Steven Gerrard’s ex-teammate explains why ‘perfect’ signing should join Newcastle United over Aston Villa

Newcastle United and Aston Villa have both been linked with a summer move for out-of-contract Burnley defender James Tarkowski.

Former Liverpool left-back and teammate of Steven Gerrard, Jose Enrique, believes James Tarkowski would be the ‘perfect’ signing for Newcastle United amid interest from Aston Villa.

Enrique, who played alongside the Villa boss at Anfield, went on to suggest that, as a player, he would choose a move to Newcastle over Birmingham due to the Magpies size and potential under new ownership.

This is despite the claret and blue recently confirming the signing of Diego Carlos from Sevilla after the Brazilian was strongly linked with a move to St James’ Park in January.

BURNLEY, ENGLAND - MAY 22: James Tarkowski of Burnley looks dejected following defeat and relegation to the Sky Bet Championship following the Premier League match between Burnley and Newcastle United at Turf Moor on May 22, 2022 in Burnley, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

“Tarkowski, a centre-back, on a free, he’ll be a very good signing,” Enrique told bettingexpert.

“Wages wise, they’ll pay him well. Aston Villa want him as well so I’m not sure what will happen there.

“I feel sorry for Stevie but the reality is, if I have Aston Villa and Newcastle, I’ll go to Newcastle with the players that they have and the club that they have.

"I think it’s massive. If he has both options, definitely I’d go to Newcastle.”

Tarkowski, 29, played 35 times for Burnley in the Premier League in 2021-22 but couldn’t stop the Clarets being relegated to the Championship following a 2-1 final day defeat to Newcastle.

“He’s a very good centre-back, and it’s on a free, then obviously you’ll have to pay him salary-wise, more," Enrique added.

“He would be a great signing. They need a centre-back who’s experienced in the Premier League. He’s the perfect centre-back for Newcastle. Perfect.”

A message from the editor:

Thank you for reading. BirminghamWorld is Birmingham’s latest news website, championing everything that is great about our city - reporting on news, lifestyle and sport. Find out more about who’s who in the team, and our editorial values. We want to start a community among our readers, so please follow us on Facebook,Twitter and Instagram, and keep the conversation going.