The intriguing Newcastle and Everton summer swap deal that just might boost both clubs

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Newcastle have been linked with a shock bid for an Everton star - but could both clubs help each other out this summer?

It wasn’t the only eyebrow-raising details of the report, but one of the more unexpected claims in Thursday’s Daily Telegraph article about Newcastle United’s transfer policy for the coming summer was that they were pursuing Everton striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Calvert-Lewin has endured consecutive seasons of struggle, first with seemingly endless injury issues and then with form and confidence in front of goal. After recovering from early-season hamstring and facial injuries, he finally got pretty much a full season of play under his belt but ended up going 23 games in a row without scoring between November and April. A late-season surge saw him score four in seven, two from the penalty spot, but still – on paper, he seems like a strange player to go for based on recent form.

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But that doesn’t seem to be deterring Newcastle, at least if the report is remotely accurate. The implication is that they see a 27-year-old England international with unfinished business and the natural gifts to be able to replicate his impressive form from the 2020/21 season, when he bagged 16 Premier League goals – and worthy competition for Alexander Isak, who they hope and expect to keep despite interest from Arsenal and others.

That need for competition stems partly from the likelihood that centre-forward Callum Wilson leaves this summer. The 31-year-old has had an injury-plagued campaign of his own started just nine matches in the top flight – scoring as many goals, at least. He’s still a fine player, but the number of knocks he’s taken mean Newcastle plainly don’t feel able to rely on him heading into an important season. In any case, he only has one year left on his contract – better to get something now than lose him for free in a year if the suspicion is that he will have limited capacity to contribute.

And while Everton have little apparent incentive to sell Calvert-Lewin, especially given the short-term failure of deals for other strikers like Beto and Chermiti – except for the fact he too has just one year left on his contract. Everton have a big decision to make. Do they negotiate a new deal for him despite entirely justifiable concerns over his condition? Or risk losing him for a free and watching him flourish elsewhere?

Of course, both sides could help each other out here. Everton’s concerns right now are, understandably, narrowly focused on the immediate future. Making good long-term decisions won’t help if they risk being sucked into a relegation battle with the current, wantaway owners unwilling to fund necessary transfer spending. They need a striker who can score goals, and can’t be sure if that’s Calvert-Lewin. Wilson has lingering fitness issues, too, but his track record isn’t as bad as their own player’s.

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So could a part-exchange deal solve the issue? If Newcastle made the leap on Calvert-Lewin it would take the decision out of Everton’s hands, presumably net them some sorely-needed cash, and put a proven goalscorer on their books. Newcastle, meanwhile, get a younger model who could be a long-term improvement for a team that can, frankly, afford to think more long-term.

The counterpoint, of course, is that one could argue both sides would end up in the same boat – with a player whose fitness is very far from assured and whose prospects for the coming years are unclear. But then Newcastle may well have made that determination already, judging by this week’s report. Everton, meanwhile, will need every penny they can get whether or not their proposed takeover by 777 Partners ever goes ahead. From where they sit, they need hard coinage as much as they need a functional striker. A chance at having both seems like a decent bet to take.

Swap deals seldom happen these days, not least because they’re complicated and require more agreements between more people. Maybe Everton would want Wilson to take a pay cut, for instance, and adding another agent into the mix is hardly the way to get things done quickly and easily. But this could be a rare case of interests aligning sufficiently – Wilson would get to be the first choice again, Calvert-Lewin would get a chance to compete for European football, and everyone would get what they most need. You never know…

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