Good news on the transfer front?

Last updated : 20 April 2003 By Martyn Elliott

All season the midfield has provided a great attacking platform but has left the defence horribly exposed, and the absence of the outstanding Gary Speed in recent weeks has made us look even more lightweight.

So it was good to hear Sir Bobby admit: "We lacked a ball-winner last Saturday (against Man U). It's something we have to look at in the summer."

The idea of having our very own Patrick Vieira, Roy Keane, Steven Gerrard and Claude Makelele is certainly appealing but who it will be is another matter entirely.

Kleberson might fit the bill if Freddy Shepherd is prepared to deal with the Brazilian’s club again, but the often-linked Lee Bowyer and Michael Carrick certainly don’t.

Big Ron believes that one name that could be in the frame is Jody Morris, who is set to leave Chelsea on a free transfer in the summer.

A combative player who rarely gives the ball away Morris is certainly the right sort of player, but whether or not someone who is regularly kept out of the Blues starting line-up by a geriatric Manu Petit and the pedestrian Frank Lampard is good enough for us is another question.

The smart money is probably on a young foreign player who we haven’t heard too much about, or Aaron Hughes making his very occasional midfield appearances a permanent fixture.

Meanwhile the club has again been linked with a bid for injury-prone Leeds United striker Michael Bridges, who is certainly a player who can improve any squad if he can stay fit long enough, and Spurs full-back Stephen Carr.

Rumours about the arrival of Portugal international winger Simao continue while Ajax skipper Christian Chivu has also been linked with making a pretty unlikely move to Tyneside.