Surprising Statements From Rafa On Newcastle’s Striker Situation

The Mail is reporting today that Newcastle has to wait until the end of the month to see whether Chelsea will allow their striker Michy Batshuayi will be allowed go out on loan for the season.

The report says that Rafa Benitez is interested in bringing the former Marseille striker to Newcastle.

But that isn’t really what Rafa has been saying in the lead-up to today’s game at Huddersfield, where he seems to suggest we will have the strikers we need for this season.

Rafa mentions that Ayoze Perez could be considered the fourth striker along with Dwight Gayle, Aleksandar Mitrovic, and recent signing Joselu from Stoke City.

Rafa Benitez in training

Here’s what Rafa has said about his striker situation:

“We have had a lot of interest in some of our players but the question is how much they have offered.”

“So how much do you expect someone interested in Gayle or Mitro or one of our players to ensure it’s the right price? We would have to sign another one. We don’t have too many strikers.”

“Normally you will play 4-2-3-1, you can play 4-4-2 sometimes. Whatever system.”

“We have three, four strikers if we put Ayo in if we someone else. More or less, we are fine.”

With only 11 days to go in this transfer window, it would be difficult for Newcastle to make a big sale of a player like Mitrovic.

Rafa and Lee Charnley will be concentrating on getting players like Tim Krul, Manu Riviere, Henri Saivet and others sold before the window closes or at least send them out on loan.

It does seem that 25-year-old Moroccan International Achraf Lazaar will go on loan to Genoa, with the player being spotted leaving Newcastle airport yesterday – so if he indeed traveled to Genoa the deal must be very close.

We assume there will be an option to buy Lazzar at the end of the loan spell.

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Comments welcome.

9 comments so far

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:22 AM

    Comment #1

    Hang on…
    Was that Rafa quoted saying ‘…you can play 4 4 2 sometimes…’ ?
    (Checks Columbian Roast coffee packet)

  • cyprus

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:23 AM

    Comment #2

    Today’s game is a tough one and the unemotional bookies have Huddersfield as firm favourites.

    As always, hoping for a win. Will not be surprised if we lose or draw.

    Really hope the window isn’t closed for us, we have one of the weakest teams, man for man.

    Surely management – MA, m.director, Rafa (who Mike said is actually the director’s boss) – won’t risk it. Surely.

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:24 AM

    Comment #3

    Perez’s development has, sadly, stalled. And I think that is being kind to him.

  • c-dog

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:28 AM

    Comment #4

    The Big A! Legend!

  • cyprus

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:29 AM

    Comment #5

    True that. After that flicked goal and some stellar performances thought we had a find. Hope he can reignite it.

  • expatmag

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:38 AM

    Comment #6


    I actually think Perez is more suited to the PL and will contribute this season.

    As for the Mirrors story on loan deals for Carroll and Wilshire, you have to wonder what the hierachy at SJP think about this sh*t spouted ftom their so called preferred media partner.

    With regard to today, tough game but I am going for a 1-1 draw

  • catchy in norway

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:42 AM

    Comment #7

    for me , perez is a CF, not a winger not a no10 but a CF who if plays should be the furthest forward,

    the no 10 role does not need to have pace , he needs to have (1) a quick brain (2) ability to play the ball fast with accuracy, then have the presence of mind to drop into spaces.

    Perez IMO has more ability than Gayle but has never been given that chance on match day,

  • DubaiMicky

    Aug 20, 2017 at 8:45 AM

    Comment #8


    “As always, hoping for a win. Will not be surprised if we lose or draw.”

    Hedging your bets there then.

  • MassiveG

    Aug 20, 2017 at 11:01 AM

    Comment #9

    Dream scenario: Jovetic, Praet, Wilshere, Mangala, Kenedy plus probably another left back who is not a winger


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