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Steve Bruce planning early for January transfer window – Sounds familiar

1 month ago
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On Friday, Steve Bruce has said he will be meeting Newcastle United’s head of recruitment to start planning for the January transfer window.

Does that not sound a little bit familiar to you?

Indeed, after the media were given access during the international break earlier this week, we heard similar messages in the local media.

Going to be meetings, early planning, look at targets and so on.

I don’t know of any other club where this happens. Where there is so much reporting of planned meetings, refining the recruitment strategy, sitting down with the scouting team and so on.

This isn’t newsworthy, surely at every club there is a scouting team and they have regular contact with other staff, particular the manager/head coach?

It just always feels like more PR nonsense from Mike Ashley and his people, making it look like they are being proactive and ambition will be shown in the transfer market etc.

With this report today (see below), I suppose you have to give Steve Bruce some leeway because he has only just arrived BUT he has shown himself far too willing already in these past eight weeks or so to trot out the usual Mike Ashley propaganda.

I never see other clubs regularly reported as having ‘high level’ meetings and suchlike to plan transfers, it is only Ashley’s NUFC where we get it on such a regular basis.

The laughable thing is that no matter what PR nonsense is put out by Ashley-friendly media, Newcastle United are actually the club that is LEAST proactive when the transfer windows come along.

We are told about careful planning  well in advance, a bit like Steve Bruce already talking about January now, yet if signings are made, they are almost always later in the windows.

Look at this summer, four of the five signings arriving in the final week of the window, two of them on deadline day. The Joelinton and Saint-Maximin deals were even said by Charnley and/or Ashley to have been set up months earlier, yet still only happened late on.

The same last summer, the Rondon deal dragging on for ever and only signed very late on.

The net result with late signings is that it then often significantly affects the opening stages of the season in a negative way.

Newcastle in relegation trouble last season, yet Almiron and Barreca came in on the last day of January.

A year earlier it was Dubravka and Slimani on loan at the very end of January.

Then of course we have real extremes such as no players signed for 18 months (January 2013 to summer 2014) and yet the media regularly reported that signings were being planned, meetings held and so on.

As always, we have to judge Mike Ashley’s Newcastle United on what actually happens, not what we are told is going to happen….

The Chronicle report:

Steve Bruce has revealed he will sit down and meet up with head of recruitment Steve Nickson in due course to start narrowing down the club’s winter shopping list.

Bruce said today: “It’s vitally important you look to get better.

“In the last week it was taking stock of what has happened in the past seven weeks.

“I think it is vitally important to work with the 25-man squad we’ve got.

“They were my main concern.

“In the next week in January we will look with Steve Nickson with his crew to see where we can strengthen.

“At any club you feel you can strengthen.

“I think are in a position like five or six (clubs) are looking for that real bit of quality to make you better.”

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