Newcastle have still yet to appoint a Director of Football as we head into the last week of November. Reports have former Chelsea Technical Director Michael Emenalo in pole position with Football Insider claiming he was all set to join last week.
However, that has not happened so there still may be other candidates in the mix. One of which could be Ramon Planes, who recently left Barcelona by mutual consent amidst reported interest from Newcastle.
With the transfer window opening in five weeks, one would expect an appointment to be coming soon. Though the board have proven they are more than willing to take their time in making such decisions
Another area that could see some big changes is in the scouting department. Frank McParland, a former Chief Scout at Liverpool, has been assisting in an advisory role since the takeover’s completion. It has been reported he will join in an official capacity at some point.
There hasn’t been any announcements on Newcastle’s Head of Recruitment Steve Nickson (shown above). Though The Sun recently reported he would remain in his post.
It’s hard to judge Nickson fairly as he was forced to recruit under Mike Ashley’s strict guidelines. Former Chief Scout Graham Carr identified some future world-class stars that Ashley just wouldn’t sanction deals for.
Nickson reportedly has a wealth of knowledge of players and could still be an asset to the club. Though, one would expect a top scout to be brought in to lead recruitment at some point.
Sport Witness has cited a report from Foot Mercato that Bayern Munich’s Chief Scout Laurent Busser is of interest to Newcastle. The 49-year-old Frenchman previously held the same role with great success at Bayer Leverkusen.
Busser is credited with bringing in some top young Frenchman to Bayern such as Benjamin Pavard and Tanguy Nianzou. He also reportedly identified Canadian international Alphonso Davies, who has quickly developed into a world-class talent.
Busser had massive success at Leverkusen paving the way to his appointment at Bayern. When he made the jump to Munich in 2018, Bild reported that it was Busser who first identified French internationals Ousmane Dembele and Kingsley Coman as future stars, though Leverkusen were unable to land them.
We’ll see if Newcastle’s new owners shake up the scouting department. It seems like that will be part of the plan as Amanda Staveley recently vowed to invest in all areas of the club.