Newcastle United were hammered 5-0 at Leicester City on Sunday afternoon, and much has been made of their shambolic showing all week.
The Magpies were humiliated against the Foxes, conceding four second half goals with 10 men on the pitch. Steve Bruce is under mounting pressure already, and needs a result against Manchester United this weekend.
Bruce sides have usually been pretty solid at the back, but Newcastle were woefully exposed against Leicester. That may well leave Bruce considering January reinforcements to his backline, with questions over some at St James’ Park.
Fabian Schar is wanted by Arsenal and Tottenham according to The Mirror, whilst Federico Fernandez is out of contract next summer. With all those factors in mind, it may spell bad news for Preston.
Back in July, Alan Nixon claimed that Newcastle boss Bruce wanted to sign Preston defender Ben Davies, having been impressed with his Championship displays.
Davies has continued to excel this season, forming a strong partnership with Patrick Bauer. His reading of the game and ability to play out from the back was always bound to attract Premier League interest, but no Newcastle bid came before the August deadline.
Newcastle may well be keeping tabs on Davies, especially as Bruce has often played a back five this season. Davies would fit nicely as the left-sided centre back, given his ability on the ball and passing ability on his left foot.
Newcastle will no doubt be aware that, come January, Davies will be inside the final 18 months of his Preston contract. If North End don’t go up this season, the decision to cash in on Davies will be staring Preston in the face.
Both Jordan Hugill and Callum Robinson made Premier League moves inside the final stages of their contracts, and the threat of Davies doing similar is lingering.
If Newcastle do look for a new defender, Davies could be on their radar again. Hopefully that isn’t the case, but with the summer links in mind, it’s a situation to keep an eye on over the coming months.