Newcastle captain Jamaal Lascelles has been linked with an £18M move to Chelsea over the weekend, as the 22 year-old defender continues to improve under the guidance of manager Rafa Benitez.
The Sun on Sunday reported yesterday that manager Antonio Conte has had his scouts watch the English center-back and they like what they have seen – which is hardly surprising.
It seems the London club would like to sign Jamaal in January, but there’s little chance of Rafa Benitez wanting to lose one of his top players – who he sees as a stalwart of his (successful) Newcastle side of the future.
That’s one reason he made the player captain of the club even though he’s just 22.
Jamaal Lascelles – 22 year-old Newcastle captain
Newcastle are in good financial shape right now having made a profit of £31M in the summer transfer market and the sell-outs at St. James’ Park and on the road this season will help keep the coffers full.
And if we get promoted then we’ll be back in the big time and the big money again.
Under Rafa Benitez the squad and the team put out on the field each game is the most important thing.
That’s so Newcastle can put out a top team for every single game – start winning games – keep winning games – and as soon as possible – win a trophy.
We shouldn’t forget that Rafa Benitez came to Newcastle to win trophies.
So things have changed a lot with Rafa coming in and it’s not that money takes a complete back seat either.
Rafa has already talked about how important it is for us to get back to the Premier League, so we have the money to bring in some top players.
We will need some world-class players if we are to really be a team to be reckoned with in England and in Europe in future years.
That’s the definite and fundamental shift that’s happened under Rafa and we will not sell our best players just for the money, which we have done all too often in the past when money was King.
And even owner Mike Ashley seems to have finally realized that a successful football team is one that wins games and wins trophies and sells out St. James’ Park for every home game.
It’s not one that has a great bank balance, continually cuts costs and struggles against relegation every season.
Mike deserves credit for that – even though it took nine years for the penny to finally drop.
So Chelsea will have a really hard job to sign Jamaal Lascelles, who still has a lot of improvement to make under Rafa’s guidance so he can become a top player at Newcastle for years to come.
That sounds so very good but it also points to the fact that Newcastle United are now a very different club than we were at the start of the year, before a certain Rafa Benitez arrived on Tyneside.
He has changed everything.
What do you think?