On and off-field developments were the subject of another weekend of intense media speculation at Newcastle United.
The Athletic reported that two key appointments were moving closer with the Magpies hoping to name a new chief executive and director of football over the next month.
The same report also said United’s training ground was to undergo “a complete refurbishment” over the summer with a new facility “three to four years away”.
German international on the radar - reports
One new name linked with a move to St James Park over the weekend was Atalanta left-back Robin Gosens.
The German international is reportedly keen to move to Tyneside - but Atalanta CEO told Tuttomercatoweb: ““I read about Newcastle pursuing one of our players every day whether it is Gosens or somebody else.
“It is a lottery at this point. We will see who will be linked to them tomorrow.
“His absence has been a significant loss for us, both technically and humanly. It is important to recover him as soon as possible.”
Botman chase over?
One name that can seemingly be struck off the list of possible arrivals is Lille centre-back Sven Botman.
The Dutch under-21 defender has been the subject of several bids from the Magpies over the last two weeks and scored in his side’s 1-1 draw at Marseille on Sunday.
However, Lille president Olivier Letang is keen to hold on to Botman until the end of the season at least.
He told RMC: ““We had enquiries last summer for Sven but we were clear in saying that we needed Sven this season.“We had a run in the Champions League and we managed to finish first in our group.
“We have big objectives for the end of the season so Sven will stay with us until the end of the season to help us achieve these objectives.”
The waiting game on Carlos
Talks over a deal for Sevilla centre-back Diego Carlos are set to resume this week as the Magpies look to secure one of their key targets.
The Brazilian defender featured in his side’s 2-1 defeat at local rivals Real Betis on Sunday but that could be his final appearance for the La Liga side as a move to the Premier League moves closer.
Carlos is said to be “astonished” by the offer put to him by the Magpies and there is hope a deal could be struck this week.
Sky Sports have claimed United are still awaiting a response on their latest bid for Carlos and European football expert Andy Brassell believes a deal could be done.
He told BT Sport: “I think they’ll get Diego Carlos over the line from Sevilla because everyone has their price at Sevilla, because he’ll be cheaper than Sven Botman, because him and his entourage are absolutely astonished by the size of the contract Newcastle have put on the table.
“It’s potentially life-changing for him at nearly 29 years old. I’m always a bit dubious about centre-backs coming from different leagues to the Premier League in January because it’s a real steep gradient of adaptation.
“They need him to fire straight away but he’s a real leader at the back, you can say that.”
Midfield loan move
The Mirror have reported Manchester United midfielder Donny van de Beek has rejected an opportunity to join Newcastle on loan until the end of the season.
The Dutchman has been linked with a move away from Old Trafford after struggling for game-time during his time with the Red Devils.
Borussia Dortmund have also been linked with a move for the 24-year-old.Speculation surrounding Lens captain Seko Fofana has cropped up once again with relegation rivals Burnley also said to be showing interest in the former Manchester City man.
However, Eurosport France have reported Fofana as saying: “My wish is to continue the adventure and to go as far as possible.
“I always said that I feel good here.”
Surprising goalkeeping link
Give Me Sport have suggested Newcastle will revisit a possible loan deal for Flamengo striker Gabriel Barbosa and the Mail have thrown up an unlikely move for PSG goalkeeper Keylor Navas.