After some six weeks of negotiations, Florian Lejeune finally became a Newcastle United player.

Newcastle hadn’t wanted to meet his full £8.7m release price and then once they had bowed to that demand, Eibar refused to let NUFC pay by instalments. The deal went through without any clarification on that second point, as to who had backed down.

The signing was obviously welcomed by Newcastle fans, after two months of hundreds of names linked it was always going to be a relief to see the first new face arriving this summer.

However, with each passing day I am feeling a little bit more uneasy about our overall summer transfer activity. The hope obviously was that this Florian Lejeune deal would open the floodgates and we’d see two or three more quickly follow the Frenchman through the door.

Instead, we have seen day after day of quotes, interviews, background, to do with the Florian Lejeune signing. The club going way over the top on their website and social media, with the local media predictably lapping it up and simply repeating, hardly surprising after such a previously barren summer to cover.

The more stuff the club and the friendly media put out about Lejeune, it makes me feel we are less, not more, likely to bring in the other essential signings that have to happen this summer if Newcastle are not to be in a relegation fight.

Despite all of the stuff written about Lejeune, I have seen zero proper analysis of the player from the local media. All that 95% know still, is that the defender is French, has been signed from La Liga and was once a Manchester City player. I haven’t seen any real analysis as to what exactly Newcastle have bought, his overall profile and career history, to give us clues of what to expect.

Here is a season by season guide to what Florian Lejeuen has done so far in professional football:

2009/10 – French second division, started 14 league games for Istres.

2010/11 – French second division, started 27 league games for Istres.

2011/12 – Spanish second division, started 25 league games for Villarreal reserves.

2012/13 – Spanish second division, started 9 league games for Villarreal reserves, plus 2 starts in La Liga for the first team.

Then went on loan to Brest, making 2 starts for their reserve team before 8 starts in Ligue 1.

2013/14 – French second division, started 4 league games for Brest when he stayed on loan after they were relegated, plus 8 starts for their reserves.

2014/15 – Spanish second division, started 40 league games for Girona.

2015/16 – Spanish second division, started 41 league games for Girona.

2016/17 – La Liga, started league 33 games for SD Eibar.

(Manchester City signed him in summer 2015 and then immediately loaned Lejeune back to Girona, before a year later selling him for £1m to SD Eibar. Lejeune says he doesn’t want to talk about the Manchester City episode but I can only assume he was signed by them with the intention of probably then passing him on to one of the Man City owners’ other clubs in the US or Australia)

I think the big question has to be, why did Florian Lejeune spend all of those years playing second tier football in the low standard French and Spanish lower leagues?

This doesn’t mean that he can’t be a success in the Premier League but when you look at his overall profile, it is very embarrassing (and worrying) just how much Newcastle United are making of the signing. It is almost as if this is it, this is as good as it gets so enjoy it.

You are looking at a 26 year old player who has had one decent season in a top tier of any country, never mind the Premier League.

Even that was playing for absolute minnows SD Eibar in front of five thousand fans.

I say that not to disparage either Lejeune or Eibar but just to point out how ridiculous it is when the question is posed as to why he decided to come to Newcastle…?

Playing in front of ten times as many supporters and his wage doubled/trebled/whatever, hardly the most difficult of decisions.

I just don’t like the way so many Newcastle fans blindly follow the local journalists who are taking the line of what a brilliant signing Florian Lejeune is, compared to the stupid over the top fees other Premier League clubs are paying for players. Such as Bournemouth shelling out £20m for Nathan Ake and Everton £30m for Michael Keane.

Yes, if Florian Lejeune does prove to be as good or better than that pair and others, then we can all celebrate a bargain signing.

However, until we reach that point, the bottom line surely is that Florian Lejeune is a longshot to be a success, compared to say Michael Keane who has already shown form in the Premier League.

Newcastle have gone to the supermarket bargain aisle with this signing and we all hope he turns out be indeed, a bargain signing from the continent, rather than another Riviere, Marveaux, Anita, de Jong…

It is common sense though surely that Newcastle need at least a couple of major signings who have more depth in their career so far than Florian Lejeune, players who you expect to be able to do it in the Premier League, rather than it being a pleasant surprise if they do prove a success.

The over the top week of celebrations heralding the signing of Lejeune…what if Newcastle sign a player who we had all previously heard of???

(All contributions from Newcastle fans welcome, send articles (as well as ideas/suggestions) to [email protected])



  • HarryHype59

    The author is to be congratulated on his objectivity and thoughtful insight regarding this signing. I also have huge reservations about this player. His record indicates he has spent most of his career in the second tier of French and Spanish football. Eibar have made a nine fold profit on him after just one season. I am curious as to why his value increased so much.

    I hope this player has been scouted better than the other ‘punts’ who are sitting in the reserves draining the wage bill.

    • Geordie-7676

      Jamie Vardy was playing for Fleetwood town at the age of 24!!!!.

      • HarryHype59

        True, but he is the exception not the rule.

        • Geordie-7676

          My point is give the lad a chance before even holding reservations.

  • Brian Standen

    I would have thought the answer was fairly obvious – if Rafa fancies him it’s enough for me.

    Negativity amongst some fans is laughable

    If by Christmas we are 10 points adrift with Alan Curbishley in charge then feel free to remind me of my comment

    • Leazes Ender

      Not using an alias today Brian?

      • Brian Standen

        Leazes – as pointed out a 100 times to you I write using my real name UNLIKE YOU!

        If you doubt that then you really are wrong – but why should I justify

        I absolutely give you my word I have never written an article or passed comment using another name – save that for the keyboard warriors.

        I see things how I see them just like you see things your way, fact we 99% disagree is what makes football debate such a great pub topic.

        However I don’t ever resort to name calling or insulting which often you do.

        If you don’t like my opinion fine, but don’t doubt who I am!

        • Leazes Ender

          So where did the threats come from yesterday, someone has used my username. Is that your mate Bobbi fleckman who said he worked on the mag years ago?

          • Brian Standen

            Got no idea who he is – I don’t work for the mag , I do occasional articles which I hope people enjoy,plus pass comment if I have time!
            No conspiracy theory about me at all

    • Soldier

      Don`t tempt fate

      • Brian Standen

        Indeed -I just prefer to look ahead with a bit of positivity

  • Micksimus

    Yet another negative article because Newcastle aren’t signing players left, right and centre like an over-excited David O’Leary with a blank chequebook belonging to Peter Ridsdale. Last time I checked, there are still FIVE WEEKS until the season starts and EIGHT WEEKS until the transfer window closes. There’s no point in signing players just for the sake of signing is there? Surely the following criteria apply:
    1) They have to be better than what we already have
    2) They have to have the right character
    3) They have to be available
    4) They have to actually WANT to play for Newcastle
    5) They have to be affordable

    Who is it exactly that you feel that Newcastle should be signing? We’re here to SUPPORT the football club and the players it has, not dictate how it should be run.

    • Soldier

      chances are all the half decent players will have been snapped up in 5 weeks. the article is a fair assessment of the situation

    • Micksimus

      Also, judging a player by his career history is remarkably short-sighted. You’ve never even seen Lejeune play and yet you’re already writing him off as “a longshot to be a success” – howay man, give the lad a chance. To put your comment in context, Newcastle once signed a player whose career history was as follows:
      Hayes
      QPR
      Brentford (loan)
      Besiktas (loan)

      And he turned out to be pretty decent!

      • Leazes Ender

        Ther season is nearly upon us you knacker

        • Micksimus

          How am I a knacker?? No need to insult me. And no the season is not nearly upon us, it’s 5 weeks away.
          Alan Shearer signed for Newcastle on the 30th July 1996. I don’t remember too many people berating Keegan and Shepherd for not signing half the league prior to that!

          • Leazes Ender

            ….. are just going to plonk the new signings in and hope they become a well honed machine? Not with third and fourth drawer players you arent.

          • Micksimus

            So if you sign players in late-July or August, they’re automatically third and fourth drawer players are they?

            Or maybe clubs like to take a look at squads for a couple of weeks, see what they do and don’t need, see what they can move on…

            We currently have in excess of 30 “senior” players at Newcastle and you can only have 25 in a Premier League squad. So maybe we need to hoy some of our own third and fourth drawer players out before we can bring new ones in?

          • Leazes Ender

            They will be third or fourth drawer anyway regardless of timing.

          • Mark Potter

            The issue is, why are you and your troll mates describing players brought in by Rafa as third/fourth drawer, when you haven’t even seen them play? Did you say the same about the players he signed last summer, that they weren’t suitable to get us promoted? Gayle, Hayden, Clarke etc. Bet you did.

          • Damon Horner

            yes they did and they were unsurprisingly wrong.
            Ask what they said about Clark, Murphy and Hayden.

    • Rich Lawson

      Spot on pal,yes other clubs are already spending money,but the transfer window is barely open,can we not give it a rest and see how this month pans out ? As for this boy,Rafa says he is good in the air and has two decent feet,can we have a look at him in the pre-seasons before we write him off just cos he didn’t cost mega-bucks ?

    • Damon Horner

      Agreed. Last statement is particularly accurate and it’s where some tension comes from because the majority aren’t in full agreement of what is needed, be a bit different if things were discussion and debate.

    • Kevin Williams

      But you are missing the point re. transfers. An analogy thus, if you go to Grainger Market at opening time, you get the best and freshest fruit n veg. Go there are closing time and you are foraging for the best of the rotten entrails

  • Soldier

    wonder what our owner`s up to today then

    • Alex

      Power drinking, I suspect.

    • Micksimus

      Doesn’t matter what the owner is up to. The employees of the football club will be at the football club, doing the jobs they’re employed to do.

      • Soldier

        i doubt that very much, Lee Charnley can do nothing without Ashley`s say so.

  • Alex

    At a realistic price in this market, with the right background and with a very promising start to his EPL career, I’m very disappointed that we’re not beating Leicester City to the signature of Iheanacho.

    • HarryHype59

      At present we can’t compete with Leicester financially! They have received 110m TV money.

      • Alex

        Rubbish! There’s £40m profit from dealing last year, there’s a similar figure from EFL prize money, there’s whatever ‘budget’ (in the loose sense), we’ve just been allocated 5 live tv matches, and we’ve only spent £15m so far.

        £25m is more than doable and, despite his tender years, Iheanacho gives us a lot of credibility and makes a statement. This lad has ‘future profit’ written all over him, too.

        • HarryHype59

          There isn’t 40m profit from last year. You are assuming the 30m the club received for Sissoko was paid upfront. The London Evening Standard amongst others have stated his fee was to be paid over five years in £6m installments.

          The Chronicle state the the EFL prize money is £7.1m it is no where near 40m. There is an additional 5m in”solidarity” and TV appearance money. There is the £41m parachute TV money, but Leicester will have picked up around £115m in TV money. I repeat this season NUFC cannot compete with Leicester in the transfer market.

          • Damon Horner

            Sad but true. It grinds on most fans but it really is all about survival this year and making the best of it. Ashley’s investment is the only way to be on par financially this year.

        • HarryHype59

          It is not rubbish but a financial fact.

  • Lhc

    Surely people can see what is happening now and going to happen, the club again will sign nobody significant/expensive, they will spend as least as possible and hope to stay in the prem, weather that be 17th. Rafa or not things will not change until we have new ownership with ambition. It is what it is!! I’m a realist not a fantasist like some, been supporting nufc to long now to fall for there spiel, go on slate me for being negative but it’s the truth.

  • Lhc

    Bournemouth, 11/12 thousand seater stadium, have more ambition than nufc these days, fact. That’s me for one day, toddle pip

    • TheFatController

      Signed players who’d already played for them, in fairness. They did with Ake what we did with Atsu.

      • Lhc

        Difference is ake was 20 mil atsu 6.25/5 mil if Chelsea wanted 20 atsu nufc wouldn’t of touched him with a barge pole!

        • HarryHype59

          True!

  • Brian Standen

    What boils my kettle is you have people like Alex Hurst and Gallowgate Flags, the Wor Hyem group trying to encourage a POSITIVE singing section ( already fully subscribed) – these groups are trying so hard to bring a positive vibe back to SJP – yet before the season has even started the snipers are out!
    Moaning because we have not spent £20 million on a potential Billy Rafferty or £10!million on a over weight has been like Kenny Sansom

    Don’t start me on Albert Luque!

    If you really can’t trust Rafa get yourself down the road where things really are bleak!

    I’m no idiot and have same distrust for MA as anyone, but while Rafa is there we have a chance!

    • MichaelMaximusMoose

      it matters not whether the fans trust Rafa, the Pie man has the cheque book & there’s not even a hint of the striker or midfield player we sorely need. The manager is trying to assemble a reasonable squad who can make a decent go of it in the Premiership
      he needs them now

      • Oooh bobbi fleckman

        Oh do shut up. you know nothing

        • MichaelMaximusMoose

          Fluck off Blobby, shyte for brains doesn`t even begin to describe an idiot like you

          • Oooh bobbi fleckman

            heh, heh, when you tell me I’m an idiot, I realise that I must be right.

      • Brian Standen

        I agree with what we need. But not just anybody, it has to improve the squad !
        Fabian Delph has been talked about and he is minimum level needed to improve !
        MA does hold the chequebook but the days of marquee signings are gone
        But apart from Shearer what do marquee signings get you – Michael Owen!

      • TheFatController

        Do all signings come with a hint prior? I didn’t read about Man Utd’s hint on Lukaku, you’d think that would have been reported…

    • Leazes Ender

      You can sing all bloody day at an Ameiobi or Colback and it isn’t going to make any difference…. you can’t replicate genuine atmosphere generated by an ambitious club with flags and a singing section watching crud.

      • Brian Standen

        Yeah and the Leazes End never got on Tommy Gibbs back!
        Fact is most of last 10 years has been crud – but last season was not.
        For ambitious club read Arsenal, Man City, Man Utd all with grounds like libraries.

        Anyone who berates those for trying to bring something back is nothing more than a bitter fool!

        • Leazes Ender

          Its Tommy Gibb

          You don’t resort to name calling remember!

          • Brian Standen

            Bitter fool is generalising as I used the term anyone!

            But as always your nit picking – quite amusing but still nit picking!

            Out of interest, why do you hide behind an alias?

          • Mark Potter

            Because they are trolls?

          • Leazes Ender

            Tell you what i’ll see you at 1 o’clock beneath the Bobby Robson statue on the first matchday, I’ll be the one with steam coming from my ears.

          • Brian Standen

            Look forward to it my friend – at least it will satisfy one of my doubts, which is that you actually go, so pleased to here that!
            Better still come to Sgt Peppers pre or post match, great for cheap bottles! 4 Stella for £6 quite often last season
            I won’t have steam coming out my ears but I don’t just write using my real name,picture top left is actually me so canny easy to find me!

  • Sid James

    It`s still the same old Carry On at Newcastle

  • TheFatController

    Didn’t the Chronicle post a tweet from a journalist who covers La Liga saying there was value to be had from Spain if you can get Lejeune for as little as £9m. Maybe he had a blinding season – lots of players cost little and come from nowhere – look at Jamie Vardy.

    Also, who knows why City signed him? It’s ok to assume, but we have no idea what they saw in him. It might suggest it was potential given they didn’t loan him to a club in Australia or USA. £1m was about right for what he had done a year ago, a solid season in La liga might give him a realistic value now, or even a lower than realistic value if that journalist is to be believed.

  • Desree

    It is a big risk us not signing players. But Everton are doing a Leeds and Bournemouth a portsmouth. The TV cash is not guaranteed. What happens if sky go bust. Media companies are under pressure. Salaries and dees are unsustanaible. A season of shirt sponsorship can’t even cover signing Lejeune. I wish we were out to make a go of it. But it is bargain basement and relegation scrap. Another eventful season awaits.

  • Mal

    Yes let’s keep up the negativity. Might struggle under big crowds. Only one decent season. What next I wonder. I haven’t noticed loads of Newcastle supporters saying he’s a brilliant signing. Most of us are simply wishing him luck and trusting Rafa’s judgement that he’s a good player and will be a good addition to the squad.

    • Damon Horner

      Expect any different? It was likely to always go from complaining about a lack of signings to using ignorance to great effect to judge the quality of the signings when nothing is well known.

  • MadMag83

    I imagine he’s been signed as backup, a lot like Lazaar last season. Rafa will take a look at him in training and make a decision on him.

    • Clarko

      Why would Benitez spend £8.7m on a backup? Is “83” in reference to your IQ?

      • MadMag83

        Obviously it would be 83 more than your IQ. Do you always go for a personal insult when you disagree over something trivial? If so I suspect you don’t have many teeth left in that thick head of yours. Jog on back to your campsite!

        • Clarko

          I never said that Lejeune is guaranteed to be in the “staring eleven” did I? According to you he has been signed to be “backup”, now why on earth, would a newly promoted club, a club which lacks the necessary quality to compete in the Premier League, with strained resources, who are struggling to sign players, spend £8.7m on someone they believe to be a “backup”, stupidity at its very peak.

          • MadMag83

            If he’s not a starter then he is on the subs bench, therefore back up.

          • Clarko

            Lejeune has been brought in by the club to start, that is not me saying he is guaranteed a place in the first eleven, that is me saying that is the intention. He has not been brought in to be “backup”, that would be silly wouldn’t it?

          • HarryHype59

            Clarko is correct! Given the limited “strained” financial resources at NUFC an £8.7m player will be expected to start.

          • Andy Mac

            “We have discussed this many, many times, until you concede by ceasing to respond”

            I think we all have to understand that this numpty is one of those you avoid in “conversation”. Either he’s a 14yo with an inferiority complex or a cyber warrior fresh from Dungeons and Dragons ?

          • Clarko

            Like you have avoided our discussion only to come and try “insult” me to another user, now that is truly pathetic.

          • HarryHype59

            I think he attempts to wind people up in order to engage with people online and get some attention. This obviously doesn’t happen to him in real life.

            I have no issues people disagreeing with me as this is what makes the forum run. His pathetic attempt to denigrate other posters who prove he talks utter nonsense shows he has “issues”.

            He is however mildly amusing, albeit unintentionally.

          • MadMag83

            It’s also the fact he has some misguided belief that he is an intellectual, when all he does is insult you and repeatedly ask the same question, despite one answering it several times over.

            I’m actually starting to feel sorry for him, perhaps he has some kind of learning disability that makes it difficult for him to understand humour, context, subtlety and all the other nuances of social interaction and debate.

          • MadMag83

            Agreed. It’s somewhat pointless trying to debate anything with somebod who clearly doesn’t appreciate abyo

          • MadMag83

            It depends if he turns out to be any better than what we already have. Sels was bought to be a starter but ended up on the subs bench and now he’s on loan. He will need to be some player to dislodge the club captain or last seasons player of the year. I guess we shall see how it unfolds this season.

          • Clarko

            You’re straying from the problem, you stated that Lejeune has “been signed as backup”, he hasn’t, he has been signed to start. Do you now agree that he has been brought in to start, if not why?

          • MadMag83

            No, I believe that he will be sat on the bench come the start of the season unless Clark or Lascelles pick up an injury. Likewise yours is a belief yet you are stating it as fact. You do not know for certain that he will start, you are trying to make a guess based on the transfer fee etc.

            Neither of us knows, unless of course you’re actually Rafa Benitez?

          • Clarko

            You are arguing about something else, of course I do not know whether he will start the first game, the second game or the third game of the season, I cannot see into the future. I am arguing that he has been brought in with the intention of him being a first team player.

            Again, why would a newly promoted club, a club which lacks the necessary quality to compete in the Premier League, with strained resources, who are struggling to sign players, spend £8.7m on someone they believe to be a backup? He is seen as a first team player.

          • MadMag83

            You seem to have interpreted my original post far too literally, a little context is needed, as provided in my original post. Of course he hasn’t been signed to make cups of tea and mop up Ashley’s sick from the fireplace. They obviously believe he has the ability to compete for a first team place, but as stated, I believe he will be starting as a backup to Lascelles and Clark to begin with. I think you took ‘signed as backup’ as meaning he will never be first team, whereas as I meant it as I think he will play second fiddle to Clark and Lascelles initially, with a view to keep them on their toes and eventually take one of their places in the starting eleven should he outshine them when given the opportunity.

          • Clarko

            You’re describing a non first team player, a “backup”, no misinterpretation has taken place. So, again why would a newly promoted club, a club which lacks the necessary quality to compete in the Premier League, with strained resources, who are struggling to sign players, spend £8.7m on someone they believe to be a backup? Where is the logic in that? Counter the point, you’re talking about “cups of tea” and a “fireplace”, come on.

            You still, after all this time haven’t given a single reason as to why you believe he will be “backup”, where is the reasoning?

          • MadMag83

            Clearly you have no grasp of either humour or context, so any attempt at reasoning with you is futile, a fact previously alluded to by other users. I shall not bother to continue this continue this conversation any further as my patience is wearing thin.

            How anyone can be so stupid with only one head is beyond me…..

          • Clarko

            And there we go, you don’t have a reason, you’re just another who seems to think they are entitled to an opinion, no, you are entitled to an informed opinion, you are uninformed.

          • HarryHype59

            “Strained resources”

            Clarko …You were arguing last week the club had at least 70m to spend on new players? You were denigrating me for pointing out that money would be tight for recruitment until the club gets the new TV deal. The lack of any link with a “marquee” 20m+ signing would indicate my analysis is correct

            BTW Ashley has kept his word regarding the statement

            “Every penny the club generates through promotion and other means”

            The 6m installment money for Sissoko paid for Atsu, the 10m for Thauvin bought Lejuene. There is still the £7.1m prize money for winning the Championship and the 5m TV appearance and solidarity money available.

            BTW I agree with you, he hasn’t been bought as back up.

          • Clarko

            We have discussed this many, many times, until you concede by ceasing to respond. You can quote the fees that we have payed for players and the fees which we have brought in by selling players as much as you want but the problem with that argument is that it is currently July 7th, the total amount of money spent by Newcastle will not be known until September.

            It is worth to note, as you have quoted, that I said “strained resources”, I did not mention a transfer budget.

          • HarryHype59

            You implied it within the context of your post! Glad you acknowledge the ” Rafalution” will be self funding, as to date it appears the “power drinker” isn’t advancing Rafa any of the TV money.

          • Clarko

            I stated that Newcastle had “strained resources”, you took that phrase and interpreted it as “transfer budget”, you have done the same with Ashley’s statement in the past, you need to address that habit in your arguments/thought process.

            You have again try to misrepresent/lie about my previous posts. My whole argument about the transfer budget has always been centred around Ashley’s statement which includes money “generated” from “player sales”.

            Again this obsession with the transfer budget has took over a discussion originally about Lejeune, not only that but you are continuing to lie, like you have done with statements and player wages in the past without acknowledging that you have done so.

          • HarryHype59

            Clarko ….pray tell, how is disproving your absurd and false analysis “lying”?

            What exactly are “strained resources”

            Has the penny not dropped yet that the money generated from player sales won’t be enough to buy even one ” Marquee” signing?

            Btw if is amusing the way you contradict yourself every few days.

          • Clarko

            Can you quote where I had a “hissy fit”, can you quote where I stated the Sissoko fee had been “paid upfront”?

          • HarryHype59

            You are a compulsive fantasist with zero understanding of the key issues at this club. You verbally abuse anyone who deconstructs your incorrect arguments. You have a “Hissy fit ” on here at least five times a week!

            You claimed on numerous previous lists that Rafa had 30m transfer surplus to spend and refused to accept the Sissoko fee was staggered. That is a fact! I could copy and paste you posts but unlike you I actually have a life.

            It is highly amusing the way you play “Captain catch up” by arguing against a statement made by a poster and then tacitly acknowledging it is true a week later. You “limited resources ” line is proof of this.

          • Clarko

            Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

            “I could copy and paste you posts”, do it.

          • HarryHype59

            You mentioned the club had £41m and a £30m transfer surplus to fund the “Rafalution ” in addition to money generated from selling players

            There is no misrepresentation as you posted this last week.

            You had a hissy fit when I correctly pointed out to you that the £41m parachute money could not be used solely to fund new players as it would be needed to fund the 96m operating costs. You were also abusive when I said the Sissoko fee was paid five 6m installments. This has been confirmed in numerous media sources including the London Evening Standard. You laughably claimed it had been paid upfront, which was factually incorrect!

            The club has been rummaging around the bargain basement bins which prove my assertion re financial restrictions for this season is correct.

            I suggest you spend more times trying to grasp the bigger picture and improve your understanding of the key issues, rather than pmay the comic keyboard hard man.

      • MadMag83

        Just because a club spend X amount on a player it doesn’t guarantee they will be in the starting eleven unless they impress in training and pre season. I’m starting to think you’re just winding me up because it would take a lot

  • Damon Horner

    His style of play for me might hint that he is the type of player that would benefit from experience, he plays from the back, not so great in the tackle and seems more tactical of a defender not to mention a possible need to improve his physical stature.

    I say we should let him play first before we worry about his impact. Unconditional support for the lads unless things appear to be on a very worrying path, in this instance too many people don’t know anything about him so give him a crack.