What Newcastle summer signings could Magpies make?
FootyOn experts assess potential Newcastle summer signings after their Premier League return is blighted by injuries, a sending off and losing to Tottenham.
Championship winners Newcastle United had a luckless first match back in the Premier League after one season away.
Losing defensive duo Paul Dummett and Florian Lejeune to first-half injuries was compounded by playmaker Jonjo Shelvey’s sending off just after half-time.
The Toon Army saw further salt rubbed into the wounds when Spurs midfielder Dele Alli, the victim of Shelvey’s silly stamp, opened the scoring. Wales defender Ben Davies rounded off Tottenham’s victory at St James’ Park.
It was thus a frustrating afternoon for Magpies manager Rafa Benitez, who was the pre-season favourite to be first Premier League boss to go.
Stoke City’s Spanish striker Joselu is rumoured to be on his way, but fans of the Tyneside team crave a big name.
In light of the loss, injuries and suspension, here are five potential Newcastle summer signings.
Shelvey’s shame leaves the Toon without a playmaker in the short-term, so tabloid reports claim they will step up rumoured interest in Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere.
After spending last season on loan with Bournemouth, Wilshere had hoped to rebuild form and fitness.
Gunners gaffer Arsene Wenger left him out of their thrilling 4-3 opening night win over Leicester City, however.
Injury-prone Wilshere is in the final year of his contract at the Emirates, so Arsenal could lose him for nothing next summer if they don’t sell now.
There are risks attached to this option, plus reported interest in Wilshere across London from West Ham United.
All of the Magpies’ defenders have either suffered relegation from the Premier League or are as yet unproven in England.
Dummett and Lejeune are big losses for Benitez, so without them there’s a lack of strength-in-depth.
Signing someone like England centre back Chris Smalling would give the Toon rearguard a commanding presence.
Manchester United have added Sweden counterpart Victor Lindelof to their ranks this summer, meaning increased competition for places.
If he can’t get regular first-team football at Old Trafford, then Smalling’s World Cup place could be in jeopardy.
Everton boss Ronald Koeman reportedly told Ross Barkley to sign a new deal or be sold this summer.
Given Newcastle’s modest spending this summer so far, would owner Mike Ashley loose the purse-strings and let Benitez buy midfield guile from Goodison Park?
If not, then how about a loan deal? Premier League big boys seem to be baulking at Barkley’s valuation.
With Toffees talks ongoing over Swansea City star Gylfi Sigurdsson, it seems Koeman has already moved on.
Like Smalling, Barkley needs regular first-team football in a World Cup year.
He is 14/1 with Sky Bet to sign for the Toon in this window.
New Zealand frontman Chris Wood grabbed the Championship Golden Boot last term, netting 27 times.
Leeds United’s star striker is interesting Burnley, who recently sold Andre Gray to Premier League relegation rivals Watford.
Wood has the stature and physical presence to form potentially potent partnerships with more mobile Magpies attacking duo Ayoze Perez and Dwight Gayle.
Whether Benitez would be bold enough to play two up front remains to be seen but – with Shelvey suspended – it may be an option.
Serbia centre forward Aleksandar Mitrovic didn’t get on against Spurs because of the defensive injuries, but has been linked with leaving Tyneside.
While Wood could stay local if he signs with Burnley, Newcastle are by far the bigger club and 7/2 second-favourites with BetVictor for his signature.
Manchester City outcast Fabian Delph looks set to leave the Etihad in search of first-team football this summer.
Shelvey’s suspension is only temporary of course but – with Jack Colback out of favour and possibly leaving his boyhood club too – the Toon engine room may be a little light.
The betting strongly hints that Delph will go to Stoke City, but that seems to be based on a transfer merry-go-round of ifs, buts and maybes.
Swansea are reportedly interested in re-signing Wales midfielder Joe Allen from the Potters if Sigurdsson is sold to Everton.
Could Newcastle end up doing deals for both Barkley and Delph then? Stranger things have happened.
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