Report: Bonuses up for grabs for Newcastle United players if they end trophy drought

A bonus scheme encouraging challenges for silverware and European football has reportedly been introduced.

Newcastle United's players could be in line for generous bonuses if they end the club's trophy drought, according to the Shields Gazette.

They have recently appointed former England boss Steve McClaren as the man charged with winning their first major piece of silverware since 1969 when they won the Fairs Cup.

The club's owner Mike Ashley has suggested he will not sell the club until they win some silverware, and winning a trophy in the coming season could see the players receive six-figure bonuses, the report states.

There is also an incentive for where the side finishes in the Premier League - suggesting that a top half finish is the minimum requirement, but there would be bonuses should the side qualify for either the Europa League or even the Champions League. 

After last season's flirtation with the relegation zone caused by a dramatic slide in their form during the second half of the campaign, it provides extra motivation to perform to a high standard for the duration for the season rather than just patches. 

This at least shows Ashley is keeping his word in terms of ambition - if it comes to fruition - and it demonstrates a change in strategy after he said winning things were not a priority earlier on during his tenure at the club.

In terms of qualifying for Europe, their best route in is probably through winning the cup competitions given how congested it is when it comes to trying to qualify for the Champions League and Europa League - but there is no reason to suggest they can't go on decent cup runs.

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