Newcastle Dismay As Players Look Like Leaving

Joe Kinnear, as we reported last night, has met with Derek Llambias and Mike Ashley, and it seems that there’s both good news and bad new for Newcastle fans, coming out of that meeting.

Michael Owen – just 55 appearances and 26 goals for Newcastle

They discussed the club’s transfer budget and seems to have been given £12M, as we reported last night for two players, each valued at £6M.

But it’s hardly any good signing new players – if we are going to lose some in January or this summer, and get nothing for them.

Michael Owen, Nicky Butt, Shola Ameobi, Steve Harper, Mark Viduka and David Edgar are all free agents in the summer and they can all talk to clubs in January, and that’s exactly what they all want to do.

Joe hasn’t talked to the players about it, but it looks like their agents want to all wait until January to talk to other clubs. Boy what a surprise that is, although they have every right to do just that. That’s one difficulty if you don’t renegotiate contracts soon enough.

Joe said today:

“I’ve not really had a chance to talk to the players about their contracts and I don’t know what is going to happen,” “The players who are out of contract, I have spoken to a few of their agents.”

“They are holding back as well. They are waiting to see what their options are in January and who comes in for them. They will make a decision then.”

“I’m speaking to Shola’s agent on Monday so we will see what happens there, but there isn’t much I can do if the players have decided they want to see what else is there for them in January.”

“I just hope I can get the players in I want, because if we can get them we’ll be smoking.”

Kinnear and Dennis Wise seem to have done their homework, and Joe has identified the players he needs, and it looks like we’ll be bidding some decent money, and they are good players – hopefully. But it will be a nervous time in  January for fans, as we may also see some of the players we want to keep, actually leave the club.

And it’s a worry that not more of the players have not come out and said they want to stay at Newcastle, although that’s been the case what Harper, Butt and Viduka have indicated.

But there again, from their point of view, the club has treated them abominably since Keegan left, and when you look at it that way, it’s hardly surprising they may want to take flight. They’ve been treat no better than the fans.

The big player of course is Michael Owen, and if he wants to leave, it’s likely the club will sell him in January, rather than get nothing for him in the summer. But we had hoped Michael would want to repay the club, since he’s on a wage of £110K a week, and in 3.5 seasons gas appeared just 55 times for the club with 26 goals.

We paid £17M for him from Real Madrid so he has cost the club about £37M in wages and transfer fees in his time at Newcastle. That’s over £1.4M a goal, not a good return.

Where’s the loyalty from the captain?  But maybe there’s not much of that left in English football right now.

We’re very disappointed at this news this morning. Let us know what you think about all this – thanks.

Comments very welcome.