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Opinion

Could Newcastle United lose their best player for only £3m if relegated under Steve Bruce?

1 year ago
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I don’t want to worry any Newcastle fan further, with this ongoing Mike Ashley circus which recently added a new clown in Steve Bruce to its repertoire.

However…to cap it all, if the very worst happens this season, could the Magpies lose their best player for as little as £3m?

Fabian Schar has arguably proved to be Rafa Benitez’ best signing for Newcastle United.

Not only in terms of ability but also price.

The fact he cost Newcastle only £3m was a massive bonus.

However, the signing was only due to the fact that one of Rafa’s contacts tipped him off that Fabian Schar had a £3m relegation clause in his contract.

Deportivo exiting La Liga at the end of the 2017/18 season, meaning any club could activate this £3m relegation clause.

The Spanish club had got the Swiss international very much on the cheap due to a falling out with head coach Julian Nagelsmann.

Schar had joined Hoffenheim from Basel in June 2015 and was a regular starter in his first season in Germany’s top flight, once Nagelsmann came in though, Fabian Schar only made three Bundesliga starts in the 2016/17 season – leading to his move on the cheap to Deportiv0.

Fabian Schar joined Deportivo for a cut price £3m but with that relegation clause in his contract, saying he could leave for that same price if the Spanish club went down.

With Newcastle getting the defender on the cheap, is it fair to assume that he has asked for the same kind of deal, just in case relegation strikes again at his club? Particularly so when Newcastle had battled relegation throughout the season (2017/18) before he arrived.

Maybe no coincidence as well that the contract Fabian Schar has is far shorter (three years) than the average Mike Ashley usually has players signed up to. The centre-back only having one more season left after this one before his NUFC contract ends, when he will still be only 29, which is no age for a centre-back.

Newcastle have already been through this type of thing previously.

Mike Ashley signed Demba Ba for free because he had a relegation clause in his contract when joining West Ham mid-season, the Hammers eventually relegated that season.

However, Demba Ba insisted on a £7.5m release clause before agreeing the free transfer and Mike Ashley was gutted when Newcastle’s best striker (and player) joined Chelsea for that bargain £7.5m release clause.

Fabian Schar has an interesting background because he became a full-time professional relatively late.

Playing in the Swiss second tier in front of a few hundred fans for his local team FC Wil 1900 he used to work in a bank and then train at night as an amateur/part-timer. Only when he signed for FC Basel in 2012 did Schar begin to play football as a full-time career.

Newcastle fans have been repeatedly told these past couple of months by Steve Bruce and media close to the close that new contracts are imminent for Fabian Schar and others.

However, still nothing has happened.

If indeed Fabian Schar has a relegation clause once again in his contract, why would he (and others) tie himself longer-term (and allow any relegation clause to be removed) to this Mike Ashley circus which is increasingly looking likely to fall apart once again, with the club now odds-on to be relegated.

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