Graham Carr has done a great job so far at Newcastle, in the almost two years he’s been the Chief Scout on Tyneside.
Chief Scout Graham Carr – important cog in Newcastle wheel
And we expect Graham is lining up some new players who Newcastle will go after in January, and then next summer, as the thrifty Newcastle management team seem to be successfully building a very decent squad, even though they are not spending much money doing it.
Things are upbeat on Tyneside at the moment, with Newcastle in 4th position in the league, but the positive mood is also because the seven new players brought in over the summer have definitely made the squad stronger.
And there are some very skillful players in that bunch like Yohan Cabaye, Davide Santon, Demba Ba, Sylvain Marveaux and Gabriel Obertan.
We would expect the French league to be another happy hunting ground for Newcastle in the year ahead.
Graham Carr watches players continuously, so he can make a better judgement on them, and he says France is not the only country Newcastle have well covered:
“We won’t just watch a player once. With someone like Cheik Tiote, it was the result of four years watching him,”
“I’d first seen him playing for Roda against Arsenal in 2006 — they were hammered 4-0 I think, but you could tell he was going to be a good player. He never stopped running.”
“So you keep an eye on him and track his progress, which is where we are with plenty of other players. People will all look at Arsène Wenger and say he’s got the French market covered, but we’ve got a good handle on it, believe me.”
“The same is true of other countries too. The key is to react quickly – that is what will get us our targets. That and the fact that Newcastle United is a big, big draw overseas.”
“Being a Geordie and having supported Newcastle gives me a bit of an advantage, I think,” “You look at some players who are talented, but you just have to say: ‘They’re not a Newcastle United player.”
Newcastle will be an even bigger draw in France these days than the club was even last summer, because the French speaking players who have arrived at the club, continue to talk in glowing terms about the setup at Newcastle.
That can only help the Newcastle recruitment program, and of course staying high up in the Premier League will also be a huge draw for players.
And Alan Pardew’s terrific man-management skills have allowed him to manage the few egos on Tyneside, and he has the players thinking always about a team ethic, and that cannot be bad.
We expect at least one new signing in January, and maybe as many as three, and with Graham Carr carefully grading the players he watches, we have to be confident that he can unearth a few more top players in the category of Cheick Tiote and Yohan Cabaye.
Things are definitely looking up on Tyneside these days, and long may that continue.
Howay The Lads!!