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‘Sven Botman and Hugo Ekitike transfers to Newcastle United – What the media really know’

2 weeks ago
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At the start of this month, we had it confirmed that Newcastle United had made moves to bring in Sven Botman and Hugo Ekitike this summer.

Newcastle United had tried to buy the two players back in January but had no luck then.

However, ‘sources’ very close to the deals confirming as we came into June 2022, that Newcastle had made fresh approaches.

The Reims FC President Jean-Pierre Caillot telling French media (see below) on 1 June that the Ligue 1 club had accepted Newcastle’s offer for Hugo Ekitike.

Whilst at the same time Sven Botman himself was confirming to Dutch media (see below) that both Newcastle United and AC Milan were now trying to sign him in this summer 2022 transfer window.

Three weeks later and this is what the media now really know about the Sven Botman and Hugo Ekitike transfers to Newcastle United….

…absolutely nothing.

With not very much of June now left, all of the Newcastle United media know nothing at all, beyond what we all found out from those interviews in France and Holland at the very start of the month.

Of course, that doesn’t stop them writing something every single day, ‘updates’ on the Hugo Ekitike and Sven Botman transfers.

Especially the local NUFC media. What a waste of time.

You get nonsense such as along the lines of ‘Eddie Howe is understood to be relaxed about the Sven Botman and Hugo Ekitike transfer situations’…the reality of course is that they haven’t got a clue what Eddie Howe thinks about anything at the minute.

The Newcastle United journalists are completely cut off from Eddie Howe this summer and don’t have a clue, he is away spending time with his family and they have zero contact. That is the story of NUFC now, at one time the local Newcastle United media were fed regular lines via the club from Alan Pardew and other previous managers / head coaches over the course of the close season to help get them through. That is all gone now, on a daily basis the local journalists have no contact with those making the big decisions within the club.

Transfers in and out of the club, not a clue.

You only have to look at Isaac Hayden moving to Norwich on Tuesday 7 June, not a single journalist regularly covering Newcastle United reported anything about it in advance, like the rest of us, the journalists found out that day.

The same with Matt Targett. Yes, just like the fans, NUFC journalists speculated after the season ended and his loan deal was at a close, that the defender was surely a no-brainer to make a permanent signing. However, none of them said in advance of Wednesday 8 June (the day after Hayden going out) that the Targett deal was now going to happen. When covering the Hayden gone to Norwich transfer, I didn’t see any of them then adding…by the way, Matt Targett is set to come in tomorrow.

You sympathise with them having to work with so little these days but this daily grind of having to read such desperate stuff is truly depressing. Hugo Ekitike says ‘Hello’ on social media…we then have whole articles analysing what did he really mean, when he said ‘Hello’ did he really mean ‘Goodbye’? Honestly, it is like the good old days of the 3-2-1 game show with Ted Rogers and Dusty Bin (ask your dad), when contestants were read out clues to what each prize was and not even NASA scientists and the MENSA elite could have worked them out. Basically because there was no way of interpreting the clues and turning them into reality, very much like the desperate attempts of Newcastle United journalists to turn innocent social media posts from Hugo Ekitike, his agents, and his dog, into believable NUFC updates.

Newcastle United is now on an upward curve, where things are done the right way and people such as Dan Ashworth and Eddie Howe are in charge of recruitment, making the decisions and working on deals, well beyond the eyesight and hearing of the Newcastle United press pack.

One day, hopefully today(!!!), the club will announce that Sven Botman and / or Hugo Ekitike have signed for Newcastle United and just like us as fans, the NUFC journalists won’t have had a clue.

Sven Botman asked by Dutch media outlet Algemeen Dagblad on 2 June 2022 if he had played his last game for Lille:

“I don’t know, but I think so, I intend to take a step (to another club).

‘Talks are underway now.

“I won’t go into all of that but it is going well.

“I do hope that the transfer for the new season is completed (as soon as possible), preferably in time for the pre-season (at a new club).

“Milan and Newcastle are interested, yes, (but) I can’t and won’t say much more about it.

“What I want is to take a nice step towards a nice competition. I am also looking forward to a new step.

“I am aware of what I want…you weigh all kinds of things and then the total picture has to suit you. I must have a very good feeling about it.”

I don’t attach any real blame on Sven Botman in this case BUT the fact remains that it was he who seventeen days ago stated that Newcastle United were trying to sign him. As this month has progressed, plenty of NUFC media has continued to report and ‘update’ on the Sven Botman to Newcastle transfer BUT none of this has been pushed by the actual club. Unlike in the past.

Jean-Pierre Caillot speaking to FranceBleu.fr – Published 2 June 2022:

“Let’s talk about the Hugo Ekitike file, we read and hear a lot. Just one question: do you have, as we speak (Editor’s note: the interview was carried out on Wednesday June 1), one or more concrete and written offers for the player?”

“Yes. Today, it is very concrete.

“And on the table there is one that suits us very well.

“An offer which, in my view, is sportingly interesting for the player and it is now up to him to make his choice, it is not for me to do so.

“From now on, it is his advisers who must move forward on this file.

“And if at the time of speaking this is not done, it is because his advisers have not yet wished to move forward with this club.”

“What club is it?”

“We remain discreet but hey… it’s an English club so we understood which club we’re talking about… (smiles).”

“Quite frankly, did you expect to see Hugo Ekitike reach this level very quickly and emerge so quickly in Ligue 1?”

“It’s been years since (Reims Sporting Director) Mathieu Lacour told me that we had a nugget in store.

“Where I was surprised, like all supporters, was how quickly he emerged.

“So it’s true, he was helped by the context because in fact he was 4th striker in the hierarchy and then the injury game also meant that he was able to show all his qualities.

“It also makes me smile today, because it sometimes seems that it would be the end of the Stade de Reims if he (Hugo Ekitike) were to leave us when a year ago, 90% of the people (supporters) did not know him.”

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