Newcastle United have two big weapons to show Anthony Gordon he's still their star man

He is the poster boy for the new Newcastle United, the beating pulse of everything that is exciting at St James' Park after the Mike Ashley years of austerity . . . but if things had gone differently over the past few days, Anthony Gordon could easily be a Liverpool player right now.

It may have been a transfer that was made with the heaviest of hearts and we could rail against profit and sustainability rules for as long as we liked, but it doesn't change the fact that one of the brightest talents to have pulled on a black-and-white shirt for years could now be a 'former player'.

That he remains a Newcastle star is more than just a relief to everyone associated with the club as they look to now kick on and make positive additions in the transfer window. However, you cannot help wondering just where Gordon's relationship with the club stands after the unfortunate developments.

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The bond with the fanbase is not an issue. Gordon has not agitated for a move and regardless of what had happened, will remain a St James' Park hero. He's only been here 18 months but already his performances and attitude on the pitch have ensured his place in the hearts of the faithful.

But there could be some interesting conversations when he returns from EURO24 duty with England later this summer. In simple terms, Newcastle must show Gordon some love - and plenty of it.

He will understand the nature what the club was required to do, just as Elliot Anderson and Yankuba Minteh have had to accept their part in the situation. However, he should be reminded just how important he is to the long-term project at the club.

In that respect, United have two key weapons. Firstly, Eddie Howe is a coach who Gordon trusts and has a close working relationship with. The Magpies boss, and his coaching staff, have helped focus his drive to succeed and become the very best he can be, leading to a place in the England squad and accolades galore last season.

While the hard work has been done by Gordon himself, he knows the challenges set by Howe and Co have guided him from hot prospect to one of the leading Premier League talents, and that trust could help smooth over what could be a potentially volatile situation.

Secondly, United can now focus on the main thrust of their summer transfer window and sign a top quality right-sided forward. What better of illustrating to Gordon that he is central to their plans than by finding the final piece in what could be a formidable attacking trio?

A strikeforce of Gordon, Alexander Isak plus someone of the ilk of Pedro Neto, Raphinha, Federico Chiesa or Bryan Mbeumo would strike fear into the hearts of any Premier League opponent, and the former Everton man must be made to feel the integral part in that which he undoubtedly is.

The PSR struggle may be over for one year, but United would be wise to ensure its ramifications don't rumble on by rolling out the metaphoric red carpet for Gordon this summer, and hoping his focus stays fully on achieving his lofty ambitions right here.