There were reports yesterday that Arsenal, Everton and Aston Villa may be keen on Newcastle midfielder, Joey Barton.
Joey Barton – could be moved out before September
But the Times also reported yesterday the Tyneside club had received no official bids for Joey Barton, Fabricio Coloccini and Jonas Gutierrez.
That’s hardly surprising since the transfer window really hasn’t gotten fully underway yet, although one club, Newcastle, have moved very quickly.
That’s probably to show skeptical Newcastle fans they mean business, and the club has three good players through the door already, and they did that by June 18th – last Saturday.
That has to be one of the fastest starts they have ever made in a summer transfer window.
The transfer season will pick up when the window officially opens on July 1st, and of course in August, and especially late August, it will all become all rather hectic.
The scary scenario is that Newcastle could sell all three players – Barton, Gutierrez and Barton – late in the window, and have no back-ups – as they proved they could do in January.
In that last transfer window six months ago, the club actually weakened their squad rather than strengthen it, and sold Andy Carroll on the very last day.
All three players are not young, and are getting close to their contracts ending, although Coloccini and Gutierrez still have a full two years left.
But that’s what captain Kevin Nolan had left on his current deal, when he decided he was better off to join second division West Ham – where he got a phenomenal deal.
Alan Smith is no longer wanted on Tyneside, and will be on offer as a free transfer, and Jose Enrique is supposed to be moving on, so we could see Newcastle without Kevin Nolan, Jose Enrique, Joey Barton, Fabricio Coloccini, Alan Smith and Jonas Gutierrez all leaving Newcastle this summer.
Those six players did more than any others in getting the club back to the Premier League in May of 2010, and they will always be remembered positively for that.
But there seems little sentiment in football these days, especially at Newcastle, and if decent offers come in for any one of them, they could be moved out – as surprising as that may seem to some of us.
The Newcastle squad could look a lot different come September, and if the players above are moved out, the wage bill should be much reduced too.
However, Newcastle have worked on a very small and paper-thin squad these last two seasons, and last season it was just too small for the Premier League.
That is one thing that must be corrected for next season, so if the six players above are moved out, they will all have to be replaced and at least five new players also brought in.
It’s very hard to see that happening, so it could be a nervous time for some us in August, just as it was in January.