Newcastle appear to have done good business this window but has anyone noticed it’s the transfer targets we didn’t get in recent times, that are stealing the headlines in games so far.
Now I know what people are going to say to this article. Newcastle were linked to everyone and their mothers during this transfer window.
It does seem a cruel coincidence though that three of the transfer targets we’ve been very strongly linked to, have been the ones to make us suffer in recent games.
Against Swansea, Andre Ayew ran the game and got a goal, as well as Gomis. I like the Mitrovic signing, although all we’ve experienced from him so far has been frustrating. I do think when we manage to keep him on the pitch for more than fifteen minutes he will start to impose himself as a decent striker. Unfortunately, so far he’s got more cards than Cisse’s got wives.
In his absence, which could be significant the way he’s started, would anyone pick the aforementioned Cisse over Gomis?
In the game against West Ham, Cisse proved everything many fans have been saying about him for ages. His goal to game tally is impressive but he is so poor in general play.
He spends more time offside than Joey Barton spends on Twitter, he’s got the first touch of Tyson Fury and his link play could be matched by the Invisible Man. I would’ve given my end of year bonus to see him sold off and Charlie Austin brought in over the summer.
Gomis looks pretty sharp on the ball and has been starting to get goals since Wilfried was freed and went to Man City. When Gomis is on the ground it’s because he’s crawling across it in his bizarre goal celebration, not because he’s slipped over; which is something else Cisse seems to do a lot.
After Swansea I ruefully looked on at the two that got away and wondered what the result would have been had they been sporting black and white. True, Montero bossed that game, but the point still stands.
West Ham was another reminder of what could have been. I’ve got high hopes for Thauvin but he failed to put any kind of stamp on the game. Correct me if I’m wrong but I don’t remember him going past Tomkins or Jenkinson once.
Payet (pictured above) was in a class of his own. Every touch seemed premeditated and opened up space, whilst both goals were taken extremely well.
I’m not panicking just yet but with Watford coming up it’ll be interesting to see if another one-time target, Troy Deeney, steals the show.
As I said before; we’ve been linked to loads of players but I do think Gomis, Ayew and Payet were three of the more realistic ones as the coverage on them went on a lot longer, especially with the former two. We have done good business and I do expect to see improvements soon.
Against Watford I think it’s time for a complete change of strategy. One of Colback or Anita have to be dropped. We just don’t look adventurous enough and we’re still conceding goals. For me it has to be Colback alongside Sissoko. I always think Sissoko is best marauding through the middle.
Then an attacking three of Perez, Wijnaldum and Aarons or Thauvin. Up front I’d give De Jong a start. He’s good in the air and had a couple of good touches against West Ham, although it was clear he’s more rusty than my toolbox. Probably as he’s been used as sparingly.
But this article isn’t about how we can improve our fortunes. That’s for McClaren to work out. It’s more a rant on the need to be a bit more aggressive in our pursuit of top targets.
I didn’t hear of any competition for the signatures of Wijnaldum and Thauvin. Mitrovic was a slightly different story but were there actually any other hard bids for him?
I’m glad we got them all and it’s been a welcome relief to the recent fiascos of not getting anyone ‘over the line’. It just seems whenever another Premier League team shows interest in one of our targets we end up losing out.
In two games this season it’s been costly. What could have been if we’d been willing to ‘finance’ two free transfers and battled harder for the signature of the undoubted talent of Payet.
It’s a long season ahead and hopefully come November I can write about the incredible impact of the players we did sign.
You can follow the author on Twitter @billymerlin
(To feature like Billy, send in your articles for our website to [email protected])