The two players Rafa Benitez was agitating to get Mike Ashley to sign in January were Everton central midfielder James McCarthy and former Newcastle winger Andros Townsend – who decided to leave us when we were relegated last year.
Ashley did not oblige.
When you want to sign two players in January you have to assume Rafa Benitez still wants to sign these two players in the summer, but we don’t seem to have made a strong move for either one of them.
In fact we were expecting one of the first players through the door this summer to be Andros Townsend, but to be fair Sam Allardyce did surprisingly resign in May and Crystal Palace appointed Dutchman Frank de Boer in his place.
25 year-old Andros Townsend – looks like he just scored
It’s realistic to think Palace needed to give Frank some time in the job to decide whether or not he wants to keep the player.
But there again assuming the release clause of £13M is still in Andros’ contract that would have nothing to do with it.
That’s because if Newcastle meet the release price, we are then allowed to talk to Andros and if he wants to come back to Newcastle then compensation would need to be agreed and he would become a Newcastle player again.
As far as James McCarthy goes, Leicester City have become interested in the player and they were quoted a price tag of £25M by Everton after Newcastle were told we could have James for £20M in January.
Nothing good ever seems to come of delaying any move into the transfer market or delaying signing a player because of long drawn-out negotiations when you are simply trying to save a buck.
26 year-old James McCarthy
While we don’t know the inside story of any of the failed transfer attempts this summer, it does seem that Newcastle are penny-pinching far too much again.
Yes – it’s always satisfying to get a good deal in the transfer market – but you cannot always do that – especially for (very) good players.
So it’s a bit of a mystery why we don’t seem to have gone after James McCarthy and Andros Townsend, who are two experienced and classy Premier League players.
They would be worth £33M to Newcastle – always assuming we can still get James for £20M – an assumption.
But Lee Charnley and Mike Ashley would have to agree to part with £33M to get these two very good players through the door – who have already proved they are good players in the Premier League.
That’s unlike some of the other transfer targets we have been going after this summer.