Dwight Gayle was in talks to leave Newcastle United and join Middlesbrough, but it looks like that deal is off for now.
That’s a blow for both the player and Newcastle. Gayle is one of three players who were told to train with the Under-21s when pre-season began by Eddie Howe.
He was joined by Ciaran Clark and Jeff Hendrick, but they have now secured moves away. They have joined Sheffield United and Reading respectively.
But Gayle remains a Magpie, and one that is in an incredibly tough position.
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Gayle’s future is unclear as move to Middlesbrough stalls
It’s a difficult situation for Gayle. He was part of the first-team squad last season, but has now been told he isn’t needed.
His teammates are currently in Austria preparing for the new season, while he has been left at home. Gayle has been training with the kids, who are now on their own warm weather training camp.
The Newcastle Under-21s and Under-18s are currently in Spain, but Gayle hasn’t been pictured with the group.
On top of that, the senior players who he had been dropped alongside have now secured moves elsewhere.
A transfer to Middlesbrough would have been ideal for Gayle. It would have given him the chance to return to the Championship, a division he knows very well.
That’s where Newcastle were when he first joined the club, and his goals propelled us to promotion. He struck up a great partnership with Jonjo Shelvey, who thinks Gayle is ‘unreal‘.
Joining Middlesbrough would also have allowed him to remain in the North East, with his family very settled in the region since his 2016 move from Crystal Palace.
All the while, Newcastle are looking for a striker to effectively replace him and compete alongside Callum Wilson and Chris Wood.
For now, it looks like Gayle’s move to Middlesbrough is off. Let’s hope the deal can be resurrected, or that another side comes in for him.
He needs to be playing football and scoring goals, but that won’t happen at Newcastle.