Chris Hughton has come out today and said that he does not think significant changes will be needed with the Newcastle squad this summer.
Mike Ashley with Chris Hughton
That may alarm a few Newcastle fans, who believe significant strengthening in some positions will be necessary, but let’s see what Chris has told the Newcastle Journal this morning.
“I don’t think significant changes are needed. Stability is the perfect word for this club going into the Premier League,”
“We do not want to disrupt the balance too much – we have a team with great momentum at the moment from winning a lot of games this season.”
“We also have a lot of players who have developed this season and have had really good seasons. Those are the things that you can’t ignore.”
“Of course there will also be decisions on where we need to strengthen, where we need cover – those decisions will be taken over the next few weeks.”
“But I take great encouragement from what other teams have done going from the Championship into the Premier League.”
If Chris means that he will stay with players like Harper , Coloccini, Taylor (S), Enrique, Nolan, Gutierrez, Carroll and Lovenkrands to be his core of players, we have no problem with that at all.
And of course the side has done well this year without the services of Steven Taylor and Joey Barton, and Joey is beginning to show what a good player he could be on Tyneside, if only he could stay fit.
And we have some youngsters coming through like Danny Guthrie, Tamas Kadar and Tim Krul, who will all be pushing for a first team start next season.
But we still expect players to leave and players to come in – the question is how many?
“What has happened and will continue to happen is there a group of yo-yo teams who will spend some time in the Championship and some in the Premier League,”
“But at the lower end of the Premier League there are teams where the gap is not so great with the teams at the top of the Championship.”
“Of course you see now big teams like Boro, who are pushing for a play off position, teams who have gone down into the Championship, striving to get back up again. I see that happening over the years.”
“The aim for us is to stay in the Premier League now. What that entails, and the difficulties we will have, everyone is aware of – but that is what this club is striving to do.”
The figures of £20M to £25M being banded about in the press as the amount Mike Ashley will give Chris during the summer for transfers may be made up numbers, but the Journal says today that around £25M is the transfer kitty that they understand will be provided to Chris.
Since Chris brought in Williamson, Routledge, Best and Simpson for around £4M in January, we have to think there are more bargain buys out there for players with Premiership level quality.
Let’s hope we can bring some of them to Newcastle this summer, and the sooner the better.