To be part of the Toon Army and to support Newcastle United must test your patience. Let alone having to deal with Mike Ashley running your club (and running it poorly at that) you also have to deal with some very poorly thought out recruitments in the transfer windows.
Every football fan from every club can at least get excited about in coming players and hope that this is the year that x, y or z player drives them on to a season of success.
Newcastle were one of those clubs too. But surely not anymore. And realistically they havent for years.
Their supporters have had so many knock backs including Amanda Staveley’s failed bid (Newcastle United takeover is in serious doubt) to take over the club that optimism must be wearing thin.
As with previous seasons, this summer’s signings are looking fairly bland and uninspiring.
Callum Wilson looks set to have agreed a £20m move to St James Park from relegated Bournemouth which some will see as good business. An England international striker.
But then you take a closer look. Surrounding all the hype Wilson has only got into double digits in the Premier League once in the past 5 seasons. 2018/19 he amassed 14 goals while his next best was 8!
Last season when Eddie Howe needed him most and the going got tough he went missing. The result was Bournemouth getting relegated and Howe losing his job.
Not all that can be put on Wilson’s head of course. But to pay £20 million for someone who is not consistently scoring goals is… well, it’s typically Newcastle.
Another in talks with the club also could arrive from the Vitality Stadium after a controversial end to his contract.
Winger Ryan Fraser has held talks with Steve Bruce this week after running down his contract while refusing to play out the remainder of the season for the cherries.
This type of self centred decision should worry the Toon Army. Do they really want a player in their ranks who is willing to jump ship whenever suits him. The lack of loyalty for a club that made his career should be seen as a cause for alarm.
Of course he was entitled not to play when his contract ended in June. But if you are building a team that will unite and fight for the same cause then personality traits like that do not fit in.
A player who is signed, sealed and delivered is Jeff Hendrick. Hendricks is a good professional and a decent player. He also didn’t finish out the season and left on a free but Burnley were relatively safe in mid-table.
Hendricks will always work hard for the team and put an honest shift in. He is a good player to have in the squad on a free transfer.
But for Newcastle fans it’s hard to get too excited about a player who plays in a more forward midfield role and who has scored 9 goals and has 5 assists in 122 games in the Premier League.
His successful crossing percentage is at 20%. He tackles less than once a game and only wins just over half of those.
An other player rumoured to be subject to a bid is Norwich City’s Jamal Lewis. Bruce is looking to fill the gap left from Danny Rose’s return to London.
And while Lewis would be a solid signing and one that’s needed it may not happen and it’s not one to get the bums off their seats.
Last year Joelinton was brought in from Hoffenheim for £39.6m. There was a big deal made about the transfer fee and a bit of excitement stirred in hope that the club knew something others hadn’t seen.
He scored two goals. Which was in no way suprising seems his best return in a professional football season was seven goals in the Austrian League and the Bundesliga.
Why would the board buy a centre forward for such a massive fee when he has never scored more than seven goals in a season?
Andy Carroll was brought back to the club as he was on a free. He used to be a dangerous player but his best days are past him.
Danny Rose is not wanted by any of the top clubs with a big question mark over his attitude and focus. But he was deemed to be a good fit for the club last year.
Miguel Almirón was bought from Alalanta United for £21m. He is a good hard working player with flashes of brilliance. Not a bad signing. But he was purchased as he scored 21 goals in the MLS. Not Serie A or La Liga, the MLS!
Mad money for someone with no top league experience. But the transfer fee yet again gave a false sense of hope to the Newcastle supporters.
It has to be said Allan Saint-Maximin has great potential and can be exciting I will give you that. But his return in goals, assists and consistency in match performances are well below the level of someone with his capabilities.
3 goals is a poor return last season. In Ligue 1 he produced 12 goals in 111 games. He can have you off your seat at times but more so kicking the seat in front of you out of frustration.
Time For Change
There has been many average uninspiring signings in the last four to five years. And it looks as though those given the job of recruitment at St James’s Park are doing their best to quench the enthusiasm of every and any member of the Toon Army.
Expect Steve Bruce to do a decent job (as he did last season) and gain Newcastle somewhere near a mid-table finish. But don’t expect anything exciting from their new signings. Newcastle United needs new owners and fast!