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All Newcastle United’s Overseas Signings Since 1993 – Hits Or Misses?

7 years ago

The message out of Newcastle United was that overseas signings would be diluted in favour of more recruits from the domestic leagues.

However, that seems to have been lost in translation and pushed to the wayside, with the transfer action so far this summer showing five overseas signings and only Jack Colback recruited from the English league set-up.

There are worries from some fans of expecting so many players who have no experience of playing in England to all quickly gel together, while other supporters see all of our overseas signings as potential great deals.

I thought I would go back through the modern era and see what kind of success rate Newcastle United have enjoyed with overseas signings.

I have gone through manager by manager from 1993 and divided players into ‘hits’ and ‘misses’, though I have left out a small number of young low key/low cost signings over these last 21 years (These are foreign players signed from overseas leagues, so transfer from other Premier League clubs aren’t included).

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As rough criteria I have taken into account how much players cost and the contributions/benefits to Newcastle United overall. So even players such as Debuchy or Bassong who didn’t hang around very long, are still rated as hits taken into account the transfer fees as well.

This is of course only a personal opinion of these players and feel free to agree/disagree in the comments section at the end.


Hits: Cheick Tiote

Misses: Fabrice Pancrate

KEVIN KEEGAN (Second Time – Though how much you can credit KK with Coloccini and blame him for Xisco is unknown, when you take into account how Keegan was undermined by Mike Ashley/Dennis Wise)

Hits: Jonas Gutierrez, Fabricio Coloccini, Sebastien Bassong

Misses: Ignacio Gonzalez (loan), Xisco


Hits: Jose Enrique

Misses: David Rozehnal, Habib Beye, Cacapa



Misses: Obafemi Martins



Misses: Albert Luque, Jean Alain Boumsong, Emre


Hits: Laurent Robert, Helder (loan), Olivier Bernard, Clarence Acuna, Sylvain Distin (loan), Charles N’Zogbia

Misses: Diego Gavilan,  Cristian Bassedas, Daniel Cordone (loan), Hugo Viana, Patrick Kluivert


Hits: Louis Saha (loan)

MIsses: Didier Domi, John Karelse, Franck Dumas, Marcelino, Alain Goma, Silvio Maric

Kenny Dalglish

Hits: Nobby Solano, Temuri Ketsbaia, Nicos Dabizas, Dietmar Hamann

Misses: Jon Dahl Tomasson, Alessandro Pistone, Andreas Andersson, George Georgiadis, Stephane Guivarc’h, Laurent Charvet


Hits: Nicky Papavasiliou, Marc Hottiger, Philippe Albert, David Ginola, Tino Asprilla


When it comes to players arriving under our current manager, I make it the following;


Hits: Yohan Cabaye, Mathieu Debuchy,  Moussa Sissoko, Yoan Gouffran,

Misses: Hatem Ben Arfa, Sylvain Marveaux, Romain Amalfitano, Luuk De Jong (loan)

That makes it a running total of 25 ‘hits’ and 31 ‘misses’ in those twenty one years, with some managers such as Keegan having an outstanding track record, while others such as Souness are abysmal.

In the case of Sir Bobby it was mixed fortunes, from the highs of Laurent Robert to the lows of Hugo Viana.

I have given the benefit of the doubt to another five of the signings under Alan Pardew with the following going under a category of the ‘jury still out’ on them.

Jury Out: Davide Santon, Papiss Cisse, Vurnon Anita, Massadio Haidara, Yanga Mapou-Mbiwa

With a general success rate of just less than half Newcastle’s overseas signings proving good moves (in my opinion), it is fair to say that at best, two or three of those below will come up trumps. While the Pardew critics will worry about the impact the manager will have on the new arrivals, no matter what their pedigree.

Signed Summer 2014

Emmanuel Riviere, Siem De Jong, Remy Cabella, Daryl Janmaat, Ayoze Perez


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