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Spurs Opinion: Lilywhites should raid Newcastle for Sean Longstaff

According to the Guardian, Spurs have been keeping close tabs on Newcastle United starlet Sean Longstaff with a view to a potential move in the summer.

Longstaff enjoyed a breakthrough season in the Premier League at Tyneside under Rafael Benitez before suffering a serious knee injury which is expected to rule him out for the remainder of the season.

However, he has already made his mark at the highest level with a series of impressive displays in central midfield, earning the tag of England’s ‘New Michael Carrick’. (h/t Independent)

The 21-year-old was made his first senior appearance for the Magpies in the 4-0 defeat at the hands of Liverpool in December and his first Premier League start came against Chelsea a few days later.

Impressed by the youngster’s tough-tackling nature, Benitez used him regularly in the first team alongside Isaac Hayden since the turn of the year and Longstaff repaid the manager’s faith in him by scoring his first Premier League goal in the 2-0 victory over Burnley.

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The fact that Longstaff kept the likes of established players like Jonjo Shelvey, Ki-Sung Yueng and Mo Diame on the bench earlier in the year, speaks volumes of his talent and potential.

Held in high regard by the Newcastle faithful as an all-action combative midfielder, Longstaff has already shown his ability to use his impressive range of passing to control the tempo of the game in the middle of the park.

He has the skill to execute accurate long passes and switch the play, whilst his energetic nature and youthful exuberance make him valuable asset in central midfield. Longstaff is a tireless worker who is not afraid to throw himself around to break up the play with tackles and interceptions, while also contributing in the build-up to the attacks.

To put things into perspective, Longstaff is not the finished article just yet and he is still very much in the developmental phase of his career, but Spurs would have a real gem in their hands if they manage to strike a deal for the youngster in the summer.

It’s been ages since the Lilywhites have signed a new player and snapping up Longstaff would be a good way to freshen up the squad with some young blood.

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While a back up striker continues to remain a priority for Mauricio Pochettino in the summer, the manager would also need to dip into the transfer market to strengthen his central midfield department.

The departure of Mousa Dembele to China in January has left the young duo of Harry Winks and Oliver Skipp to vie for a spot in defensive midfield, while Victor Wanyama has been overlooked the manager even after regaining fitness.

Spurs have the option of calling upon the services of Eric Dier but Pochettino should be aware of the Englishman’s habit of letting the team down with moments of sloppiness.

Moreover, Dier is not the most agile of central midfielders, which certainly doesn’t work in his favour when dealing with quick counter attacks.

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Longstaff, though not an established player at the highest level, has shown strong signs of excellence and training with top-quality players, and more importantly working under the guidance of a charismatic manager like Pochettino, is likely to bring the best out of him.

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Transforming youngsters into international stalwarts has very much been the Tottenham way of doing things in recent years and Longstaff might be the next in queue.

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