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Opinion

Confirmed Newcastle United can’t stop the payments on Joelinton as all £40m paid up front

2 years ago
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Joelinton continues to be a massive talking point.

The Brazilian dropped/rested for the first time on Thursday night, even if  not looking anything like fully fit his replacement Andy Carroll put himself about as best he can and made a favourable impression up to a point, even contributing an assist.

In 1,133 minutes of Premier League football, Newcastle United’s record £40m signing has scored one goal and one assist.

At Sheffield United every player contributed, Atsu tidy when he came on a sub and even Krafth got a few touches when coming on for the final few minutes.

However, even at 2-0 and on for the final 20 minutes, Joelinton was the only one who looked really out of place. He did make one run into the box and then as he shaped to shoot he lost his balance and fell down, kind of summing up his time at Newcastle so far.

Optimists have looked for other signs, as opposed to goalscoring, in games that might explain why he was a must have signing for the Mike Ashley recruitment team. That is way before you get to why he was a must have £40m signing.

However, you are feeding on scraps when looking for his positive contribution.

Joelinton doesn’t look like a terrible football player, just a very average one, never mind a goalscorer.

I was interested to come across a piece in the Chronicle on Friday, it had gone up online on Thursday morning before he ended up being dropped.

I thought it was interesting for a number of reasons.

Extract from that Chronicle article:

‘Joelinton was a £40million signing from Hoffenheim in the summer in a deal that Newcastle wanted to go through back in February so that the striker would be ready for pre-season on July 1.

But that wasn’t possible back then as Rafa Benitez did not sanction the transfer. He had the final say on recruitment and he did not believe the South American was worth the asking price of the Bundesliga club.

It was at that stage that Mike Ashley got involved and offered to inject an extra £20million into the kitty so that Benitez would be able to pursue other targets without his balance being affected, but Joelinton was told the deal had been put on hold.

Amid Joelinton’s struggles in front of goal, fans have questioned if the £40million was in instalments and whether Hoffenheim will ever see the full amount.

But the fee was paid in full back in July.

Newcastle felt he ticked all the boxes and that eventually his valuation will only rise.

The Magpies scouted Joelinton extensively last season with both Steve Nickson and Mick Tait spending plenty of quality time in Germany viewing games in which the Alianca-born player appeared in various positions.

Only Almiiron has had as many shots as Joelinton (23) this term and the number 9 has registered the most shots in the penalty area with 15.’

So Newcastle paid £40m up front, presumably that was to get him on the cheap and Joelinton would have been closer to £50m if paid by instalments! So no chance of stopping the payments then, cutting our losses and sending him back…

Interesting to see that stat of 15 shots from inside the box. It is seemingly trying to be used as a positive but surely it sums up both Joelinton and Newcastle’s shocking lack of attacking threat, basically once a game on average a chance of any description falls your £40m centre-forward’s way.

No surprise the Chronicle follow the club/Ashley line as usual, stating it as fact the embarrassing claim by the NUFC owner that he was willing to put in £20m of his own money to help buy Joelinton. If that was the case, why wasn’t Mike Ashley doing that the previous two years when Rafa was having to rely on loans and £5m Josleu to keep Newcastle up?

However, by far  the most interesting line is the one where the Chronicle say ‘Newcastle felt he ticked all the boxes and that eventually his valuation will only rise.’

Who exactly is ‘Newcastle’ in this case?

Who exactly decided that Joelinton ‘ticked all the boxes’?

Who exactly had the expert opinion that ‘his valuation will only rise’?

This gets surely to the heart of the problems we have at Newcastle United, who exactly makes the major decisions both football and non-football?

What we do know is that it certainly isn’t Steve Bruce and/or Lee Charnley.

Surely nobody was more qualified back in February than Rafa Benitez in terms of judging a player, somebody who has worked with Ronaldo and so many other top class strikers/players.

Who else would be more qualified to make that decision – Lee Charnley, Steve Nickson, Mick Tait, Mike Ashley, or even Steve Bruce when arriving in July, a few days before Joelinton followed him in.

Rafa Benitez certainly didn’t think Joelinton ‘ticked all the boxes’ and that ‘his valuation will only rise’, indeed, Mike Ashley has said that Rafa valued the player at no more than £20m at the very most, not convinced he could be a regular goalscorer in the Premier League.

So who did make the decision?

It was either Mike Ashley, or else it was an employee who should surely be sacked, as spending £40m on a very average player like this, could well prove to be a disaster for a club like Newcastle United. A bit like some simpleton sent to Asda for the Christmas food shopping and instead meeting somebody on the way, who sells him some magic beans.

Once again, who makes the big decisions at Newcastle United?

No wonder we lurch from one disaster to the next, with the odd false hopes of encouragement in between.

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