On Monday there was much excitement amongst the gullible that Newcastle United were going to smash their transfer record and buy a £20m striker.
Various media carried the exact same story and clearly they had been briefed by one of Mike Ashley’s minions.
Nobody in the media explained why the club/Ashley was leaking this information (although the less gullible could all guess…), but they were happy to go along with the Ashley line that the identity of this £2om striker couldn’t be revealed, because it would alert rival clubs and make it harder to land this superstar etc etc.
Tuesday night saw the identity of this £20m striker revealed, allegedly by the club hoping to sell him.
The forward being 27 year old Nicolai Jorgensen who signed on at Feyenoord only 18 months ago from FC Copenhagen for only £2.5m.
Newcastle have had a bid rejected and surprise surprise, they have tried to land the ‘£20m striker’ for a reported £12m, although elsewhere it is claimed the offer was £14m.
Newcastle United/Mike Ashley are said not to be willing to go higher than their opening bid and as somebody has put so well….On Monday Newcastle United were going to sign a mystery striker for £20 million, then on Wednesday we have discovered that the mystery striker is Nicolai Jorgensen and we aren’t buying him due to the fact he will cost £20 million!
My position is that as I say in the headline at the top, I am both happy and underwhelmed with discovering it is Nicolai Jorgensen who is the mystery £20m man.
I am happy because it didn’t prove to be some usual ridiculous scam, whereby Newcastle were looking to ‘offer’ £20m for a really good player who would cost more than twice that figure and wouldn’t look at Newcastle twice in the state they are in under Mike Ashley.
I am underwhelmed at the same time because reality hits you, this is the level we are currently at, with Nicolai Jorgensen the level of striker that is about as good as we can get when it comes to Mike Ashley allowing money to be spent.
He was never going to break the 13 year old £16m Michael Owen record, in fact I reckon it has become a bit of a badge of honour for him. Whilst every other club is breaking their transfer record pretty much year after year, with almost all of them beyond £16m these days, Mike Ashley gets some kind of perverse pleasure out of limiting our ambitions.
A striker for around the £12m or £13m mark was the best we could have hoped for and surely Nicolai Jorgensen can be landed for that, if Rafa wants him and the Fat Controller allows the fee to be paid.
I am happy as well because I think when you look at the facts/details, you can see that Jorgensen is basically an upgraded version of Joselu. I could see the Danish striker being able to play the lone role up front but also maybe bring out better from Dwight Gayle playing alongside him.
Joselu and Jorgensen are both aged 27, the same height more or less (Joselu 192cm to Jorgensen 190cm) and similar build (Joselu 80kg and Jorgensen 83kg), whilst Jorgensen though seems to have a better touch and eye for goal.
These are their respective goal records over the past seven years, Jorgensen scoring more league goals every season than Joselu but one, though still not exactly prolific (what do you expect for £12m/£13….?), though you have to acknowledge the fact that Joselu has played his football in more competitive leagues (Premier League, Bundesliga and La Liga), as opposed to Danish and Dutch domestic football.
2017/18 Jorgensen 7 (Holland) Joselu 4 (England)
2016/17 Jorgensen 21 (Holland) Joselu 5 (Spain)
2015/16 Jorgensen 15 (Denmark) Joselu 4 (England)
2014/15 Jorgensen 10 (Denmark) Joselu 8 (Germany)
2013/14 Jorgensen 7 (Denmark) Joselu 9 (Germany)
2012/13 Jorgensen 11 (Denmark) Joselu 5 (Germany)
2011/12 Jorgensen 0 (Germany) Joselu 0 (Spain)
If Newcastle can’t attract a player like Nicolai Jorgensen and if Mike Ashley isn’t even prepared to pay the £12m/£13m probably needed to land him, then Newcastle United are in serious trouble this season, and probably beyond.