A national newspaper claims United is interested in signing Everton midfielder James McCarthy who is 28 and unwanted at Goodison Park. It would be a bizarre turn of events if Bruce was allowed to lash money and a transfer fee, no matter how small, on a player widely regarded to have fallen right out of the picture on Merseyside and at his age is unlikely to have any sell-on value. But this is Newcastle United after all so logic is not always in the frame when things happen.

On Friday, Ian Murtagh of The Star claimed United were about to sign Nice midfielder  Allan Saint-Maximin- click here but as you and I both know it hasn’t happened with Lee Charnley not exactly known for the pace at which he can get jobs done. Pay peanuts, get monkeys and all of that. The Mail is repeating the words of both Mike Ashley and Steve Bruce have said about not selling Sean Longstaff. We all know they will though – just perhaps not now and maybe next summer when his value has increased – click here

The Express claims United is interested in Hull City’s 22-year-old Jarrod Bowen – click here Apparently Bowen is thought of as being the “perfect” replacement for Ayoze Perez. Norwich and Southampton are after him as well it is reported. That is the end of the transfer market Ashley has us operating in these days. The same paper reckons United has made a 7 millions bid for PSG’s left-back Stanley N’Soki who is also wanted by Southampton – click here

A national newspaper also claims United is interested in Emil Krafth, the Amiens 24-year-old Swedish left-back who might be available for only  £1m – which is a price I think Mike Ashley could relate to.

Speaking of left-backs and to no-one’s great surprise any interest United may have had in Spurs’ left-back Danny Rose has more or less ended as the club could not match his money at Tottenham. There’s speculation of him going to PSG. No-one thought this was anything other than paper-talk.

There was some further fanciful speculation that United are sniffing around  Porto’s Moussa Marega who has a reported release of €30m. The player however is 28 and there seems little chance of the club seriously competing with West Ham for him.

There has been further reportage linking United to the crocks Andy Carroll and Charlie Austin. Even for United replacing tow proven strikers in Perez and Rondon with an unproven import and a crock would seem far fetched but who thought Steve Bruce would be the man in the United dug-out back in May?

Meanwhile The Mirror clocked the poor turn-out that travelled to Preston for the pre-season game and saw us lose in what was Steve Bruce’s first game in charge. There is likely to be a pretty low turn-out at Hibs this week and the game v St Etienne at SJP is on course to be pretty sparsely attended. Tickets for the Norwich game at Carrow Road went to zero points very quickly. Bruce commented:

“I have said many times if I hadn’t played football, I might have been standing with them. Though that weather would have tested my loyalty today! It is quite simple, I am one of them. I will try to do my best. I wasn’t nervous about the reaction. I am not everybody’s cup of tea, I am not Rafa Benitez. But whoever would have followed in his footsteps would have found it difficult. The last couple of weeks have been a blur but it’s the best job I could ever think of.”

The press seemed to have gotten a little excited about some bairns singing “Brucie, Brucie give us a wave”. Let’s see how the ticket sales are going eh?

Give the Geordie stuff a rest man Steve, it didn’t stop you from taking the Mackem job and behaving like you were the cat with the cream at the time. See what I did there?

So far, the club has managed to complete one incoming transfer. There are two weeks of the transfer window remaining.