There has been lots of speculation in January about whether the likes of Demba Ba and Cheick Tiote will be leaving the club.
Alan Pardew – best possible players with the budget we have
And that’s hardly surprising given what happened last January, when Newcastle fans were told there was absolutely no chance that top striker Andy Carroll, who had 11 Premier League goals at the time and was out injured, would be leaving the club.
And of course that’s exactly what happened, and it all came to pass in the last few hours of the transfer window on January 31st, when Liverpool came in and Mike Ashley negotiated £35M in cool cash from Liverpool for big Andy.
Alan Pardew wants to strengthen his squad this January, and the main target is a center-back, although we may see a striker come through the door too.
January is a difficult transfer window, quite simply because it’s right in the middle of the European football season, and few good players are available.
This is what Alan Pardew said about the transfer market today:
“Our fans are sold these smokescreens and it’s not fair on them.” “They just want to have honesty and the truth in both those is far from what has been portrayed.”
“We are trying to get the best possible players with the budgets we have, and we are working hard at that.” Graham Carr does a terrific job for us, as his scouting team does and as my staff do.”
“So on that side of it we are really trying to cover everything we can.” “It’s difficult. If one of the big players makes a move, it stimulates the market.”
“But it looks like everybody is jostling as usual and hopefully we are not going to have this last-day scenario, or the last few days, that we had in the last window which really affected us.”
“We have made it clear to all the clubs that if there is any business to be done with us, you had better get in quickly because obviously we are stained from last year.”
“But looking around and speaking to other managers it’s very difficult to get value in this window and we are all a bit wary of that.”
“It’s important for us to keep what business we are doing in house,” “There has been no communication, certainly from manager to manager, but sometimes these deals at football clubs are taking place behind the scenes.”
“As far as I am concerned, there is no definite bid in from us.”
The latest rumors are that Newcastle have now bid twice for Manchester United whiz kid – 18 year-old Ravel Morrison, but it’s really difficult to know which stories are true and which are simply made-up in these transfer windows.
But the minimum we need is a good center-back brought in this month, in case either Mike Williamson or Fabricio Coloccini are injured or get suspended – because at the moment we will be in big trouble if that happens.
And calamity for Cheick Tiote yesterday in the Ivory Coast’s 2-0 win in their warm-up game against Tunisia.
Cheick was sent off in the 73rd minute for a vicious tackle on 28 year-old midfielder Mejdi Traore, and the Chelsea pair – Kalou and Drogba got the goals.
It’s not clear whether Cheick will get a suspension because of the nature of the game, since it was a warm-up game and not part of the actual competition, which starts a week on Sunday when Senegal play Zambia, and the next day the Ivory Coast plays Sudan.
If Tiote does get a ban for three games, that would be tough and he’ll miss all the group games, with the knockout phase starting on February 4th.
Both the Ivory Coast and Senegal are expected to do very well in the tournament, but we’ll now have to wait and see what happens with Cheick.