By Russell Edge

Former Manchester United defender and current Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville has said that Newcastle United will struggle to bring in their top transfer targets due to their geographical location.

The Magpies endured a difficult transfer window following their return to the Premier League after a solitary season in the Championship, with manager Rafael Benitez publicly voicing his frustrations.

He saw several of his top targets slip through his fingers, and although he did manage to bring six new faces through the doors at St James’ Park, there is no doubt he would have liked to have seen more.

Now Neville has said he does not see their struggles in the transfer market letting up any time soon due to being so far away from London, which is a huge draw for foreign players when moving to England.

He believes that clubs in the south are a much more attractive proposition for players and their lifestyles, but insists he hopes to see Newcastle return to their former glories and bring in more quality to help bring stability to Tyneside.

He told Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football (30/10, 19:00): “It is difficult attracting players to the north-east. I think he is doing a really good job there, Rafa Benitez, they just have a quality issue.

“It is a problem getting players out of London – it is a big attraction.

“There are clubs now, even in the South Coast, that become a little bit more attractive in terms of lifestyle, rather than the north of England.

“You think about Newcastle and where they have been during our careers – it is a fantastic football club, who have had great players. Will that happen again? That is difficult, but you would like to see it happen again.

“They have got to build some stability at the club and make sure they stay in the Premier League to start with – they haven’t been the most reliable over the last few years.”

Newcastle are currently sitting ninth in the top flight table after their title winning campaign in England’s second tier, but suffered defeat against Burnley on Monday night to leave them with just one win from their away matches this season.

In other Newcastle United news, Rafa Benitez has delivered a worrying update on the future of this star player.

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