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In their hunt for a manager it’s fair to say Newcastle United have cast the net far and wide, jumping from experience a la Lucien Favre and Unai Emery to prodigies such as Xavi and Steven Gerrard – so can we throw the name of Matias Almeyda into the hat too?

After being turned down by a World Cup winner as well as a man with four Europa League titles on his CV, it seems Eddie Howe – relegated with Bournemouth – will be be settling into the St James’ Park dugout instead. 

According to Sky Sports, Howe is the leading candidate for the job, in pole position after Emery got cold feet.

Talks are apparently under way ahead of a potential unveiling before this weekend’s Premier League clash with Brighton and Hove Albion. 

ANTONIO CONTE WILL BE A SPURS DISASTER.

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Nothing has been signed just yet, however, and wouldn’t it be typical Newcastle if talks with Howe went the same way as Emery?

Despite spending the past year and a half out of the game, Howe isn’t going to gobble up any old opportunity. He’s waiting for the right project, at the right time, his fingers burned by that miserable spell at Burnley. 

Remember, Howe rejected what would have been the biggest job of his career just a few months ago. 

The potential availability of Matias Almeyda, then, should be of interest to Amanda Staveley and co.

Matias Almeyda could be an Eddie Howe back-up in Newcastle’s hunt for a manager

A candidate right out of left field, in October Tuttomercatoweb reported 47-year-old former Argentina international Almeyda had admirers on Tyneside.  

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And it just so happens his contract at MLS outfit San Jose Earthquakes is due to expire in less than two months.  

“I have spoken with the people of (San Jose Earthquakes) and, in this time, I will continue talking,” Almeyda said this week when asked about the prospect of signing a new deal.  

“But I am an employee and, for employees, many times keeping their jobs doesn’t depend on just one (person). So, I am open to everything.” 

Almeyda has never coached in Europe before – let alone the Premier League – but his CV speaks for itself. 

The Argentine dragged River Plate off the canvas during his first coaching role, guiding one of South America’s biggest clubs to promotion from the second tier in 2013.  

He repeated the trick with Banfield before claiming five titles at Mexican outfit Guadalajara, ending their nine-year trophy drought while triumphing in the 2018 Concacaf Champions League.

Almeyda has spent the past three years with San Jose Earthquakes in the US but it’s understood he would relish the prospect of proving his tactical chops in a more high-profile division. 

The problem is Newcastle can’t afford to wait until the end of December for Almeyda’s deal to expire as the threat of relegation refuses to go away.

Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images

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