We have made three good signings in the summer so far, but we are still short of a top center-back and if along with Wijnaldum, Mitrovic and Mbemba we had brought in another center-back – such as Joel Matip of Schalke as one example – that would have been the minimum requirements for this summer.
That’s because we would have brought in two center-backs to bolster our weakest position and one striker in – and if Papiss Cisse is to stay – that’s all we probably needed since we also have young Ayoze Perez and Emmanuel Riviere.
Chancel Mbemba in action yesterday
Newcastle also have Siem de Jong and Rolando Aarons fit again – and they will be like new signings for us – and they can score goals – and so can new singing Gini Wijnaldum.
But it’s still the defense that is a worry for the upcoming Southampton game – and that’s not good after we have conceded 190 goals in our previous three seasons in the Premier League, and that’s worse than any other club over those three years.
It doesn’t take a genius to know where our biggest weakness is.
We are already taking a liking to new signing Chancel Mbemba, and he looked solid at right back yesterday, and he seems such a personable young man.
This is what he has said on the Newcastle web-site today about the game:
“It was a great day and I was really proud to hear the crowd clapping and shouting my name.” “I was glad to be able to get out onto the pitch and help the team.”
“I have only ever played there (right-back) once before, for Anderlecht, and never since, but I am happy to play anywhere the coach and team need me to.” “I can’t tell you how I did though – it is up to the coaches and the fans to tell you that.”
“The team played quite well and we managed the first half pretty well. However, in football when you get chances you have to take them and maybe we missed a few of our opportunities.”
“Monchengladbach had one chance and took it. That was the difference and I know we will work hard this week to put that right.” “But we can take confidence from our performance against a team who will be playing in the Champions League.”
“The Premier League season is just around the corner and we went out there and played well against a very good side. It has given us confidence to take into next weekend.”
“I wasn’t too surprised because everyone I have spoken to since arriving here has told me what the atmosphere and noise is like when the stadium gets going,”
“This was just a friendly match and obviously wasn’t full but hopefully in the first game of the season we will see a full stadium with everyone really behind us, and that will be important to drive us on as a team.”
It will be interesting to see if Steve McClaren starts Chancel on Sunday – it’s probably best to have him in the starting line-up, and he may quickly help to close those gaps in the Newcastle defense.
But apart from the giveaway goal yesterday, the back four didn’t look too bad – not good – but not too bad either.
It’s just great to have Chancel on board at Newcastle United.