When I saw that Newcastle United was stuck with a meager 30m pounds, I thought that this transfer window would damn us to relegation. Not so. The club has done well signing Jamal Lewis, Callum Wilson for decent fees, and signing Jeff Hendricks and Ryan Fraser on free transfers.
Four players, all with quality experience and great talent. They’re filling in gaps that are necessary, and they’ll add to the quality that already oozes out of the midfield. Yet I’m seeing some predictions putting Newcastle United at 17th, some predicting relegation, and others predicting 15th. I think these predictions are wrong, and don’t do justice to the business that Newcastle United has conducted.
I believe Newcastle United will finish at best 11th, and at worst, 13th. I don’t think the club have damned themselves this window with poor purchases, yet I actually believe Lee Charnley and Steve Bruce identified players that would fill gaps without breaking the bank. While records weren’t broken, and the club didn’t make huge moves (I, too, would have liked to have signed James Rodriguez for 20m pounds) I think we have made serious progress.
Steve Bruce, while not a tactical wizard, is a great man manager. The players respect him, and they perform for him. Having both Ryan Fraser and Callum Wilson means we have players that don’t need to get used to each other, yet they already feel comfortable with one another. With Allan Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almiron both creating chances, Wilson may actually have a midfield able to accommodate his finishing ability.
I’m not a stats guy, so I cannot provide you with the analysis that would back up my belief. In fact, most stats will actually shut me up and say the club will finish 17th. But it is with a strong belief in Bruce’s grit, the club’s talent, and yes, the club’s ownership that this club will not perform poorly. I think they’ll actually exceed expectations.