Following claims that Crystal Palace are poised to trigger the release clause for Newcastle winger Andros Townsend, reports on Tyneside now suggest that the Toon Army will be playing hardball with Pardew and co.
Having taken the former Tottenham man to the North East during the January transfer window, Mike Ashley will no doubt have been astonished by the impact the 24-year-old has had on the club’s supporters, all of whom appear to have fallen head-over-heels in love with his direct style of play.
An almost ever-present presence in the side since making the switch, it’s of little surprise to hear that the people of Newcastle are so keen to keep Townsend on the books as they attempt to bounce back from the agony of relegation at the first time of asking, but as things stand, a clause in his contract remains a giant elephant crouched ominously in the corner of the room.
Whilst the Geordie faithful believe that Benitez’s long-term ambitions and their “sleeping giant” status is enough to keep even the most ambitious of players on side, the lure of an immediate return to the Premier League will likely be playing on the mind of the England hopeful, as he weighs up the pros and cons of the albeit flattering predicament he finds himself in whilst away on holiday over the next week or so.
Contract details are often shrouded in mystery, but the above report goes into startling detail over the intricate quirks of the deal that Townsend is currently signed up to with the Magpies, proving beyond any doubt that Mike Ashley and co. find themselves in a rather precarious position as things stand.
Which way do you think this one will end up going?