European club joins race for Newcastle United 'target' as pundit reveals Kristoffer Ajer fears

Former Leeds striker Noel Whelan believes Kristoffer Ajer would be a good signing for Newcastle United, despite questioning the player’s character.

Tuesday, 8th June 2021, 4:30 pm
Celtic defender Kristoffer Ajer has been strongly linked with a move to Newcastle United. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)
Celtic defender Kristoffer Ajer has been strongly linked with a move to Newcastle United. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

The Norwegian international is a known target for the Magpies but they face competition from other clubs across Europe.

Ajer has 12 months remaining on his contract at Celtic, though admitted last week he expects to leave Scotland this summer.

The whole transfer saga has got Whelan questioning the 23-year-old’s character – fearing he could jump ship if things get tough on Tyneside.

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He told Football Insider: “He will probably end up being a very good signing for Newcastle. The difficult one is why could he not be that for Celtic?

“As a manager, you look at that and you’re questioning his character straight away.

“Is he going to fight or sink? Is he going to jump ship? He’s done it once. What’s to say if things don’t go right at Newcastle he won’t do the same thing?”

Lille join Velasco race

Lille have joined the race for Independiente winger Alan Velasco, a player reportedly tracked by Newcastle and Brighton.

Eighteen-year-old Velasco is regarded as one of the best young players in South American having scored one goal and provided two assists in 17 appearances this term.

The attacker joined Independiente’s academy in 2012 before making his competitive debut aged 16. He later won the South American under-17s Championship in 2019 with Argentina.

Recent reports have claimed Newcastle and Brighton are keen to sign Velasco, with the latter said to have tabled a £8.8m bid.

However, Ligue 1 champions Lille are now in the mix for his signature, according to speculation in France.