The big story of Newcastle United's transfer deadline day at this point is the imminent loan of players (as many as 5) to Scottish Championship side and Mike Ashley side project Rangers. The exact details of the arrangement will likely never be known, but suggestions that Rangers will pay £0 wages for players moving their direction would seem to be inevitably correct and a sneaky extension of credit from Ashley to the Glasgow side. Money may or may not exchange hands, but players will certainly move, so let's build a short list.
- Gael Bigirimana - Bigi has been getting some matches with the reserves, but still lies down the NUFC depth chart at CM with Moussa Sissoko, Vurnon Anita, Jack Colback, Mehdi Abeid and Cheik Tiote all ahead of him. Both he and the club will hope that he can follow Abeid's lead and perform well enough on loan to help salvage his Newcastle career. It would seem that he is nailed on as part of this loan arrangement.
- Haris Vuckic - Haris is just as likely to go in this loan arrangement (he was rumored to be in Glasgow at one point today), but probably for different reasons. It has to be considered that in spite of the club's fondness for Vuckic and the potential that he has shown flashes of, there is a time frame in which he has to catch on and that time frame has to be about out. It seems unlikely that he is going to surpass the likes of Siem de Jong, Remy Cabella, Ayoze Perez, Papiss Cisse or even Emmanuel Riviere for any of the positions that he could play and it would seem that this loan arrangement would be a shop window opportunity for Vuckic to either earn a permanent move to Rangers or generate interest from somewhere else.
- Curtis Good - Good has been out on a successful loan spell before (at Bradford City) and would likely benefit from consistent match time again, although there would be all unholy hell if he does move as Newcastle are tremendously thin at CB. One would assume that if he were to be part of this arrangement he would have a recall available and Glasgow isn't too far away, so it could work out. If not Good, then it could be:
- Lubo Satka - Satka is another young defender that could benefit from consistent first team action, although he may be less likely than Good to make this particular move. He has been singled out for some praise this year among the reserves/youth setup which would seem to position him as the most likely to stick around as CB cover (you know, after Paul Dummett) in case of emergency. One way or the other, Satka or Good seem a one-or-the-other proposition in this situation.
- Adam Campbell - Professional loan player Campbell is currently on a short-term loan at Gateshead where he has scored 3 goals so far. It wouldn't be a surprise to see him recalled and sent to Ibrox Arena by Sports Direct™ or whatever they're calling it these days, but it would make as much sense to leave/extend his loan at Gateshead. The ultimate question is whether the Scottish Championship is a greater competition level than the Conference - you would probably assume that it is, in which case the club probably benefits the most by getting him to Rangers.
- Jak Alnwick - Granted he has had some first team experience this season (forced by injuries to Tim Krul and Rob Elliot) but it would be just as easy for Freddy Woodman to sit the bench while Newcastle get a better handle on exactly where Alnwick's top-end potential is. It would seem unlikely overall, but I wouldn't mid to see it happen.
- Tom Heardman - the promising youngster has been in decent form for the reserves lately having scored a couple of goals and may make a little more sense than Campbell to head to Glasgow... or he could be shifted to Gateshead as replacement for a Campbell recall. One way or the other, it would probably make sense to send him out for some first team action.
- Kevin Mbabu - Swiss defender Mbabu has been a name consistently linked with these rumors and a player that would benefit from first team action. Perhaps he takes the opportunity over Good and Satka depending on exactly where Peter Beardsley and John Carver believe we are with regard to the three players. Probably two of them go and Mbabu seems as likely as any.
- Olivier Kemen - He has gone to the press this January saying he would like a loan move to get first team action, and Rangers may be a good fit in that it's there. Being close to Newcastle where the team can keep an eye on him would probably be beneficial as well. He's likely a year or two away from the first team, so any match experience has got to be good experience.
All of this is from a NUFC-centric perspective and takes into no account what Rangers' actual needs may be as I don't really know what that would be. If I was wagging (wild-ass guessing) at it, I would say we're looking for sure at Bigi, Vuckic, Mbabu for certain while one of Campbell or Heardman goes as well and Good getting the last spot. That leaves us needing a spot for Kemen who I'd really like to see get some time... but he seems perhaps more like a Gateshead or other destination at this point as he is further from the first team than the rest.