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Chelsea Target Newcastle United’s Krul and Tiote

10 years ago

The ending of the January transfer window seems to move seamlessly into worrying about the summer transfer market and with us having a truly unbalanced team of gifted and not so naturally gifted players, our stars are naturally going to be targeted, at least in the media.

‘The Independent’ are first up with a story linking Krul and Tiote with Chelsea;

Chelsea are planning a £30m raid in the summer to land the Newcastle pair Cheick Tioté and Tim Krul.

Krul and Tioté have been targeted as part of the rebuilding progress at Chelsea that began under Andre Villas-Boas, before he was dismissed earlier this month. His removal, however, will not stop the desire to overhaul the ageing squad at Stamford Bridge and create a side capable of challenging for the Premier League title. Tioté, at 25, has emerged as one of the most dynamic central midfielders in the country. He would offer the kind of defensive strength in that position which was clearly missing during Villas-Boas’s ill-fated attempts to play a more expansive game, in line with owner Roman Abramovich’s desires.

The Ivory Coast midfielder, who joined from Twente in August 2010, signed an improved contract six months after arriving at St James’ Park, making him one of Newcastle’s best paid players on around £67,000 per week. Chelsea would offer a significant improvement even on those terms and are prepared to pay around £20m for his signature.

Krul, the 23-year-old Dutch goalkeeper, has enjoyed a fine first full season as a Premier League player since he was handed the starting position at Newcastle by Alan Pardew in the summer. He has emerged as one of the league’s most consistent keepers and Chelsea want him as a replacement for Petr Cech.

Krul moved to Newcastle in 2005 from Den Haag when Graeme Souness was in charge, with a tribunal setting his transfer fee at £200,000. His elevation to first choice saw him rewarded with a new five-year contract at the start of this month. However, Chelsea believe that an offer of £10m would be very difficult for Newcastle to turn down and they could potentially offer the player the chance to perform in the Champions League.

Newcastle managing director Derek Llambias admitted recently that they would struggle to hold on to Tioté if any club came forward with a strong offer. That will now come from Chelsea.

It would be so cruel and ironic, if we ended the season above Chelsea and yet lost arguably our two best players to them.

I don’t believe our best players will necessarily be looking for a move but I’d be amazed if those players aren’t the target of clubs still looking to pay big money, especially for players who have already made their mark in the Premier League.

With Newcastle United having made over £32m (according to the recently published full NUFC accounts, with the money going into ‘club reserves) thanks to player trading, why should there be any pressure to sell anybody?

I didn’t see what there was to gain by Derek Llambias publicly stating that the club would basically sell Cheick Tiote to the highest bidder…unless they wanted to sell Cheick Tiote to the highest bidder!

No doubt some of you might point to Tiote’s recent injuries and at times his form has fallen a bit flat this season but for me, even in those matches he is a 7 out of 10 for his defensive cover and workrate, while I find it impossible to think we could have achieved results like the 3-0 win over Manchester United without him. That day he was quite literally an 11 out of 10 and the montage TV showed afterwards was immense as he bossed the midfield and sent player after player (fairly)  into the middle of next week when they came near him.

As for selling Krul, that would be just utter madness. As for a situation if players want to leave, well then you do have to treat that differently and get the best price for them.

However, before that you need to have convinced them that their best option is Newcastle United and surely a team that has risen to fifth/sixth and with money in reserve from selling players should be a no-brainer? What has been built at St.James’ Park is still so fragile, taking out a couple of our key players could be like the worst move in Jenga or KerPlunk!



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