By Alex Stevens
Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce has confirmed that Newcastle bid for Andros Townsend in the January window.
The Palace senior official admitted at the weekend that the Magpies made an attempt to re-sign the player just six months after selling him to the south London club.
But Allardyce claimed that Townsend “never” came close to leaving Selhurst Park as he admitted that a loan transfer would not have been accepted by the Premier League club.
The former England manager’s confirmation came after strong speculation in the final 10 days of the window that Townsend could make a sensational return to St James’ Park.
It was widely reported that Newcastle wanted a loan move with a view to a permanent summer transfer, while Palace were holding out to recoup the £13million they paid to sign the England international last summer.
“Never. Not ever,” said Allardyce, as quoted by the Mail, when asked if Townsend came close to leaving in January.
“The only interest was a loan from Newcastle which was never going to happen. His long term future is with Palace.”
Townsend has struggled to make an impact at Palace after pushing hard for a return to the Premier League following Newcastle’s relegation to the second tier.
In 27 appearances in all competitions under Allardyce and ex-manager Alan Pardew, the Tottenham academy graduate has scored just a single goal and supplied four assists.
Townsend has been a substitute for each of Palace’s last three league matches although he did end up playing 45 minutes of their 4-0 defeat to Sunderland on Saturday.
In other Newcastle transfer news, the club have lined up an Arsenal raid for a defender after a major development.