Much maligned Stewart Downing could be heading to the North-East again…
Liverpool are prepared to sell Stewart Downing to Newcastle for £5m, just two years after paying Aston Villa £20m for the winger, reports the Liverpool Echo.
The much criticised attacker has not featured in Liverpool’s last two friendly matches, and the club are willing to move him on while he still warrants some kind of transfer fee.
Impressive Brazilian Phillipe Coutinho is guaranteed one of the wide positions, but it appears Brendan Rodgers favours the pace and technical ability of Raheem Sterling, Iago Aspas or youngster Jordon Ibe ahead of the England man.
Newcastle are looking to bolster attacking options in the final third, and will finalise moves for strikers Loic Remy and Darren Bent soon. Downing will be brought in to provide service to the new look strike duo.
The 29-year-old endured a miserable start to his career since the big money move in 2011, and failed to register a single goal or assist in 36 Premier League appearances. After losing his place in the starting line-up to 17-year-old Raheem Sterling, to Downing’s credit, he worked hard and won his place back in the team, but has still never looked anything like a player worth near the £20m bracket.
Downing enjoyed arguably his best years in the North-East with Middlesbrough, where he earned most of his 34 England caps. He will be hoping first-team football at Newcastle revitalises his chances of making the World Cup squad should England qualify for Brazil 2014 next summer.