It seems likely that Newcastle will get promoted this season unless some unforeseen catastrophe occurs.
Chris Hughton – already has plans for the summer
And if that happens then Chris Hughton will need to strengthen the squad and from what we’ve seen Newcastle are already in top gear with their scouting activities, with chief scout Graham Carr leading the way.
Newcastle have already strengthened the squad this season with four decent players being drafted in – Mike Williamson, Wayne Routledge, Danny Simpson and Leon Best.
Of those four only Leon Best had so far been disappointing, but perhaps the fans will need to give the lad more time to settle in on Tyneside.
We expect Nicky Butt, Fitz Hall, Fabrice Pancrate, Kazenga LuaLua and maybe Shola Ameobi to all be moved out this summer.
When we look at the remaining squad, it looks like the positions that need strengthening for the Premier League are as follows:
central midfield play-maker
When we say strengthen, we mean bringing in a player who will be a starter, not just somebody who is as good as what we already have.
Given this, it may cost some real money for some of these players, but rumors are that Mike will give Chris Hughton as much as £20M, and with some savvy scouting, that should be enough money for the summer transfer market.
We’ll not mentioned too many players until we are definitely promoted but we do notice that Habib Beye at Aston Villa hardly plays, and Martin O’Neill is famous for starting almost the same team all the time.
Habib has started just 8 games this season at Villa, and we sold him for about £2.5M last summer, so he could be a good buy at say £1.5M this summer.
However Habib is now 32, and Mike Ashley has stated that any new players should be 26 or younger.
We also notice that Villa’s other full-back Luke Young is also not in the team right now, although again, Luke will be 31 come July, and he may also be too old.
With Newcastle’s scouting activities, we may all be surprised with the players Newcastle draft in, but we’d love to make more signings like Sebastien Bassong, who we picked up for just £500K from Stade Rennais FC in Brittany, France in the summer of 2008.
Any ideas on players we should move for this summer?