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News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Newcastle Start To Offer New Contracts To Players

10:26 pm, Tuesday, May 24th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 40 Comments

The Chronicle is reporting tonight that it’s their understanding that Rafa Benitez will offer a new two year deal to 21 year-old defender Kevin Mbabu.

The Swiss youth international looked good when he did play for the first team last season and he was especially impressive when he played left back against Chelsea at St. James’ Park at the end of September.

It’s been reported that Rafa Benitez has been mulling over which players to retain and which ones to release, so we may be seeing announcements coming soon.

But that will only happen after Benitez is announced as the new Newcastle manager later in the week – the sooner the better for Newcastle fans.

kevin mbabu

Kevin Mbabu – in action against Chelsea

The big problem that Kevin has had since he signed on from Servette just over three years ago are his injuries.

But that’s also a general problem at Newcastle and one we are hopping Rafa can get to the bottom of – once he has a good review of the medical department at the club and their procedures.

We are continually top of the injury league in the Premier League.

Kevin’s current deal runs out at the end of next month, so he looks to be one of the first to receive a new deal at Newcastle if this news is accurate.

Kevin deserves his chance and could become a very good player for Newcastle down the road – certainly his attitude and spirit are first class and he trains hard and has impressed Rafa Benitez.

Comments welcome.

Tags: Contracts · Kevin Mbabu · Newcastle Youth

40 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Shadow_Shearer // May 24, 2016 at 10:29 PM

    Hope this is true. This kid looks really good.

  • 2 Shadow_Shearer // May 24, 2016 at 10:30 PM

    Hope arrons gets a new contract aswel.

  • 3 YoungMagpieFromBurnley // May 24, 2016 at 10:31 PM

    Good news

  • 4 jane // May 24, 2016 at 10:43 PM

    how much do you think he will be on?

  • 5 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // May 24, 2016 at 10:44 PM

    Was seeing somewhere that Skrtel is going to be available from Liverpool this summer !?

    Get Agger on a free and him with Lascalles, Dummett and Mbemba as CB and we suddenly look a lot healthier at the back

    Also James Morrison from West Brom is on a free transfer would add some experience and quality

  • 6 welshgeordie9 // May 24, 2016 at 10:50 PM

    Would help if the club stopped pissing about and get Benitez in first ffs, then sort out the players, why the hell is this dragging on.

  • 7 jimmysmith // May 24, 2016 at 11:02 PM

    It’s most likely that the delay is on Benitez’ end. He either wants the deal just so, and watertight, and also wants a little window to allow competing offers to come in and to be considered.

  • 8 jane // May 24, 2016 at 11:15 PM

    what have Dummett, Sissoko and Townsend in common?

  • 9 wolfshead@toon // May 24, 2016 at 11:17 PM

    your prob near the mark jimmy benetiz could be stalling waiting for a better offer while fatty searches for a new puppet

    im betting he regrets not giving the king more money if he was still here this season we would have had early exits from the cups and finished about 12th so he could gets his hands on all the new payout loot

  • 10 nufc 11 // May 24, 2016 at 11:18 PM

    Looked far better than dummett at lb in the lascells mould eager to listen and learn rafa will make him a plAyer. Arons next. Krul,cisse, sissoko, janmatt, Taylor, Colo, gini can leave. Keogh, Morrison, ba and were good to go.

  • 11 nufc786 // May 24, 2016 at 11:20 PM

    Maybe also add Glenn Murray from Bournemouth and look at some of the players Chelsea have out on loan ?

  • 12 Novocastrian66 // May 25, 2016 at 1:08 AM

    C’mon boys; Glen Murray? Keogh? I know we e been relegated but we’re better than that man. I would take Skrtel though.

  • 13 whitbytoonwallsend // May 25, 2016 at 1:21 AM

    I’ve been a fan since the days of shoot and used to stand in the right hand side of the Gallowgate near the corner flag. The atmosphere, the peanut bags being thrown. My big brothers and cousins singing the Blaydon Races. The love, the passion. Supermac, Tudor, shouting at Tommy Cassidy. Irving Nattrass, Alan Kennedy, Micky Burns. Days when we had hope! Days we thought had came again with Keegan and Sir Bobby. I pray that Rafa stays and brings those days back again.

  • 14 willowdalerez // May 25, 2016 at 1:24 AM

    Repost in part:

    I’ve repeatedly posted Rafa won’t stay on and go down with us to the Championship and anyone on here believes different is deluding themselves. I stand by that. The negotiations are all just a smokescreen to cover while Charnley arranges a new pet to do his bidding, if change was coming Charnley and Carr would have been out immediately after the season. They weren’t so business as usual. Rafa has better sense than to risk his professional neck below the deck in the championship when he will have a flock of heavy hitters after him.

    Someone posted something interesting that he might stay on only if given full control, a big budget and only if motivated by a personal desire to build an even greater personal legacy for himself by taking a club with potential to be huge and ten getting it there… could see that just don’t see Ashley doing the other side of the equation. I might be wrong but the fact Charnley is still in charge has me thinking otherwise. Hope I’m wrong and get mocked for it but if Rafa were going to stay it could easily have been done by now.

  • 15 whitbytoonwallsend // May 25, 2016 at 1:32 AM

    Willow, I can’t believe that Ashley would risk the backlash. I also hope that Rafa wants to build a legend here.

  • 16 expatmag // May 25, 2016 at 2:07 AM


    Rafa will be re-appointed.

    Despite what you and others believe, he is still apparently contracted to the club as he signed a 3 year deal in March.

    Much of his work is preparation and organising the season ahead.

    His updated contract is basically dotting I and crossing Ts. Pure administration.

    Rafa himself said it would take 2 weeks to finalise and as he wsnts to stay in England, the only available jobs are us and Everton. They have yheir eyes elsewhere

  • 17 manxpie // May 25, 2016 at 2:26 AM

    looks far better than dummet!!!!!!!!!! what are you serious!!
    people are forgetting dummet hasn’t been fit or at the very least match fit for over a season
    and he changed our game completely
    same as the know it alls forget that mcclaren had the worst injury list you could imagine
    without a striker!!
    but yeah rafa changed the lot ie made us defensive and had the added bonus of having a LB and tiote back
    have a look again through the season and look at the luck we had with injuries before you get on your high horse and thats without a recognised prem striker

    wat an arse you must be to “not start an argument”!!!!
    the funny thing is you never state what you mean or show anything that many posters do but have the gall to try and show them up! first class cretin!!!
    jib and you are the same admt it!????????
    the evidence is there

  • 18 willowdalerez // May 25, 2016 at 3:28 AM

    Whitby and Expat hope you are both right! Rafa would be a great stroke and easily the best signing we can make.

    Looking at players I’m happy we are planning on keeping Mbabu he looked good when fit.

    As for strikers Mitro stupidly took himself out of the first few games with that straight red so we need a proven goalscorer to step in from the get go. Despite his age and poor sell on value / unlikely usefulness if we achieve immediate promotion McCormack can score and can give Armstrong the room he needs to grow into something more (if he does – remember for all the hype he hasn’t even played / proven himself at the championship level yet)

    With the players we will be unloading and the parachute payment we can go for McCormack… not doing so would be similar to our passing on Austin last summer at 15 M… hefty fee up front for proven performance.

  • 19 willowdalerez // May 25, 2016 at 3:36 AM

    Feel bad for Chris Hughton… a bit of bad luck with injuries cost his Seagulls promotion. Heady days when he led us straight back up to what we thought was a promising new start in the Prem. A real gentleman I’d wish him well except for the fact he’ll likely be one of our stiffest competitors next season.

  • 20 jimmysmith // May 25, 2016 at 4:07 AM

    I can’t recall a situation where circumstance has played such an obvious role in outcomes.

    We got Rafa in the first place only because he got sacked by Real Madrid and wanted a return to England not just because of his family, but also because England is going to be the league to be in because of the juggernaut of investment about to be poured in, all at the same time as McClaren’s tenure had become untenable.

    Then we get relegated, which amazingly further strengthened Rafa’s hand, considering the desperate need to come straight back up, again because of the money to be had, and just as Ashley runs out of viable alternative options.

    It just go to show what little control we can exert on the events that make up our lives. But most of all it shows that this is a remarkably lucky circumstance for our massive fan base, because without it, history tells us we’d be stuck with the same old inadequate finance and management that has marked Newcastle so divisively under Ashley up to now.

  • 21 expatmag // May 25, 2016 at 4:22 AM


    McCormack is too old ptobably too expensive. I could see the club going for someone like Gayle from Palace or Griffiths ftom Celtic as a cheaper, better and younger option.

    We already have the likes of Mitrovic, Petez, Armstrong and Toney who could and should thrive in the championship. Our main purchases should be players who can serve assuming they all stay.

    I am also basing my assumptions on Sissoko snd Wijnaldum going, Townsend and Shelvey staying. A new contract for a fit Aarons snd a Redmond/Gray type Will Hughes ftom Derby would suit us just fine

  • 22 expatmag // May 25, 2016 at 4:52 AM

    My squad for next season:

    Darlow, Elliott, Woodman……sell Krul edtimated £5m.

    Anita, Sterry, Taylor, Dunk, Lascelles, Mbemba, mbabu, Dummett, Haidara…….sell Janmaat £6m, Coloccini free, Good free…..offer Taylor 1 year on lower wages……in Dunk from Brighton….£6m…..possible full back cover on loan

    Townsend, Shelvey, Colback, Saviet, Hughes, Redmond, Perez, Aarons, Riviere, …..sell Sissoko £15m, DeJong £4m, Gouffran £1m, Ameobi £1m, Vukic £1m, Tiote £5m, Cabella £6m……loan Wijnaldum and Thauvin for 12 months……buy Hughes snd Redmond for £8m each …possible couple of lower level squad loans in. Marvesux and Obertan already released

    Mitrovic, Armstrong, Toney, Griffiths…..sell Cisse for 5 million….sign Griffiths for 10 million from Celtic. Perez and Riviere can supplement the forwards if short.

    That is a fairly healthy squad in the championship which is young as well as experienced. The club should be able to rake in a profit on ssles to sprnd of approximately £20m pounds whilst significantly cutting back on the salary budget. It has a very good british base too

    I could see tjis squad tomping away with the championship.

  • 23 The overrated Frenchman // May 25, 2016 at 5:07 AM

    Jinky@20. Interesting comments. It is kind of curious that Ashley’s poor judgement may be ultimately to the club’s advantage. If he hadn’t made the ridiculous decision to retain the woefully incompetent Charnley, we wouldn’t have retained the bent old-aged pensioner as head scout or hired the failed Championship manager. All this of course lead to the disastrous relegation, and Ashley’s subsequent about turn with the pursuit of Benitez as he sees the EPL money gurgling away.

  • 24 expatmag // May 25, 2016 at 5:28 AM


    Ashley has been digging his own grave over a number of years. Whether it is because he has been unreliably informed and advised or whether it is just that he cuts himself off from reality, ge has made a continuous mess of things at our once great club. Makes you wonder how he became a sucessful businessman.

    Anyway, like most on here and I have been saying it for a couple of years now, relegation should ve a blessing in disguise by virtue the despot will lose a lot of money, will need to spend even more money to get back where he was and appoint experienced professionals to achieve this.

    It is not rocket science really.

  • 25 Ian Toon // May 25, 2016 at 6:47 AM

    Jimmy- I like the fate/ destiny prognosis. Benitez is at a stage of his life , career in football, where he might well be thinking of NUFC as a “project” whereby he can leave a legacy in football . Not unlike Keegan but he’s made of sterner stuff.

  • 26 jimmysmith // May 25, 2016 at 6:50 AM

    Relegation can’t be considered a blessing overall when you consider the money we will miss out on and how handicapped that will make us relative to those who stay in the EPL, unless Ashley takes a voluntary hit, and finances the training facility et al out of his own hip pocket and so increases the amount of the interest free loan, which he may, at Rafa’s insistence.

    But it does afford this most unexpected opportunity for us to finally be run sensibly and realistically, which is a very much a blessing, so unlikely it all has been.

    I think the pivotal momentss were that long stretch when we didn’t strengthen, Pardew leaving, to be followed by the appointments of Carver and McClaren, and then the planets lined up, in a way few could have imagined.

    To be honest, McClaren should have done far better with the group he was given, but he didn’t, and fate took over.

    Even the stupidity of Charnley dithering after the Chelsea defeat, meant Rafa didn’t have enough time to save us, and so almost counter intuitively he can now write his own ticket.

  • 27 Jib // May 25, 2016 at 7:30 AM

    In my humble – Kevin M’babu’s offer of a contract is not unconnected to revelations that Juventus have tabled an offer for Janmaat !

  • 28 Jib // May 25, 2016 at 7:35 AM

    Folk are so dim at times.
    Screaming for the immediate sacking of Lee Charnley before the future of the management position is resolved.
    He may have screwed up on some of the bigger issues at the club , but the mundane day-to-day stuff – like sorting out contracts and responding to other clubs enquiries about our players still have to be dealt with.

  • 29 jimmysmith // May 25, 2016 at 7:37 AM

    I’d agree Ian. Keegan was very much the right appointment at the right time, in that remarkable first stint, but did lack the stomach for it ultimately.

    However Benitez, like Bobby Robson, would seem the right appointment at any time. And it’s a rare thing for us. This will be only the second appointment of that calibre in my lifetime, and there have been many. Although I did have high hopes when we landed Dalglish, Gullet and Souness, only for them to be dashed of course.

    Hopeless really, when you consider the size of the club. Then again, there aren’t a lot of genuinely elite managers going round, and so they of course naturally gravitate to the senior sides. But surely we could and should have attracted far better over the years.

    Anyhoo, we have Benitez now, and as Keegan and Bobby have shown, we can most certainly become a force to be reckoned with again.

  • 30 Mag52 // May 25, 2016 at 7:43 AM

    Jimmy @20

    Nice and positive there Jimmy, if only the Rafa business were done and dusted.
    We’re all counting our chickens at the moment, which can be a pretty devastating thing to do if they don’t hatch.

  • 31 Jail for Ashley // May 25, 2016 at 7:46 AM

    Ha ha,
    Blog classic, Churnley can’t be that stupid because he put us all through that ordeal with Carver, narrowly by the skin of his teeth avoiding relegation on the last day so that we’d all think Mclaren was an upgrade and Jibberish fell for it. That coming from the kid who always got it at school. What a knacker.

  • 32 jimmysmith // May 25, 2016 at 7:49 AM

    Well if Ashley doesn’t get him signed up, we can cheer ourselves up by running Ashley out of town, once and for all. Which would be the next best thing, and our only decent alternative.

  • 33 Jib // May 25, 2016 at 7:51 AM

    Remember the club in the last Championship adventure pretty much ended up with Chris Hughton by accident.
    Originally appointed assistant to KK by Denis Wise he was only caretaker manager at the start of that season as Ashley had the club up for sale.
    His manager of the month awards in August and September pretty much pushed the ownership into making his role permanent.

    The point I’m trying to make is that it is crucial we make a flying start to next season we must have every other club striving to catch us.

  • 34 giimps // May 25, 2016 at 8:00 AM

    I agree, the best way to win that league is to get in front and stay there, I think that’s why Rafa is getting the squad back early to prepare everything correctly and give us the best chance possible.
    As much as I believe that Rafa is staying, I get the slightest niggle telling me that we will end up with Warnock trying to complete Rafas plans on the cheap, I’m hoping though that Ashley ain’t that stupid……..could still be forced on him though if Rafa does get another offer………I hate this waiting lark… good for my psyche

  • 35 carltoon // May 25, 2016 at 8:05 AM

    hope to hear good news today. that Raffa’s staying. then can renew my season tickets.

  • 36 giimps // May 25, 2016 at 8:05 AM

    Mourinhio agreed terms with manure, no drawn out contract for them as they will give him full control and he won’t need to point to the wording of the contract to make sure he gets the clubs backing…………….our club is a disgrace ( at least the ones running it are) spineless, clueless and untrustworthy…….the three wise snakes.

  • 37 Jib // May 25, 2016 at 8:10 AM

    Someone the other day pointed out that Mourinho probably had all the wording of his contract worked out at Xmas !
    It’s hard to feel sorry for a stiffnecked jerk like van Gaal.

  • 38 Jail for Ashley // May 25, 2016 at 8:11 AM

    Can you imagine that they’d hoodwinked Rafa in to weeks of talks outlining his vision for success with Monkers, Beardo and Watson listening from the board room, Keith Bishop writing it all down for a dossier to be given to Warnock and his assistant Stuart Pearce.

  • 39 Jail for Ashley // May 25, 2016 at 8:20 AM

    Joey Barton to Rangers, shame he couldn’t have buried the hatchet somewhere. He would have very useful in the Championship, his experience and knowledge of the teams we’ll be facing would be invaluable.

  • 40 lesh // May 25, 2016 at 8:23 AM

    No press conference today or any time soon then?

    Could it be that Ashley’s got no intention of agreeing and contracting Rafa’s blueprint and they’re stalling to keep the heat of Ashley? Could they be trying to get Rafa to walk away – blaming failure to agree on his ‘excessive’ demands?

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