Newcastle United ‘close to signing’ EFL record-breaker on a free transfer

Rory Finneran is the subject of interest from Newcastle United.Rory Finneran is the subject of interest from Newcastle United.
Rory Finneran is the subject of interest from Newcastle United. | Getty Images
The teenage prodigy made his first team debut at just 15 years old

Newcastle United are edging closer to the signing of Blackburn Rovers wonderkid Rory Finneran, according to reports.

Finneran is the latest in a long line of starlets to progress from the highly-esteemed Blackburn academy which has also developed the likes of Joe Rankin-Costello, Lewis Travis, David Raya, John Buckley and Adam Wharton in recent times.

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The teenager has been at Blackburn since he was eight-years-old and is regarded as a tough-tackling defensive midfielder with a great eye for pass. His form at youth level has earned him 13 caps for Republic of Ireland U15 and a further 10 caps at U17 level where he captains the side.

Finneran is highly-rated in the Blackburn set-up and became the club’s youngster ever appearance holder earlier this season at just 15 years and 312 days old when he was brought on from the subs bench against Cambridge in the FA Cup. He was also included in the matchday squad for his side’s FA Cup clash with Newcastle but didn’t make it on to the pitch as his side were defeated on penalties.

The 16-year-old is tipped to be a star for years to come but his future at Blackburn remains uncertain as he is yet to sign a professional contract with the club.

The Lancashire Telegraph claims the youngster is ‘increasingly likely’ to leave Ewood Park for pastures new and NUFC Blog claims the Magpies are the frontrunners to snatch the player on a free transfer as they continue to try and build up an arsenal of talented young footballers.

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Newcastle could offer Finneran a great pathway into first team football in years to come, having already handed opportunities to academy stars such as Lewis Miley, Elliot Anderson and Sean Longstaff in recent years.

The move would see Finneran link up with Republic of Ireland prospects Cathal Heffernan, signed from AC Milan and Alex Murphy, signed from Galway in the Newcastle academy next season.

Newcastle’s youth team has also added the likes of Alfie Harrison from Manchester City, Garang Kuol from Central Coast Mariners and Yankuba Minteh from Odense Boldklub with a view to giving them first team exposure in the near future.

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