Newcastle are in a weird situation. Three months ago, the Magpies were looking set to become the next Manchester City with a big-money takeover, causing their long-suffering supporters to gear up for a busy summer transfer window after years of misery under Mike Ashley.


But the takeover process has been complicated and drawn out to say the least. It still doesn't seem anywhere close to completion, with the takeover being delayed as the Premier League looks to further investigate it amid concerns the Saudi Arabian state will be controlling the club through the Public Investment Fund.


Regardless, the new Premier League season starts in just six weeks time, meaning that Steve Bruce - despite his own future being uncertain - has to start preparing for it. With this in mind, here is a look at every first-team player and analysing whether Bruce should keep or move them on.



Goalkeepers


Martin Dubravka is Newcastle's undisputed starting goalkeeper

Martin Dubravka (STAY) - Dubravka has started every Premier League game for Newcastle going all the way back to February 2018 and has proved to be a very reliable option between the sticks. He kept 11 clean sheets last season, more than any other goalkeeper playing for a team in the bottom-half of the table.


Karl Darlow (STAY) - The Northampton-born goalkeeper hasn't made a Premier League appearance for over two seasons, but plays consistently in the cup competitions. A good back-up option, but with one year left on his current deal, he may ask for a move away in search of first-team football.


Mark Gillespie (STAY) - After two seasons with Motherwell in Scotland, Gillespie joined his boyhood club on a free transfer in early July - presumably to replace the outgoing Rob Elliot. Would be very surprised if he was moved on.


Freddie Woodman (GO on loan) - The 23-year-old has enjoyed a very good season with Swansea City but is unlikely to challenge Dubravka for the number one spot any time soon. Send him back on loan next year and analyse the situation again in 2021.



Full-Backs


Achraaf Lazaar hasn't played a competitive fixture for Newcastle since 2017

Javier Manquillo (STAY) - The Spaniard has been solid - if unspectacular - at right-back this season and has certainly improved since last-term. Should be kept unless an adequate replacement is brought in.


DeAndre Yedlin (STAY) - He's had his fair share of injury problems this season, but is still a very decent option at right-back. There are rumours he could move on, but Newcastle should look to keep him in order to ensure there is quality in depth on the right side of the defence.


Achraaf Lazaar (GO) - It'll be beneficial for both parties if his contract was just terminated early. He spent the past season on-loan at struggling Serie B outfit Cosenza, where he played just nine times.


Matt Ritchie (STAY) - Once again, he's someone good to have on the bench. Ritchie is now in his 30s and spent a large portion of last season out injured, though he probably still has another year or two of top-flight football left in him.


Emil Krafth (GO) - It's fair to say the Swedish international hasn't had a great debut season in the Premier League, and, should Yedlin and Manquillo remain, there's not much use for him going forward.



Centre-Backs


Florian Lejeune has made just six appearances this season due to injuries

Ciaran Clark (STAY) - When fit, Clark is one of the more dependable defenders in the squad. He undoubtedly deserves another chance to get a full campaign under his belt and compete for a starting spot in the side.


Paul Dummett (STAY) - The Newcastle-born defender's versatility is his main strength, being capable of filling in at the centre or on the left. A good option to have on the bench in case of an injury crisis, but not much more than that.


Fabian Schar (STAY) - The Swiss international was one of the best players in the squad under Rafael Benitez, but has struggled for the same kind of consistency this season. Still a very good player, though.


Jamaal Lascelles (STAY) - Captain since the age of 22, Lascelles has been a stable, assuring figure in the face of Newcastle's instability over the last five years. A rock at the back and a natural leader, he would probably remain a key part of the squad even if they were taken over.


Federico Fernandez (STAY) - The last time Fernandez didn't start a Premier League game for Newcastle was 19 October 2019, a testament to his reliability at the back. Arguably the best performing centre-back at the club this season, we can expect to see him in Newcastle colours for at least a couple more seasons.


Florian Lejeune (GO) - The 29-year-old's time at St. James' Park has been marred by injuries, restricting him to just 18 appearances over the last two seasons. Taking this into account, and the fact that Newcastle have a decent level of depth in his position, it might be best to find him a new club.



Central Midfielders


Matty Longstaff's contract expires soon

Jonjo Shelvey (STAY) - Occasionally the subject of criticism from the Newcastle faithful, Shelvey has been one of their best players as of late and is their top league goalscorer this season. At 28, he still has a good few top flight seasons left in him too.


Matty Longstaff (STAY) - A midfielder with a ton of potential, Newcastle should lock Longstaff in a room with a pen and a contract and not let him out until he signs it.


Sean Longstaff (STAY) - Like his younger brother, Longstaff has raw talent and has put in some good performances this season, though it would be fair to say that he could've done better. Definitely needs to step up in 2020/21.


Henri Saivet (GO) - In four and a half seasons at Newcastle, Saivet has made just eight appearances and gone out on loan on three separate occasions. Clearly surplus to requirements, the best option for both parties is for Saivet to depart.


Isaac Hayden (STAY) - Popular with the Toon support, Hayden has been one of Newcastle's better-performing midfielders this season. A regular for the last couple of campaigns now, he will likely remain in the side unless the Magpies' takeover goes through and they overhaul their midfield.



Wingers


Allan Saint-Maximin joined from Nice last summer and has been one of the signings of the season

Miguel Almiron (STAY) - The Paraguayan initially had a slow start to life at Newcastle after joining for a (then) club record fee in January 2019, but has improved this season, barely missing a game. One of the players who would probably hold their place in the team if the takeover goes through.


Allan Saint-Maximin (STAY) - The signing of the season, Saint-Maximin has quickly become one of Newcastle's most important players. Only 23, he's still a few years away from his peak and it is crucial that the Magpies hold on to him going forward.


Christian Atsu (GO) - Atsu has seen his playing time at Newcastle decrease this season and it appears that his time at St. James' Park is up, with the club reportedly willing to listen to offers for the 28-year-old.


Rolando Aarons (GO) - Since the last time Aarons played for Newcastle in 2017, he has had loan spells in Italy, the Czech Republic, Scotland and Wycombe. That should tell you something about the kind of player he is.


Jacob Murphy (GO) - Returning to Newcastle after an excellent loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday, Murphy's future at St James' Park is uncertain. What is certain, however, is that he would be a very good signing for a top Championship club and that his contract expires at the end of next season.



Strikers


Joelinton - a record signing at £40m - has netted just twice this season

Joelinton (STAY) - The Brazilian has had a difficult debut season at Newcastle, scoring a measly two goals in 38 appearances. But let's face it, the Magpies aren't going to recoup much of the £40m they paid for him if they decide to sell him this summer, so they might as well keep him around and see how he does next season.


Dwight Gayle (STAY) - Too good for the Championship but perhaps not good enough for the Premier League, Gayle is - amazingly - Newcastle's best striking option. They need to keep him at least until they sign a couple more good strikers.


Yoshinori Muto (GO) - The Japanese international has never really held a regular spot in the side since joining from Mainz in 2018, and has only made eight appearances this season. Clearly it just isn't working out and he needs to leave for the sake of his career.


Andy Carroll (GO) - Despite being in his 30s, having injury problems and failing to find the back of the net last season, Newcastle handed Carroll a contract extension last month. He should probably drop a division for regular football, but will probably remain at St James' Park until his contract expires in 2021.