By Harvey Byrne

Newcastle and Aston Villa have sent scouts to watch Dundalk ace Daryl Horgan, according to a report.

The Sun has claimed that the Championship duo are monitoring the 24-year-old winger after an impressive campaign in Ireland’s top division, as well as in Europe.

The uncapped Republic of Ireland international has bagged 10 goals in 22 appearances this season and even got on the score sheet as his side suffered a 2-1 defeat against Zenit St Petersburg on Thursday.

It is reported that Rafa Benitez sent over representatives to watch the FAI Cup final between Dundalk and Cork City, which saw Horgan play 120 minutes in a 1-0 defeat after extra-time.

Meanwhile, it is believed that Steve Bruce has taken an interest following his goal in Russia, with division rivals Ipswich, Reading and Preston also keeping a watchful eye on his current situation.

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Horgan’s contract runs out in December, which has caught the attention of many of the Championship clubs.

However, the recently relegated Newcastle and Villa are considered two of the biggest clubs in the division, while also boasting the most wealth as they look to secure their targets.

Irish players have generally done well when moving to England, which includes such players as Damien Duff, Robbie Keane, Shane Long, Seamus Coleman and Shay Given.

In other Newcastle transfer news, the club have no plans to sell this forward in January.