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Newcastle sweat over work permit for £60m star Alexander Isak for Liverpool

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Newcastle continues to sweat over the availability of £60million record purchase from Alexander Isak for a midweek trip to Liverpool… with the striker having up to 75 MINUTES before kick-off at Anfield to get his work permit to play

  • Newcastle set Alexander Isak’s club record for £60 million last week
  • He saw their 1-1 draw at Wolves from the stands due to work permit delays
  • Boss Eddie Howe has now revealed the striker has still not received confirmation
  • Newcastle have up to 75 minutes before kick-off at Liverpool to get the permit

Newcastle United may have to wait up to 75 minutes before kick-off in Liverpool on Wednesday evening to find out if record contractor Alexander Isak has a work permit to play.

The Swedish striker, who came in £60 million from Real Sociedad last week, had to sit in the stands during Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Wolves because his interior ministry paperwork had not arrived.

That remains the case, as of Tuesday morning, but Eddie Howe is hopeful Isak will be available at Anfield, especially as Bruno Guimaraes, Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin all have hamstring injuries.

Alexander Isak still has no confirmation of work permit from the UK Home Office

Eddie Howe has revealed Newcastle have until 75 minutes before kick-off against Liverpool on Wednesday to secure confirmation whether Isak will play for the Magpies at Anfield

Eddie Howe has revealed Newcastle have until 75 minutes before kick-off against Liverpool on Wednesday to secure confirmation whether Isak will play for the Magpies at Anfield

“We still don’t know (if the work permit will come),” Howe said. ‘I really hope so. It would be great to see him involved for us, but we’re still in the hands of other people. We desperately hope it will be ready before the game, but there is no guarantee as I am here now.

“I think (the cut-off point) is 75 minutes before kick-off, so it could go to the wire. We’ll wait.’

Isak has been training with his teammates for the past few days – it is believed he does not need a work permit for that – and Howe said: ‘We have trained with him minimally between games, but what he has done, he has done. very good. He looked cheerful and cheerful, but we only saw him in flashes. I’m excited by him.’

Isak (second row, third from left) had to watch Newcastle's draw at Wolves from the stands

Isak (second row, third from left) had to watch Newcastle’s draw at Wolves from the stands

Howe, meanwhile, confirmed Brazilian midfielder Bruno felt his hamstring during the final stages of the midweek win over Tranmere in the Carabao Cup, after being signed for a potential penalty. He will miss the next two games.

Saint-Maximin picked up a similar problem at Molineux and is a ‘worry’ for the trip to Merseyside, with Wilson out for at least another 10 days.

The injuries are unlikely to force Newcastle to take drastic action in the transfer market – they spent £115m this summer – and Howe said: “I don’t expect (important things) to be honest. We are very happy with the business we have done.

“We think the injuries we have are short-lived. So there may be some pain around the squad in the short term, but in the longer term I think we are very strong. That doesn’t mean we’re completely closed off, we’re still looking.’

The Swedish striker has arrived in the North East as the club's record £60million tally

The Swedish striker has arrived in the North East as the club’s record £60million tally

Loan deals are the most likely route, and one player to leave is goalkeeper Martin Dubravka.

The Slovak will join Manchester United on a loan with a £6m option to buy, which will become mandatory if certain criteria are met.

But Howe said: “Talks have taken place between the clubs. I don’t think anything’s shut down while I’m sitting here right now. From my perspective I am sad when Martin leaves, sad to see him go.

“It’s certainly not something we wanted as a football club per se, but we understand that there are always two sides to every story.”

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