Shaqiri move could spark domino effect
NEWCASTLE United’s hopes of signing Andros Townsend will hinge on whether or not Stoke City can agree on a deal for Matt Ritchie.
Townsend partially addressed talk about his future by stating he was focused on pre-season training yesterday while Ritchie was all smiles during United’s training camp in Ireland.
Speaking to Football.London, Townsend had said: “Your name can be linked with other clubs every transfer window it seems, but you have just got to get on with it and focus on what you are doing for the club you are contracted to until that changes.
“For me, I am just focusing on pre-season and trying to get some minutes under my belt in Sweden and Denmark.”
The exit of Xherdan Shaqiri to Liverpool could also result in Stoke coming back with an increased offer for the former AFC Bournemouth man.
United rejected a £15m offer for Ritchie earlier this month and Rafa Benitez has made it clear to his board that he isn’t interested in selling unless they can conjure up a named replacement in former Newcastle winger Townsend.
It is understood that the same agent is working on both the incoming and outgoing deals surrounding Townsend and Ritchie, but their representative has failed so far to strike a deal with either Crystal Palace or the Potters.
Benitez signed Kenedy this week and has competition for places on the flanks with Jacob Murphy and Christian Atsu also on board for the campaign.
It leaves Benitez with a decision to make on Rolando Aarons and Cal Roberts who will be classed as back-up players for the coming season.
Aarons has attracted interest from West Brom while Roberts, currently training in Ireland after signing a new deal, may go out on loan.