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Opinion

These four new Newcastle United signings and just maybe you can see Rafa Benitez staying and NUFC moving forward

3 months ago
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How many Newcastle United signings would it take to turn things around?

Well obviously no sane person thinks that Miguel Almiron can do it singlehandedly, no matter how good he hopefully proves to be.

Newcastle should just about have enough to crawl to safety now, providing Salomon Rondon stays fit and Almiron adds even minimal better quality than the likes of Perez and Atsu.

However, just what is needed to actually move forward?

What kind of Newcastle United signings are needed to do that, whilst at the same time convincing Rafa Benitez to stick around?

I think that just maybe these four new Newcastle United signings could tick these boxes.

First signing of the summer, and it should be the most simple, is to turn Salomon Rondon into a permanent signing.

He is never going to be a prolific scorer but in terms of the way Rafa Benitez wants to play, the Venezuelan is ideal.

Yes he might turn 30 in September but Rondon would be worth £10m easily, give him a three year contract and with pace not being a big part of his game, he could definitely play that role in the top tier over the next three seasons.

Second signing needed/wanted…

Rafa Benitez has a system but not currently the players to make it work effectively going forward. Atsu and Perez are working hard but they simply don’t have the pace and/or quality. This season they only have three goals and one assist between them, Atsu managing no goals or assists so far.

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Miguel Almiron can hopefully prove the answer in place of one of them, so in the summer I think it is obvious that Newcastle need the same upgrade in the other key attacking position, supporting main striker Rondon. A player who like Almiron potentially, will have that pace, ability and goal threat to make the swift transition from defence to attack.

The other two essential summer signings, in my opinion, are further back in the team but in their own way just as essential to help transform NUFC into an attacking threat.

I quite like both Paul Dummett and DeAndre Yedlin but an upgrade is very much necessary.

It seems as though Rafa is clearly smitten with the three/five at the back and so he has to have the right kind of players in those wing-back positions.

Paul Dummett clearly isn’t that right type of player and whilst DeAndre Yedlin certainly has the pace/energy to do the role, his defending leaves a lot to be desired at times and his end product when getting up the pitch is variable at best.

Antonio Barreca is now here on loan but with his profile, struggled for a game at both Torino and Monaco, it would be a massive surprise if he proved to be the answer on the left. However, at least Rafa has a more or less free hit with him these next three months to assess if he could in any way be part of the answer.

I think with these four signings you could potentially see Newcastle make rapid improvement, though obviously there is also a reliance on Miguel Almiron doing the business as well. If these other signings are made in the summer then he will definitely have a better chance of being a lasting success in the Premier League, hopefully for Newcastle.

Rafa Benitez already has a base to work from, in that he has Dubravka, then a great group of centre-backs in Lejeune, Schar, Lascelles, Fernandez and to a slightly lesser extent Clark, an additional reason for playing the three centre-back formation when he has such options, even Paul Dummett is arguably better there than as a left-back and certainly as a wing-back.

In centre midfield, I think that in Shelvey, Ki, Diame and Longstaff, you have decent options for next season, especially if they have those better quality options going forward, with better wing-backs, then Rondon with the two new key supporting attacking players.

Others such as Ritchie, Yedlin and Dummett can continue to be key members of the squad, whilst I would also see a Dwight Gayle returning from loan back-up to Rondon, playing in that central striker role with Almiron and another new signing in support.

As for financing the signings, as we all know there has been zero net spending over the course of Rafa’s three years at the club so no reason there shouldn’t be finally some half-decent realistic investment now.

If you look at around £10m to make Rondon permanent, £20m for another Almiron-like signing, then £10m-£15m on each of the two wing-backs, you are looking at £50m-£60m tops.

Hayden is going to leave, then Newcastle could also trade in some or all of the likes of Manquillo, Perez, Joselu, Atsu and others to help finance it.

Miguel Almiron is a start but providing Newcastle stay up, the same reckless lack of ambition shown these past two years cannot be repeated.

Naturally the dream is still for Mike Ashley to accept he now as to put the club up for sale properly at a market price but even if he remains, it is quite ridiculous if he can’t see the above summer transfer scenario making sense and at the same time convincing Rafa Benitez to stay.

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