Newcastle United round-up: Benitez future; Injury update; Striker interest
Newcastle United have had an unsettling couple of weeks and supporters will be relieved that the team will be back in action this weekend. The win against West Ham gave the club a lift and a couple more positive results will help to improve the mood. The Chronicle report that Rafa Benitez will put a line under the transfer window and focus on the upcoming games, as there are three winnable ones on the horizon.
The Spaniard’s future has been widely discussed, but this is an encouraging update. If the team can put together a string of good results, the mood around the club will improve and the future will have a positive look to it again. Benitez is the key figure at Newcastle. Although he is underappreciated by the board, the same can’t be said for the supporters. They will do everything they can to convince him to stay.
Later in the article, it is mentioned that Jonjo Shelvey and Florian Lejeune will be available this weekend. They have both been missing since the opening day of the season and it will be great for Benitez to have them available for the trip to Swansea City. The Spaniard has bemoaned the lack of quality in his squad, but these two are both very good players. Although the team delivered an excellent performance without them against West Ham, they will be even better with the two on the pitch.
Now the transfer window has closed, there is news being released about deals that could have happened this summer, but didn’t for one reason or another. Newcastle were in the market for a striker and would have liked to bring one in alongside Joselu. There were a number of names mentioned and Abel Hernandez’s agent, Pablo Bentancur, has admitted that the Magpies were interested in his client. He spoke to Tutto Mercato Web and the quotes were reported by the Chronicle today:
“He had an important market, strong interest from Aston Villa and Birmingham, they wanted him at all costs, and there was also a chance to go to Newcastle.
“It’s a bad thing, but football is the way it is, Abel has strength and is young, he will be back.”
The Uruguayan striker won’t have been the striker that Newcastle fans would have wanted, but it would make sense for the club. Benitez didn’t have a lot of money available to him and Hernandez would have been available for a reasonable fee. This could be one that the club look at again in the future.