Only days after clinching the title, we had seen Rafa Benitez whisked off in a helicopter to meet Mike Ashley and then within 24 hours a club statement indicated the Manager was staying.

Rafa Benitez talked of his plans in advance of next season and told everybody to enjoy their summer.

Well we can now!

However, whilst Rafa staying and Mike Ashley’s ‘every last penny’ comment were always going to grab the eye/headlines, there was something else of interest that appears to have slipped by.

‘Plans for next season were discussed, including the purchase and loan of players to add to the squad in readiness for the Premier League season.’

Rather than talking about simply recruiting players, this was a major departure when the club is talking specifically about ‘loan of players’.

It hasn’t been the Mike Ashley way, the owner seeing loaning players as wasting money on something that isn’t a longer-term asset and no potential increasing in value in the future. A bit like renting a house instead of buying  – it is putting money in somebody else’s pocket.

In the six Premier League seasons that followed Newcastle’s last (2009/10) promotion, Newcastle have only loaned three players for a full season.

Hatem Ben Arfa who ended up being made a permanent transfer halfway through his loan (whilst injured).

Then you have Loic Remy who did a great job and arguably scored the goals that saved/made that (2013/14) season.

Finally, we have the very strange case of Facundo Ferreyra. The Argentine striker obviously brought in for reasons other than playing football, as he didn’t play a single minute of first team football in 2014/15.

Newcastle though are in a minority of clubs outside the top handful, with loan signings regularly used to top up the quality of a Premier League squad.

It isn’t a case of seeing this as a long-term permanent Newcastle United policy but on promotion it looks a very effective/essential tool.

These are the loan signings that were made by the three clubs promoted in May 2016:

Burnley

Patrick Bamford (Chelsea) 6 appearances

Jon Flanagan (Liverpool) 10 appearances

Middlesbrough

Alvaro Negredo (Valencia) 37 appearances & 10 goals

Calum Chambers (Arsenal) 24 appearances & 1 goal

Hull City

Dieumerci Mbokani (Dynamo Kiev) 14 appearances

Markus Henriksen (AZ Alkmaar) 20 appearances

Alfred N’Diaye (Villarreal) 13 appearances & 1 goal

Lazaar Markovic (Liverpool) 14 appearances & 2 goals

Oumar Niasse (Everton) 17 appearances & 5 goals

Just like permanent transfers there is no guarantee of a loan one being a success BUT it does open doors at times for a level of player who otherwise wouldn’t come to your club – at least not at the present time.

Some of those players have moved for big fees and as you can see, most of them have been loaned out by the top teams with big squads.

Hull have brought three of their five loan players in during January and if they do survive, you could say that as well as their impressive manager, it will be the loan deals that have made the difference.

Rafa Benitez said he wanted to present his plans to Mike Ashley, rather than it just being about a certain figure in terms of budget to spend.

The probability of loan deals as part of Rafa’s pans, opens up a whole new group of players who could potentially be attracted to Newcastle United.

An interesting Summer ahead.



  • Paul Patterson

    An interesting take.
    Maybe the loan market could open doors to higher class of players, along the lines of the likes of the Fabregas and Torres moves that have been rumoured/speculated about?

    • Wor Lass

      Yes – to continue the comparison with housing used by Jim, it`s a fact that people who rent can live in a much better house than they could afford to buy.

  • Polarboy

    You’re forgetting the great Seydou Doumbia.

    • Mark Potter

      He’s not. Doumbia came in January, and he specifically only covers the three full season loans. There were several other January loan signings, most notably Luuk De Jong.

  • toonterrier

    Its another case of wait and see. Hopefully Rafa has contacts who can recommend players with potential who can turn out to be good enough for this league as again I cant see us spending serious money. We need class acts to get us up the table and not have to fight relegation again. Time will tell but still don’t trust the owner as he doesn’t like getting the wallet out.

  • Gareth Marshall

    I’m expecting that the loan players we can bring in will be the best signings of the summer.

    Given Rafas ability to develop players coupled with his connections at some of the biggest clubs in the world it’s not beyond possibility we could end up with some top draw youngsters at SJP next season.

    Loan signings for a newly promoted club are a fantastic way of boasting the squad without spending a fortune and if we can sign the 4-5 quality players that we need and bring in another 3-4 loan players we should be looking quite good come the start of the season.

    I’m excited!

    • Leazes Ender

      I can tell…. have you just wet your pants

  • Leazes Ender

    I thought it was scousers who are supposed to be the ‘bin-dippers’ but when our fans start doing it they fail to see the irony.