Newcastle United are keen on retaining both Yoan Gouffran and Vurnon Anita beyond this season, according to media reports this morning.
The two players both see their contracts end this summer when they will be able to leave for nothing, unless an extension is agreed with NUFC.
The Northern Echo claim that their inside information backs up these claims but there are no quotes from Rafa Benitez to go with their story.
Vurnon Anita has made 18 league starts this season and Yoan Gouffran 28, both of them doing a steady job.
However, that is surely where it ends.
The fact that there has been no move to give either player a new deal tells you that neither player is seen as essential to keep.
My belief (and hope) is that the only way any new deal would be offered is if Newcastle United somehow find a way to miss out on promotion from this point of being top of the table with nine games remaining.
Giving Anita and/or Gouffran a one year deal to play a part in another Championship season would make sense but I would be really really worried if new deals were to be agreed if Newcastle were back in the Premier League.
Both players have done steady jobs in the Championship but that is their level, whereas over the previous four seasons they showed overwhelmingly that they haven’t got what it takes in the top tier.
Even in the Championship their limitations are exposed at times, with Yoan Gouffran offering little really but hard work, as he gives nothing creatively on the left side.
Similarly, Vurnon Anita was humiliated by 16 year old Ryan Sessegnon on Saturday. His lack of pace repeatedly exposed as the youngster scored the two goals that gave Fulham the win.
If in the Premier League, Newcastle United need a DeAndre Yedlin or better if they are to prosper, having no pace or attacking ability at full-back is a real liability.
Anita has already shown that he can’t survive playing a midfield role in England, his lack of physical stature as well as pace, meaning he was getting bossed the vast majority of times when tried there in the past.
Good luck to the pair of them wherever they end up next because they both seem good characters, just not enough ability for the Premier League.
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