Rafa Benitez has been talking about transfers again, and he admits that Nice striker Alassane Plea was one of the strikers on his list.
But we didn’t get him and the news was that we bid £20M for him, but Borussia Dortmund got him for £2M more than that.
It looks like £20M is the cut-off point that Mike Ashley will allow for any player this summer.
This is shaping up to be a little like last summer when Newcastle cannot seem to move quickly or efficiently enough to get their top targets in.
Mike Ashley – averse to spending money
And Rafa has talked about that again today – as he did last summer – that we must be a lot quicker and move early for players.
Here’s what the manager has said in the Chronicle when asked about Alassane Plea :
“He was one of the names on the list.”
“We have some inquiries about some of our players and Lee Charnley is working on that.”
“We will see if we have any news in the next few days.” “Obviously, we need to move players if we want to have money to spend on players.”
“It depends on the movements.” “We will see how quick the others can go.”
“Always in the window, you have to do things quickly; if not, you’re losing your targets.”
“And then you go, later on, to players that maybe are not as good as you are expecting in different positions.”
“We will try to sign the right players with the characteristics that we will need for the games.”
“If you go early, you can sign the first or second choice.” “If not, you go deeper and deeper down the list of targets.”
“The fans need to understand these players here are giving everything, so we have to support them.”
“We cannot say ‘oh, he is not good enough’ because sometimes you cannot sign the players you want but the players that are good for you and the squad.”
“At least we are trying to bring professionals that care.”
There was news today that Newcastle are trying to do a loan deal for West Brom striker Salomon Rondon.
So it does look like we have to sell players before there’s any money to bring in players on permanent transfers.
That suggests we could have a net zero transfer window (or close to it) where the only money spent is what we bring in from transfers of our players to other clubs.
What looks almost certain is that once again the net spend will be low.