Lewis Ambrose

Newcastle blocked moves for two of Benítez’s deadline day targets

Newcastle United reportedly prevented moves for two Rafa Benítez targets on deadline day.

The Spaniard had hoped to sign Liverpool’s Ragnar Klavan and Stoke City’s Erik Pieters on Thursday, the Evening Chronicle report.

However, the Magpies were unwilling to rubber stamp the deals. The club reportedly insisted Klavan, 32, did not fit the club’s criteria for incoming players despite Benítez’s belief the defender could provide cover in two positions.

A derisory €2.2m offer was tabled for Pieters, a fee Stoke never would have agreed to.

Federico Fernández did join the club on deadline day, completing a €6.5m move from Swansea.

Newcastle did make seven signings over the summer but spent just €35m despite raising €47m from sales.