The local reports suggest that Rafa Benitez will try to improve the Newcastle team in almost every position this summer and that will depend on how well Rafa can do in the transfer market with the help of Managing Director Lee Charnley.
Newcastle have already been linked with a host of players and that will continue and even increase as the summer approaches.
We’ll look at some of the defenders we have been linked with and who could be good buys for the club.
Harry Maquire – likely signing this summer?
We’ve been linked with at least three center-backs already in Ryan Shawcross of Stoke, Harry Maguire of Hull City and Italian Luca Caldirola of Werder Bremen.
Rafa wants players with Premier League experience but they will be more expensive and of course Luca is a free agent this summer so he comes at a very low price.
Maguire is supposed to be around £12M so we think he would be worth it and we’re not sure how much Ryan would cost but both have the experience in the Premier League and would be excellent buys for Newcastle and could come straight in and do a job at the back.
Both have good leadership skills and their contracts run out in June of next yer – so not sure if that will help bring their price down a little.
On the other hand we could get Luca cheaply, but all being well and that the players want to join us – Ryan and Harry would be great buys.
We have been linked with 22 year-old Calum Chambers and it looks like Arsenal will make the former Southampton youngster available following his loan spell at Middlesbrough.
We like Calum a lot as a player and he’s technically very good and the type of player Rafa could make better and fill with confidence on Tyneside and we’d love for Newcastle to sign him this summer.
Maybe we could get him for less than £15M but that’s the problem – some of the fees are going to be high and that’s one of the challenges for Rafa and Lee Charnley, which is why we may be forced to bring in some free agents and players with reasonable release clauses in their contracts.
Calum is versatile and can play at right back and center-back.
Two left backs we have been linked with are 19 year-old Kieran Tierney of Celtic, who looks a star of the future and we have now been linked for over a year with Leeds United’s Charlie Taylor, who is a free agent this summer.
Again, do we pay the extra for Kieran or get 23 year-old Taylor for a much lower price – we like the look of Taylor so we would go with Charlie as a free agent to keep the cost down.
And for goalkeeper we have been already been linked with Sunderland’s Jordan Pickford but there’s no way he would join us being both a Sunderland fan and a Black Cats player.
Earlier this week we were linked with Burnley goalkeeper Tom Heaton and we’ve been impressed with Tom when we have watched hom this season.
Tom was a real star as a teenager at Manchester United and later in years – he’s now 31 – he seems to have come right back into some great form.
Not sure how much he would cost with the £15M quoted seeming to be high, but he could be an excellent buy and if we get him he would probably be the starter in goal next season.
If we can keep Rob Elliot and Karl Darlow as the two other goalkeepers we would have no problem with the goalkeeper position next season.
We have an inkling that Rafa will sell Tim Krul and try to cash in on his Premier League experience and Rafa and Lee Charnley will try to get as much as possible for him with the inflated prices this summer.
Tim has been an excellent player for Newcastle United since he joined us as a 17 year-old back in 2007.
So if we go with those five players here’s a defense Rafa could buy this summer
Chambers Shawcross Maguire Taylor
However, the difficulty will be the transfer fees and they could cost as much as £50M – although it’s difficult to estimate in today’s inflated market.
We can sell some of the defenders we have such as Tim Krul, Jesus Gamez, Achraf Lazaar, Grant Hanley, Chancel Mbemba, Massadio Haidara and Kevin Mbabu to offset some of the cost of those coming in and also get the wages down for new players coming in.
That’s just some of the massive work Rafa and Lee have to do this summer – sell some of the players who have no future at Newcastle, now that we are back in the Premier League.
That’s it – so what do you think?