Newcastle United should test the waters over forgotten Chelsea man Danny Drinkwater.
The midfielder has been left to rot on the Stamford Bridge bench by Maurizio Sarri this term, with favourite Jorginho, N’Golo Kante, Ross Barkley, Mateo Kovacic, Cesc Fabregas and Ruben Loftus-Cheek having all been ahead of him in the pecking order.
Since signing for the club from Leicester City in 2017 Drinkwater has made just 23 appearances for the club.
This term, he has made one cameo appearance in the Community Shield against Manchester City and hasn’t featured since, indicating that he is very much not a part of the new coach’s plans.
Fulham are said to be keen on landing Drinkwater this month (The Express), but Newcastle should be thinking about launching an enquiry of their own.
Newcastle need midfield reinforcements
Rafa Benitez should try to take advantage of the relations he has with his old club and strike a cut-price deal for Drinkwater.
Sarri has clearly shown he doesn’t intend to use the player, which could make a transfer possible.
Chelsea are notoriously good at selling players for inflated fees, however surely they know they’d have to take a significant hit on Drinkwater, who was bought for £35 million (BBC Sport).
The Magpies are currently quite stretched in midfield, with Ki Sung-yueng on Asia Cup duty with South Korea, Jonjo Shelvey struggling with injury, Isaac Hayden intent on leaving and Mohamed Diame ageing.
Benitez needs fresh impetus. Drinkwater – a Premier League winner – hasn’t seen much pitch time of late but remains a brilliant passer of the ball with an excellent engine.
He could work really well alongside the industrious Diame.