The story this weekend was that Dwight Gayle could be off to West Brom.

It was claimed across the media that the Baggies had approached Newcastle with an offer to loan him for the season.

I’m not sure how this story makes sense in any way and was being reported as a ‘cheeky’ loan bid.

I doubt very much there was any truth in it, as why would West Brom think that Newcastle would be up for loaning out their only current out and out striker who could potentially score goals?

It is about as believable as the recent Salomon Rondon transfer claim.

Where supposedly Newcastle had made a ‘cut-price offer’ for Rondon, where instead of paying  his £16.5m release clause, instead £19m would be paid in total. The ‘cut-price’ deal being to pay a £4m loan fee and then another £15m to make it permanent next summer.

This media story also conveniently ignoring the fact that Salomon Rondon only has a year left to run on his West Brom contract.

Also, the striker turns 30 in September 2019, so we are supposed to either believe that next summer Mike Ashley would be tied into paying that chunk of cash to make it a £19m total fee for somebody set to turn 30 and have zero resale value, or that West Brom would let the striker go out on loan (after presumably extending his Baggies contract) with there being no watertight clause whereby Newcastle had to buy next summer. The Championship club then risking being  left with a 30 year old striker who has lost pretty much all of his transfer value.

This is what we are left with in this ever more depressing transfer window.

Newcastle fans watching on as Rafa Benitez has to go through pre-season training preparations and games without the new striker he desperately wants.

I find it disheartening enough that it appears Salomon Rondon is probably the best level of forward signing we can hope for at this stage, somebody who has scored 24 goals in three Premier League seasons at West Brom, doesn’t exactly suggest he will score for fun in a Newcastle team that has had next to no investment in it this summer.

Trying to be positive, I could maybe see Rondon and Dwight Gayle playing together as a possible partnership that could get goals, but I struggle to see Rafa shifting from his insistence on playing only one up front. I’m not blaming the manager because you can understand that if he isn’t backed to bring in better attacking options so Newcastle can go more on the front foot, he will have to continue with his policy of making it tough for the opposition to score and relying largely on counter-attacks.

It is scarcely believable that if indeed Salomon Rondon is the striker Rafa Benitez has decided on, that he isn’t even able to sign him straight away by triggering that £16.5m release clause. Even if Ashley won’t allow the manager any transfer funds and Rafa (wrongly) has to finance signings through sales, surely the NUFC owner should at least see the common sense in letting Rafa get his striker now so he can be part of pre-season, with then the likes of Mitrovic surely set to leave and fund Rondon’s transfer?

There has also predictably been talk of making it a swap deal, with supposedly Gayle plus cash for Rondon. I’m not convinced that would be any improvement and you are then left with a situation where surely you would have to then bring in another striker, with Mitrovic set to leave. The thought of Joselu as your only out and out striker cover is a frightening one, just as it was last season. Yes he tries hard but his entire career tells you e won’t score goals.

In only nine days time Newcastle play their second last friendly (Braga on Wednesday 1 August) of the season and even if by some miracle Rondon and/or other signings are made in the next day or two, I think it would be unlikely they’d be involved much in those friendlies, with maybe only the final one (home v Augsburg on 4 August) a strong possibility.

At this moment in time, quite amazingly Newcastle United look set to start the season with the exact same team who played those final few months of last season, with potentially Ki Sung-yueng the only addition on the bench when we meet Spurs on the opening day.

You really couldn’t make it up.

  • TheNutJob

    the Fat Gringo won`t be laying out any £16m for any player & Rafael will leave next summer if he want`s to retain his sanity as working for Fatty`s enough to send anybody off their trolley

  • Paul Patterson

    What’s Shola doing these days?

  • Soldier

    last seasons stats, Rondon 7 goals in 37 appearances, Gayle scored 6 in 35.
    Rondon has never scored more than 8 goals per season, why would Rafa want a striker with that record

  • Hughie

    “They finished 10th so why should I buy any more players and I want my 139 million back”. Who said that?

    • Ben Jones

      The voice in your head which has the imagination of a child

  • Billmag

    Pre fatty we never had much trouble getting a striker that could actually score goals.

  • gold coast mag

    what do Leicester want for Slimani- 20 million I read, IMO he has more potential ability than Rondon after getting acquainted to the PL over the last couple of seasons, but our owner is stuck in the 00’s with his transfer buys and the wages he pays in his sweatshops.

    • Soldier


      • Leazes.

        Why do you think his Market value has halved since Leicester bought him…. it probably his true value, you don’t get a top premiership striker for peanuts.

      • gold coast mag

        what’s a couple of million between friend haha

    • Leazes.

      Did you not watch him last season, he’s a Mitrovic clone, maybe a bit more about him but he’s not a prolific striker, nowhere near the likes of Ba, Cisse, or Rene?

      • gold coast mag

        I watched him every minute he played for us, and a few minutes when he got on for Leicester. Gayle is not a prolific striker either, nor Joselu nor Rondon, but of the bunch of names being regurgitated he is as good as any. I personally would like to see Rafa take Mitro back- he is still young enough to develop with the right guidance and Rafa could be that father figure/stern teacher, but that looks unlikely.

        • Virsino

          If Mitro can’t run at the age of 23, he’s hardly going to be able to run at the age of 24.

  • Leazes.

    You don’t have to go looking for these mystical ‘positives’ Simon…….all you really need to do is tell the truth about the club and the way its being run into the ground, but you aren’t even likely to do that until you start posting without the need for these nom de plumes!

    Free yourself from the shackles mate it’ll be a liberation.

    Rondon, right then he’s not very good is he? We all know that but that’s not going to stop the chronicle boys though is it…. we know what the self appointed ‘Friend of Ashley’ does time and again, Two days ago the ‘good friend to the club’ Sports Editor and Blackburn Rovers fan Douglas said that if Rafa was to leave they might write something a bit unfavourable about Ashley, sometime, whatever, whilst refusing to back the campaign outright, kin a classic piece of fence sitting said there were two sides and they would take the neutral stance…..

    ….yes there are two sides…..Ashleys regime and everyone else!

    Rondon christ.

    • Christopher Edwards

      I thought he was a Bradford fan?

      • Leazes.

        Blackburn Rovers

        • Christopher Edwards

          Are you talking about Mark Douglas of the Chronicle? I am pretty sure he is a Bradford City fan.

          • Ben Jones

            Yes he is talking about him and yes he is a Bradford city fan, I was hoping no one would say anything in order for Leazes to cause maximum embarrassment to himself, alas not to be, it’ll be interesting to see how Leazes responds to this information, presumably he’ll just plough on with the same craic, facts don’t matter to Leazes

          • Christopher Edwards

            I see. I often read the comments but don’t take too much notice of who posted them. It does make any points made by him less creditable however when he makes incorrect statements.

  • Lostprofit DBC

    Sadly NUFC fans are the real losers again in this Mexican stand off. Rafa has settled on doing his best in his last year, circumstances have made his mind up for him. As for greedy Mike, he couldn’t care where we finish as long alas he gets rid of Benitez and takes the smile of the fans faces. Money is secondary to him.

  • Paul Patterson

    17 days left . .