Newcastle United supporters have been pretty downbeat in recent times after seeing their side throw-away at two-goal lead to suffer a sixth Premier League defeat of the season on Saturday.
Rafa Benitez’s men went into their clash with Manchester United having picked up just two points from a possible 21 this term, and already three points adrift of safety even at this early stage of the campaign. Yet the Magpies raced into a 2-0 lead at Old Trafford on Saturday thanks to goals from Kenedy and Yoshinori Muto, only to concede three times in the last 20 minutes of the game to go down 3-2 to Jose Mourinho’s side, and thus remain winless after eight Premier League matches.
Thus, there have been many disappointed Newcastle fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom will be hoping the club’s new signings can hit the ground running sooner rather than later in a bid to pull away from the bottom three.
And while there were some concerns about the club’s business during the close season, it’s fair to say that they spent £4.5 million (as per Transfermarkt) very wisely back in 2014, in luring Jamaal Lascelles to St James’ Park from Nottingham Forest.
And while Forest earned a very tidy £4.5 million profit from the defender’s exit, and indeed secured him on loan straight after his permanent switch, their sale of the 24-year-old has paved the way for Lascelles to become a lynchpin at the North East giants.
Ultimately, the centre back had always been a very reliable and accomplished defender at Championship level during his time at the City Ground, coming up through the ranks at the East Midlands giants to go on and earn 65 appearances for the club, netting eight goals in the process.
And Newcastle clearly liked what they saw of the Englishman in spending £4.5 million on his services back in 2014, loaning him straight back to Forest for the 2014/15 season, before making him a key part of the squad the years after.
And what a decision that has turned out to be as Lascelles has comfortably become one of Newcastle’s most important and influential players in the last few years, captaining the side to the second tier title back in 2017, before leading by example last term in their run to tenth place under Benitez.
In fact, the Magpies backline is certainly stronger and more resilient with Lascelles at the heart of it, with the 24-year-old a tad unlucky not to have earned an England call-up in recent times such have been his efforts for Benitez’s side – and the North East heavyweights are going to need him to be at his best again this term if they are to pull away from the bottom three.
Thus, while it was a relatively low-key deal at the time, there is little doubting that Forest’s sale of the centre back in 2014 has paved the way for a Newcastle lynchpin to emerge, one Magpies fans hope will lead their backline for many years to come.
Newcastle and Forest fans… what do you think? Let us know!
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