West Bromwich Albion are expected to sign a left-back to compete with Conor Townsend for a starting place next season and Newcastle United defender Matt Ritchie was mooted as a potential option, but Josh Holland doesn’t believe the Baggies can afford to sign him.

The 32-year-old made 19 appearances in all competitions this season but lost his place when Matt Targett was signed on loan from Aston Villa in January. Ritchie made just two Premier League appearances in 2022, amassing 17 minutes of playing time, so a departure looks on the cards.

But with the Scottish international earning £45k-per-week, Holland says Ritchie might be out of their price range. The Midlands journalist told Give Me Sport: “I think Ritchie could be on too much money for West Brom to get.” Ritchie has made 188 appearances in all competitions for Newcastle, scoring 24 goals with 33 assists.

The 32-year-old is out of contract in 2023 and is unlikely to be handed a new deal, so the Magpies may look to cash in this summer rather than lose Ritchie for nothing next year. He would improve the West Brom squad but takes home far too much money to be a viable option.

Steve Bruce isn’t blessed with lucrative transfer funds for new recruits, so he can’t afford to have a deputy defender among the highest earners at the club.

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