Rafa Benitez’s continued investment in youth at Newcastle has been one of the defining traits of the preseason. His continued faith in Alexsandar Mitrovic and refusal to sell Ayoze Perez, as well as naming Jamaal Lascelles captain, is showing real intent to build a future for the Magpies.
Rolling with the trend, it was announced yesterday that starlet Rolando Aarons has signed a new five-year deal at the club.
The winger joined Newcastle from Bristol City on a free transfer in his youth, and was offered his first professional contract in 2014.
After signing his new contract, the 20-year-old hit a scintillating vein of form in preseason including scoring and assisting against German giants Schalke.
Aarons’ contributions to the first team have been labelled as “thrillingly incisive” by journalists, and aged 20, there’s plenty of room to progress for the youngster.
The length of the contract is seen as a risk by some, given the winger’s first team future has been continually threatened by injury.
If Aarons can shake of his injury issues, the contract could be some of Benitez’s best transfer work this window.
Reports in Italy suggest that Newcastle are set to break the bank yet again to sign Italian international Lorenzo Insigne.
The 25-year-old is reportedly unhappy with his current club Napoli and his current pay check, which totals around £1.5 million a year.
Meanwhile, Italian publication Il Mattino claim that both West Ham will rival the Magpies for Insigne’s signature, with both clubs offering to near-triple the attacking midfielder’s wages.
Benitez worked with Insigne during his time as Napoli boss, which could help in his pursuit of the talented forward. However, as big a club as Newcastle are, they remain a Championship side for the time being. Luring an established international in one of the big five leagues could prove too unrealistic.
Inter had a £30 million offer for Insigne rejected last summer, so it’s possible the north east club will have to shell out a similar fee at least to him away from Napoli.
Established defender Paul Dummett is being linked with a move to Burnley, according to Chronicle Live.
Sean Dyche is allegedly a fan of the Wales international and wants his proven top flight experience to bolster Burnley’s back four.
While many Newcastle fans see Dummett as an unnecessary expenditure, he remains the clubs only left back that isn’t plagued by injury problems, and Rafa Benitez seems to see him as part of the first team for the coming season.
“We’ve had problems. We have been playing games without a left-footed full-back. Now we have Dummett, the defence is more compact and balanced.”
Newcastle have spent big this summer though and may be looking to offload some players to recoup some of those transfer fees.
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