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Newcastle United: Flirting with credibility

5 years ago

Summer report: a pre-season of positives and negatives for Newcastle United.

It feels nice to start with something positive, just for a change. It might only be three new players but that’s an outlay of over £30m.

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They are all very welcome additions to a club badly in need of fresh blood ahead of another bruising roller coaster of a season.

Hell, if they get a few more players, I might even consider putting some money through the till.

I’d say the regime is flirting with credibility as things stand. Cynicism will always linger, given the damage that’s been done in the past, but summer 2015 should go down as one of the more productive transfer windows of the Mike Ashley era.

It’s not rocket science. Solid recruitment can ease so much pressure. It doesn’t need to be crazy spending like Man City, just shrewd strengthening in key areas, with well scouted players who are the right age. New faces coming in helps to get the fans (customers) back onside, and it helps blue chip players who were a bit unsettled feel more like sticking around, until next summer at the very least.

I’ve been critical of Lee Charnley in the past, so credit where it’s due in this instance.

It may have been a slow start to the transfer window but he has now produced some of the players that were so badly needed. Clearly Ashley has sanctioned the expenditure, with the extra TV cash also a factor in the loosening of purse strings.

However, the fear remains we won’t build the team over a long enough period as assets will be cashed in once they prove a success but for now things look a bit healthier. Charnley has gone from D minus to B plus.

The other issue with our strategic approach is the unwillingness to look at players who are late 20s or very early 30s. Some experienced heads are always nice. While I wouldn’t want to build up some of the dead wood the mackems accumulate, on silly wages, there does need to be a blend.

Tyne and Wear Mitro

The signing of Aleksander Mitrovic gives me real hope that we’ll see a few more goals next season. We’ve been starved, so I really hope our new Serbian goal getter can find the net as quickly as possible. I am convinced he can hit double figures, if he stays fit. His record shows he will score goals in the Premier League.

Gini in a bottle

Movie star good looks and a Rolls Royce engine. Wijnaldum has the lot. If this lad doesn’t set the Premier League alight then I’ll be amazed. A Dutch international, box to box midfield player, and he’s opted for Newcastle Utd. I’d suggest enjoying this fella ply his trade in black and white for as long as it lasts. He’ll turn Ashley a profit come 2017.

Chancel be a fine thing

It sickens to me to say that Mbemba is the first centre-half we have bought since 2013. Scary. He arrives on Tyneside with plaudits to his name but a question mark over his age, but anyone who keep Mike Williamson away from the starting eleven is alright by me!

Pre-season head scratching for Mac?

It’s very much the twilight zone just now and allowances have to be made in that pre-season period. It’s all about fitness, right?

Some of the displays over in the US were disjointed and the final game was a farce on a plastic pitch. I’d like to think Mac will be getting a lot more from the players as the big kick off looms on August 9th.

Boycott the Sun and the Daily Star

I’m sure many Newcastle fans don’t read these two rags anyway, but some of their recent coverage has been lamentable, and I’m not really one to criticise the media.

The Sun’s article on Cisse’s alleged bigamy was truly terrible. Was there really any truth in this tale? As for the Star, I was annoyed to see them run a piece on the day that we signed Mitrovic saying that Chelsea want the player. Give us a break eh…trying to unsettle him while the ink isn’t even dry on the contract. Chip wrapper.

You can follow the author on Twitter @DavePunton


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