We are all second guessing Rafa Benitez and what his transfer plans are for Newcastle United, both in and out, this summer.
However, a story that ran yesterday didn’t seem to make any sense whatsoever…
The Chronicle claimed that Lyon are interested in taking Kevin Mbabu on an initial loan which would include a clause for a permanent transfer – with the player said to be potentially tempted due to the competition for first team football at Newcastle, plus the potential of playing Champions League for the Ligue 1 side.
At the age of 21, Kevin Mbabu has only ever started three matches in his career, so I’m puzzled as to how he would be seen by Lyon as somebody who would be suddenly propelled into their first team and playing in the Champions League.
This looks like a transfer story that would make no sense to either club, or the player.
Surely the only priority for Kevin Mbabu is to try and stay fit now and get some football, something which is surely far more likely in the Championship than at a club that just finished runners-up in Ligue 1, have moved into their brand new stadium, and will have ambitions that currently far exceed picking up a little known Newcastle reserve player who has achieved nothing as yet in his career.
It’s true that in the one and a half Premier League games he played against Chelsea and Manchester City he looked like he had something – but that is only a very small starting point, not any kind of proof that he can make it.
Along with his mate Rolando Aarons, Kevin Mbabu is a player who must see this coming season as a massive opportunity that almost certainly wouldn’t have presented itself if Newcastle had stayed in the Premier League.
The Championship will surely give both players the chance now to play a substantial number of games, if they stay fit, and tell us if they have any chance of making it at Newcastle and in football generally.