The Newcastle United Blog

News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

The Newcastle United Blog header image 2
Howay The Lads!!

Pablo Aimar Signs For Benfica

12:10 pm, Thursday, July 17th, 2008 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 69 Comments

Sky Sports News has reported today that Pablo Aimar, has signed a 4 year deal with Portuguese giants Benfica.


Kevin Keegan – let’s execute plan B Kevin

The Portuguese side agreed a €7.5M (£6M) fee with his club Real Zaragoza, as reported on the Benfica web-site late last night.

His move is a major blow to the Tyneside club, there’s no doubt about that, since we had moved in for the player with a reported £7M bid, but it turns out that Pablo says he always wanted to go to Benfica (really!).

That followed reports that Pablo really wanted a move to the Premier League, according to his agent, if only an English club would come in for him.

There’s no doubt that Pablo would have been a great buy for the club, and given the club, fans and players a much needed lift, but he’s gone now.

The Newcastle recruitment team will need to go into overdrive, to start bringing in some good players to the club.

There’s still 45 days to go – approximately – in this summer’s transfer season,  and we think we need at least 4 new players at the club. But even with those 4 new players, our squad will be even smaller than it was last season – which is not good.

And if we plan to send players like 18 year-olds Tamas Kadar and Ben Tozer out on loan, we’ll need to bring a lot more than 4 new players in, surely.

Comments welcome.

Tags: Newcastle News · Transfer News and Rumours

69 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Liam // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:12 PM

    another one bites the dust

  • 2 NotAGhostToon // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:12 PM

    yeah well *sulks*

  • 3 dougnufc // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:18 PM

    Prefer to go for young potential players

    Check this player out, Diego Buonanotte, he is an young Argentine Attacking Midfielder and could be better than Aimar

  • 4 dyer // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:19 PM

    Expected. We should move on and finally sign some playmaker. I am tired of reading those reports every day, there are always exlusive reports that we are set to sign someone and it never happens! I’d like our transfers to be like the Gutierrez’s one! There was not a single word written about it before the official announcement was published on That’s the way it should be.

  • 5 true // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:24 PM

    Ed too much advertising on your site these days!
    The season starts 16 Aug, any new player should have atleast 3-4 weeks to settle and get to know the lads so i would say we are late in making signings especially with our small squad.
    We cant wait untill the end September before any new player settle in.

  • 6 The Entertainers // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:26 PM

    I feeling on this signing have been a bit topsey turvey.

    I intially thought he was a gamble and did not fit our ‘new approach’.
    I also thought i may well be agent talk attempting to get a better deal out of Benfica
    Then it appeared we had all but signed him and thought what a great prospect he would be to watch.
    Now it appears we have ‘lost out’…..i just dont know.

    What i don know i personally WANT a creative midfielder next season, Aimar or no Aimar!

  • 7 Ericles // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:28 PM

    I still think one of the reasons we are missing out on players of quality is because the back room at NUFC is disjointed. Who in Newcastle has got any say? KK? Too many London suits playing into the hands of the London media. The future success of the club requires a presence in Newcastle not behind some desk in London. We need KK as hands on in the market – not some fancy titled director pumping away down a telephone line or mobile phone. These recruited experts on getting players in seem to be playing their own game and not one that makes the fans happy. The fans were here before you Mr Wise and we will still be here after you are gone!

  • 8 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:28 PM

    hahaha, as predicted, the media are trying to humiliate us because we aren’t giving them any info, love it!

  • 9 madpie // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:29 PM

    yea! we are LOSER

  • 10 John // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:31 PM

    It just show’s the ambition off aimar though does’nt it…He could off played in one the greatest league’s in the world aswell as one off the most exciting but choose a crap league in portugal playing mediocre football IMO…

    Im glad we hav’nt got him as this just shows if he did sign, he would only be here for the cheque…Lets get the hungry players who still have the passion for playing

  • 11 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:31 PM

    i just read we have been offered Frings, he would be a great signing for us, he would be great competition for all our CM’s, should go straight into the first team

  • 12 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:32 PM

    we dont even know if we went in for Aimar, its just what the papers are saying

  • 13 GM // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:34 PM

    see the chronicle and anal oliver have us linked with torsten frings, but then in the 2nd paragraph totally kill the story by saying we arent interested as he is too old…what a waist of a time the article was, oliver is such a tosser

  • 14 madpie // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:35 PM

    check these out guys
    more training pics

  • 15 Faustino // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:36 PM

    Spyro – chron just came out with a trinity of stories out of left field didnt they! Frings was Germany’s best player in the Euros imo.

    Defo. do a job in the middle of the park for the next year or so. Thing is he’s old enough to remember Keegan at Hamburg too! lol

  • 16 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:38 PM

    Frings would be a great signign, but as GM just pointed out, the story is killed in the second paragraph so the prat probably made it up to have a story

  • 17 staffsmag // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:39 PM

    @GM well said mate – knew the Aimar story was bollocks as soon as I saw who wrote the article – anal oliver (mackem twat) !!!! lol

  • 18 John // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:39 PM

    lads lets ignore the story, it also says he could be on he’s way to Aresnal..Whats the point in talking about it if arsenal want him

  • 19 ToonDaft // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:39 PM

    he must have lost his hunger! surely! i think we have dodged a bullet here – he is at an age where the top league in the world should be beckoning him, he shud want to play in the PL – turning it down for Portuguese league? nothing against that league, i really enjoy it actually, but wouldnt you think he would want toi show what he can do at the top of the game???

  • 20 Petey // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:40 PM

    if we are talking germans, i like lahm….

    otherwise i could see this a mile off, aimar obviously has some reason he ddint wanna go to england, he probs thinks the football doesnt suit him or sommin, i dunno, i just think he likes benfica.

    we will sign someone out of the blue….we will.
    hopefully it will be Diego from werder bremen 😛 rofl. (probs not but u get my drift)

  • 21 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:40 PM

    Frings could easily replace Butt or Barton in the middle

  • 22 Faustino // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:40 PM

    True but the fact that tw*t reckons he’s not coming probably means he is – this whole ‘age thing’ is still totally out of the minds of the press and fans isnt it? No one at the club has said this?

    Larsson’s agent has just been quoted as being un happy with the club for not letting him leave btw.

  • 23 dougnufc // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:41 PM

    Nice find madpie, it looks like Gutierrez had made a lot of friends there already

  • 24 GM // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:42 PM

    thing that gets me is that WISE rejected the offer of frings, WISE rejected norwich £1Million offer for Carol, and WISE rejected Kadars loan move….who is in charge at our club as it certainly doesnt seem as though KK is

  • 25 Faustino // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:42 PM

    HAhaha Arsenal …f*ck off have you seen their midfield and who they could sign if they want. Mate there will be a list of players a mile long on Wenger’s desk before you hit Frings.

  • 26 bailey // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:46 PM

    Where is the proof that we we were in for this player (or any others for that matter).
    There is nothing from NUFC so it is all conjecture. and paper talk. Until someone comes up with solid proof then stop guessing and even second guessing in lots of cases.
    Anal Oliver back reporting for Comical so we should now get factual comments at long last and know exactly what is going on. Like hell.

  • 27 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:46 PM

    GM the story is bull****, Wise is in charge of the youth signings so why would he have the last say on who we sign? Wise has done a fine job so far in the youth department, we have guys on trial as we speak

  • 28 Petey // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:47 PM

    go KK!

  • 29 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:47 PM

    your too late Pete, Mag Pie already posted them up

  • 30 Petey // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:48 PM

    hehe, i edited 😛

  • 31 darren grech MALTA // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:48 PM

    things are getting worst for newcastle. AIMAR was going to be really important for us.we need expereance players like AIMAR.we need at least 2 creative midfilders and another 1 who can play on the left.we also need a good striker an 2 defenders.

    but i’m afraid this is not going to happen

  • 32 DanToon // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:51 PM

    Typical Newcastle!

  • 33 Petey // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:53 PM

    btw, can anyone tell me why we didnt change our sponsor this season to carling ? i thought tht was the idea after norther rock went a bit pear shaped…now i gotta wait to get the new change kit!

  • 34 Faustino // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:55 PM

    Typical Newcastle fans!

    We were never going to get him ffs.

  • 35 Spyro // Jul 17, 2008 at 12:55 PM

    hahaha, daily mail just got those pictures up, late again lol. I am sure they read this blog

  • 36 WesToon // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:01 PM

    Yea nice work Mad Pie,good to see like all 13 players we have,smiling at least

  • 37 JOeT // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:06 PM

    nice and efficient in the transfer market again! Talk of walnock signing and chimbonda……could this get any more depressing

  • 38 toonfan1 // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:09 PM

    did owen train because i could not see him in those pictures

  • 39 sheareralan // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:14 PM

    only skysport can believe?

  • 40 sirjasontoon // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:16 PM

    Not bothered…NEXT !

  • 41 boater // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:28 PM

    Aimar would have transformed our side…. there’s no getting around it… and I’d like to know of another player who could touch the genius of Aimar and who would be even a contender for us.
    See Messi is probably out of our range guys.. even though he’s younger.
    That we didn’t get 15goal /season Farfan – who went for a paltry e10mil is heart braking – Frings would have been a great foil for Aimar and so should be gotten immediately – with a view to bringing in another (budding) continental attacking starlet…
    Is anyone else starting to miss the Shepherd recruitment packages which seemed too good to refuse to top world players…

  • 42 Dan13 // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:38 PM

    guiza’s signed for fenerbahce
    anothe rpotential target gone

  • 43 tom tomb // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:39 PM

    Oliver does this method of writing all the time. We are interested in signing—– however. He is crap and he should retire. Like lads have said made up non stories. He always puts exclusive by them-prick.

  • 44 Faustino // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:40 PM

    FFs we’d be in the championship now with Fat Fred, how important would his ‘irresistable packages’ be then? We’d also have gone into administartion due to the immense debt and the zero ability to pay it and started the season 10 points down. Have a word.

  • 45 TalkingHead // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:41 PM

    Is it not the case that the majority of these stories originate from agents rather than the club? If you were trying to get as much money for someone as possible you’d probably try and create a bit of competition and urgency to force the price up – in this case to get Benfica to cough up and meet the player’s demands. A well-timed article in a semi-respectable newspaper would be one way of doing this.

    These are good stories for the papers- one day we’re signing somebody, the next day we’ve been beaten to their signature – they all sell papers. It’s probably the same thing with the Oliver articles. We’ve been ‘offered’ Frings. Pointless story!

  • 46 Faustino // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:41 PM

    toonfan1 – thats some worrying observation you made there mate. dead on.

  • 47 gorskino10 // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:47 PM

    Why is it always so dramtical up at NUFC lol its never boring i give them that, as Ed says i feel the same 4 players is the MIN so they have to get moving quick i reacon and to be fair i bet its getting stressfull for Wisey and KK.

  • 48 toonoot // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:52 PM

    “His move is a major blow to the Tyneside club,” the Tyneside club? Who the hell are you writing this for Ed? Or is it just lifted from another site

  • 49 agnetha // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:57 PM

    6 weeks to get 6 first teamers in. Cant see it happening myself.Our squad is weaker than what we finished the season with at the moment. its really depressing to see teams like bolton, fulham and portsmouth signing decent players. I honestly think if we dont see a glut of transfers within the next 2 weeks we are in trouble. Big teams wont let there best players go so close to the start of the season.

    I would like to see arda, chimbonda, huddlestone, krankjaer and oshea.

  • 50 african-kenyan-ronniezog // Jul 17, 2008 at 1:59 PM

    in ma own country kenya we have a defensive midfielder by the name osborne monday(in the kenyan league)he has impressed in both the league and world cup 2010 qualifiers,op we’ll buy him,coz newcastle lacks a player of his ability.

  • 51 micepie // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:00 PM

    I hate all this doom talk, especially the press saying “will this be another miserable season for Newcastle?” etc.

    Look at the excellent run of 7 or 8 games we had late last season. The only player missing from the starting eleven from that run is Barton. Players like Emre, Ramage etc we’re injured, others like Diatta and Troisi not considered first-team choices anyway.
    And we’ve added Gutierrez and Guthrie so far as extra options. Of course we do need more players in, but overall that’s one positive way of looking at things instead of the
    gloom masters! Plus I do think we’ll get some quality players in. Last summer there was an unbearable nothingness for ages before a few started rolling in.

  • 52 Greek Toon // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:01 PM

    Guiza was one of the stars of Euro 2008. It is surprising to see him go to Turkey playing in a sub standard league.

  • 53 marat18 // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:01 PM

    cross Chimbonda off the list, and it’s fine.

  • 54 agnetha // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:01 PM

    if tom toon comes on here claiming to have seen Osborne Monday play i will stick pins in my eyes.

  • 55 figsdad // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:03 PM

    like i said before we will sign somebody oot of the blue….

  • 56 liamtoonbirchy // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:12 PM

    my very hopeful team for next year

    given, harper
    beye, geremi
    evans, taylor
    faye, goian
    warnock, enrique
    inler, butt
    spiderman, milner
    zoggy, duff
    guthrie, barton
    viduka, derdiyok
    owen, martins

    AND a surprise creatve midfielder, maybe AFELLAY?

  • 57 bigarn // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:38 PM

    Happy to see this deal fail.

    If he doesn’t want to play for the toon for a reasonable wage then I do not see it as a knock back rather NUFC knocking him back for expecting too much for his wages. This is just the type of player we don’t want…mercenaries like Luque, Marcelino even Maric.

    Crap agent by the way allthough he probably got a bit on the weekly wage at Benfica.

  • 58 Michael12 // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:50 PM

    Let us face the facts, the proposition of playing under Kevin Keegan the dream of a toon fan. Outside of that, there is no one interested.

    Now Managers must be international and celebrated, Scolaris, Wengers, Jose, Rafa etc.

    Even Rijkaard has more pulling power than Keegan. Now we have a manager who is:

    >Tactically malnourished
    > lacking in motivational skills
    > And has no pulling power

    The only people Kevin excites is the Fans.
    Can you Blame Ashley for not splashing millions on a man like Keegan. That would be a gamble you are to lose.

    Michael Owen is unlikely to sign a new Contract and If working under Keegan is not enough to have Micahel Owen commit himself, then why expect more from international stars?

  • 59 Tasty Magpie // Jul 17, 2008 at 2:57 PM

    Strikes me as unlikely that we were ever even in for him. Point 1: Wasnt the original ‘exclusive’ in the mirror stating that a bid of £7mill had been accepted as it met Zaragozas asking price, which Benfica were short of – thus the hitch in his moving to them? Then we have him signing for Benfica for much less than this. Point 2: We have the dubious point that that on having agreed the fee only the players agents would be flying to discuss personal terms… Ok. Personal terms could easily be discussed remotely, I feel that if there had genuinely been a bid of £7m accepted then Aimar with is agent would have been over here so he could have got a feel for the place rather than ‘signing blind’.

    So, no need to grumble or grouse about skimping on the terms etc. We will sign some good players (that should be MORE good players as I feel Gutierrez is a superior signing to what Aimar would have been anyway – better suited to the premiership, younger, stronger, faster etc. Hard working and tracks back when needed.).

    Bet there is some more below the radar work going on.

  • 60 Paul141726 // Jul 17, 2008 at 3:15 PM

    I don’t know if this speculation is all that much “fun” anymore. I realize that most of this is just papers talking and us getting our hopes up for a signing or two(or six). Please take this with the tongue-in-cheek way it is meant, but could agents be playing our recruitment team like a Stadivarius?

  • 61 Tom_Toon // Jul 17, 2008 at 3:24 PM

    agnetha, dont worry i wont 🙂

    Gutierrez looks like a nice guy always smiling during training, looks like he just enjoys playing football more than most. Refreshing to see.

  • 62 Taiwantoon // Jul 17, 2008 at 3:29 PM

    Michael12, I am quite surprised by your comments. I don’t think it is fair to KK.

    It’s true that KK is not at the top of his professional life at the moment, but he is certainly not an un-know figure in European football. None of the coachs you have mentioned had enjoyed a more successful playing career than KK had.

    Lacking in motivational skill…well, what can I say?

  • 63 xfer // Jul 17, 2008 at 4:03 PM

    Not too disappointed, though i like the fact he can uses both feets.

  • 64 Influence raghav // Jul 17, 2008 at 4:50 PM

    why would he even think about signing for us.even fulham,boro look far ahead of us.our management sucks.

  • 65 Dan13 // Jul 17, 2008 at 5:09 PM

    Hello everyone
    I’ve made a fantasy league on the official premiership website.
    If anyone wishes to join me go to this website…
    Once you’ve signed up and picked your team etc go to join league under head to head i think.
    You can join my league by entering this code…

  • 66 Gallowgate31 // Jul 17, 2008 at 7:55 PM

    Tom Toon should either be an advisor to the toon or at very least should send his cv to the ronnie gill.

    See that picture of geetarez ( or spiderman to u or me ) with his arm around smith, link was from madpie ( 14 ) he is laughing and pointing to him, here is the challenge ! what was he laughing about ?

    to start the ball rolling I suggest

    ” how many millions ?”
    ” not even ONE goal”

  • 67 Paul141726 // Jul 18, 2008 at 12:14 AM

    The Aimar speculation was just that-speculation. I agree it must be reported ( thanks Ed), but until someone at the club states we are persuing a player it’s still speculation! I don’t recall anyone from the club stating we were trying for Aimar. The papers said we were, and we know how accurate they are, and his agent said we were, and he’s working to get the most in terms of money and length of contract for his client. Until the club says this is who we want, don’t believe a word. And with the way it looks like we are working behind the scenes as in the Gutierrez case we won’t know until it’s done.

  • 68 clinta // Jul 18, 2008 at 4:07 AM

    ‘no doubt?’ we’ll i’m glad your minds made up ed and that you speak for the rest of us ey, I feel there is doubt that hm signing for benfica is a blow for us, and a lot of doubt that he would of actually been a good signing for us.

  • 69 clinta // Jul 18, 2008 at 4:10 AM

    Michael 12, said it myself a few times and agree mate, if top 4 is were we want to be KK’s not the man to put ue there, he’ll he even sai that himself!

previous post: Are Newcastle Still After Arda Turan?

next post: Shay Given Just Itching To Play Again