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Transfer Rumor Roundup #1 : Rafa Looking to Revive Careers?

Fact: Rafa Benitez once made a Grilled Cheese sandwich without cheese or a grill

Chelsea FC v Atletico Madrid - UEFA Champions League
He needs a team, we need a striker
Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

It’s Friday, and every Friday until the conclusion of the January Transfer Window, we here at CHN are going to give you guys the latest transfer rumors and our analysis of them all. This is week one, and there are already some intriguing, injury-prone names. So, without further ado, let’s start things off with a bang.

Michy Batshuayi (Transfermarkt value - £22.50m)

Ah, yes the dream summer signing that never happened. Newcastle have been linked to Batshuayi since his days in Ligue 1, and once again we find ourselves linked to him again after a summer of wishing he would join Newcastle on loan. This time, it looks like Batshuayi is set to leave Chelsea on a Loan deal in January.

The Chronicle reports that Conte is considering sending him out on loan as long a they bring in a replacement. Batshuayi is looking for more play time as he has only made 5 first team starts despite having scored 6 goals. He has even been playing with the Under 21’s during their Checkatrade trophy campaign, recently scoring a brace against MK Dons.

AS Roma v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League
Lack of first team minutes is obviously a huge barrier in Michy’s campaign to be a part of the Belgian World Cup squad
Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

The move makes sense for Batshuayi as he also looks to solidify a spot on the Belgian National Team’s World Cup roster after only 11 caps for the national side. Regular first team football makes sense for the young striker, and Newcastle need a proven goalscorer. Everything looks good to make this deal happen and then there was this. A comment from a Chronicle reader has left us all a little worried for Batshuayi:

“Definite yes on a loan deal with a view to buy only thing that worries me is apparently he was cuddling a hot water bottle on the bench at the weekend so if it’s too cold in London for him it might as well be the arctic circle here he’ll not want to come” - Paul9

Let’s hope Michy can adjust, because you all know we need a striker.

Luke Shaw (Transfermarkt value - £16.20m)

The English golden boy at left back who has not quite lived up to the height due to injuries, has been linked to Newcastle.

Shaw is the Man U prospect, thought to be the future of English football who has found himself only appearing 4 times this season. This is largely due to the amount of time he has spent recovering from injuries, as it has been a rough past couple of years riddled with injuries since his magical 2013 season. Yet, Rafa believes he can salvage the 22-year old’s career and help him reach his full potential.

Manchester United v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League
Shaw got a standing ovation from fans after his impressive performance against Bournemouth, but it was apparently not enough to secure him regular first team minutes as Mourinho still looks to let him leave in January.

Shaw, would be a welcome addition to the team, given he plays. He is a fine left back with a decent bit of pace, who actually tracks back and defends. The fact that he defends already gets him a first team spot over Manquillo, who along with Yedlin have struggled in that department. The biggest issue, like many players on this list is if he can stay healthy.

Danny Ings (Transfermarkt value - £7.20m)

Danny Ings is that rumor that just won’t go away. Ings, has not played first team football in awhile due to nagging injury problems. Ings of course is talented when healthy, but the issue is that he has not been healthy in years.

Liverpool FC v 1899 Hoffenheim - UEFA Champions League Qualifying Play-Offs Round: Second Leg
Ings has been on the bench for Liverpool a lot under the Klopp tenure. Ings seeks a move to get him regular first team minutes, is that place Newcastle?
Photo by Mark Robinson/Getty Images

The 25 year old is being tracked by a number of clubs including Pardew’s West Brom as well as West Ham, Crystal Palace, Stoke, and Brighton. It is a little surprising considering Ings has made only 7 appearances for Liverpool since 2015. This of course is due to the fact he was sidelined all of 2015 with an anterior cruciate ligament injury in his left knee. The next year he was sidelined for 9 months for an injury to his right knee cap sustained during a cup match against Tottenham. He finally made an appearance on September 19th, 2017 as a substitute against Leicester City in a cup match. He was subbed into the midfield and ended up with an abysmal 5.7 rating.

Still, Ings is on the watch list for so many Premier League sides, all hoping he can be the player he was when he was at Burnley.

Kiko Casilla (Transfermarkt value - £5.40m)

A new keeper was the top priority this past window, and unfortunately a keeper was never bought. An unsuccessful saga with Pepe Reina, left fans wondering “what now ?”. It looks like we finally have an answer.

Tottenham Hotspur v Real Madrid - UEFA Champions League
Casilla never quite made it into Madrid’s first team on a regular basis, but it is safe to say he would likely start on this Newcastle team.
Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Another former Benitez keeper Kiko Casilla, looks to be sold by Real Madrid in this upcoming window , and of course the team linked with him is Newcastle. Rafa bought Casilla during his tenure with Madrid from Espanyol for £4.2m, and since Rafa’s departure Casilla has struggled to make first team appearances. He finds himself playing back up to Keylor Navas, having only made 10 appearances for Zidane this season. He likely will be further down the pecking order as Real Madrid are looking to sign Athletic Bilbao’s Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Casilla would immediately start in goal if the Newcastle move were to happen. Zidane has reportedly already said the keeper could leave in January, so the biggest barrier would likely be the wage demands from the keeper. With the rumored sale of the club finalized, this might not be as big of a barrier as it was this past summer with many Newcastle targets.

Besiktas JK v Tottenham Hotspur FC - UEFA Europa League
Tosun (Left), has been a consistent link to NUFC this whole season, but have the club been priced out of a possible move?
Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Cenk Tosun (Transfermarkt value - £9.45m)

Another player rumored with Newcastle the whole season has been Cenk Tosun. Tosun of course is the striker who has been absolutely destroying it for Besiktas. Tosun so far has 12 goals in 21 appearances including 4 goals in the Champions League.

There have been a host of Premier league clubs looking to sign Tosun, which has driven his price up into the £20-30 million pound range. Earlier in the week this would have priced Newcastle out of the move, but news of the takeover finalized and Staveley agreeing to reimburse Ashley for all January money has made this move a possibility once more.

Newcastle will have to compete for the signing of Tosun with a host of other PL clubs, but more notably Real Madrid. Who, as the Chronicle reports, sent a representative to scout him during Besiktas’ Champions League match against RB Leipzig.

Richmond Boakye (Transfermarkt value - £1.80m)

ESPN broke a story earlier this week that West Brom and Newcastle are looking to target Richmond Boakye from Red Star Belgrade .

Crvena Zvezda v Arsenal FC - UEFA Europa League
Another star on the Ghanaian National Team, Boakye looks to play Premier League football like his teammate Christian Atsu
Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

Boakye alone has more goals than Newcastle this season and could be a welcome addition to the squad. He currently is sitting on 14 goals through 13 league matches, but you must consider it is the serbian SuperLiga. Boakye has played well for Red Star in their Europa League campaign, as he was a key reason for them advancing out of the group stages for the first time in 26 years.

Boakye will be hard to pry away from Red Star as they just inked a deal with him that will secure his services until 2020.

Jack Hendry (Transfermarkt value - £220k)

The Daily Mail reports that Newcastle, Southampton and Crystal Palace have all been monitoring Dundee’s Jack Jendry.

The 22-year old Center Back has been drawing comparisons to John Stones and there is genuine belief per the The Chronicle that the youngster could succeed in the Premier League.

Hendry just joined Dundee from Wigan this past summer, and Dundee has been looking to extend his contract to lock him up long term, as he only has 18 months remaining on his contract. Dundee however, is reportedly struggling financially and the sell of Hendry to a PL side with access to lucrative TV money would rejuvenate the club’s finances. All of this being said, Celtic are reportedly the front runners for the signature of Hendry. They can offer something no other club monitoring him can, possible Champions League Football next season (even if they were terrible in the group stages)

Brechin City v Dundee - Pre Season Friendly
Hendry could be the best bargain breakout star the club has seen
Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

That’s all for this week, let us know who you think could be joining Newcastle in January in the comments.