Newcastle agree to sign Lloyd Kelly on free transfer after leaving Bournemouth

Lloyd Kelly - Newcastle agree to sign Lloyd Kelly on free transfer after leaving Bournemouth

Newcastle United are expected to complete the free transfer signing of former Bournemouth defender Lloyd Kelly in their first breakthrough in a pivotal window.

Having missed out on Fulham defender Tosin Adarabioyo who decided to join Chelsea instead, the breakthrough in negotiations for Kelly will be a big boost to manager Eddie Howe.

Howe signed Kelly for Bournemouth from Bristol City for £13 million back in 2017 and Newcastle felt the 25-year-old’s capture offered excellent value for money as a free agent. The defender is expected to sign a five-year deal.

Talks have taken place for several weeks and Kelly had other offers to consider but decided Newcastle was the perfect club for him and he was keen to work with Howe again.

Sources have told Telegraph Sport that a deal has been verbally agreed with the player and his representatives and he will become the club’s first summer signing when the transfer window officially opens.

Kelly can play as a left-sided centre-back or as left-back and will add depth to a defence that will be without both Sven Botman and Jamaal Lascelles until the end of the 2024.

Kelly has also had his fair share of injury problems but he should still have the peak years of his career ahead of him and has previous experience playing for Howe which should mean he needs little time to adjust to playing for his new team.

Newcastle will now focus their efforts on the recruitment of a right winger, right-sided centre-back and a striker. Newcastle sources have admitted that their list of targets is a small one this summer and several of their targets are likely to be expensive and difficult to prise away from their current clubs.

Newcastle’s squad depth was exposed last season during a crippling injury crisis and the club’s hierarchy are determined to strengthen Howe’s hand as they look to compete for a top-six finish next season.

They also need to sell players this month and, as revealed by Telegraph Sport, are currently weighing up a number of offers for exciting young winger Yankuba Minteh.

Striker Callum Wilson could also be sold and the 32-year-old is thought to be interested in a new challenge after falling behind Alexander Isak in the pecking order at St James’ Park. Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin is one of the names who has been discussed as a replacement for Wilson if he leaves.

Newcastle have enquired about signing Burnley goalkeeper James Trafford but have not yet met the valuation of the player with a bid.

Following the failure to qualify for European football next season, Newcastle switched their goalkeeping target from Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsdale, who would have been direct competition for current No 1 Nick Pope, to a young goalkeeper who will learn behind him next season.

Talks with Burnley are set to continue although a deal is highly unlikely to go through until the start of July due to profit and sustainability concerns. The club needs to raise money through sales before the end of June.

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