£9.5million winger Albert Luque has had a tough start to his Premiership career, what with injuries and poor results going against him and the team. Graeme Souness says we have yet to see the best of him, and the player admits he is struggling to settle on Tyneside.
But he could be offered a way out, as rumours are rife in Spain that the big guns Real Madrid and Barcelona are interested in luring the former Deportivo La Coruna midfielder back to his native country.
However, Freddy Shepherd isn't impressed by rumours.
Shepherd: "I've heard about this supposed interest in Albert Luque from Real Madrid and Barcelona but nobody has contacted us. But we do know Luque is highly regarded by the all the top teams in Spain, where he is rated as one of the top six players in the country. However, I can categorically say Newcastle United have absolutely no interest in letting Albert Luque go to Spain.
"Why would we want to sell a player only a couple of months after signing him, and when he has only played three or four games for us?"
Luque, 27, has started only three matches and striker Shola Ameobi has been preferred on the left of midfield.
Real are said to ready to give the player a "get out" ticket by offering former Everton central midfielder Thomas Gravesen, a player Souness tried to sign while he was still at Goodison Park.