Former Arsenal striker and BBC Sport pundit Ian Wright has named Newcastle United as an “unbelievable place” for players to go as he tips the Magpies for future transfer success.
The club struggled to bring in players during both the summer and winter transfer windows as a result of a lack of financial backing from owner Mike Ashley, which saw Rafael Benitez voice his frustration at missing out on top targets such as Tammy Abraham, who ended up joining Swansea City on loan from Chelsea.
However Wright believes that the north east side, with Rafael Benitez at the helm, is a brilliant club for players to join, and that their current 10th place position is an outstanding achievement considering the lack of support the Spanish boss has been offered.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live Sport (09/04, 19:00), he said: “When you get a manager who is able to go into the market and get players like Kenedy, and a goalkeeper like that (Martin Dubravka), this is why I was praying that someone like Tammy Abraham would have went somewhere like there.
“It would be an unbelievable place to score goals at and build.
“It’s the kind of place, if he goes there under Rafa, then all of a sudden he can start to bring in these players.
“Newcastle, finishing 10th, with what they’ve got, it is an amazing achievement.”
Football Insider verdict
Benitez might not have got what he wanted in the two transfer markets this season but he has made the best of his situation. Kenedy has been an outstanding success, while Martin Dubravka also looks to have been a very canny signing, and it only begs the question as to what the manager could have done had done had he had some more money at his disposal. As for new players arriving at the club, any player worth his salt will recognise the ability that Benitez has as a coach and many would take that firmly into account when making a decision over their futures. Abraham might have made a mistake over his move, but there will be few who follow in his footsteps.
In other Newcastle United transfer news, the club are eyeing up a 17-goal striker set for the exit this summer.