In the lead up to the January transfer window Newcastle have been linked with two talented teenagers – 17 year-old Sunderland striker Joel Asoro and 18 year-old Leeds United playmaker Ronaldo Vieira.
Rafa Benitez is interested in buying players who are young and can develop into much better players on Tyneside and he’s also interested in buying players who can come in and immediately challenge for a first team spot.
Asoro is a player who fits into the first category and Ronaldo Vieira probably fits into both categories.
17 year-old striker Joel Asoro
There’s not much of a chance of signing either player next month although Joel Asoro is a possibility.
But in the summer, when we hope Newcastle are back in the Premier League, Rafa Benitez’ Newcastle will be a big draw for any player and it looks like we will have plenty of money to spend to further improve the Newcastle squad.
We also expect another clear-out players in the summer (or in January) when players such as Emmanuel Riviere, Massadio Haidara, Florian Thauvin, Henri Saivet, Haris Vuckic, Kevin Mbabu, Sammy Ameobi and maybe Tim Krul and Siem de Jong could all leave the club.
Asoro signed for Sunderland in 2015 and in August David Moyes gave him his debut in the league against Middlesbrough, when he came on as a substitute late in the game.
He has made only 2 more appearances for Sunderland since then and made his debut for the Sweden U21 side in September, starting the game against Spain in the 1-1 draw.
Asoro began his career at his home town club IFK Haninge and then at eleven he moved to IF Brommapojkarna where he stayed for five years before moving to Sunderland last year.
Ronaldo Vieira – 18 year-old Leeds play-maker
Leeds United’s Ronaldo Vieira is an 18 year old midfielder born in Guinea-Bissau but raised in Portugal, where he signed for the S.L. Benfica Academy.
He left Portugal in 2011 with his family for England and began playing football in England for Whitley Bay Boys Club, just eight miles east of Newcastle.
Ronaldo then moved to Yorkshire and played 2 seasons in the Huddersfield Junior Football league for Batley Phoenix before joining Leeds United after a trial in September of last year.
He’s been a regular for Leeds this season and we watched him on Friday night at Brighton where Leeds played well but lost Kalvin Phillips with a red card in the 23rd minute after he handled the ball on the line.
It was difficult for the Whites after that and they lost 2-0 with the second goal coming late in the game.
Ronaldo is a young and skilled creative player and he has made great progress at Leeds in just over a year and one thing Newcastle are short of in the current squad is creativity.
So these two lads are likely to be on Newcastle’s radar screen probably for the summer, when hopefully we will have gained promotion back to the Premier League.
What do you think?