Tue 12 Mar 2024, 12:29 · Ash Harrison

Nine out and six in: We play fantasy football with NUFC's squad to try and fix the problems this summer

Nine out and six in: We play fantasy football with NUFC's squad to try and fix the problems this summer
Share Tweet

There's no denying the fact that Newcastle United have a long way to go before we can breach that protective wall the Premier League has put up around it's precious 'big six', but we are taking a crack at getting us to the next step this summer with an ins an outs plan.

This article builds on the one we did last month that gave our opinion on the six first-team players we need to cut loose and adds a few more, then we go on to spend that money to try and take us to the next level.

It should go without saying that this is a complete work of fiction and we don't expect this to come to pass - we will have a more sensible transfer wish list coming in the future - but we've taken into account our expected budget based on our revenue on the last accounts which was £250million and the new rules that will allow us to spend 85% of that on new personnel, which will be around £212.5million. There's probably a lot more to it than that in reality, but this is what we're working with here.

So, hold on to your lug nuts it's time for an overhaul! (10 points if you get that reference).


Heading for the exit

Using nothing but what we believe we'll get for them, we believe we can raise an extra £51million by selling/releasing the following players. We're not taking into account the headroom generated by getting people off the wage bill as we're not 100% on how that's going to work under the proposed new financial system. Also, we're using 100% of the money raised from these transfers, even though anyone who's played Football Manager will know, you never get to play with the full whack.

Paul Dummett £0- We already know Dummett is offski at the end of the season but we'll not receive any money from that one as his contract is up.

Jamaal Lascelles £5m - "But he's just signed a new contract!" I hear you cry. That means nothing. He's a sellable asset as long as we replace him. He'll probably not be sold but this is our list and we can do what we want.

Matt Ritchie £3m - We're probably being a bit generous thinking we could get £3million for him, but if he's not willing to hang up his boots, then he might as well go somewhere else.

Matt Targett £7m - Less than half of what we paid for him would still be a good price just to get him out of the club. He's been nowt but a financial drain since we signed him permanently.

Miguel Almiron £13m - We tried and failed to ship him in January. Talk of a move to Saudi Arabia proved fruitless, but he's definitely on his way in the summer and £13m might just be enough to see him go.

Callum Wilson £15m - He may be made of dandelion seeds, and over 30, but strikers still carry a premium, especially English ones. We can still get some decent coin if we move him on in the summer before he goes on to ruin his legacy at the club.

Jeff Hendrick £0 - Seriously, just get rid. Tear up his contract and boot him out of the door. He could potentially cost us money to get shot of, but just do it. DO IT!

Isaac Hayden £3m - One who is proving impossible to shift thanks to those wonderful Mike Ashley contracts, still has a deal with us until 2026. He needs to be sat down and told he's not worth the wages he's on and to accept whatever comes his way.

Ryan Fraser £5m - Hopefully Southampton will put in a cheeky bid to keep him after his loan spell, and if they get promoted, hopefully they will do just that. He's clearly got no future here.

Those are our main nine outgoings, we expect there are others who are on the block like Loris Karius for example and we also fear we could cash in on a big player too, but as this is fantasy, we're not going there.

Untitled 49
Victor Osimhen, Jean-Clair Todibo and Matias Soule to Newcastle? Wouldn't that be nice?

Come to Newcastle, it's lovely, we have bridges

As we look into how we'd spend the money, this part isn't so much about the actual players but the positions we need and how much we should be looking to spend. With the £212.5m from our revenue plus the £51million from player sales, we've given ourselves a budget of around £263.5million. In today's terms that's not really a huge figure when you're trying to buy more than three players, or one if you're Chelsea, but we've stretched it out over six positions we must strengthen to avoid another catastrophe like this season.

Centre-back <£30m - If we're flogging Lascelles and losing Dummett then we need another centre-back anyway, but given that Fabian Schar isn't getting any younger and Sven Botman is going backwards, we will need to bring in another defender. £30million might not get you someone "world-class" but you can do well with that figure. A (very) cheeky offer for Jean-Clair Todibo perhaps?

Left-back <£35m - We originally had this at £25m but honestly, to find a left-back who can defend and support the attack, £25m won't get you anything great. £35 might even be pushing it in today's economy, but we're kicking Targett out the door and we can't bide the idea of relying on Dan Burn again. Also, Lewis Hall is costing us £28million and he can't even get a game, so what does that tell you? Technically, Hall should make this point moot, but clearly Howe doesn't see it so we will have to look elsewhere, as for who? No idea. We could just take a risk and sign Geordie boy, Leif Davis from Ipswich on the cheap and hope he works out better than Hall.

Central Defensive Midfielder <£40m - Our midfield is pretty well stacked already, provided we don't start culling the herd in the summer, but the one thing we really lack is that midfielder who can guard the defence. Amadou Onana is one that we're allegedy looking at and he could come in under budget and would actually be an ideal signing. How often he'd play may be an issue with Bruno Guimaraes, Joelinton, and Joe Willock ahead of him, but he'd leap ahead of Lewis Miley, Sean Longstaff and Elliot Anderson that's for sure.

Right Wing <£50m - Miggy will be sent packing in the summer leaving us with Jacob Murphy and as much as we love the guy, he can't be our first-choice winger. £50million should get us somebody more than decent, some hidden gem from a far off land. Maybe Yankuba Minteh will be utilised after his decent spell at Feyenoord which would ease the burden. Raphinha is a name that keeps popping up linked with Newcastle, but there are definitely others out there. Matias Soule is another we have our eye on who could be acquired within that budget.

Striker <£70m - If we're selling Callum Wilson we will have to bring in two strikers, or one striker and a versatile forward at least, but as an out-and-out striker is something we will be sorely lacking after Wilson's departure, then we've assigned the largest portion of the budget to this. Not as much as we'd have liked because ideally we'd like to go out and get Victor Osimhen but he'd be a £100m+ type of purchase and even in fantasy land, we're not quite there yet.

Second striker >£30m - We're thinking a young striker with bags of potential to be the back-up option behind Alexander Isak and whoever else we bring in. Someone like a Hugo Ekitike but less of a <expletive deleted>!

Those potential acquisitions should see us come in under budget even if we hit the top end of every bracket.

What are your thoughts? Are there any positions we've missed? Do we need to shop for a new goalkeeper for instance? Who would be on your shopping list? Let us know in the comments or via X @NUFCFEED