Emotional Newcastle United goodbyes may be delayed as Eddie Howe confirms 'doubts'

Newcastle United know Europa Conference League qualification will dramatically improve their chances of attracting top talent to Tyneside this summer - but the result of this weekend's FA Cup final will also have a big impact on current players staying put or departing in the near future. The Magpies will earn a spot in the UEFA competition should Manchester City beat Manchester United at Wembley on Saturday.

In terms of potential outgoings, Paul Dummett, Matt Ritchie and Loris Karius are all out of contract in the coming weeks but Eddie Howe believes new deals could be put on the table to the first two mentioned if Newcastle are in Europe next season. Dummett only featured eight times in all competitions this term, while Ritchie started once and made 16 substitute appearance.

However, both could be seen as useful squad assets if Newcastle are once again fighting on four fronts next season and therefore needing to meet homegrown quotes.

READ MORE: Newcastle's 29-man Australia squad in full as key men left at home and youngsters given chance

READ MORE: Spurs make Newcastle claim they wouldn't have allowed as FFP 'secret' is revealed

“The players that you’re talking about [Dummett and Ritchie] are just incredible characters,” Howe told reporters on Sunday following the 4-2 win over Brentford. “There’s a slight doubt over their futures, but we go to Australia with them.

“I think European qualification might potentially have a bearing on what happens with their futures. What I will say about Paul Dummett and Matt Ritchie is that they’ve just been incredible servants to the football club. I absolutely love their characters and what they’ve given.”

Newcastle will be allowed to name a squad of 25 players should they make the Europa Conference League, with a minimum of eight classed as homegrown players. A homegrown player is one who has been registered with any club affiliated to the FA for a period, continuous or not, of three entire seasons before his 21st birthday.

Both Dummett and Ritchie have made the trip to Australia as Newcastle prepare to take on Tottenham Hotspur and an A-League All Star team in Melbourne. Karius has been left at home and is expected to leave when his deal expires next month.

As for incomings, Newcastle have already been linked with number of players, including Aaron Ramsdale, Dominic Solanke, Tosin Adarabioyo, Lloyd Kelly and Pedro Neto in recent weeks, but Howe and his transfer team know their hand will be strengthened greatly in the market if they are in a UEFA competition next season.