Chris is likely to be appointed permanent manager at Newcastle some time today, and he has come out today and said he is very keen to strengthen the squad in January.
Chris Hughton – very keen to strenghten Newcastle squad
Chris explained this morning:
“I don’t think we can allow ourselves to go past January and miss out on opportunities to make this squad as strong as we can for the second half of the season.”
“Whether it will just be loan signings I don’t know. That’s something we’ll look at as we go along. At this moment we’re looking at loan signings.”
“But what I will find out is if there’s money to spend in that January window. That will be dictated by the circumstances over the next few weeks.”
The size and quality of the Newcastle squad has been brutally exposed with the loss of both first-choice center-backs Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor, which meant Danny Simpson had to switch to the middle of the defence rather than at right-back.
That unsettled the defense and we’d much rather have seen 19 year-old Tamas Kadar just slot in at center-back – after all the lads looks a more than decent player, and played well in pre-season – and he’s just waiting for his chance.
Coloccini will return from a groin strain against Doncaster Rovers today, and we’re hoping the Argentine International will slot right back in and maybe we can keep a clean sheet this afternoon.
Steven Taylor could hopefully be back in time for the trip to Sheffield United, and this lad has been a big miss, there’s no doubt about that.
“Up until now we’ve coped well with the squad. We had a problem at center-half and I think the options were always, once you have a problem, do you address that bringing by in a loan signing. You don’t want to bring in a loan unless you can guarantee them a good number of games.”
“Sometimes you don’t want too many players in one position because you can only play one at a time. It’s always something you’re evaluating and it’s something you might get wrong because an injury gets thrown in when you’re least expecting it.”
“Center-back is an area we’ve been short in the last couple of games, but when I’m asked if we need to strengthen there the answer is probably no because we’ve got Coloccini back on Saturday and Steven Taylor looking at the next game after that against Sheffield United.”
If we can hang onto Khizanishvili and Simpson through the end of the season, and bring in say four new players, we should have a big enough squad to go all out for promotion in the second half of the season.
We just have to hope that by the time January rolls around, we are still in one of the automatic promotion spots.