Newcastle United are considering a cut-price move to sign Alanyaspor defender Steven Caulker as a last-minute addition to Steve Bruce’s backline, according to the Mirror.
Bruce has long been an admirer of the former Liverpool, Southampton and Queens Park Rangers centre-back, and is understood to have made enquires throughout the summer as to the 27-year-old’s fitness and form after once again being left impressed by his performances in pre-season.
The one-time England international has only been with Alanyaspor since January, when he joined the Super Lig side after five-months as a free agent following his release by Dundee. But he could be allowed the leave the Bahcesehir School Arena for a reduced fee this summer, as he has one-year remaining on his contract.
It is alleged President Hasan Cavusoglu would accept an offer of £2million for the Tottenham Hotspur product, but even that would be too much for the forgotten defender.
TransferMarkt value Caulker at a much-more realistic £540,000, which places him in line with Championship defenders Ethan Pinnock of Brentford and Matty Pearson of Luton Town, somewhat highlighting how underwhelming an addition he would prove to be.
Caulker is far from the player that saw Liverpool take on him on loan, and would need injuries to rip through our ranks to get anywhere near the starting XI.
Newcastle chiefs considering handing Bruce his long-term target would, therefore, be yet another worrying sign of mediocrity on Tyneside, after allowing Champions League-winner Rafa Benitez and last season’s top goalscorer Ayoze Perez to leave.
The club had just started to turn things around slightly with the additions of Joelinton and Allan Saint-Maximin, but are back to looking at targets that do not suggest they intend to move United back up the table.