Possible Dan Ashworth replacement Dougie Freedman ticks the boxes with impressive transfer record

Newcastle United's hunt for Dan Ashworth's eventual successor continues with the suitable options being whittled down on Tyneside. The Magpies chief remains on gardening leave as Manchester United seek to make him a part of the new-look boardroom at Old Trafford.

Back on Tyneside, Newcastle are hoping to have concluded the hiring process in the coming weeks with a number of top names touted to fill the void at St James' Park. Ex-Monaco chief Paul Mitchell is highly thought of internally at the club and Brentford's Phil Giles has been considered at different stages of the recruitment process.

However, Crystal Palace sporting director Dougie Freedman is also being considered by the Newcastle hierarchy given his incredible track record at Selhurst Park. The 49-year-old is a Palace legend thanks to his two stints as a player in south east London and a period of time in the dugout.

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In recent years Freedman has moved upstairs to help oversee a hugely successful recruitment drive as Palace cemented their status as a regular Premier League side. The sporting director has played a key role in signing the likes of Marc Guehi, Eberechi Eze, and Michael Olise, all of whom have blossomed into consistent top flight operators.

Palace's shrewd purchase of Blackburn Rovers midfielder Adam Wharton in January looks to be an exciting capture, with the deal costing up to £22m if all clauses are met. The biggest single outlay at Palace under Freedman is £26m spent on centre-back Mamadou Sakho.

Given Ashworth's solid track record when it comes to recruitment, Newcastle are seeking a reliable pair of hands who knows the market and can land a bargain or two. It is also key the replacement sees eye to eye with Howe.

The Magpies boss has consistently sought out not just good players, but good characters who will fit into his harmonious dressing room. A school of thought it appears Freedman subscribes to.

“Dougie is not only big on talent, but on mentality and attitude,” an agent familiar with Freedman told the Athletic last year. “He extensively checks out the people he’s going to sign beforehand.

“He tends to avoid players he might think are a big-time Charlie. He’s concise in his summary. He is very focused on the future and always wants the next player, the next big thing, people who are on the rise.”