Whatever it is Atletico Madrid players have, it deffinitely appeals coach Eddie Howe.
Whilte it’s widely known and already reported that Newcastle might be close to signing left wing-back Renan Lodi—there should be talks between the player and the Magpies board as soon as this week—it’s now his teammate and Belgium international Yannick Carrasco who has joined the transfer conversation.
Spanish newspaper Marca—surely not the most trustful of sources, it must be said—is confirming and reporting Newcastle’s interest in both Lodi and Yannick Carrasco, respectively, by the Tyneside club. Atletico Madrid, under Diego Simeone’s management, have had no problems selling assets to Premier League teams in the recent past, including England international Kieran Trippier this past January to the very own Newcastle.
Coincidence or not, it truly feels like the Toon is trying to build their own case for Premier League contention on Atletico Madrid’s foundation and, if both Lodi and Carrasco eventually arrive in Newcastle, the Magpies could actually feature three ex-Rojiblanco players on their flanks next season: Lodi and Carrasco on the left-wing, and Trippier on the right-wing.
Lodi has been reportedly valued at around £40 million while Yannick Carrasco would be more expensive at £60 million. While the cost would be higher for Newcastle or any other club interested in the services of the Belgium, though, the operation with Atletico Madrid would be easier as that’s part of a release clause placed in Carrasco’s current contract.
There is no denying the influx of quality both Lodi and Carrasco would bring to Newcastle—such as Trippier has already proved—though it is also true that the massive cost both additions would entail, with the two men combining for north of £100 million, would definitely hamper the Magpies flexibility in the summer transfer window already limiting their operations a lot barring multiple and still-unreported sales.
The addition of Lodi and Carrasco would be great, yes, but I don’t entirely see a good reasoning under adding both players. Why do so when one is a full-back with winger capabilities and the other a winger with full-back prowess? Why do so when Allan Saint-Maximin goes through his prime and is a very capable—yet still raw—player on that very same role? Questions, questions, and little answers in my opinion.
Adding Renan Lodi would be a coup, and even signing him for the reported £40M and also transforming Matt Targett’s loan into a permanent deal for the alleged £15M that’d cost Newcastle makes much more sense than adding Carrasco for the ridiculous amount of £70M. Yes, Lodi and Targett play the same position and one would most probably hit the bench on a weekly basis. Also yes: Targett is limited when it comes to the attack phase while Lodi is just the opposite. In other words, the perfect pairing to complement the other flank in which Trippier and Krafth have that exact type of well-meshing profiles.
It’s often said that Newcastle “won’t have a problem paying this or that price”, but the club and their owners must be the smartest in the room when it comes to signing deals. Everybody knows that money won’t (in most cases) be a problem if everything the board and the media is selling us is actually true. Another, much different thing, is being able to trump the likes of AC Milan—in the run for defender Sven Botman—given their huge history and lore, let alone not falling for traps such as overpaying for good-not-great players when money can be better spend in multiple assets tha can organically grow with the team while it builds toward true national and continental contention.