By support

31st Aug, 2017 | 11:44am

Report: Newcastle leading race for late deal with proven PL defender

By Abigail Withey

Newcastle United are in talks with Southampton over sealing a deal for left-back Matt Target and are said to be in ‘pole-position’ to land the England Under 21, according to a recent report.

TEAMtalk has revealed that Rafa Benitez’ side are the frontrunners to sign the 21-year-old despite the Saints receiving a number of enquiries over the starlet.

The media outlet claims that the Saints are willing to allow Targett to leave the club on a loan deal as Ryan Betrand and Sam McQueen are above him in the club’s backline pecking order.

Targett penned a new five-year-deal with the Premier League side at the beginning of August but the Magpies are still said to be working tirelessly to agree terms with the club.

The youngster is a product of the Southampton academy and finally moved up to the senior squad in 2014, where he has since made a total of 40 appearances.

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Targett has proven himself in the top flight competition but unfortunately missed out on a majority of the 2016/17 season due to a hamstring injury.

His last performance in the first team was in one of the Saints’ closing games of the Premier League 2016/17 campaign against Manchester United, where the Englishman played the full 90 minutes of their goalless draw.

Football Insider verdict

Matt Targett is an excellent player to pursue in the closing hours of the transfer window. After Newcastle’s shaky start to the Premier League season with the defence looking weak and unsustainable, signing a left-back is the right thing to do. The Magpies’ main aim of the season is to remain in the top flight, and Targett will be able to help with that as he’s shown he is a capable Premier League defender as well as impressing in the England Under-21 squad. While a permanent move would be ideal, Benitez should take the opportunity to sign him on a loan basis to see how he shapes up in the Toon squad.

In other Newcastle United transfer news, a reliable journalist has given an update on one of the Toon players after a lot of speculation surrounding a move.

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