Rafa Benitez Now After Surprise Spanish Midfield Target

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There’s a report in Sky Sports today that Newcastle are interested in signing Jota (full name Jose Ignacio Peleteiro Ramallo), who is a Spanish attacking midfielder who plays for Brentford in the Championship.

Jota was on loan at Spanish club Eibar during almost the whole of 2016, but returned to Brentford at the end of last year – maybe the Newcastle scouts watched him during the first half of last season while they were scouting French center-back Florian Lejeune, who played at Eibar last season.

Other clubs reported to be interested in the player are said to be West Ham and Everton.

25 year-old Jota of Brentford

Jota was signed by Brentford in the summer of 2014 from Celta Vigo on a three year deal for an undisclosed fee and that contract included a one year option, which was taken up by the Bees.

In August of 2015 he suffering damaged ankle ligaments in the opening game of the season against Ipswich and was out of action until that December.

In January of 2016, he left on loan to Eibar until June 2017 due to personal reasons; Jota was unsettled and seemed to be missing his family and that was the main reason for his return to Spain.

So he’s had a bit of an in-and-out time of it at Brentford being recalled from loan by Brentford at the end of 2016 after receiving international clearance so he spent almost all of 2016 playing at Eibar, where he played really well and helped the club get promoted to La Liga in May 2016.

But in the last five months of the Championship season Jota seemed to come alive and scored 12 goals and laid on five assists in 21 total appearances.

Jota now has just one year left on his contract, but since he only just became a starter at Brentford we wonder if the 25 year-old is good enough for Newcastle and good enough for the Premier League?

That seems to be the big question.

He has now played 74 games for Brentford with 23 goals and 9 assists – and while at Eibar on loan a couple of times in 2013-2014 and then in 2016 he played a total of 57 times and scored 11 goals with  3 assists.

We assume Rafa knows about his performances from his many contacts and presumably the Newcastle manager thinks  he can make the step up to the Premier – that’s always assuming the Sky Sports report is accurate.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.



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