Beating Manchester City and new Newcastle transfer record on same day? Press repeat…
Sometimes it may feel difficult to accept this with Newcastle United.
However, at times GOOD things do happen at our football club.
When your team has only won once in seven and a half months, any football fan would be entitled to wonder when there might be some light at the end of the tunnel.
So it is with many Newcastle United fans, that lone victory over Burnley earlier this month, the only win since the pair of triumphs over already relegated Sheffield United and Fulham back in May 2021.
I want you to cast your mind back 35 months…
A cold winter’s night, 29 January 2019.
Newcastle United had just managed to crawl out of the relegation zone, a win the previous game against Cardiff had seen the pair swap places, NUFC now one place over the drop zone but still so precarious, only two points clear.
That night, Newcastle United were playing all powerful moneybags Manchester City at St James Park.
This night, not just one remarkable thing happened, but two truly remarkable things on the same night, unbelievable.
Just before setting off to the game, AJC in Atlanta broke this story on 29 January 2019…
AJC: – Tuesday 29 January 2019:
‘Atlanta United and Newcastle agreed to terms on Tuesday on the transfer of Miguel Almiron, according to a person close to the player.
Almiron, one of the best players in MLS the past two seasons, is flying to Newcastle on Tuesday for a physical.
Almiron, 24, helped Atlanta United win the MLS Cup last season. In two seasons, he has scored 21 goals, added 28 assists and twice been named an All-Star. He finished second to Josef Martinez last season in the MVP voting.’
The quotes above are what I used in my article before belatedly I then set off to the Man City match. There had been rumours about signing Almiron for some three months but the most recent reports had been less than positive about this happened, surely Mike Ashley with only a couple of days left before the window closed, wasn’t going to suddenly allow the Newcastle United transfer record to be broken after all those years of refusing to properly invest in the squad, especially since promotion with Rafa.
I got into St James Park and had just sat down, when Newcastle United gifted Manchester City the perfect start, Aguero scoring in the very first minute. Thoughts of transfer records being broken going out of my mind, as you wondered just what damage Man City would inflict after this early disaster.
Then something remarkable happened. Not only did Man City not add to that Aguero goal but Rondon equalised in the 66th minute.
Then as the game went on it was Newcastle United who were looking positive, getting players forward, going for the win…surely not.
Ten minutes left and with Newcastle getting players up the pitch, Sean Longstaff was one of the NUFC players pressurising and taken out in the box, penalty!
Matt Ritchie put it away and then Manchester City did exert maximum pressure, only for Newcastle United to stand up to it all.
That 2-1 win gave Newcastle United real belief for the rest of that season.
Then on top of that the news that day of transfer record to be broken DID prove true.
Miguel Almiron signed for £20m and there followed a remarkable end of season.
Just signing that one player, along with the confidence / momentum from that Man City match, saw Newcastle United playing far better attacking football, Almiron giving NUFC a new edge that helped other players perform far better.
So much so, Newcastle United ended that season with the fifth best form in the Premier League over the final 16 games, on top of that, they scored the fifth highest total of goals in those 16 matches.
As we all know, it wasn’t a case of living happily ever after. After all, this is Mike Ashley you are / were talking about.
However, it did prove that good things could happen to Newcastle United.
Bear in mind as well, this was an outstanding Manchester City team that NUFC came back and beat. After that defeat, Man City played 19 other matches in domestic football and won…all 19!!! In the process winning the Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup.
Which brings us back to the present day, 35 months after that Man City match and transfer record breaking Almiron news.
Newcastle United could of course do with that kind of day being repeated today.
When you consider just how good Man City were at that time AND how unlikely it felt after 12 years of Mike Ashley for that transfer breaking deal to happen…why can’t we dream of a repeat tonight?
Man Utd are currently 20 points off the top of the Premier League table, closer to Norwich (and Newcastle) than they are to Man City.
Newcastle United can beat Manchester United, no question. Whether they will or not is another matter.
Can the new NUFC owners beat the current club transfer record? Once again, absolutely. Will news break of that ahead of this Man Utd game? Maybe, just maybe.
What I do know for sure is that no matter how miserable things appear at the moment, better times are just around the corner.
The only question is, just how big is this corner going to prove…before we can all start looking up again, rather than down.
It doesn’t have to be a Newcastle United transfer record and just how massive a lift would it be if the club announced ahead of tonight’s kick-off that the first January signing had been agreed? It is only five days until the window is officially open and already a number of other clubs have made public that signings have been made, in advance of the window opening and the deals then formally to go through.
The atmosphere will be class tonight when we get to kick-off regardless, however, news of an incoming signing could potentially just give it and the team the extra edge necessary to get the win.
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