What kind of Newcastle transfer market activity do you want to see?

Which players tick the boxes for you?

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I would guess we want to see ability, hopefully somebody we have already heard of and been impressed by previously, most off all though I think we are all desperate for the club to bring in players who are committed.

By committed of course we mean not just on the pitch for any particular 90 minutes, but also committed to staying at the club and not pushing for a move elsewhere.

So which talented and committed players fit the bill this summer?

Well the truth is that you don’t ever really find out until they come to St James Park and you can form a proper opinion.

You then get a chance to see if they are any good on the pitch, then in time you get a decent idea of what they are like off it.

So who have proved to be mercenaries in recent seasons at Newcastle United, which players came to St James Park and were simply takers? Using the club before moving on.

For many supporters, the following players would be seen as falling into this category:

Andy Carroll

Demba Ba

Yohan Cabaye

Mathieu Debuchy

Jose Enrique

The thing they all share is that they were quality players for Newcastle United and left for more ambitious clubs.

When playing for NUFC, all five were popular players and did the business on the pitch.

Just like has happened in the past, the story then changes once they leave and many are happy to demonise them.

Under Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson though, it was funny how you never had this problem. The difference was that players believed in the managers ad could see a potential path to success at our club, rather than having to move elsewhere.

The only player who was the exception was Jonathan Woodgate and I suppose if there is one club you could sympathise with a player wanting to join (though I never did!), it is Real Madrid.

newcastle transfer

I just shake my head when I hear people who in contrast talk about players such as Shola Ameobi showing loyalty, whereas the truth was that we could never have got rid of him to another club.

You might as well say that Williamson, Anita, Marveaux, Steven Taylor, Riviere and countless others we are stuck with are ‘loyal’. If we could ever shift this level of player, exactly what type of club is going to take them?

If your best players left in their prime to go to some uncompetitive league that simply paid loads of money, such as say China or Qatar, then you could accuse them of money turning their heads.

However, when players leave a club showing no ambition for one that has a (modern) history  of winning trophies, then how can you honestly blame them?

Maybe the moves might not work out but you can’t blame them for giving it a blast.

So if say the likes of Ba and Cabaye had stayed, then last season they would have found themselves still having to play alongside the likes of Obertan, Sammy Ameobi, Anita, Riviere and Williamson.

Again, how can you blame players for wanting to get away when this is the level of player they’ll be playing alongside year in year out?

If you run the club along ambitious lines then the rest takes care of itself, you don’t need to worry about players having their heads turned, except in very rare instances.

I’m sure most of us know that unless Mike Ashley drastically changes his running of the club (or preferably sells it), it will only be a matter before the likes of Daryl Janmaat and Ayoze Perez also leave.

Will many of you also be calling them mercenaries and so on, just because they looked to make the most of their career and not waste it at a club like Newcastle United under Ashley?

To me, the relationship revolves around the players doing their best whilst they are at the club and if Newcastle are a club going nowhere and they (talented players) decide to jump ship, then I’ll just be grateful for the small mercy of seeing the odd decent player hanging around for a year or two before the inevitable.

  • RexN

    The title is unhelpful given the points made in the article. At least one of those players took a pay cut to pursue football ambition. Shay Given, who I believe is 3rd on the appearances list (highest since WW2) also moved on to more ambitious clubs.

    The points about players under Keegan and Sir Bobby are well made. The majority shareholder was also Sir John Hall.

    What the “mercenaries” had in common was that they signed under Ashley whose ambition has not so far stretched to cups or anything more than reaching the top 10.

  • macandmarge


    I agree…these people arent “mercenaries”…its a job….if you are offered more money or the chance to go to a better company…99.9% of people will go !!

  • Andgeo

    This is ridiculous! We are quite blatantly being played for fools with this transfer speculation. If we were going to sign Dost or Austin then a deal would already have been agreed. It doesn’t take two weeks to sign a player if you really want them! Don’t fall for fat mikes season ticket jumble sale.

  • ncncnc

    ‘goldfish bowl’ jenas
    andy cole
    didi hamann
    few off the top of my head from ‘better’ times that did the same.
    theres probably about 3 or 4 clubs in europe that are exempt from players thinking there is somewhere bigger to go. most arsenal players would be off as would many at citeh or manu if barca or real madrid came knocking – its not just us that have players that are looking upwards.

  • NottsToon

    Fans always expect players to have the same passion for the club as they do, sadly this has nothing to do with reality.

  • Toon Terrier

    Players have always been recruited by Charnley on the basis that they can move on to ‘bigger and better things.’The decent ones have done so and we are stuck with those who can’t cut it or have reached their level.
    This transfer window is shaping up to be a rerun the past season
    Reports suggest it’s the same old, same old Newcastle. Buy or loan deadwood, haggle to save money until others step in and do a deal and then end up buying more foreign players hoping some make the grade.

  • macandmarge

    Juanmi…gazumped by Southampton !!

  • Big Al 1967

    To suggest that Woodgate was a mercenary is based on what exactly? This was a player with huge injury problems and when Madrid came in with £24 million fat Freddie couldn’t push him out the door quick enough.(there are also stories that Woodgate had ‘other issues’ which prevented him playing for both clubs and NUFC were glad to get rid.)

  • Jezza_NUFC

    To this day I still don’t believe Andy Carroll really wanted to leave Newcastle. I think he was pushed out the door and had little option in the end. Ashley wanted the £35 million and that dictated everything.

  • DownUnderMag

    I’m sick of players being labelled mercenaries just because they want to get paid what the going rate is at other clubs and we are too tight to pay it!!! If someone offers me more money to go to a new job and do the same role then of course i’m going to say yes and move to the new job…..are the players supposed to view us as a charity that they work for less for??  Even players who love the area (i.e. Shearer) were always paid the going rate at the time.  These players leaving was not to be put on them but to be blamed on the club for not paying them what they were worth and not building a side up to make them feel like they could actually win something here…

  • radgiegadgie

    Big Al 1967 If only it was 24m!  I thought it was 12m but nufc.com are saying it was 13.4m

  • Paul Patterson

    Ginola, Bernard, Bassong . .

  • NotFatFreddy

    Interesting that we can’t presently compete with Southampton or Swansea and probably even the mighty Villa.
    Interesting that Pardew says Palace can now challenge Newcastle…what for…relegation?

    I actually like McLaren, a decent bloke. If 99.9% in football say he is a great coach…then what is he?  A thin injury plagued squad second half of last season, so derby fell away, but they did play bright football.

    I like the fact he has gotten Simpson as his assistant -his own choice.  That he knows the Dutch and German leagues and the best championship players. After all we have gone through he is the best appointment we could ever achieve.  He knows the area and he actually won a trophy for, wait for it,…the mighty Boro!  More than Sir Bobby or Keegan or anyone else has done for us.  So until he has us in the bottom five…then we should be happy! 

    I note Ashley has a 100k or 6 figure bonus if we win a cup.  Only a couple of weeks wages for some of them, hardly much of a bonus, unless we sign a lot of championship players!

  • kuromori

    NotFatFreddy  “A thin injury plagued squad second half of last season, so derby fell away”
    What could possibly go wrong at Newcastle?
    Whilst I agree that McClaren is a great coach (not the same as manager), can we get over the League Cup? It was against Fat Sham’s Bolton, FFS!

  • NotFatFreddy

    kuromori NotFatFreddy 

    So what!  They beat Everton, Spurs and Arsenal to get there.  Would Man City fans be happy to have beaten Wigan and win the FA CUP or did you see Arsenal fans when they beat Hull City for the same. I bet you would have been delirious if it was the toon who had beaten Bolton rather than looking in an old dusty history book to find the last time we won a domestic trophy ;-)

  • fireflyuk

    NotFatFreddy Do footballers really need a bonus to win a cup??? Sadly it seems true, whether its national sides in the World Cup or us in the Prem. That just about sums up everything that is wrong with modern day footballers. I know bonuses have been around a long time but that’s exactly what it was, a bonus. Now it is needed as an incentive.So wrong.