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Opinion

Newcastle United owners have committed to £200m transfer spend in first year

2 months ago
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Difficult to believe that the new Newcastle United owners have been in control only eight months.

October 2021 saw Mike Ashley finally hand the keys over after some fourteen years and five months.

A decade and a half wasted, the club going backwards both on and off the pitch.

So much to put right after 14+ years of neglect and zero ambition, it says it all that one of the first jobs the new Newcastle United owners felt compelled to set in motion, was to give St James Park a good clean, inside and out.

Though by no means the only major issue to put right at Newcastle United, the approach to the transfer market was / is arguably by far the most important, certainly the most public.

Now that this summer 2022 transfer window is here (14 days gone and now 70 days to go, including today), obviously the focus has really sharpened on what will happen in terms of signings.

Now two weeks into the window, Nick Pope signed for United last night, making it two permanent deals coming in so far, after Matt Targett signed up earlier this month.

However, despite this, I have seen plenty of strange comments regarding the Newcastle United owners and the transfer activity. I wouldn’t say it was necessarily criticism and disappointment from some fans and journalists, more I think a feeling / perception of being underwhelmed.

Time to do some sums methinks, as I think the figures are pretty startling.

As things stand, I see the transfer spending already committed to by the new Newcastle United owners, as somewhere in the region of approaching £200m.

That is within eight months of taking over.

That is all net spend as well (with only whatever relatively meagre fee Preston have agreed to pay for Freddie Woodman – with no doubt a major sell-on clause included).

If you don’t believe me, here are my workings out in terms of what the Newcastle United owners have committed to so far:

£12m initial transfer fee agreed for Kieran Trippier.

£25m transfer clause release figure brings Chris Wood to St James Park.

£35m initial transfer fee agreed for Bruno Guimaraes

£2m loan fee brings Matt Target to Newcastle.

£13m initial transfer fee agreed for Dan Burn.

£13m paid to make Matt Targett a permanent signing.

£10m+ paid to sign Nick Pope.

That little lot adds up to £110m+ and I certainly think the overall package for Pope will at the very least, be something more than that claimed £10m figure.

Then we have the add-ons.

When Bruno Guimaraes signed, Lyon gave a detailed breakdown of the deal. They stated that there was £35m agreed as the initial transfer fee, with then £6.65m to be paid in future add-ons, almost entirely reliant on NUFC avoiding relegation. They also said a transfer clause meant Athletico Paranaense (who sold Bruno to Lyon) received 20% of what Newcastle were paying, whilst if NUFC sold Bruno in the future, a clause in this new deal would entitle Lyon to 20% of any profit.

The Kieran Trippier deal also saw widespread reporting that claimed there was a significant extra payment to be made to Atletico Madrid if Newcastle avoided relegation this past season.

The Dan Burn deal saw claims of an avoiding relegation bonus to be paid to Brighton as well.

No surprise on Burn and Trippier that bonus payments were part of the deals, when you consider how Newcastle got two such excellent players for only an initial £25m for the pair.

I think fair to assume that the total potential add-ons for this trio (almost entirely relating to NUFC staying up), would in total add another £15m-£20m to what the Newcastle United owners had committed to as the potential final pay-outs. So already up around the £130m mark in terms of potential transfer spend signed up for.

You then have the offers currently on the table.

Reims FC stating that they have accepted Newcastle’s offer, whilst widely reported that an offer is also on the table for Sven Botman from United.

A lot of speculation on exactly what the figures are BUT for the purposes of my calculations, I think fair to say that if both of these deals did happen, then that would increase the commitment by the Newcastle United owners to potentially £60m+ for the pair.

That takes us up to £190m+ of Newcastle United net spend, if / when those two deals go through.

I think fair to say that you can round that up to the £200m mark on transfer spend, especially if you start adding / including associated agents costs etc.

It would be ridiculous to look at this summer 2022 transfer window in isolation when it comes the new / current Newcastle United owners. Amanda Staveley has stated that their preferred route would have been to not spend anything in January and then go all out in this summer 2022 window to get the right players into the NUFC team / squad.

Circumstances forced their hand and bottom line is that if Botman and Ekitike commit, that would already be eight significant signings made in their first year in charge, with the likelihood of at least another one or two more to come in as well.

With Botman and Ekitike, you are talking then probably seven new first eleven signings made already, with Chris Wood the odd one out. He did an excellent job for the team last season but everybody knew that this was an essential short-term fix, with now Wood set to be a back up / squad striker for the new season.

Who knows what will happen in these next / remaining ten weeks of the transfer window BUT with the Newcastle United owners already having committed to a potential £200m worth of net transfer spend in their first year, that is amazing stuff surely by anybody’s standards.

As Newcastle fans we all knew the damage that had been done by a lack of ambition and a refusal by Mike Ashley to allow realistic investment in the first team squad. It was of course key to get the likes of Ashley, Bruce and Charnley out of the club but then major surgery also needed on the playing side as well.

The patient is now showing every sign of making a full recovery and indeed could end up in rude health, far better than anything seen for a long long time…

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