Alan Pardew confirmed last night to the Portuguese press, that Newcastle have not bid for Porto center-back Rolando – but while it’s still possible for Newcastle to bring in a new center-back this summer, that will only happen if Newcastle unload Mike Williamson, who turns 30 in November.
Rolando - Pardew likes Portuguese players’ mentality
Newcastle now have Fab Coloccini, Steven Taylor, Yanga-Mbiwa and Mike Williamson to fight it out for the two center-back places, with youngsters Remie Streete and Curtis Good coming through the ranks – so we are well off for center-backs, if nothing happens this summer.
We’ve been linked with James Tomkins of West Ham, but he’s still too expensive for Newcastle, and we’ve also been linked with 6’2″ tall Rolando, who turns 28 next month.
Alan Pardew answered questions in a packed press conference at the team hotel after training yesterday in Braga (in northern Portugal), and said there had been no approach or interest in Rolando:
“I’ve signed a few good Portuguese players in my time.” “I like the mentality of a Portuguese player.” “We played against Benfica and had two fabulous games against them.”
“There is no truth in the Rolando story.” “All good players are of interest to us.” “But there is no bid gone into their club or any serious conversations, no.”
Newcastle have been getting some good training in at the Braga SC facilities in Portugal over the last couple of days, and the lads play Rio Ave tonight at the Estadio do Rio Ave in Vila do Conde, and the game kicks off at 6:00pm.
Vila do Conde is in northern Portugal, and very close to Braga (35Km away), where the squad is stationed.
And it will be interesting to see what team Alan Pardew will start tonight, but it seems that 20 year-old Slovenian International Haris Vuckic will get another start, after playing so well in the first half on Tuesday at Motherwell, where he scored a goal and made one for Yoan Gouffran in the first 15 minutes of that game we won convincingly 4-2.
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