For a ‘business’ built on value, Newcastle United seem to have lost any concept of transfer strategy.
The first step is for Newcastle United to remember what a strategy is.
‘A plan to achieve a long term aim’.
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So why does it take a transfer summit well into the post-season to set this?
The Chief Scout Graham Carr (pictured above) surely knows what he is working to, has made initial enquiries and is waiting for our new Head Coach to give the green light?
We need to remember that the man in the street could have identified the need for two strikers, two centre backs and a creative midfielder. This long-term strategy though seems to be as simple as get anyone who is cheap!
So then, how do you go about this?
We are a club who only a couple of seasons ago made all of our signings quickly and sharply. There was no sniff of who was coming in. They appeared and had pedigree (Cabaye, Tiote etc).
Now we seem to have gone to the other extreme. In war you protect your strategy with mis-communication. Maybe Lee Charnley feels that he is the master off this. Leaked stories throwing everyone off the scent! But no. When it is 67+ stories then we fail to believe.
The challenge is that the slight glimmer of hope is now fading in a world of mis-communication. We are being linked to a wide range of realistic players, but already failing to ‘get them over the line’. We are an agent’s dream.
Leaked stories about Austin and Dost simply driving the interest up for them priming a move to West Ham and Borussia Dortmund respectively. Free transfer targets being deemed to pricey or too high risk.
But then what were Chucky and Riviere last year? Were they deemed as low risk? They were certainly too pricey!
Ok, so if we won’t pay top dollar in fees or wages then what about moving for up and coming talent. Well now you have to accept that this lies in the Championship and they are all too well aware that there is a flood of new money up top.
Every player has now doubled in price – £10m for Tyrone Mings anyone?! This is where you need to be smart. Make a competitive offer, give a deadline and then move on. We may be doing this but it doesn’t feel the case. Only this weekend Liverpool have snapped up one of the most promising talents in Charlton’s Joe Gomez for £3.5m.
I live in hope that we can tie down some great signings in the next week or so, but it really does feel like our press policy of leaked stories to preferred partners and leaving the rest to make them up, is working against our ability to make deals.
For once I feel this isn’t something which lies at the feet of Mike Ashley. It feels like Charnley and Carr have got it wrong. If you are not going to drop a £15m bomb on a club then you need to go guerrilla – at the moment we are simply charging over the top and getting shot down every time.