By support

30th Nov, 2016 | 5:52am

Top-flight manager dismisses Newcastle move for 24-year-old talisman

By Will Butcher

Eddie Howe has rubbished claims that Newcastle are looking to sign Bournemouth’s star-striker Callum Wilson.

The Evening Chronicle claimed last week that the 24-year-old ace was high on the radar of Magpies manager Rafa Benitez, as the January transfer window looms.

However, Howe told his players to concentrate on themselves and reminded his Cherries squad that speculation should not affect their performances on the pitch.

“It’s got no relevance to us,” Howe told the Bournemouth Echo. “Not to the football club or to Callum. There’s no substance to the story.

“The only time that will influence him is if he believes it or reads it himself. And I would encourage my players to just concentrate on their day-to-day job.”

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Wearing the number 13 shirt for Howe’s Bournemouth, Wilson has scored four goals this season in 12 games against the likes of Arsenal, Hull and Watford.

His impressive ability to lead the line had reportedly interested Newcastle, despite Benitez’s squad already boasting strikers such as Dwight Gayle, Daryl Murphy and Aleksander Mitrovic.

Wilson is in his third season at the Vitality Stadium, after moving to Bournemouth from League One side Coventry City in 2014 for a fee believed to be around £3million.

Since the move, Wilson has found the back of the net 33 times in 75 league and cup encounters for the Cherries, with 23 of those strikes coming in Bournemouth’s 2014-15 promotion winning season.

Newcastle are likely to enter the market in January, despite bringing in 12 new faces in the summer.

But a move to link Wilson with former teammate Matt Ritchie has been laughed off by Howe, who is set to keep his attacking spearhead.

In other Newcastle transfer news, this Serbian is reportedly on Benitez’s radar but the Toon face a battle to sign the defender.