Date: 6th April 2009 at 7:42am
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Magpies gaffer Alan Shearer has already planned ahead for the summer, after telling Mike Ashley the club’s current crop of players will instigate the same relegation prospects next season if wholesale changes are not made in the coming months.

Ashley has responded with a promise that given Shearer keeps the hapless Toon up, £50 million will be allocated for transfers in the summer.

To that effect Shearer has identified several Premier League players who he considers instrumental to the side challenging for honours next season. And one of them plays for Manchester United.

On Sunday, Toon assistant manager Iain Dowie was sent to scout potential targets at Manchester United’s 3-2 win against Aston Villa at Old Trafford. Under the guise of preparing for the final match of the season against Villa, Vital Newcastle can exclusively reveal that Iain Dowie was taking notes on potential target Nani, a player Shearer considers can fulful a Laurent Robert/David Ginola role at the club.

The 175m tall player arrived at Manchester United from Sporting Lisbon in 2007 for a fee believed to be £15 million. The player has however failed to command a regular place on Sir Alex Ferguson’s side, and Newcastle are keen to tap into those insecurities to try to lure the 22-year-old left-sided winger in the summer.

The Magpies are ready to offer £10 million for the Portuguese ace, and will approach the Old Trafford club in the summer, although an initial approach has already been made, some sources claim.