By Richard Parks
Jamaal Lascelles has insisted he is “happy” at Newcastle United amid speculation of strong interest from Everton.
The Mirror claim the Merseysiders are preparing a £25million move for the centre-back as they look to strengthen their defence in the summer window.
Lascelles, 24, has had a fine season at St James’ Park but claimed he is committed to Newcastle or not paying too much attention to links elsewhere.
“When you’re flicking through Twitter or people say there’s rumours about this, that and the other you’re aware of it but I don’t take any notice,” said Lascelles, as quoted by the Sky Sports website.
“I’m a Newcastle player, I’m happy here, I’m the captain and things are going really well. You hear about rumours, but I’m just concentrating on Newcastle.”
Football Insider verdict:
Given that Lascelles signed a new six-year contract last year that statistics site Spotrac claim is worth £40,000-a-week, it will take a serious sum of money to persuade Newcastle to cash in on one of their prize assets. Lascelles has been a standout player for the Magpies side that secured Premier League safety with five matches remaining and is one of those who has thrived under the tutelage of Rafael Benitez. He has developed into a commanding Premier League centre-back with the potential to be a mighty fine one as he enters his peak years. Newcastle fans will be concerned if Everton make a concerted bid to prise Lascelles from their club this summer. The Merseysiders are cash-rich and not afraid of spending mega sums on players, as they proved with their purchases of the likes of Jordan Pickford, Michael Keane, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Wayne Rooney last summer. Lascelles has broken his silence to claim he is ‘happy’ at St James’ Park, but will he still feel the same way if he is offered a double-your-money contract? Perhaps not.