Newcastle’s priority in January will be to strengthen the backline. The porous defense has been the primary culprit for the disastrous start to this season, which The Magpies are already almost a third of the way through.
Most reports have Newcastle looking to bring in two center-backs as well as a creative force in the midfield. Though a lot will depend on how we fare in our remaining 8 matches until the window opens.
One area that could be a ticking timebomb is at striker. Callum Wilson is our only reliable source for goals. With Allan Saint-Maximin and Joelinton deployed on the flanks against Brentford, that may be where Eddie Howe sees the pair going forward.
That would leave just Dwight Gayle as cover for Wilson, who has had his share of injuries since joining Newcastle before the start of last season. It remains to be seen if Howe can get Dwight firing away in front of goal.
However, another Wilson injury could be a lurking disaster in a season where Newcastle cannot afford any more missteps. So a goalscorer could be on the agenda during the winter window.
Sport Witness has cited a report from Portugal’s Record that Newcastle are one of a number of clubs who could make a move for Benfica’s Darwin Nunez (shown above). The Uruguayan international has 8 goals in his 15 appearances this term.
The 22-year-old joined Benfica from second division Spanish club Almeria for a club-record £21.8m in 2020. He’s since made 55 appearances with an impressive 22 goals and 14 assists.
The 6’2″ striker’s contract runs until 2025 and he has a mammoth release clause close to £130m. While Benfica don’t want to lose their young star, it could come down to a bidding war with Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid, Inter Milan, Manchester City, and Newcastle all in the mix.
Newcastle, at the moment, don’t have the pulling power of those other clubs. So it will be a challenge to land someone of the caliber of Nunez, or Fiorentina striker Dusan Vlahovic.
Though if Howe can keep Newcastle safe this season, we’ll stand a much better chance of landing some of these world-class players in the summer and beyond.