Open Window, Open Season!
The Winter transfer window has opened and to most in the Premier League it usually means an attempt to boost your squad with one or two signings. But for Newcastle United this is the land of opportunity. Like a kid in a sweet shop they have enough in the coffers to literally buy anything they want. So, with a long list and rich owners ready to splash the cash lets have a look at the possibilities in hand for the Geordie faithful.
Be sensible or be adventurous for one window? That is the only question. Lets be honest we’d all like to play Fantasy Football and dream of a team full of world class players. But Newcastle are in reality are fighting off relegation and this is not a time to be aiming too high. For the sake of a bit of fun though lets recommend a sensible and ridiculous option for a few positions to help the Magpies.
Centre Back: Kalidou Koulibaly
Starting out with a dream signing here. Koulibaly has long been admired by some of the big hitters in the Premier League most notably Jose Mourinho tried to lure him to Old Trafford. It has always been a surprise that the Senegal captain has never left the Napalese club. Likely a bridge too far for a Winter transfer but maybe could be persuaded in the summer.
Centre Back: Joe Gomez
This time last season in the transfer window Liverpool were desperate to be in such bad shape that they tried to buy not one but two centre backs as their season was grounding to a halt. But this season has seen a revival with Virgil Van Dijk returning and Joel Matip returning from the wilderness. If Newcastle cannot get Gomez in on a permanent transfer they should be bursting a gut to sign on a loan deal. Liverpool have in recent years done well from young prospects going out on loan and this could be ideal for both parties
Centre Back: Sven Botman
Lilles Dutch centre back is a realistic target for Newcastle as he would be in the region of €30million. AC Milan are thought to be also interested so Newcaslte will need to flex their financial muscle here to parry away the Milan giants.
Left Back: Oleksandr Zinchenko
Always a bit part player for Manchester City Zinchenko would be a great signing for Newcastle. Making only 7 league appearances this season it shows that he is surplus to requirements at City. He also plays across the midfield for Ukraine showing his versatility.
Left Back: Lucas Digne
Everton’s Frenchman is four years into his tenure at Goodison Park and maybe now would be a good time to cash in on a player that will bring in an inflated transfer fee due to the position of his would be suiters. Easily replaced by Everton with some young talent coming through this could be a match made in heaven for both clubs.
Midfielder: Georginio Wijnaldum
This to me is a no brainer for Newcastle as Gini is a player that knows the Premier League well. They are also desperate for his type of talent as they are pretty barren across the middle of midfield. The only question is would Gini see this as a massive step backwards in his career. Is he desperate to play football or will he follow the yellow brick road of money back to where he started. Time will tell.
Midfielder: Jesse Lingard
Again we are talking sense here. A guy that is desperate to play football and a team that is desperate for his talents. This could be an option to buy in the Summer after a successful loan deal. With the right bid this could easily be an option for Newcastle without breaking the bank. A hungry player that is desperate to revive his career.
Midfielder: Luka Modric
Back in fantasy land here but Modric is out of contract in the Summer and it would be an incredible signing for the Magpies. Unlikely but we can dream!
Midfielder: Ross Barkley
Returning to earth again with a signing that would again make sense. Barkley would be a decent option for Newcastle as he is a young man looking to get his career out of the ditch. Clearly Barkley is no favourite of Tomas Tuchel who has an embarrassment of riches as his disposal.
Midfielder: Donny van de Beek
Could Newcastle end the nightmare that this guy has endured since his arrival to Manchester United. Clearly not wanted by the club with now two managers not having an interest in him. This would be interesting if not just to see what United would find and acceptable deal. This could be his window to get out.
Forward: Pierre Emerick Aubameyang
With Arsenal perhaps willing to listen to offers for what has become a bad apple in the dressing room. This could be ideal for both sides. Although Newcastle would need to put up a really decent €30million offer they could get their man if persistent. Newcastle are too reliant on Callum Wilson but would Eddie Howe want to deal with a personality like Aubameyang after how he has ended up at Arsenal. At 32 years this will be his last move.
Forward: Alfredo Morelos
Lets look at a risky option in Morelos. Obviously Rangers would be looking for a decent transfer but they are never sky high going from the border and this could be worth the risk. Would Eddie Howe want to be taking this type of gamble with a relegation battle looming?
Forward: Erling Haaland
Back in dreamland but let me put this out there. In 3-4 years this is the type of forward that Newcastle will be looking to attract. Likened to Sergio Aguero when he signed for Manchester City when they inherited their Billions but after they already had a more concrete squad assembled. The stuff of dreams for now maybe but this will soon become a reality! Mbappe and Haaland might be tempted by the black and white of Newcastle in their next big move in 4 years time.
Head over heart
Obviously if Eddie Howe wants to have a crack at this job long-term he must be pragmatic in his approach to transfers. Priority one is to remain in the Premier League and then build on that by upgrading some players in the Summer. He doesn’t need to be buying players that will make his life more difficult as the squad grows in value and expectation.
Newcastle do not need a team of world class players to avoid relegation this window. They need fighters. Players that will give 100% for the badge. If Howe over-reaches he will end up with a list of guys that are only there for the money and that will be difficult to motivate.
Either way the fortunes of Newcastle have changed. They will spend a Billion on players in the next decade and that will transform them into one of the big players. Incredible as that sounds. We watch with interest.