There were 12 Rafa Benitez signings for Newcastle United in summer 2016.

The United boss making wholesale changes to try and turn around a club that was in turmoil.

Seven months into the season and Newcastle stand top of the Championship.

How we though have each of those Rafa Benitez signings worked out?

Below I have looked at all 12 players and given them a mark out of 10 as well as a short write-up. In brackets after each player’s name is the number of Championship starts and sub appearances they have made this season.

Isaac Hayden (23 +4) – 7.5 out of 10

Turning 22 today, the young midfielder’s worth has maybe only really been shown in his absence.

Easily the best option at the club to partner Jonjo Shelvey in the middle of the pitch, jury still out though on whether he will be able to progress enough to do a job in the Premier League.

Achraf Lazaar (0 + 4) – 1 out of 10

The expectation was that once he’d settled in, Lazaar would be challenging Paul Dummett for the left-back position and then eventually make it his own ahead of the hoped for return to the Premier League.

The fact he hasn’t started a single league game and can’t even get on the bench says it all.

Dwight Gayle (23 + 5) – 9 out of 10

To have scored 20+ goals despite injuries, with the best goal per minutes ratio in the Championship, means he has been a great signing.

Couldn’t have done any more and realistic hopes he can continue scoring if United are promoted.

Grant Hanley (3 + 5) – 4 out of 10

Looks very much to be simply cover for Jamaal Lascelles and like the Newcastle Captain has the same limitations of lack of pace and not being comfortable when in possession.

One of the players brought in ‘just in case’ and will no doubt be traded in at the end of the season if Newcastle are promoted, with some kind of loss on his transfer fee.

Jesus Gamez (2 + 2) – 2 out of 10

Difficult to know what to make of his really.

With his wealth of experience he was definitely a signing for the here and now, rather than one for the future. Despite Yedlin injured and Vurnon Anita struggling, Gamez still can’t get a game at right-back.

Christian Atsu (10 + 15) – 6 out of 10

Has impressed in flashes but with only 10 starts and unable to get in ahead of the workmanlike Yoan Gouffran, difficult to see him having a future at St James Park beyond this season.

Has contributed with goals and creating chances but simply just not done enough and certainly not convinced he would be the answer in the Premier League.

Ciaran Clark (32 + 0) – 9.5 out of 10

Nailed on for player of the season, has been superb since getting his chance.

United’s best defender week after week and one of the few in the Newcastle squad who will definitely make the step up if Newcastle are back in the top tier.

Daryl Murphy (5 + 5) – 7 out of 10

Limited opportunities but has made a valuable contribution nonetheless.

Brought in to do a job when others are missing/out of form and has deserved more chances.

Matt Ritchie (32 + 2) – 8.5 out of 10

Had a drop in form mid-season but kept on working hard to contribute.

Second top scorer and along with Shelvey top for assists, has given value for money.

Mohamed Diame (22 + 8) – 3 out of 10

After 10 goals for Hull last season and all previous seasons in England spent in the Premier League, he looked a great signing.

With only three goals and two assists all season he has been a massive disappointment and seems to drift through game after game with zero influence.

DeAndre Yedlin (18 + 5) – 7.5 out of 10

A bit wayward at times bit his pace has been a major asset to Newcastle when going forward as well as in defence.

Big hopes that he can develop further and be the kind of attacking full-back NUFC will need if/when getting promoted.

Matz Sels (9 + 0) – 3 out of 10

Brought in as first choice keeper and never looked comfortable.

Probably responsible for a number of dropped points and now can’t even get a place on the bench.

(All contributions from Newcastle fans welcome, send articles (as well as ideas/suggestions) to [email protected])

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  • Polarboy

    50% success rate isn’t great. Hopefully if and when we go up at the end of the season we can improve on that ratio. In fairness Rafa should be far more suited to buying for that level.

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    Lets have some fun, the 50% success were Rafa signings,
    the rest are the Gimp Carr`s

  • Andy Mac

    I think spotting talent is a different skill set to coaching and managing. In an ideal world Rafa should trust someone enough to tell him what he needs and then accept the Scout’s judgement. However trust is the key and I’m sure Rafa doesn’t have any in Carr which is why he brought in his own people.

    Fortunately the misfires have been relatively cheap unlike the Thauvins, Cabella’s or De Jong’s in the past.

  • Leazesl Ender

    …. the City Council Planning Committee has condemned the club to the second tier of football indefinitely….. the beating heart of its own City!

    …. marks out of ten matter not one jot my friend…

    • Andy Mac

      Give us a clue Leazes ?

      • Leazesl Ender

        What is red, white and blue and covered in a layer of soot?

        • Leazesl Ender

          …..Shirebrook after the fire….

      • It’s bobbi fleckman

        Leazes has no clue for himself, certainly not one going spare.

        • Leazesl Ender

          If I hadn’t got a clue you wouldn’t be trolling me…. aren’t you a York City supporter anyway? What are you doing here?

          • It’s bobbi fleckman

            I’m just trying to educate you, that’s proving difficult so the alternative is to correct the nonsense you post as you go along.

    • It’s bobbi fleckman

      Much as i dislike left-wing local authorities, they can’t knock back planning applications on the basis of another business may want to expand in the future, especiailly as it’s completely irrelevant.

      • Leazesl Ender

        Were you on that committee Greg?

        • It’s bobbi fleckman

          Nah, it’s full of left-wing numpties, wouldn’t let me near it.

    • nevfur

      According to the council the new builds on the metro car park would not stop development of the Gallowgate although it is likely to be used as an excuse even tho it’s pretty unlikely to ever happen anyway

      • Leazesl Ender

        ….while we have a Spuds fan at the helm at least!

  • Desree

    Looking at these scores, no wonder fatty wouldn’t let Rafa spend in January.