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

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Two Positions Benitez Must Strengthen This Summer

6:39 pm, Wednesday, June 8th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 39 Comments

One of Newcastle’s big weaknesses last season is that we didn’t have a recognized reliable goalscorer in the ranks – and we failed to sign Charlie Austin when we had ample opportunity to do so last summer and in January.

In the end it was Southampton who snapped him up for just £4M.

If we had signed Charlie – even in January – there was a good chance we could have avoided relegation, but that was just one mistake Lee Charnley and Graham Carr made last season  – there were many more.

The big one was keeping Steve McClaren in the job when it was obvious to everybody the job was just too big for him.


Ross McCormack – expensive

So it’s not surprising that one of the positions Rafa Benitez wants to strengthen as quickly as possible is striker and we have already been linked with Fulham’s Ross McCormack, Chelsea’s Patrick Bamford,  and Bournemouth’s Lee Tomlin and even Tenerife striker Nano.

We have also been offered Crystal Palace’s Dwight Gayle for the second summer running.

But of those five the only one that we really like is Ross McCormack, because he would guarantee us 15 goals nest season, and there are various reasons the other four may not be good deals for Newcastle.

Bamford had a bad time of it last season at both Palace and Norwich, Lee Tomlin just doesn’t seem good enough with his background, Nano if signed would be one for the future and we’ve never rated Dwight Gayle, who Alan Pardew also tried to sell last summer.

What Rafa wants in over the summer is experience and Ross would provide that – since he ‘s been a consistent goalscorer for a few seasons now in the Championship and he has scored 42 goals for Fulham in the last two seasons in 100 total appearances.

In the four seasons he was at Leeds United before moving to Fulham, he scored 58 goals in 154 appearances

The problem is that Fulham have put a £15M release clause in his contract and he’s not worth that much, but getting in one or even two experienced strikers this summer has to be Rafa’s first priority.

The other position that needs strengthening is center-back and we need to bring in a top center-back with Coloccini now certain to leave the club as another veteran, Steven Taylor, will do at the end of the month.

Newcastle already have two very promising young center-backs in Chancel Mbemba and Jamaal Lascelles who will both get better next season, but we need an experienced central defender too.

So as it was last summer Newcastle need a top striker and a top center-back brought in and with Rafa Benitez now at the helm – we think we’ll finally get those players in.

And the sooner the better.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Tags: Fabricio Coloccini · Newcastle News · Recruitment · Steven Taylor · Transfer News and Rumours · Transfer Target

39 responses so far ↓

  • 1 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:46 PM

    Ed. How many times? Austin-did-not-want-to-come-here. Please, just forget about him.

  • 2 Tsunki // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:48 PM

    Seconds out!

  • 3 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:50 PM

    One of the biggest mistakes made last season was the fact we did not sign Suarez.

  • 4 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:51 PM


    Who gets to be Michael Buffer?

  • 5 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:52 PM

    Lll?lleys get rrrreadyyy to rrrrrrummmmmbbbbllle

  • 6 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:52 PM

    Llllllets* Cant believe i had to correct that. Michael Buffer never does.

  • 7 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:57 PM


    It went a bit “Pete Tong” today, when I wasn’t around to answer you brave fellows. As it always does.
    I don’t recall making snide remarks about tramadol and other strong sedatives. You’ve turned King’s Evidence on that stuff quite nicely my slippery little friend.
    I’m going to make it up with bobby and adopt all his enemies as my own. What a team we’ll make 🙂

  • 8 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 6:59 PM

    In the red corner……

  • 9 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:00 PM

    And Lesh was in the next room having a spine inserted.
    All good jolly banter.
    No offence intended.

  • 10 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:01 PM

    Nah, another time.

  • 11 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:01 PM

    The MFI blogweight champion of the worrrrrld….

  • 12 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:02 PM


  • 13 Yo-yo // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:03 PM

    Not nice stuff but a daily part of my anti-arthritis medication. Why would anybody criticise people for their medical needs ?

    I think that Kets and Ed are related. There is no other reason for this mutual obsession with players we are never going to sign. Good call YCMIU.

  • 14 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:04 PM

    Sorry all. Getting a tad carried away 😀

  • 15 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:06 PM

    Yo Yo

    Had tramadol a few years back for reasons not worth going into. It felt as if my head was floating away.

  • 16 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:07 PM

    And mine.

  • 17 cyprus // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:07 PM

    No bitchin yet on this string! What’s a matta wit you guys

  • 18 Thump // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:09 PM

    @YoYo: Had tramadol when I tore my groin a few years back. It took about an hour for it to take hold, but when it did I felt sleepy, warm, and like I was floating – and best of all, the pain was easing. Suddenly I saw the world in such clarity like I hadn’t known possible.

    “So this is why Michael Owens is always tearing muscles.”

  • 19 Ron Knee // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:12 PM

    Is it sold over the counter?

  • 20 ShirebrookToon // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:15 PM

    Tramadol is a very addictive drug too!

  • 21 ShirebrookToon // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:16 PM

    No Ron it’s not mate

  • 22 welshgeordie9 // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:18 PM

    85lesh // Jun 8, 2016 at 5:55 PM

    Mr Tuff

    So it’s only human beings allowed tonight – no animals allowed.

    Ed’ll be onto you for posting discriminatory posts – Welshyboyo’s sure to complain!

    No no lesh i won’t complain or moan, some of you are doing a great job doing that yourselves.

  • 23 bettyswallocks // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:19 PM

    Cyprus…….. It has to be spontaneous and unexpected . If you keep prompting she won’t do it.

  • 24 Ron Knee // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:22 PM


    Didn’t think so!

  • 25 ShirebrookToon // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:27 PM

    Sissoko must be taking it with some of the stuff he spurts

  • 26 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:29 PM

    Austin again ?? He’s on 100k a week at Southampton!!!Also he got injured so would have missed a lot of our run in which would have still seen us relegated !!!

  • 27 Average_Contents // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:30 PM

    Looks like we’ve stumbled upon the replacement for the Austin articles.

    Obviously they still involve Charlie in some capacity but I expect nothing less from ed’s wide-on regarding him.

    How many games did he play before succumbing to injury again.

    That’s not to say I didn’t want him in the summer or January as he was just what we needed imo but come on.

    It’s getting ridiculous now ed.

  • 28 clinath@ed // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:32 PM

    If, and it’s a big IF, we’d gotten Austin, AND we’d stayed in the PREM, McClaren would have kept his job, and Rafa would not have come…..who else thinks we still got the best option?

  • 29 welshgeordie9 // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:33 PM

    I agree with Ed, if only we had signed Charle Austin, he probably would have wanted to join us only the club was to slow.

  • 30 welshgeordie9 // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:34 PM

    Should have kept Pardew and signed Charlie Austin.

  • 31 Average_Contents // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:37 PM

    Tramadol. Had it for back spasms.

    Highly addictive apparently because it’s morphine based.

    Only took a few because I didn’t like it.

    Still got 2 strips left over if anyone’s interested 😉


    I am in no way a drug dealer.

  • 32 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:39 PM

    I’d have taken relegation with Rafa over squeaking home with McClaren, which may have doomed us to another season of muddle.
    I have taken it.
    Relegation also meant Rafa renegotiated his contract and that the bad eggs will leave. No silver lining yet, but one may develop.

  • 33 clinath@ed // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:40 PM

    Small steps eh BandB?

  • 34 Average_Contents // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:42 PM

    Shire beat me to it.

    Mark ya shitstirrer 😉

    Yes BandB, Tsunki was very naughty then went all turncoat.

    That is an offence punishable by being in a room with just Bobby.

    I’d kill myself now.

  • 35 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:49 PM

    I am actually quite optimistic Clinath…this is me being optimistic.
    I’m even prepared go along for the ride.
    But I don’t think it vindicates nine years of rotten decisions and I’m not going to repent my distrust of the regime, which is still in place.
    All I want is to be able to make my own mind up when there’s solid evidence that a new leaf really has been turned.

  • 36 BandB // Jun 8, 2016 at 7:51 PM

    You’ll not need two strips of Tramadol for that AC.

  • 37 geordieviking // Jun 8, 2016 at 8:03 PM

    Had tramadol when I was in hospital having part of my lung removed and developed an abscess on my gum just to rub salt in (metaphorically). Tramadol had no effect whatsoever and they had to knock me out with oramorh. That did put me nicely to sleep.

  • 38 geordieviking // Jun 8, 2016 at 8:04 PM


  • 39 scout // Jun 8, 2016 at 9:23 PM

    Funny how people say Mccormack isn’t worth 15 million but say Sissoko price should be 20 million…

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