ISAAC HAYDEN warned Newcastle’s owners over signing “mercenaries” only interested in a bumper pay packet.

The Magpies are closing in on the signing of Atletico Madrid’s Kieran Trippier, who is currently undergoing a medical with the North East outfit.


The England right-back, 31, missed training in Spain on Wednesday morning with Newcastle set to pay an initial £12million, though that fee could rise if they avoid relegation.

There is hope in the Tyneside air that his arrival will encourage a handful more to join this month.

But Toon midfielder Hayden said: “You can chuck as much money at it as you want. Some players are mercenaries.

“Some players just want a bit of money. I understand that because it happens.

“I'm not naive to that but, for me, it's not about the money because these levels of players in the Premier League or players that are in Europe at a high level, wherever you're going to go, you're going to get paid well.

“With all due respect to some of these European players, 'Oh going to get offered 30 grand a week more'. To them, they're already on stupid money.

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“They want to win things or they want to be involved in a project.

“That's what's important to go for those types of players rather than players that, oh, are you going to give them an extra bit of money?

“But do they care? There's all these different things, but that's for the club to sort out.”

With manager Eddie Howe to re-submit a 25-man squad for the rest of the season at the end of January, a number will be left out in the cold to make way for new arrivals.

And, speaking to the Beautiful Game podcast, Hayden added: “If you've got a contract and you've got three years left, what are they going to do?

“It's not like Football Manager where they go, 'That player's gone. He's released'. You can't do that.

“They might have kids here, for example. They have a wife, two kids. The kids are at school. They're loving it. They've got three years left. Suddenly, the club doesn't want them.

“It's not a case where they can just turn around and go, 'Oh, we don't want you anymore. Bye'.

“Well, hang on a minute, you've got two or three years left.  

"The club's going to have to either pay them to go or… there's all these different things that people don't see.

“The manager's not going to want players in his squad that he can't use because there's only a 25-man squad.

“If they want to go out and buy five or six players then there are going to have to be five or six players that are going to have to go and if some of them don't want to go, what are you going to do?

“Are you going to pay players to be in the under 23s? It's impossible.

“Then you get a massive explosion of players in a club and the club's paying players millions of pounds a year to not do anything so it's very, very tricky.”

Hayden, 26, has started just two of Howe’s eight games in charge and is one who will be nervously looking over his shoulder at who arrives this month.

While Joelinton’s incredible transformation into a box-to-box destroyer beefs it up, another midfielder is wanted.

Marseille’s Boubacar Kamara has been watched and fits the bill, while Juventus’ Aaron Ramsey and a loan move for PSG’s Georginio Wijnaldum, who left Newcastle for Liverpool in 2016, have been mooted.

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And Hayden, whose contract expires in 2026, said: “If the club don’t want me…that’s their decision. 

"If I can control what I can control, and do it well, then that’s all I can do.

“If after all those things I’m not wanted or they want to sell me, I hold my hands up and go, ‘Sweet, no problem’.”

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