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Newcastle United round-up: Benitez taken ill; Boss committed to fans; Transfer window change

Jake Jackman

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Newcastle

Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez won’t face the media tomorrow as he continues to recover from a recent hernia operation, according to the Chronicle. The Spaniard had hoped to be back in time to deliver his press conference ahead of the Swansea City match after missing three days of training. He tried to return to Tyneside on Thursday, but he had to turn back after suffering pain in the car. Francisco de Miguel Moreno will stand in for the boss and it remains to be seen whether he can return to take his place on the touchline this weekend.

This is noteworthy as it would have been the manager’s first opportunity to address the recent transfer window. His thoughts would have been interesting after the club failed to sign any more players. However, it will be an even bigger blow if he doesn’t return in time for the match this weekend. Benitez is an influential figure on the touchline and Newcastle will be weaker without him there.

The Spaniard has been linked with the exit recently as the rumours persist on his unhappiness. The Mirror report that Benitez will battle on as Newcastle manager and will give his backing to the current squad to do a job over the next few months.

“The North East already feels like home for me. I am grateful to have such a positive relationship with our fantastic supporters. They are always behind us and played a big part in our success last season. All I can do is continue to work hard every day and try my best to give them a team to be proud of.”

These comments don’t sound like the Magpies’ boss is looking for a way out. It is clear that he has a special relationship with the supporters and he will want to deliver success for them. Benitez is an honourable man and he won’t want to walk out on the fans. He feels a duty to them and that should be enough to see him commit for the rest of the season at least. The problem won’t go away, but a drastic solution is unlikely in the immediate future.

Earlier today, the Premier League clubs voted in favour to close the summer transfer window before the start of each new season and this will start in 2018. The Chronicle report that Newcastle United voted in favour of the amendment. It wasn’t a unanimous vote, but the Magpies were one of the clubs that voted for the change.

This will mean that the transfer deadline will be 5pm on Thursday 9th August. The new rule only applies to the acquisition of players and foreign clubs could still buy players from England while their windows were open. This does appear to leave Premier League clubs at a disadvantage, but the thinking behind the change is that the focus will be on the football once the season starts.

Jake is a journalist based in the South East. He is a Newcastle United fan and has a keen interest in Dutch football. Jake can be found on Twitter here - @jakejackmann.

Newcastle United

Newcastle United fans divided after Nicolai Jorgensen performance

The Danish striker has long been linked with a move to Newcastle United.

Mathew Nash

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Denmark played out a 1-1 draw with Australia in the World Cup this afternoon. A controversial penalty was converted by Aston Villa midfielder Mile Jedinak to give the Socceroos a deserved draw against their European opponents. But the opening goal of the game might have been one of the best in the tournament so far.

Christian Eriksen smashed home a delicious left-foot half-volley to give the Danes the lead. However, it was the assist from a Newcastle United target that had fans talking on social media.

Nicolai Jorgensen played a brilliant reverse pass into the path of Eriksen. The Feyenoord striker has long been linked with Newcastle United. Over the weekend The Sun reported that Newcastle would need to pay £20 million for the player.

Newcastle were previously linked with the player in January, with a £15 million bid being rejected.

(Photo credit should read OLAF KRAAK/AFP/Getty Images)

That interest appears to have continued and it is easy to see why. Jorgensen was the Eredivisie’s top scorer in 2016-17, scoring 25 goals in 45 games.

But there is also a case suggesting he is not worth the money. He scored just 13 goals last season and against Peru in the opening game of the World Cup he struggled.

It is clear that scoring goals is not really his specialty. His link-up play is brilliant but some Newcastle fans feel he would simply not score goals in England.

Here is how Newcastle United fans reacted to his display…

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Newcastle United

Newcastle should move for Senegal star M’Baye Niang

Newcastle are looking for attacking additions this summer.

Jamie Watts

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Newcastle United are reportedly in the market for new forwards this summer, according to the Northern Echo, with Rafa Benitez identifying the Magpies’ attacking output as a key weakness last term, despite their impressive 10th place finish. And a new target should emerge from yesterday’s World Cup clash between Senegal and Poland.

The Africans surprisingly came away as victors, having been helped by two massive defensive errors from the European outfit, with Grzegorz Krychowiak’s late goal proving nothing more than a consolation.

Torino striker M’Baye Niang proved to be a thorn in the side of Poland all game, landing the man of the match award, as his pace and power proved too much for Thiago Rangel Cionek and accomplished right-back Lukasz Piszczek to deal with.

Photo: Getty Images

His shining moment came in the 60th minute, when he returned onto the field of play from injury and promptly latched onto a poor back-pass, eventually rounding the out-rushing Wojciech Szczesny and slotting into an empty net – notably scoring his first ever Senegal goal with his first shot on target.

And Newcastle should be keeping an eye on the 23-year-old throughout the tournament. Current targets such as Salomon Rondon and Jordan Ayew are underwhelming for fans and Rafa Benitez could look to make a statement by bringing in the former Watford loanee.

His physicality and raw speed suit the Premier League to a tee, and given regular playing-time the forward could become a sensation in England. However, he has recently agreed to join Torino on a permanent basis, meaning any deal would likely be a loan deal at the moment. A deal is still possible though, as Niang will be likely play second-fiddle to Andrea Belotti next term.

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Newcastle United should rekindle Miguel Layun interest after stunning World Cup performance

The 29-year-old was wanted by Newcastle last summer.

Mathew Nash

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Mexico caused a World Cup shock yesterday, defeating reigning champions Germany 1-0 in Moscow. It was a fantastic performance by El Tri, who decimated the world champions with a fearsome display of counter-attacking football.

There were many performances that caught the eye, with Javier Hernandez, Hirving Lozano and Hector Herrera all outstanding. But former Watford man Miguel Layun also put in a tremendous display.

It was one which will hopefully see Newcastle United rekindle their efforts to sign him.

Playing on the right-hand side of midfield he was a constant thorn in the side of Marvin Plattenhardt for Germany. Meanwhile, his impressive ability to work up and down the pitch the entire game left Julian Draxler completely nullified.

(Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images)

Currently contracted to Porto he spent the second half of last season with Sevilla, who have a permanent deal lined up. However, last summer saw Newcastle linked with a move for the player.

Valued at £6 million, Rafa Benitez is reportedly a fan and wanted him to help their survival hopes last term- as reported by Record, among others. No deal ever came off but 12 months down the line Newcastle should try again.

Layun proved against Germany just how impressive an athlete he is. The 29-year-old is also extremely versatile. Capable at both left and right-back, on either wing or even in central midfield he would solve many problems for Newcastle United.

With Sevilla dawdling over a permanent deal for the Mexican the Magpies should consider coming knocking once again.

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