Newcastle Face Huge Competition For This Player In January

Rafa Benitez has talked recently about the targets he has in the January transfer window and it seems he has identified the positions he wants to strengthen the squad in.

It’s always difficult to know exactly which positions they could be – but one of them could be center-back.

Last season’s number one choice at center-back, Chancel Mbemba seems out of favor at the club at the moment and his last two starts have not gone well at all.

Nikola Milenkovic – Partizan Belgrade center-back

They were both home games against Wolves and Blackburn Rovers that ended in shock defeats and Chancel did not play well in either game – in fact he looked poor.

It could be that Rafa could sell Chancel in the summer, just less than two years after we brought him in from Belgium club Anderlecht for around £9M.

If center-back is one of the positions to strengthen, Newcastle have been heavily linked with 19 year-old Serbian defender Nikola Milenkovic of Partizan Belgrade all season.

But Newcastle will face huge competition for the teenager from Juventus who are said to be tracking the player and wanting to buy him in January.

On November 22nd Italian transfer pundit Fabrizio Romano reported in that the Italian giants had inquired about the Partizan central defender who “they have fallen in love with him.”

Juventus and Newcastle have been watching him regularly and he’s looked impressive in the Partizan first team.

In his reporting Romano  has said Juventus will face competition from some English clubs for Milenkovic – and especially from Newcastle United.

Milenkovic is 6ft 5ins tall and made his debut for Partizan against Mladost Lucani in April of this year and he  has one cap for Serbia, when he played against Qatar in a September friendly.

He has a contract that lasts through June, 2020 and he’s now played 36 times for Partizan with two goals and is getting regular playing time for Partizan.

Nikola could be a target of Newcastle’s this January and if we cannot get him then – watch for a bid to be made  this summer.

Other clubs also tracking him are reported by the Sun to be Ajax and Anderlecht – as well as Newcastle and Juventus.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

17 comments so far

  • Jib

    Dec 13, 2016 at 11:40 AM

    Comment #1
  • bettyswallocks

    Dec 13, 2016 at 11:42 AM

    Comment #2

    Maybe Milenkovic is being lined up as a replacement for Lascelles. Jamaal is improving under Rafa and is a good leader. Can we find better is a question for Rafa to answer. CB’ s are like a good wine, they improve with age unlike my good self who improves with wine.

  • Graeme

    Dec 13, 2016 at 11:44 AM

    Comment #3
  • Jib

    Dec 13, 2016 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #4

    Perhaps rumours of toon dealings with Porto are not so far fetched.

    Belgian and Portuguese media are reporting Porto boss , Pinto da Costa is getting ready to part with €6million for Mitrovic – as that is way below big Al’s valuation maybe there is a player plus cash deal being mooted or maybe it’s a fee plus wages deal for him on loan ?

  • Mag52

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:21 PM

    Comment #5

    There’ll be plenty of good players who Rafa would be keen to sign on should we get promoted.
    Equally these good players will be a target for clubs with money to spend.
    Our £31 (?) million profit on the summer transfer season will look pretty insignificant when we start to compete in the spending stakes in the premiership. Will fat Ash step in to help out ? I wonder.

  • Belfast

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:22 PM

    Comment #6

    Think Simon Hooper is that tube from the Fulham Game ? Another great referee then lol

  • manxpie

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:34 PM

    Comment #7

    Haha big fan were ya Belfast?

  • Lindisfarne

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:46 PM

    Comment #8

    IMO Chancel Mbemba needs game time to improve his confidence and consequently his decision making. It may be possible to play him at RB with Yedlin in front of him and Ritchie on the left.

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:48 PM

    Comment #9

    Porto wanted to sign Mitrovic before we got him so maybe they would like to get him now!?

  • Lindisfarne

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:50 PM

    Comment #10

    Possible Wigan line up:

    Ritchie – Atsu – Yedlin
    Shelvey – Hayden
    Dummett – Clarke – Lascelles – Mbemba

  • Belfast

    Dec 13, 2016 at 12:54 PM

    Comment #11

    December 13, 2016

    Hell yeah!

  • toonincheek

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:03 PM

    Comment #12

    Mbemba has potential, based on his performances last season.
    Why has he not ‘improved’ under Rafa the way everyone else has?

    Surely he has potential – how do we release that?
    He can be a quality player to us – or has Rafa discovered a problem?

  • mickybraham

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:18 PM

    Comment #13

    On the Gayle song:

    Always look on the Dwight side of life (whistles)

    dunno if its been mentioned already. Easy as pie.

    I’d imagine it’s easier to start songs at away games as well. So maybe one will emerge tmorrow evening 🙂

    I think everyone wants to sing his name but no one knows what to sing! Maybe the ear cupping is just to encourage us to come up with something!

  • mickybraham

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:23 PM

    Comment #14

    And on lascelles:

    After ripping levy’s arms and legs off over the Sissoko deal. Just imagine the price Rafa would get when a club is actively pursuing one of our players.

    Like to think Lascelles would stay, though. Rafa has given him a huge opportunity to captain the club and he should be with us for the next few years imo 🙂

  • toonincheek

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:31 PM

    Comment #15

    micky –

    That’s the best song idea for me.

    Easy to sing, even though the whistles are an invitation
    to descend into a horrific catcall.

  • mickybraham

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #16

    hahaha yeah definitely! Maybe just shout the whistle bits

  • nufc 11

    Dec 13, 2016 at 5:58 PM

    Comment #17

    Robbie Brady good option for lb next season, very impressed with Porto duo barhami and corona, sturidge, ward prowse for next season desperately need more pace in the team.


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