Transfer tactic Newcastle United must avoid with new 'behind the scenes skills'


Newcastle United should not go 'all in' on one big transfer this summer, but the club have the 'right people' in place to negotiate the difficult financial landscape, according to football finance expert Kieran Maguire.

Many fans are looking for a marquee signing in the transfer window from the Magpies, after the club met their PSR requirements by selling Elliot Anderson and Yankuba Minteh last month. Newcastle are keen to hold on to their prize assets such as Anthony Gordon, Alexander Isak and Bruno Guimaraes, but focus has very much switched to incoming signings in recent weeks.

Following the PIF-backed takeover of the club, transfer windows have been dominated by big-name signings, but last January saw Newcastle keep their powder dry as the realities of FFP restrictions started to make themselves felt. However, while Price of Football guru Maguire acknowledges there had to be end to the spending with so little coming in through player sales, he insists Newcastle have the right people at the club 'box clever' and ensure United can keep strengthening their squad - even if it involves some more sales.

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"For all of the faults of Mike Ashley, he left behind the legacy that whoever bought club had a huge amount of headroom to significantly upgrade the level of expenditure at the club in terms of PSR,” Maguire told TBR. “That’s what we’ve seen from PIF. I think they have got the balancing act right. What you don’t want to do is go all in on one huge transfer.

“They’ve signed Lewis Hall from Chelsea, but they have to ‘box clever’. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Their initial strategy when the acquisition took place was consolidation to avoid relegation.

“They spend a lot of money that season, 2021-22. Player purchases were £150m, incomings were £7m. The following season, purchases were £153m, incomings were £3m. These figures are from the accounts. You’ve got a net spend of £292m there. That cannot go on.

“The whole point of player trading is that it involves both purchases and sales. For fans, the focus is on purchases. But the club has to start thinking about the exit door. They sold Minteh to Brighton, which is a good piece of business and a fantastic return. That is the way the club is going to have to go forwards. They have the people behind the scenes with the skills to do that.”

Newcastle have made four signings this summer already, with Hall's loan deal from Chelsea becoming a permanent move, adding to the arrivals of Lloyd Kelly, Odysseas Vlachodimos and John Ruddy. When it comes to exits, United could yet sell the likes of Miguel Almiron and Callum Wilson - although replacements would need to be found for both.