Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew
It’s just 55 days until the January transfer window swings open, and clubs across Europe are already identifying their top targets.
At Newcastle United, much like it was during the summer, a centre-forward is on manager Alan Pardew’s wish list.
The Toon’s hierarchy were heavily criticised ahead of the current campaign after failing to make one permanent signing. The only arrival was that of Loic Remy, who arrived on loan from Queens Park Rangers.
However, Magpies owner Mike Ashley is known to favour the winter window. With that in mind, we look at five players who would fit the bill perfectly at St. James’ Park.
While a queue of suitors is likely to form for the England international, Carl Eldridge of the Daily Star has reported that Newcastle United is his preferred destination.
The 20-year-old has failed to impress David Moyes during his short reign at Old Trafford and has been used sparingly so far this season, appearing just once in the League Cup.
Magpies boss Alan Pardew is a known admirer of the winger, and a switch to St. James’ Park would give the Toon boss further options as he looks to tweak his preferred 4-3-3 formation.
Not for the first time this year, Newcastle United have been linked with a move for prolific Heerenveen striker Alfred Finnbogason—but they may face competition for his signature.
In any case, the Toon’s interest is well known, and the 24-year-old—who has netted 13 times in only nine games this season—could well be the answer to Alan Pardew’s prayers.
The Reykjavik-born international has never found goals hard to come by during spells in Belgium, Sweden and Holland as well as his home country, and is eager to try his luck in England.
The top flight in France has become a regular shopping destination for Newcastle United over the last few years, and they could be ready to do business on the other side of the channel once more in January.
The Ghanaian striker was originally linked with a move to St. James’ Park over the summer, but given Mike Ashley’s reluctance to splash the cash, the switch failed to materialise.
With just 18 months remaining on his contract at the Stade Velodrome, a double-figures offer could tempt the Cote d’Azur club to cut their losses.
As reported by Paul Collins of the Daily Mail, Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew has suggested he wants more "homegrown" players at St. James’ Park, and Coventry City striker Callum Wilson certainly measures up.
The striker has been in eye-catching form for the Sky Blues so far this term, netting 12 goals in just 15 appearances for the League One side.
Even though the forward recently signed a new two-year deal with his hometown club, a big bid could tempt cash-strapped Coventry to sell.
The 21-year-old worked his way up through the youth ranks with City and enjoyed loan spells with Kettering Town and Tamworth in 2011.
With the future of Newcastle United midfielder Yohan Cabaye up in the air once more, Blackpool midfielder Tom Ince could find himself in the Magpies’ sights in January.
Any departure is likely to force Alan Pardew’s hand in the transfer market, and with his Seasiders contract set to expire in the summer, Ince would be an obvious replacement.