By Noel Whelan

10th Dec, 2020 | 4:42pm

It's Happening - Exclusive: Pundit reacts to massive Newcastle development

Newcastle United midfielder Sean Longstaff is laying the groundwork to leave the club as soon as possible.

That is according to ex-Leeds United striker Noel Whelan, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, about the 23-year-old enlisting the services of super agent Pini Zahavi.

The Daily Mail claims that the centre-midfielder, who has just 18 months remaining on his contract on Tyneside, has signed a one-year agreement with the renowned broker and player representative.

Zahavi’s client list includes PSG’s Neymar, Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski, Manchester United’s Alex Telles and Tottenham’s Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg among others.

The 77-year-old Israeli has also been responsible for hundreds of other elite footballers over the last three decades.

When asked by Football Insider for his verdict on Longstaff making such a landmark change, Whelan believes the writing is on the wall for him to quit St James’ Park.

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“It’s strange,” he said. |It is really weird when a player changes agents because it is normally done for a reason.

“Either something is not right with his last agent, and I very much doubt that he stole money off him, or he feels he is not fighting his corner.

“That could be in regards to a new contract at Newcastle or negotiating a move away.

“Zahavi might have relationships with other clubs that could benefit him in the future. That is usually what happens.

“Different agents have different relationships with clubs and chairmans. That could be why he has moved.”

Longstaff is a big fans favourite after graduating from the academy to establish himself as a key player at Newcastle.

He began this season out of Steve Bruce’s side but made his fourth consecutive Premier League start in the 2-0 win over Crystal Palace last weekend.

In other news, Newcastle United are set to block January exit of yet-to-be-seen after £20million reveal.