Jose Enrique is easily the best left-back Newcastle have had under Mike Ashley’s reign, though that is hardly the most difficult achievement.
However, I find it very difficult to believe an ‘exclusive’ that has now appeared, claiming that the Liverpool player could be on his way back to St James Park.
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A number of newspapers/websites have carried the story but it appears to have originated from the Winner Sports website, which has a transfer exclusive conversion record that is on a par with my mate Joe D’s pulling attempts back in the day, when we used to go clubbing at Tiffany’s in the toon
This is how their ‘exclusive’ read
Newcastle are considering a move to bring Jose Enrique back to the club on loan.
New Toon boss Steve McClaren is desperate to bring in new defenders and is weighing up a move for the out of favour Liverpool defender.
The 29-year-old has fallen out of favour at Liverpool under Brendan Rodgers and is thought to be keen a return to Tyneside.
Jose Enrique had an outstanding partnership with Jonas Gutierrez and I was gutted when the Spanish left-back left.
I think that the left-back position is a massive weakness in the team (Dummett and Haidara clearly not Premier League class) but attention gets drawn away from it because at centre-back it has been even worse.
However, Jose Enrique is not the player he was when he left in August 2011.
Hard to believe but he turns 30 during the coming season and after a decent first season on Merseyside when he featured in 35 Premier League matches, he has been affected more and more by knee and hamstring injuries, to the point where in the last two years he has only started eight PL matches.
With other positions desperately needed to be strengthened, including centre-back and up front, it is very difficult to see Mike Ashley splashing out on big wages for an ex-player, in a position where he and the club think they can probably get by with what they have got.
The one interesting thing to come out of last night’s phone-in that Steve McClaren did, was his admission ‘You can’t win anything with a bad defence’ and his statement that they were still looking to bring in more defenders.
Whether that includes a left-back remains to be seen but I can ‘exclusively’ reveal that it won’t be Jose Enrique.