There is an interesting report in the Telegraph today that Rafa Benitez has had a one-on-one talk to Aleksandar Mitrovic about the situation with Dwight Gayle starting in the side and scoring 17 goals for Newcastle and that Mitro will need to be patient – at least in the near term.
The meeting took place yesterday morning during training and Mitrovic again said he has no intention of leaving Newcastle and wants to stay and fight for starting place in the side.
Aleksandar Mitrovic in action against Blackburn
This comes as the likelihood of some big bids are going to come in for Mitro next month.
Both Crystal Palace and Swansea – two sides in the relegation scrap this season – are said to be willing to bid £15M for the striker.
This is what Rafa told the local journalists yesterday as reported in the Telegraph:
“I can’t say 100% I will not sell these players, because you never know.” “At the moment, we are not thinking about selling.”
“We have had a conversation today. Mitro is fine, he’s OK and he understands the situation.”
“He knows that Dwight Gayle is scoring goals and it’s very difficult to play every week.”
This sounds like good man-management from Rafa that he has been made aware that clubs will be bidding for Mitro in January and the club intends to turn down those bids and he wanted to check how Mitro felt about the current situation at Newcastle.
Of course there’s always the chance that one of the clubs could offer silly money for Mitro – north of say £20M – and then Newcastle would need to think about it more.
Newcastle did that last January when we offered a whopping £25M to West Brom for striker Saido Berahino, but they still turned it down.
If the Serbian stays on the sidelines for the rest of the season with Dwight Gayle continuing to score the goals, maybe the future at Newcastle will not look too bright for the 22 year-old Serbian International.
In that case he could well be sold in the summer if we are promoted, because Rafa will want to significantly improve the quality of the squad for the Premier League.
What do you think?