I suppose you can never say never but claims of Besiktas setting up talks to sign this Newcastle midfielder look even stranger than your average not very believable transfer story.
Besiktas may play in the not that strong Turkish league but they have won the title these past two seasons, are four points off the top at the moment, and have impressed in the Champions League as well.
Finishing unbeaten and top of their group, it took Bayern Munich to bring their Champions League hopes to an end in the knockout stages.
They are though expected to lose midfielder Oguzhan Ozyakup who sees his contract expire at the end of the season, with actually Newcastle one of a host of clubs claimed to be interested in previous media reports, as well as Arsenal, Everton and others.
Anyway, Turkish newspaper Aksam, report that their information is that Besiktas are setting up talks in order to bring in Newcastle’s Dan Barlaser, to help fill the gap that will be left by the soon to be departing Oguzhan Ozyakup.
Barlaser has been linked with the various top Turkish clubs on a regular basis and no disrespect to him – but the stories all seem based purely on one thing.
The Newcastle midfielder was born in Gateshead but is of Turkish descent, so you can understand that angle being attractive to both clubs and media over there, but only once the player has shown something to back up the story.
The 21 year old (same age as Mikel Merino…) has made three appearances for Newcastle but all of them have been in the cups when Rafa has played what is basically a reserve side.
Currently out on his first ever loan, the midfielder is at Crewe Alexandra who are fighting against relegation from League Two.
Despite that very low level, Barlaser is yet to make a single start and has only played 58 minutes in brief sub appearances.
This doesn’t mean he can’t/won’t make it as a professional player but I think fair to say that a club winning league titles and impressing in the Champions League will be aiming a little higher for first team players AND waiting to see if the midfielder progresses in England first.
The Turkish media talk about Besiktas being able to offer European football and challenging for titles to try and ‘tempt’ the player…but the story appears to rely on the reader knowing nothing about the player, his career so far, and what stage he is at now.
It does make you wonder, when English papers run stories about Newcastle being supposedly interested in a young player from another country, that when the story is repeated in their own media, that they are also left shaking their heads as to how anybody can believe it.