The former Liverpool defender John Arne Riise, now at Roma, emerged yesterday as one of the two "£10m" players from Italy whom Newcastle caretaker manager Joe Kinnear wishes to bring on loan in January, should Kinnear still be at St James' Park then. That is not certain as due diligence is being performed by at least one of two American companies interested in acquiring Newcastle. It was said yesterday that it is almost complete.
There is no guarantee that an offer acceptable to owner Mike Ashley will follow, though, which is why Kinnear, and Dennis Wise, has begun scouting.
"I have already got my shortlist and I will be giving it to Mike," Kinnear said. "We need two players in as soon as possible and I have them in mind. "One is with Roma and he is not in the team at the moment and the other is a player who has already scored against us this season. I already know that the player in Rome would cost us £2m to bring him over here."
Riise, 28, was sold to Roma for £4m by Liverpool in the summer. The Norwegian has struggled to get into the team but left-back is one of the problem positions for Newcastle.
There was speculation on Tyneside that Arsenal's Brazilian midfielder Denilson, though clearly not in Italy, is another Kinnear target. Denilson, 20, cost £3.4m when he joined Arsenal from Sao Paulo. Kinnear has spoken of his friendship with Arsène Wenger before.
Newcastle are at Chelsea today, where they will be without Joey Barton. Barton may require surgery on the knee ligament damage he suffered against Wigan last Saturday but will be out for eight to 10 weeks regardless, according to Kinnear.Reuse content