A bit of a depressing update on Saturday afternoon.
The Chronicle reporting that Aleksandar Mitrovic is set to be sold for around that much talked about £20m figure.
However…they say that their information is that Rafa Benitez will only get a small proportion of the sale price to invest in the player(s) he wants to bring in.
The report saying that Mike Ashley is once again insisting on the transfer fee being paid over a number of instalments, with only a fraction of it paid up front.
Previous transfer windows had seen similar situations, with indeed Rafa Benitez said to have refused to sell unwanted players because there was little point, as the NUFC owner would give only a small proportion of any sale price to strengthen his squad in that same window.
Whilst Mitrovic looks all but certain to go this time, it is a bizarre and baffling situation.
Every other club tries to put together as big a transfer pot as possible for their manager, whilst Mike Ashley does the opposite with Rafa Benitez.
There were claims in June that Ashley was refusing to give his manager any transfer funds until he (Rafa) signed an extension to his current NUFC contract.
That seemed far-fetched at the time and just yet another made-up media story.
However, with less than three weeks to go until the transfer window closes and currently Newcastle in a profit in this window, it seems a lot more real.
Claims of Newcastle supposedly bidding over £20m for Alassane Plea the other week sounded unlikely at the time and now look laughable.
Interesting to see what happens with incoming transfers when/if Aleksandar Mitrovic does finally depart.
As for Salomon Rondon, he might have a £16.5m release clause but the fact that nobody has so far triggered it AND he turns 29 in September, tells me he will cost considerably less than that £16.5m release figure.
‘Aleksandar Mitrovic’s midweek return from holiday should coincide with Fulham tying up a deal worth in the region of £20million for the striker.
‘But it’s understood that any fee may be paid in instalments, which means it will not all be available to boss Benitez to strengthen a squad that he feels needs to be beefed up before the August 9 deadline.
‘That will be a frustration to Benitez but he was aware of that way Newcastle do business and that is why Rondon – available at a cut-price £16.5million due to a release clause in his contract – is near the top of his hitlist.’