The summer transfer window ends at 5pm on Thursday 9 August.

Yes, in exactly 100 days time we will all know who Newcastle United have, and haven’t, signed this summer.

To get an idea of how quickly 100 days passes, if we go back that amount of time it brings us to 21 January, the day after Manchester City beat NUFC 3-1 at The Etihad.

That was three weeks before the pivotal match when Newcastle beat Man Utd 1-0 at St James Park and sparked the run of form and results that ensured Premier League safety.

So 14 weeks and 2 days can fly be pretty quick.

The summer transfer window opens in 16 days time on Thursday 17 May and is open exactly 12 weeks.

With the Premier League moving their window and it coinciding with a major tournament, it has split the window into three almost equal parts.

Four weeks of the window before the World Cup Finals kick off (14 June), then the tournament running for almost exactly four weeks (over the course of 31 days from start to finish), then 25 days after the tournament ends.

I think for me, these three splits for the transfer window sum up how I feel about it.

Newcastle have to get their main business done in the first four weeks. Not only because of the extra problems that the World Cup causes of getting deals done – but also  think we need to get deals in a little under the radar, as once any kind of auction/competition comes along, we are usually knackered under Ashley.

Then we have to look at what will happen by the end of the World Cup, this is getting towards the danger zone. As by the time the World Cup finals finish on 15 July, Newcastle will have been back for pre-season training for around a couple of weeks.

To get new signings properly integrated and brought up to speed by Rafa Benitez, he ideally will want them brought in by that mid-July point.

Then we come to that post World Cup period, which is when I guess there will be a mad mad period, as Premier League clubs realise time is running out due to the window now closing before the season kicks off.

If Newcastle are still relying on making key signings in this period, then the risk factor for me will be far higher, as desperation means the pressure will be on to bring in someone, even if not the ideal one.

We saw this happen to an extent with Joselu last summer and then definitely with the Islam Slimani loan deal on deadline day in January.

Assuming the £4m permanent deal goes through with Martin Dubravka, then I think we have a pretty solid central core, with the Slovakian keeper and then Lascelles and Lejeune in front of him (and Clark as back-up), then the flourishing central midfield pairing of Diame and Shelvey.

There is always room for improvement if the right player comes along but I find it difficult to see Rafa Benitez finding players within his overall budget to get ahead of these five players.

Which then leaves us with both flanks as well as the two most forward players.

I think none of the current first eleven are terrible but…I do believe that at the very least we have to bring in better quality options in a minimum of four of those six positions.

So any four or better of the two full-backs, two wingers, and two strikers/striker and number 10.

Happy to keep any/all of these current first teamers as squad players BUT I do think we need significant improvement if the team are going to compete next season.

For my money, Gayle and Perez are top of the list for seeing better quality come in above them. For your front pair to score 10 goals between them, it doesn’t take a genius to work out that this will make it very difficult for your team to compete overall.

Then I would say Newcastle need to improve at least one player on both sides of the pitch, either at full-back or on the wing.

A permanent deal for Kenedy would tick that box on the left, and whilst I like both Yedlin and Ritchie, I think it’s clear a boost in quality is needed from one of those positions, particularly going forward.

Ideally I’d like to see all six of those positions (full-backs, wingers, and strikers) strengthened and another central midfielder, but I am a realist.

As well as Dubravka, I think it is realistic for Rafa to be able to bring in four other first team players, if given a half-decent budget, particularly if say Mitrovic is traded for getting on for something around the £20m mark which is now very likely.

All I am asking for them, realistically, is for permanent deals to be done on Kenedy and Dubravka before the World Cup kicks off, plus two other key signings before mid-June, including at least one new first choice striker.

If that work can be done in the opening four weeks of the transfer window then I think we will have broken the back of it.

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  • Paul Patterson

    Major plus the window shutting before the start of the season.
    We need to get business done sharpish and let the Mitrovic price sky rocket after the World Cup.

    • Jezza

      It doesn’t work that way under Ashley. There will be no incoming transfer business done before Mitrovic is sold and you can guarantee that Mitrovic will be sold just before the deadline.

      • Paul Patterson

        You can see Ashley drooling at Mitrovic on the pitch at the WC. Then if he plays well/scores . .

  • Coble’s Return

    And if Ashley bu66ers off in the next couple of weeks and if a new owner acts to deliver on the potential of the club and if ………

    Desperate loan signings just before the transfer window slams shut – anything more will be a miracle.

    • Jezza

      100% correct.

  • Rich Lawson

    What we 1st need is a ruthless culling of the current squad to generate some cash,or frees to get them off the wage bill. So out go Darlow,Elliot,Gomez,Gayle,Perez,Joselu,Atsu,Colback,Toney,Haidara,Aarons(contract can be cancelled on behaviour/court issues).Keep Woodman and Armstrong at St Jame’s next season and sign Marty n Kenedy (Chelsea willing ?) and bring in 4 at least quality players ?

    • TheNutJob

      dreams are great aren`t they, but when you wake up Fatty`s there & it all goes down the toilet

    • mactoon

      Gayle, Perez and Joselu out before being sure of getting replacements???

      No way given that history dictates we will be scrapping around for loan deals in the last few days

      • Jezza

        Spot on.

      • 1957

        The Hoss won’t be leaving, no one will buy him. He’ll be our main striker after we sell Mitrovic, Gayle and Perez and don’t buy replacements.

    • Ram Kishore

      Dw Gamez will leave

  • TheNutJob

    they will be loans or out of contract players, half the Toon must be deaf,
    they seem to have missed the part when Fatty said he ain`t spending.

  • Alex

    You want transfer business done early, you pay top whack. That doesn’t happen in Ashley-World.

    The great players will be picked off before and after the World Cup, the good ones will be snapped up by those that missed out on the great ones, then there’s the make-weights that we’ll be scrapping for in the last 10 days of the window.

  • glassjawsh-got-banned

    Moves Newcastle need to make: 2 Forwards, a #10, a winger or 2, a LB and another CB. and maybe another RB. And probably another CM. And also a new owner and a real board of directors. You know what? just scrap everyone except for Shelvey and Lescelles and Rafa and most of the fans.

  • Waxi

    History tells us if the fat controller is still at the toon forget about any kind of big spend he just won’t do it. We are going to be in the bargain bucket section where Rafa Wants a top class striker but ends up with another 5 million player. Just like last season when shearer let it out that Rafa wanted Javier Hernandez and Tammy Abraham and ended up with Joselu the fat man has a lot of history.

    • Paul Patterson

      It’s scary how much a little push spending wise would take this side on.

  • Weyhhadaway

    The post world cup weeks are always a mad mad frenzy of clubs buying whoever strung together three good games, add 10M for a wonder strike goal. Rafa has already said he knows who he wants and won’t do that little WC bandwagon.

    Knowing and getting though?

  • 1957

    I doubt the loan players we would be interested in will be involved in the World Cup

  • Albert Stubbins

    So no activity for the next 99 days there followed by frantic attempts to bring loan players in twenty four hours later then!!

  • Toon

    So it will be 100 days of whinging articles about no transfer activity