Date: 28th January 2009 at 5:33pm
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Mike Ashley’s surprise visit to the Newcastle United training ground was not a fluke or a course of nature, rather, the billionaire was at the ground to oversee the transfer activity of the club, and to assure Joe Kinnear that he would back the manager with finances provided they were for the ‘right players.’

Ashley spent three odd hours discussing the future of Shay Given at the club’s facilities yesterday, and also made a surprising decision to pursue Portuguese hotshot Miguel Veloso.

The move was meant to entice Given to stay, as Ashley tried to assert that he had not given up on United and would invest in players like Veloso who could take the club forward.

A club source revealed today that the 22-year-old is a player Ashley wants to see at St. James’ Park, and has sanctioned £10 million to go ahead with the transfer.

The source said exclusive to Vital Newcastle United: ‘The owner was personally here, and he was serious about making progress in the transfer market. There was a real buzz around the place, and Veloso was the topic of discussion.’

Bolton Wanderers, and Manchester City have been linked with Veloso, but Newcastle United have now made their move for the midfield maestro.

Vital Newcastle United revealed yesterday of Newcastle’s overtures to sign the player, and it has emerged today that he is player who Ashley sees fit enough to build a side around.

Sport.co.uk revealed earlier that Veloso’s agent had confirmed to the site that his client was the subject of a bid from the Toon.

Sporting Lisbon, Veloso’s current club want £12 million for the Portuguese International, but Derek Llambias – the Magpies’ Managing Director hopes to tie up the deal for about £10 million.