By Wayne Veysey

30th Mar, 2017 | 6:34pm

Report: Newcastle in battle to fend off PL big guns and tie up defender deal

By Harry Sykes

Newcastle are locked in a battle to tie emerging defender Lewis Gibson down to a long-term deal, according to a report.

Bleacher Report claim the north-east giants are keen for academy ace Gibson to sign a professional contract.

It is said that Newcastle will need to fend off interest from Premier League big guns to keep the promising 16-year-old, who is regarded as one of their brightest academy stars.

Arsenal, Manchester United and Manchester City have all been credited with an interest in the defender, who can play anywhere across the back line.

Gibson, whose elder brother Liam is also in the Newcastle academy set-up, is currently on scholarship terms on Tyneside.

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He has already been capped 10 times by England at Under-17 level and has even made two appearances this season for Peter Beardsley’s Under-23s development squad.

Bleacher Report state that it currently appears more likely that Gibson will quit St James’ Park rather than commit to signing a new contract with the club.

Meanwhile, Newcastle’s senior side are back in action on Saturday when they host relegation-threatened Wigan in the Championship at St James’ Park.

In other Newcastle transfer news, Mike Ashley is plotting a sensational £30million bid.

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