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The 5 summer Newcastle United signings assessed – Was it enough?

1 year ago

In total there were five Newcastle United signings made in the summer.

The two top scorers having left – Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez.

Whilst the NUFC first team squad also lost Mohamed Diame, Joselu, Antonio Barreca and Kenedy.

On top of that we have also seen a number of players going out on loan – Woodman, Murphy, Aarons, Sorensen etc.

The five Newcastle United signings assessed after the opening five games:

Joelinton – Signed 22 July 2019 – 335 minutes with 4 starts and 0 sub appearances

The only summer signing to have any kind of a pre-season with his new teammates and after starting in friendlies and all four Premier League games, probably the one we can assess best.

I think the first thing you have to do is push aside his £40m transfer fee for this exercise.

I have liked what I have seen and he did well at Tottenham, not just the goal but his general play. Then whilst like pretty much everybody else he was poor at Norwich, in the Arsenal and Watford games we saw enough to suggest he will do well.

Early days but I’m confident that he can give the team as much as Rondon did last season, although in a slightly different way, as they are not like for like players.

Jetro Willems – Signed 2 August 2019 – 204 minutes with 2 starts and 1 sub appearance

Found himself in the middle of that shambles against Arsenal thanks to Steve Bruce, the team in disarray when Bruce made his subs and the goal being due at least in part to the confusion.

Has shown a bit of promise going forward but defensively looks a bit suspect.

Ritchie’s injury appears to be going to guarantee Willems games now. Think he will contribute this season to an extent but based on what I have  seen so far I don’t think he is good enough to be first choice in the Premier League.

Allan Saint-Maximin – Signed 2 August 2019 – 40 minutes with 1 starts and 1 sub appearance

For all I don’t think he touched the ball at Tottenham and only got 20 or so minutes against Arsenal, I think he showed plenty on that openig day.

Looks a real livewire and against Arsenal was very quick and direct.

ASM has already also quickly got in tune with the fans, some good interaction on social media and already helping the food bank.

A shame Steve Bruce made the ridiculous decision to play ASM at Tottenham only 48 hours after returning to full training after a hamstring problem. The head coach thus ensuring the winger misses these crucial early stages of the season.

I have a fancy that ASM could have been the difference against a very poor Watford, if he had been available…

Emil Krafth – Signed 8 August 2019 – 308 minutes with 4 starts and 0 sub appearances

He has played almost as many minutes as Joelinton but I am yet to see anything that suggests Krafth is better than what we had already.

I think Manquillo was playing better and the Swede looks weak at times defensively.

Plus of course we have the conundrum of DeAndre Yedlin, he is close to a return now and at his best I think he is clearly better than Krafth on what I have seen so far. Although I accept Yedlin isn’t the most consistent. 

Shame we can’t swap our now three average right-back options for one who is PL quality.

Andy Carroll – Signed 8 August 2019 – 0 minutes with 0 starts and 0 sub appearances

Still yet to see him back on the pitch after leaving eight and a half years ago.

I suppose we have to reserve judgement and see if/when he ever is able to make a contribution.

In the position Newcastle were in, so desperate for goalscorers to make up for Perez and Rondon going, I still find it unbelievable that Carroll was signed.

It is all very well to say ‘when he is fit’ but there is zero guarantee of this ever happening. 

Even if he gets on the pitch, the crossing ability in the team is really poor, which wouldn’t exactly help Carroll to contribute.

My personal feeling is that success for Carroll would be measured on him being able to get on the pitch at least 20 or so times and contributing at least six or so goals. We will see.

In terms of the Newcastle United signings overall, I don’t think anything close to what was needed was done in the summer in terms of squad strengthening.

The situation hardly helped by the timings as well. It is crazy to wait until the very final week of the transfer window to make four of your five signings, including two on the very final day.

I have a feeling we need at least three of these five signings to prove success stories this season, or else the first team could fall sort.


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