After years of struggles and protests against former Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley, fans of The Magpies were both surprised and delighted when it was announced that they would be taken over by new owners, the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia, and although plenty in the wider world of football raised an eyebrow or two at the deal, the main question was what kind of money would Newcastle now be throwing around in an effort to again battle at the top of the English Premier League table.

With the deal officially going through back on October 7, 2021, unquestionably their new owners have spent and fans will particularly look at the bigger money captures of Sven Botman, Bruno Guimaraes and most recently, Alexander Isak. There was every expectation that sort of expenditure would continue as if Newcastle had somehow struck lucky on a 9 Pots of Gold slot game, but if recent reports are to be believed, fans might get better odds during future transfer windows if they err on the side of caution, and do not expect many more big signings for a while.

It seems the club has now bumped heads with the Financial Fair Play regulations, and with domestic news slow owing to the Premier League pause for the first ever winter World Cup out in Qatar, this story and manager Eddie Howe’s interview with the Daily Mail will certainly have gained traction with fans.

Newcastle went into the break in great form and are sat pretty in third place in the top flight table on 30 points with eight wins from the opening 15 games, and clearly they will want to push on when the Premier League returns and the January transfer window opens, but it may not be that clear cut listening to the words of the gaffer and it seems that despite the heavy speculation, they will not be making a move for Leicester City and England midfielder James Maddison after all.

‘As a manager, I am always looking to improve the team. I will never sit here and be content – I don’t think that is the right way to manage. My way to take the team to new heights is to improve through the training of the players we have. If we can’t get to a certain level, then we need to find that in the transfer market.’

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Howe went on to confirm that he would be meeting with the board to discuss January plans shortly, adding.

‘In my position, you are keen to sign the best players you can – but those players come at a premium. Botman wasn’t cheap, Alex Isak (£60m) wasn’t cheap. Those are players who can influence the starting XI. Do we have the finances for that? I do not know. That might impact our options. It is a considerable outlay the club have to find and with FFP, I’m not sure that’s available to us. You have to work within the guidelines of the club.’

It certainly will not be what fans wanted to hear, but one option is a ‘one in one out’ policy as the Mail say numerous sources have hinted at, but equally growing revenues has its own effect, and if they can stay in the battle for the Champions League next season, that will make a big difference to their spending power.