Benitez Targets This Center-Back For The Summer

The Sun is reporting that Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez is interested in another Arsenal player after his signing of Isaac Hayden last summer has been so successful with Isaac Hayden continuing to improve under the Spanish manager’s guidance.

This time it’s Arsenal 19 year-old 6ft 2ins center-back Kristopher da Graca as the news is the Spaniard is lining up a move for the youngster this summer.

Kristopher da Graca – 19 year-old Arsenal defender

Da Graca can also play at right back and the news is that he has been told he can leave the London club in the summer – his contract will not be renewed – and Rafa seems interested in signing the teenager.

It’s little wonder that Newcastle could be interested in de Graca since he will become a free agent and could be signed for a nominal fee.

Newcastle are always interested in signing young talent and that policy has become even more important since Rafa arrived at the club and he can use his many contacts throughout Europe to bring in the best young players to Newcastle.

Da Graca has been interesting PSG and we would expect Rafa and Lee Charnley behind the scenes to be working on  targets to go after this summer, as we try to get promoted and become a Premier League club again.

And while it seems that some big transfer money will be available in the summer by owner Mike Ashley, Newcastle will always try to pick up some bargain buys as we did last summer.

This is what it says about de Graca on the Arsenal web-site:

“Strong defender Kristopher was able to show his promise last season after enduring an injury-disrupted debut year at the club following his move from Swedish side Hisingsbacka in 2014.”

“The central defender made the majority of his appearances for the under-18s, but he also broke into the under-21 setup and made six appearances for Steve Gatting’s side.”

“Naturally suited to a central role, ‘Kris’ has demonstrated his versatility by impressing at right back and the Sweden youth international will be hoping to carry on his steady progress this year.”

Personal details:

Born January 16, 1998
Bergsjon, Sweden
Position: Defender
Squad Number: 42

So he just turned 19 last month and he could be one for Peter Beardsley’s development squad at least initially, although Rafa may make him part of the first team squad immediately, once he’s taken a look at him in training.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

29 comments so far

  • Jib

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:18 PM

    Comment #1

    Blackley and Brownlie // Looked average.

    ha ha ha


    they’ll put than on your headstone



    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:21 PM

    Comment #2

    Never heard of him but for free to add to the reserves aye sure

    Though it won’t be Rafa bringing him in unless he’s first team ready

  • posada

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:26 PM

    Comment #3

    Lot of negative comments after QPR game.
    Lot of positive ones after yesterday.
    But, what was the difference.
    A Tom Ince miss, a penalty not given or a clearance off the line.
    Overall we played better yesterday.
    Have to say though I thought we went to pieces in that last 15 minutes. How they did not score I will never know.
    I’m not gonna speculate on why.

  • lesh

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:28 PM

    Comment #4

    beermonkey, rotanda

    Wasn’t Mbabu loaned out after an incident involving himself along with Aarons and a female friend?

    The fact that Aarons stayed with us made me wonder whether Mbabu’s done something else to make Rafa loan him out.

  • lesh

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:30 PM

    Comment #5


    Surely you mean near first-team ready thereby allowing scope for further development?

  • lesh

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #6


    Surely you mean near first-team ready thereby allowing scope for further development?

  • VanToonMan

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:37 PM

    Comment #7

    Assuming we do get promoted – I think Rafa will have a very solid transfer kitty.

    In terms of our starting xi (not bench) for premier league games – who else believes that we 5 of our current xi would remain – Darlow, Yedlin, Lascelles, Shelvey and Ritchie.

    Everyone else should be on the bench (which is great squad depth) – which basically means Rafa needs to sign 6 top quality players!

    Definitely a top class CB to partner Lascelles, CM to partner Shelvey and CF.

    I’m not too keen about signing players from the relegated teams for the Prem. For championship it’s fine (eg Ciaran Clark) – but players who have gone from one relegated team to another clearly are lacking something.

    PS – we should have pulled out all the stops for sigurdsson in Jan – would have been great as No. 10.

  • Novocastrian66

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:39 PM

    Comment #8

    It was never a penalty. Carson grabs Lascelles around the waist and pulls him over, if anything it was a foul by Carson.

  • Thump

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:40 PM

    Comment #9

    @posada: They didn’t score because they couldn’t hit a barn door with the proverbial banjo. They had maybe 4 or 5 shots all game, and I’d bet only half of them were on target.

    Even during the last 15 – where we invited them on to us – they still didn’t look threatening.

    What’s more impressive is that they finished with 11 men.


    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:43 PM

    Comment #10

    Haha I mean reserve player mate if that’s what ur asking

  • RUNAWAY777

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:45 PM

    Comment #11

    Newcastle owner Mike Ashley has told Rafa Benitez to “judge me in the summer” after a lack of January signings.

  • RUNAWAY777

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:47 PM

    Comment #12

    Hope this Huddersfiel and Leeds match finishes a draw.

  • MadisonToon

    Feb 5, 2017 at 12:53 PM

    Comment #13

    Carson was the one who fouled and he did so blatantly. I was amazed when the commentators made a claim that was a penalty as his arms were wrapped around our player (Lascelles if memory serves correctly) and our man was then wrestled to the ground.

    Did anyone see that differently?

  • lochinvar

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:05 PM

    Comment #14

    If the ref had seen the incident then Carson should have been booked for foul play off the ball or effectively diving to try to gain an unfair advantage. He was seriously wound up after clattering Perez which was also bookable for dangerous play.

  • Jib

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:06 PM

    Comment #15

    Huddersfield 1 Leeds 1 start of 2nd half

  • JamesToon

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:08 PM

    Comment #16


    I agree but want us to be careful about completely overhauling the starting XI, what merits clark and hayden to be dropped?

    Players that definitely should be retained in the summer:

    Players that may need to be replaced for better quality:
    De Jong

  • Thump

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:10 PM

    Comment #17

    @MadisonToon: Their ‘penalty shout’ was 6 of one, half a dozen of the other. They both had hold of each other, but Carson pulled Lascelles down.

    I don’t think he should have even been on the pitch for the corner though. He should have been off when he wiped out Perez.

  • dem

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:11 PM

    Comment #18


    Regarding Sigurdsson, he is a good player, but he wouldn’t sign for us in the championship. Swansea would be mental to sell too and I’m sure I saw they turned down a £30m offer for him due to the situation they currently find themselves in.

    We need to keep perspective of the situation we are currently in (Championship team) before saying we should go after this or that player from the Premier League. With fees and wages, nothing major will happen until the summer, hopefully.


    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:19 PM

    Comment #19

    Aarons definitely should be retained? Id sooner keep some of the players uve got in the other list than our reigning Mr Injury

  • Novocastrian66

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:25 PM

    Comment #20

    That was dangerous play by Carson. A two footed lunge which was late and high.

  • posada

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:29 PM

    Comment #21

    In fairness to him it was not two footed.
    Both feet off the ground and out of control which is bad enough, but not one of what I call a long jump tackle.
    The like of which we have seen recently in the prem.

  • posada

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:33 PM

    Comment #22

    Thump @ 9 They still did’nt look threatening ?
    The header off the line must have been a dream.
    I can tell you now, you can’t depend on Ince missing a chance like that.
    Panic looked to be setting in. Just like QPR which eventually lead to an own goal.

  • NoahJ

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:43 PM

    Comment #23

    Does that mean the end for the so-called prospects of tomorrow, Lubo Satka and Curtis Good? If not, then there’s not much point, unless he’s first team ready (in which case I assume that will mean the end of one of mbemba or hanley)

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #24

    If we have a big budget we should sell darlow for 8m, krul for 5m and bring in Fraser forster for whatever he coats. Southampton have had a great defence ever since he joined yet each year they change manager and sell 2 or 3 of their defenders. He’s the only constant and it’s no coincedence that when he had his big injury Southampton were well below par.

  • dem

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:49 PM

    Comment #25

    Huddersfield played well this 2nd half and look to have got a deserved victory. Will be a tough game when we go there next month.

  • Belfast

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #26

    Huddersfield manager was brilliant there hehehe


    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:52 PM

    Comment #27

    Garry Monk hahaha

  • Novocastrian66

    Feb 5, 2017 at 1:55 PM

    Comment #28

    Posada; Watched it again and you’re right it wasn’t two footed.

  • Belfast

    Feb 5, 2017 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #29

    I think that was a good result for us. Leeds momentum has been killed the last few weeks. Huddersfield are a good side but I can’t see them catching us.


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