Steve McClaren's assertion that Newcastle United are "close" to more summer signings may have been an accurate statement. The club appear to be very close to a long-rumored summer move for one of their primary targets. While it would seem maybe too late for any signing to join up with the club in the USA at this point, new signings would have several England-based friendlies to try to rush through the "getting to know you" phase of any transfer.
In the face of a potential late entry by Aston Villa into the Charlie Austin race, it looks like Newcastle have accelerated their drive to bring the QPR striker to St. James' Park. With rumors of a £30m bid coming from Liverpool for Villa striker Christian Benteke, the threat of a club needing a striker with money to burn (that's not a Sky6 club) is a very real one for any hopes to bring Austin to the northeast. Betting odds are not always a great barometer for transfer dealings, but generally speaking when betting is suspended for a player the feeling is that completion of a deal is imminent.
This is the fourth time that betting has been suspended regarding Charlie Austin, (NUFC, Chelsea, West Ham) so it may mean nothing... again... but prior to the suspension of betting, odds had shrunk to as small as 1/10 for Newcastle to land their man. With the potential windfall coming Aston Villa's way, there is added impetus for Charnley to get the deal done, suggesting that a deal may in fact be imminent.