Updated: Aug 13, 2020
With the news surrounding the collapse of yet another takeover of Newcastle United, the situation of Matty Longstaff seems to have gone under the radar. The talented youngster is no longer a Newcastle player, with his contract now expired - What now for Longstaff?
Rewind to October last year, a few days after Longstaff had scored the winner against Manchester United. I was able to sit in during an interview both he and his older brother, Sean, were giving to the media. Matty reflected on being turned away by Newcastle as a boy, “It was one of the toughest things you can go through as a kid. We have supported Newcastle since we were little,” Matty said.
I remember Middlesbrough and Sunderland constantly asking us every year to come and join them and my Dad saying ‘He wants to go to Newcastle.’ I finally got the chance to come in and train with them. It was a four week thing and and they pulled me and one other kid in here and said, ‘Look, thanks for coming, but we’re not going to keep you.’ “I remember Sunderland asked me three or four times if I would go and play for them, but no, I wanted to do everything I could to get back to Newcastle,” Matty says. “Middlesbrough came in for me as well. But there was only one club that I wanted to play for and thankfully I got back into the set up.”
Longstaff had so much determination, so much fire in his belly to get back to his hometown club. To look at the situation he is now, without a club, without his beloved Newcastle United is criminal. Longstaff has proved that he has what it takes to play at the highest level, despite the takeover saga, his contract situation should have been resolved. The takeover should not have distracted from keeping one of the brightest young talents the club has seen in a long time.
There has been no official word from Newcastle regarding Longstaff's release, however, the midfielder is now free to talk to other clubs. Like Newcastle, Longstaff has been left in limbo due to the takeover saga that has rumbled on for far too long. Manager, Steve Bruce, stated last month, “We can only ask that question and see. In the next week or so we will find out whether he is going to stay or move on.” The club now have that answer, as they blindly sit and do nothing about the situation.
As time continues to tick towards another new Premier League season, Newcastle look bare boned, skeleton like and among the favourites to be relegated. It is not only the loss of Longstaff, there has been no decision on the loan players from last season; Valentino Lazaro, Nabil Bentaleb, Danny Rose and Jetro Willems. As it stands, Newcastle will be heading into the new campaign five players lighter. In an already thread bare squad, it is hard to see many positives surrounding the club at the moment.
Supporters will hope that the club resolve Longstaff's situation, however, with the takeover saga continuing to rumble on, the club may have missed their chance.