It is ironic that despite relegation, this is one summer where Newcastle fans don’t have to worry about a particular subject.
That’s right, even though we have taken the drop into the Championship, nobody is being tortured by which players might leave.
The main two reasons for this are…
Firstly, Rafa Benitez has been assured that he doesn’t have to sell anybody and he has the final say.
Secondly, who would want most of our failures, sorry, players. Last season showed pretty much all the squad to be lacking in either ability or character, or both.
In what feels almost a previous life such is the whirlwind of following Newcastle United, the days of agonising over whether Carroll, Ba and Cabaye would be sold, seems like another world.
Even last summer, you worried that Mike Ashley would cash in on players such as Ayoze Perez and Daryl Janmaat, probably the two players who had shown most promise in that particular brush with near relegation. It wasn’t as though the likes of John Carver and Steve McClaren would have had any say in preventing their sales.
The worries in previous seasons were also twofold, as it wasn’t just the fact you would be seeing Newcastle’s better players walk out of the door but the club actually had a policy of then attempting to replace them with cheaper and riskier replacements.
This was Mike Ashley’s dream production line, bring them in young and lean, then fatten them up and when at their prime sell at the optimum time.
Ironically, the only big successes for Ashley came with Andy Carroll who he inherited when he bought the club, plus older experienced players in Yohan Cabaye, Demba Ba and Mathieu Debuchy.
Whilst the national press try to portray it as a disaster if Wijnaldum and/or Sissoko exit the club, Newcastle fans are falling over themselves to offer to carry their suitcases.
Andros Townsend is very good and Mbemba full of promise, but if anybody came in and bought them it might be disappointing but not critical. Rather than disappearing, the £10m+ that each of them would generate, would be spent by Rafa on players of his choosing.
Like I said at the beginning, it is all very strange that the drop to the Championship, with Rafa’s arrival, has led to anticipation of who we might bring in – rather than which superstar could leave.
Enjoy the sunshine.