Without a single signing in the January transfer window so far, Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew has under two weeks left if he is to strengthen his squad this month.
The Magpies have been linked with a number of players across the continent over the past few weeks, but are yet to make any concrete offers for their reported targets.
So with time running out, we look at the Toon’s current needs and four areas that could do with reinforcing before the winter window slams shut.
Dutch striker Luuk De Jong is a target for Newcastle United
It’s no secret that Newcastle United are looking to bolster their attacking options during the current transfer window. A quick glance at their list of top scorers explains why.
On-loan striker Loic Remy, who is at St. James’ Park on a temporary basis from Queens Park Rangers, is way out in front with 11 Premier League strikes to his name.
The Toon’s other recognised forwards, namely Papiss Cisse and Shola Ameobi, have collectively mustered just one top-flight goal despite racking up 15 starts and the same amount in substitute appearances between them.
This drought from two international forwards has quickened the Toon’s pursuit of a new goalscorer, and nailing down a permanent deal for Remy should be top of their list of priorities.
The arrival of Dutch striker Luuk De Jong from Borussia Monchengladbach—who is close to joining the club, according to Jason Mellor in the Daily Star—would also bring some much-needed competition to the Magpies’ squad.
Moussa Sissoko has been played out of position this season
With the unpredictable form of Hatem Ben Arfa, coupled with Jonas Gutierrez’s departure to Norwich City, Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew has some decisions to make in wide areas.
Yoan Gouffran has made the left side of midfield his own this term and become a huge favourite on the terraces in the process, but it is a different story on the right.
The Toon manager has used Moussa Sissoko to fill the gap left by the erratic Ben Arfa in recent months, but it is widely accepted that his best position is elsewhere.
A new face, and preferably one which could feature on either flank, would give Pardew added options on the wings and allow him to move Sissoko to a more central role in the event of any departures.
Could Remy Cabella be the man to fill Yohan Cabaye's shoes?
Speculation surrounding the future of Yohan Cabaye has intensified recently.
With Paris Saint-Germain reportedly set to bid for the playmaker, according to Samuel Stevens in The Independent, a huge hole could be created in Alan Pardew’s side.
The French international has been a key player for the Magpies this term, and is in a fine run of form, with five goals in his last seven Premier League appearances.
One option in the event of the 28-year-old’s exit would be to move Moussa Sissoko inside, but ideally the Magpies would like to sign a like-for-like replacement.
Montpellier’s Remy Cabella is the latest name linked with a move to Tyneside, as reported by Sky Sports. However, given Cabaye’s influence from his attacking midfield position, Newcastle would dearly love to hold on to the former Lille star.
Mathieu Debuchy’s recent suspension did Newcastle's defence no favours
Mathieu Debuchy’s recent three-game suspension, coupled with a knee injury to Newcastle United captain Fabricio Coloccini, prompted a major reshuffle at the back for the Magpies.
The lack of a back-up right-back saw Davide Santon switched from the left before Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa—a recognised centre-half—filled the position during the last two games.
Though Debuchy will return to the Toon’s starting XI for their next fixture away at Norwich City, Alan Pardew would like to avoid such reorganisation in the future.
Not since James Perch have the Magpies had a genuine all-rounder who can play anywhere across the back-four, and a similar addition to the current squad would help alleviate such upheaval again.