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A tall story: Vurnon Anita fails to get contract offer when club realise how small he is

4 years ago

Vurnon Anita formally became a free agent at the weekend, when his five year lucrative deal at Newcastle United ended.

The player having done a decent job at right-back in the second tier but Rafa Benitez agreeing with many Newcastle fans, that the former Ajax player wasn’t good enough for the Premier League challenge ahead.

Having turned 28 in April the Dutchman obviously has plenty of years ahead of him and his agent has been offering the player to Turkish clubs.

Galatasaray were one of those approached and with Vurnon Anita carrying no transfer fee, they expressed potential interest in doing a deal.

However, Fotospor report that when the club put the idea to Manager Igor Tudor, it was met with a firm rebuttal.

The Galatasaray boss said that despite the club needing a new right-back, Vurnon Anita was far too short.

Igor Tudor making clear to his bosses that he wants to see tall and powerful defenders coming in this summer to improve the team.

Tudor was a quality player in his time, with 55 caps for Croatia and a playing career that centred on Hadjuk Split and Juventus.

He was primarily a centre-back but played all across the defence including right-back.

Clearly preferring players in his own image, the 6ft 4 Galatasaray manager was said to have dismissed the 5ft 4 (1.66m) Vurnon Anita out of hand.

Whilst he had fans at Newcastle, certainly most felt that he was totally unsuited to playing centre of midfield in the Premier League, his lack of height, strength and pace being weakness far too major to overcome, despite him having a decent football brain.

Doing a decent job at right-back last season, helped by the fact that very few Championship clubs had quality widemen, Anita still struggled at times when he had a decent opponent up against him – with the likes of 16 year old Ryan Sessegnon taking him to pieces and scoring twice as Fulham won 3-1 at St James Park.

Always coming across as a decent bloke, nevertheless at a near £7m fee in summer 2012 and significant wages, it was yet another poor Graham Carr signing – confirmed by the fact that nobody was interested in trying to buy Anita as his contract ran down at St James Park.


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