Newcastle United supporters have been in fine voice in the Transfer Tavern in the last few days after seeing their side take a massive step closer to Premier League safety courtesy of a 1-0 success over Huddersfield Town on Saturday.
Rafa Benitez’s men went into their clash with the Terriers at St James’ Park having won two and drawn three of their preceding six league games, a run of form which moved them four points clear of the relegation zone. And the Magpies put even further distance between themselves and the bottom three at the weekend as an Ayoze Perez strike ten minutes from time secured all three points against David Wagner’s side, thus moving the North East giants up to 12th place in the Premier League table and seven points clear of danger.
Subsequently, there have been many thrilled Newcastle fans in the Tavern this week, several of whom are hoping that their side can maintain their fine recent run of form between now and the end of the season, and thus preserve their top-flight status.
Yet many of our resident Magpies supporters are already looking ahead to the summer and what business their side might do to move to the next level next season, with several of the opinion that their club must seek to land wantaway Southampton ace Manolo Gabbiadini during the close season.
Ultimately, the Italy international has struggled for the Saints this season in netting only four Premier League goals in 26 appearances for the South Coast outfit, just one goal of which coming in 2018.
However, the 26-year-old has been afforded just 11 starts in the league this term to further underline his difficulties, but it cannot be forgotten that the Italian made an incredible start to life at St Mary’s back in January last year.
Gabbiadini bagged a stunning six goals in his first four games for Southampton to emphasise his quality and indeed suggest that he could succeed in English football, netting in victories over Sunderland and Watford, and indeed twice in their 3-2 EFL Cup final defeat to Manchester United.
And in a Newcastle team seriously struggling for goals this term, having netted just 31 from their 31 Premier League games, he could flourish.
Dwight Gayle is without doubt the best finisher at St James’ Park but isn’t necessarily the all round forward Benitez is after, hence he has sparingly been used as the lone striker this season, while Joselu has more of an all round game than the Englishman, but simply doesn’t get the goals required.
And with Aleksandar Mitrovic’s future far from certain, and Islam Slimani mustering just 15 minutes of action since his loan move in January, the striking ranks are sure to be bolstered over the summer – Gabbiadini’s arrival would do just that.
A decent finisher, a strong presence upfront, and a good hold-up player, the 26-year-old would provide a more all round option than Gayle but someone more prolific in front of goal than Joselu.
As such, the Magpies simply must seek to land the Southampton star if the Saints go down this season.
Newcastle fans… what do you think? Let us know!
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