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OPINION: Newcastle could make late adjustment to transfer policy due to growing injury list

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January promises to be an important month for the Mags...

The Magpies suffered a number of key injuries against the Red Devils and might have to reshape their transfer policy after both Wilson and Saint-Maximin limp off with calf issues.

Ryan Fraser also joins the growing list of players on the sideline after he suffered a hamstring problem as Newcastle were unfortunate not to win.

Following the postponement of the Everton game on Thursday night, Newcastle head into the New Year in 19th position, having won just once in the first half of the campaign. 

Howe’s side will be pleased with their efforts in the draw with Man Utd last time out but the Newcastle manager will be worried about the extent of the injuries sustained at St James’ Park on Monday evening. 

Callum Wilson’s calf injury seems to be the most serious. The striker may face “weeks to months” out after he limped off at half time with his side leading 1-0. Allan Saint-Maximin’s night also came to a premature end as the French Winger was unable to continue after he went down clutching his calf – Howe seems to think this is less serious. 

Ryan Fraser, who had his best game in a black and white shirt, is reported to have a hamstring issue and could also miss the next couple of games. 

The trio join defenders Jamal Lewis, Federico Fernandez and Paul Dummet on the sidelines and add to the lengthy injury list at the club. 

CRUCIAL TRANSFER WINDOW

Following the Saudi-led takeover of Newcastle in October, the Magpies are expected to bring major reinforcements to the club during the fast-approaching January transfer window in what promises to be the most important window in the clubs history.

The defensive deficiencies are there for all to see as Howe is expected to bring in a number of players at the back to help bolster Newcastle’s chances of Premier League survival.

Defensively, Howe’s side have been linked with a growing number of players and names like James Tarkowski and Kieran Trippier would be welcomed to SJP with open arms. The Magpies have the second-worst defensive record in the division having shipped 42 goals in their opening 19 games.

However, with the recent injuries sustained by attacking players, the Newcastle manager may have to rethink his transfer policy slightly in the coming weeks.

The loss of Wilson for what could be months, could hugely damage the clubs chances of retaining its Premier League status come the end of the season. Without a quality replacement for the top-scorer, it seems that Newcastle may need to utilise their substantial budget and call on some Premier League experience in the striker department. 

Dwight Gayle is a decent option to have off the bench but is yet to feature much under Howe and lacks the ability needed to keep the side up and score important goals. 

Newcastle have been linked with a myriad of attacking names such as: Jesse Lingard, Dele Alli, Van de Beek and Odion Ighalo but none of them have the same striker’s instincts as Wilson. No doubt they would improve the squad in forward areas but the club needs a figurehead to put the ball in the net. 

IMPORTANCE OF WILSON AND SAINT-MAXIMIN

Callum Wilson has that knack of scoring important goals e.g against Southampton, Spurs, Palace, Norwich and Burnley all this season and will be a huge miss. No doubt Howe will be looking for replacements already and could bring someone in during the early stages of the window. His side need to find the back of the net more often, especially in the upcoming games against fellow strugglers: Southampton, Watford and Leeds.

Allan Saint-Maximin has brightened up the season at times with his mesmerising dribbling and entertaining personality. The 24-year-old is a fan favourite on Tyneside and will be missed if he spends a long period out of action – it would be tough to find anyone with the same ability on the ball.

The end product is sometimes missing when the French winger has possession, however it was clear for all to see on Monday evening when he smashed his side in-front. If Howe brings in attacking reinforcements, he will be hoping to add to the productivity of the side going forward and search for players to match his front-foot, attacking and exciting style of play.

Wilson and Saint-Maximin have scored a combined 10 goals and had 4 assists for the Magpies so far this season and make up more than half of the goals managed by the side in their opening 19 games. The pair give the side substantial threat in attacking areas and are one of the best combinations in the league – their form will be hard to replicate.

Saint-Maximin was back to his best for the visit of Manchester United and scored a sublime opening goal – a glimpse of his full potential.

Saint-Maximin took the lead for NUFC inside seven minutes…

THE NEXT FIVE GAMES

Newcastle aren’t in action again until the 2nd of January and could have some new names at the club by then.The next fixture is away to Southampton at St Mary’s and Howe’s side will be expecting to pick up three points to add to their season tally of 11.

Teams around Newcastle have up to four games in hand but by the time the Toon are playing again the table might have sorted itself out. 

In the next five Premier League games, Newcastle face: Southampton (A), Watford (H), Leeds (A), Everton (H) and Aston Villa (H), knowing that they will need to pick up a substantial points total to help them climb out of the relegation zone.

The performance against the Red Devils shows that Howe’s side are capable of giving anyone a game at SJP and the form of Joelinton might just give the side the spark in the midfield to get some much-needed points on the board in the coming weeks.

Consecutive games against fellow strugglers Southampton, Watford and Leeds represent the best opportunities for the Magpies to pick up three points but with the potential loss of Wilson and, less likely the loss of Saint-Maximin, these games may become even more challenging.

Watford sit in 17th position at the time of writing and have 13 points (2 more than NUFC) with 2 games in hand. Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds have 5 more points than Newcastle and have a game in hand. The next couple of weeks may shape how the closing stages of the season look and could be one of the most important periods in the clubs history.

HWTL.

Thoughts?

Are you worried about the injury to Wilson? Which striker would you bring to the club? Can Howe’s side get their second win against the Saints?

Join in the conversation and have your say…

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Saudi Arabia wants its investors to own Manchester United

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North East Updates - Breaking News

Sports minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal revealed the country’s latest sporting ambitions in an interview with Sky News – with the sovereign wealth fund already owning Newcastle and now funding a breakaway golf series.

 

Sports minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal revealed the country’s latest sporting ambitions in an interview with Sky News – with the sovereign wealth fund already owning Newcastle and now funding a breakaway golf series.

 

It follows the Manchester United board announcing that they are open to a sale of the club.

Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisalstated he would be keen on Ronaldo signing for a Saudi Pro League after the World Cup, with the 37-year-old a free agent following a controversial interview and exit to Manchester United earlier this week..

 

“Who wouldn’t want him to play in their league?” “He’s a role model to a lot of young players – him and Messi.”

 

Sky news are reporting – It is the availability of United – after the Glazers announced plans for a potential sale – and Ronaldo that is interesting Prince Abdulaziz.

 

What are your thoughts on this – join the conversation on our Facebook page.

 

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Which Newcastle Players Are Going To The World Cup?

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Newcastle

The FIFA World Cup in Qatar gets underway next week and here are all the Newcastle players involved in the tournament

Callum Wilson (England)

Newcastle striker Callum Wilson is a player that has consistently shown the quality to earn a spot in an England squad at a major tournament but has sadly had his chances diminished by injuries in the past.

However, Wilson is currently injury free and is on the plane to Qatar! The Coventry City academy graduate averages a goal every 130 minutes in the Premier League this season, which is the second-best return of all English players behind Harry Kane.

The 30-year-old may have to bide his time for an opportunity due to England captain Harry Kane being the first-choice striker. That said, Wilson gives Gareth Southgate a great alternative should England find themselves chasing a game.

Kieran Trippier (England)

Gareth Southgate has always been very fond of Kieran Trippier’s abilities and what he brings to a team. For example, in Euro 2020 Southgate opted to play Trippier at left-back ahead of a more natural option in Ben Chilwell due to the 32-year-old’s experience and leadership qualities.

Trippier brings bags of experience at major tournaments after reaching the semi-final of the 2018 World Cup and the final of Euro 2020.

With injuries at right-back to the likes of Reece James and uncertainty around the fitness of Kyle Walker, Trippier could start at right wing-back in England’s World Cup opener against Iran.

Nick Pope (England)

The last player to complete The Magpies’ England trio is Nick Pope. Toon’s No.1 has been outstanding since arriving from Burnley in the Summer and has earnt his place in England’s World Cup squad.

Pope has the joint most clean sheets in the Premier League this season (6) alongside Manchester City goalkeeper, Ederson and fellow England goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.

It remains to be seen if Gareth Southgate picks Pope to be his first-choice goalkeeper in Qatar ahead of Jordan Pickford and Aaron Ramsdale. Pope started both of England’s last games in the Nations League back in September.

Bruno Guimarães (Brazil)

Moving to South America and the favourites to win the competition, Brazil. Bruno Guimarães has been one of Newcastle’s stand-out players this season and has deservedly earned himself a spot in Brazil’s very competitive World Cup Squad.

Guimarães has statistically been the best midfielder in the Premier League so far this season and will be hoping his performances have done enough to earn him a start against Serbia in Brazil’s opening fixture.

That said, Brazil manager Adenor Leonardo Bacchi has predominantly played with a midfield two of Manchester United duo, Casemiro and Fred at the base of the Brazilian midfield.

Fabian Schär (Switzerland)

The Magpies’ centre-back has been in great form alongside Sven Botman at the heart of Newcastle’s defence this season and will be hoping to continue his form in Qatar.

Schär has some tough competition in his position in the form of Manchester City centre-back Manuel Akanji and Borussia Monchengladbach’s Nico Elvedi.

Switzerland find themselves in the same group as tournament favourites Brazil, which will see Schär reunited with Toon teammate Bruno Guimarães in Gameweek 2.

Who didn’t make the squad?

The most surprising player to not make their country’s squad is Sven Botman. The former Lille centre-back has been a major part of why Newcastle has the Premier League’s best defence so far this campaign.

Louis van Gaal has a great pool of centre-backs available to him and opted for the likes of Virgil van Dijk, Matthijs de Ligt, Stefan de Vrij and Nathan Ake over Botman.

Another Toon player with World Cup disappointment is Joelinton, who has failed to follow Bruno Guimarães on the plane to Qatar.

Joelinton has been a revelation under Eddie Howe following his remarkable transformation from a striker to a box-to-box midfielder. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be for Joelinton this year.

Have Your Say

Who do you think will win the World Cup?

Which Newcastle player will be the best performer?

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What We Learnt (Spurs 1-2 Newcastle)

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deadline day

Newcastle United were victorious at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium yesterday, winning 2-1 and now sit fourth in the Premier League. This is the first time they’ve been there at this stage of the season in 10 years.

 

Goals from Callum Wilson and Miguel Almiron were enough to scare away any chances of a second-half Spurs comeback. That’s six goals for Miggy in what is now his best-ever season for goals in black and white.

 

With 21 points, just five behind Manchester City and seven behind current league leaders Arsenal, the Toon are looking better than ever, but what did the victory yesterday tell us?

 

Toon are charging for Europe

 

If you didn’t believe it at the start of the season you should now. Eddie Howe has transformed Newcastle into a team with a winning mentality with a real sense of togetherness in a squad who are willing to battle for one another, week in and week out.

 

Very few teams will travel to London this season and manage to come away with a point, never mind three when playing Spurs. Not only this game, however, but Man City (3-3), Liverpool (2-1) and Brentford (5-1) have also shown that Howe and his side mean business this season and are willing to go toe to toe with some of the very best teams, coaches and players in the world. 

 

In his first signing interview, Sven Botman said, “Newcastle wants to reach the top and the top is in the league and, at the end, maybe in Europe.” Maybe he didn’t specifically mean this season but now he and the rest of his teammates should believe that they have a real chance of playing European football next season.

 

Almiron transformation shouldn’t go unnoticed

 

Almiron made 30 appearances last season in the league and finished with just one goal and no assists. Now, after just 12 games and six goals, the Paraguayan is already on course to smash his previous goal-scoring records which have seen him accumulate nine Premier League goals over the course of four seasons. 

 

Loved by the fans and with the full support of his teammates, it can only get better for the Paraguayan at this point. His goal against Tottenham showed the dribbling, flair and finishing quality he withholds, something that Steve Bruce and Rafael Benitez could never get out of him.

 

Eddie Howe must be awarded credit for this development, as with the current budget the club has, he could’ve easily found a replacement in the summer. But, just like Joelinton, Miggy has cemented his spot in Newcastle’s starting eleven and is proving every week why he deserves to be there.

 

Wilson & Burn should be considered by Southgate 

 

On TalkSport recently, Neil Warnock warned Gareth Southgate saying his loyalty to players might be his downfall and said Dan Burn is “Mr Steady Eddie” referring to his versatility, being able to play left-back or centre-back.

 

Burn started 28 Premier League games last season and this season has 11 out of 12. His consistent dominating performances in Newcastle’s back line have put him into the conversation for a first-ever England call-up and I don’t think many would disagree. With John Stoned injured, Harry Maguire and Tyrone Mings not in good form and not getting regular game time, Gareth Southgate’s defensive decisions should now be a lot more challenging.

 

Callum Wilson has proved yet again his abilities as a top Premier League striker. His goal against Spurs not only put him in the headlines over England captain Harry Kane but also made it four in eight for the English man this season who has averaged 2.8 shots per game with an average scoring frequency of 162 minutes. 

 

With no clear-cut backup striker to Kane, is Wilson ahead of Ivan Toney and Tammy Abraham in the race to be England’s number two striker?

 

So, what do you think? Do Newcastle have a serious chance at European football next season, can Almiron stay at his best and should Wilson and Burn be considered for a World Cup call-up?

 

Join the conversation on our Facebook page …

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