Newcastle United – 7.

Howay the Lads !



– Wasting away

Sure – we all love to sign those young kids who are destined for greatness from about the age of seventeen years-old; wonderkids as they’ve been christened by those working in the game.

Snapping them up nice and early – thus giving you the best part of their developing years to mould and morph them into the talents they were always certain to become.

Granted, that is such a fulfilling aspect of football management and squad building as a whole but, what about those who’ve perhaps stalled in their development?

– and for a variety of reasons their once bright star begins to fade.

These types of players excite me greatly.

So much undervalued talent that’s waiting to be salvaged and brought to life once more.

Two fine examples are Serge Gnabry and Joelinton – both brought in from the Bundesliga wilderness – arriving from Bayern Munich and TSG Hoffenheim, respectively.



Joelinton the “new Roberto Firminho”.

– Sport Bild Deutchland

His compatriot left Hoffenheim in 2015 when Joelinton just arrived. “He is a role model for me. He plays in England and in the national team, he is a great player. The Premier League is the best league in the world for me, and I would like to play there someday. “

Having spent a good few Saturday afternoons watching Bundesliga – Joelinton always impressed me whenever I’d seen him in action for Julian Nagelsmann’s Hoffenheim side.

It later got me thinking that he’d be a perfect backup pressing forward for my Newcastle United.

Admittedly I don’t need 30+ goals per season from this part of the team and certainly not from Alfredo Morelos’ understudy however, for a cool £4.2 million – the twenty-three year old has all the qualities I look for in a pressing forward.

Big, strong and technically adept enough to hold-up play in order to bring his teammates into the action. Ideal when you have the likes of David Neres, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Serge Gnabry in support.

Joelinton’s goal return has also been a tremendous help – not only in aiding the teams lofty league position but, in removing some of the goalscoring burden weighing down on Alfredo Morelos’ shoulders.

Players fitting this profile are essential when building a squad and they’re definitely less inclined to get ideas above their station in relation to game minutes or indeed moving on.

There is no haphazard approach to recruitment; every signing strategically thought out with a place in our well oiled machine firmly in mind.

Serge Gnabry


This methodical approach was also applied during the acquisition of ex-Arsenal starlet, Serge Gnabry.

Wasting away at Bavarian superclub Bayern Munich – rapidly approaching his twenty-fourth birthday – we were able to lure the young German to North-East England for, yes, wait for it… £4.4 million!!

With the extravagant purchase of Ismaila Sarr in the pipeline it was imperative we attract quality and goals in the form of competition for the inside forward slot on the left side of the pitch.

Two fantastic footballers rescued from footballing extinction who, most importantly, fulfil vital roles in my tactic when called upon.

A large element of moneyball involved here as;

  1. They’ve been overlooked.
  2. Signed on the cheap.
  3. Fill vital roles in our tactic.
  4. Could potentially make a huge profit if sold.

Dream Team

Matthias Sammer – Director of Football


Sven Mislintat – Chief Scout


I’m quite sure I intimated in an earlier blog post; much like a wine connoisseur lovingly selects particular vintage bottles for their beloved collection – I take similar care and attention when deciding which players to sign, and that’s also extended to non-playing staff.

For too long this club has been run by charlatans with no real vision in mind; now we’ve assembled a strong squad it’s paramount that we continue with this allied thought process.

Luring Matthias Sammer and Sven Mislintat [Borussia Dortmund connection] to the club should bring us in line with some of the top recruitment models around Europe – with the pair having already worked their magic in finding a young Colombian gem [£1.3 million] touted as the next Freddy Rincón by media types in his homeland.

Miguel Perea


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Steadily – methodically rebuilding the culture at Newcastle United is as important as solving the on-field issues that have historically plagued this great club.

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My trusted lieutenant, Kevin Keen has been here by my side since I arrived on Tyneside, and he’s been an integral part in our rebuilding process; my eyes and ears on the training field.

Kevin Keen – Assistant Manager


We’re playing well, the players are harmonious, developing both personally and as an overall unit.

Times are good…

Am I crazy to potentially rock the boat by replacing my number two?

I want my progression as a manager to be narrated by the men I select to assist me throughout my career.

Sir Alex Ferguson would regularly mix things up by replacing his assistant manager; having as many as seven number two’s in his time at Manchester United.

It’s certainly on my mind, but there is a concern that some of the magic could be lost…

I’ll leave it for now and make my final decision come the end of the season.

First, we have a monumental two months as the season draws to a climactic end.

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