Following another uninspiring and unambitious summer transfer window, Newcastle have desperately struggled in the early stages of the season as familiar problems continue to persist at the club.
Rafa Benitez was widely hailed last season for masterminding Newcastle’s survival bid, but with just two points on the board from eight fixtures it seems that the enormity of the task before him is even greater than the one he tackled so successfully last season.
One problem which plagued the Magpies for the majority of the previous campaign was their lack of potency in the final-third – a return of six goals from eight league fixtures this season would suggest that finding the back of the net remains a detrimental issue.
Kenedy’s mid-season arrival injected a level of creativity and guile into Newcastle’s attack which ultimately instigated widespread improvement throughout the squad, so a similar injection of fresh ideas could represent the difference between survival and relegation once again this season.
With that in mind, Rafa Benitez should be keeping tabs on Samir Nasri’s situation as a recent report from the Daily Mail suggests that Everton are interested in signing him on a free transfer when his drug ban comes to an end next month.
It’s certainly an eyebrow-raising story considering Nasri hasn’t played in the Premier League since the end of the 2015/16 season and his controversial history, but he is a match-winner of raw talent who the Toffees are wise to put under consideration.
However, Newcastle should not be allowing Everton to have it all their own way in the transfer market as Nasri’s touch of class would transform their creativity in the final-third.
Although Ayoze Perez has demonstrated a notable improvement in 2018, his lack of competition is a genuine concern for Newcastle and he would certainly benefit from Nasri’s presence in the squad.
With the ability to operate in a variety of attacking positions and a proven record in the Premier League with 36 goals and 42 assists from 215 appearances, Nasri could be the man to emulate Kenedy’s success from last season and fire the north east giants to safety once again.
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