Rafa remains hopeful that come January Newcastle can get maybe three good players through the door and by that time we hope we are still in the top ten in the Premier League.
Rafa was disappointed in the summer and certainly didn’t get what he was expecting from owner Rafa Benitez.
But with takeover talk starting to increase on Tyneside maybe we will get new owners before the January window even opens.
If that does happen, we expect Rafa to be given significant funds to spend in January if the right players are available.
But as always Rafa is thoroughly preparing for the upcoming transfer window, and he is relying on the Head of Recruitment Steve Nickson.
Steve was elevated to that position in the summer when former Chief Scout Graham Carr left by mutual consent on June 21st.
Steve had been the Under-21s scout before his promotion and with Carr leaving Rafa was left entirely in charge of all transfers into and out of the club.
Steve Nickson has the full confidence of the manager, and he is now an essential cog in the Newcastle wheel as he will be responsible for scouting players who could be signed by Newcastle.
He will take direction from Rafa.
Steve will work jointly not only with Rafa but also with Managing Director Lee Charnley on new potential targets in the upcoming transfer windows.
The Chronicle is reporting the recruitment (scouting) team have been asked to provide a list of at least five names for every single position in the team before the January transfer window opens.
Steve Nickson – Head of Recruitment
Rafa has talked about recruitment in his two and a half hour meeting with the local press:
“We have a new ‘shed’, or office, for the scouting department.”
“They are already working because it’s what you have to do. It doesn’t matter if the transfer window is not open, then you still have to be ready to bring in players and be looking.”
“Everybody is doing their job for the next window, but in every training session you can see that the groundsmen have made the pitches fine, the medical department are doing well because we have just a couple of injuries, so everyone’s doing their jobs.”
“But afterward things change and you have to react and have a solution in place just in case.”
“We are working on what we have to do, what we would like to do, but you never know.”
“But imagine in December you have an injury, then you are expecting more money on a certain player, then you have to spend however much money for a striker because they are more expensive.
“I think for us now, we have names and we have options and are following the players. We have as much information as we can for everyone.”
“Everything is more complicated than it seems. We try to analyze sometimes too many things, but you can be lucky that sometimes you sign a player who is not fit or doesn’t have a good record.”
“But then he comes here, settles down and does well and starts scoring goals.”
Things seem to be starting to click both on and off the field for Newcastle at the moment.
That’s good news, and all we need now is an owner who will fully support what Rafa wants to do with Newcastle.
In short – that’s to take us to the very top.