Newcastle United supporters in the Transfer Tavern are relishing the remainder of the summer transfer window, what with it looking increasingly likely that manager Rafa Benitez will remain at the club.
The Spaniard did a tremendous job in leading the Magpies to tenth place upon their return to the Premier League this season, this all despite being given very little financial backing from owner Mike Ashley and the club’s hierarchy. And that transfer policy has been a source of frustration for Benitez in recent times, to the point that many of our resident Newcastle fans were concerned when the West Ham job came up at the start of the month, what with the Magpies chief one of the Hammers’ main targets.
However, they have since appointed Manuel Pellegrini to suggest that Benitez is set to stay at St James’ Park, and there could be more good news to follow if recent reports linking Newcastle with a move for Ryan Fredericks are anything to go by.
And that’s because the summer addition of the £3.6 million-rated ace (as per Transfermarkt) would without doubt enhance Newcastle’s European hopes in the Premier League next season.
Ultimately, while the Magpies deserve great credit for their efforts this season, it’s clear from their limitations over the course of the campaign that signings are needed this summer to take the club forward next season, and perhaps into European contention.
And one area of the squad many in the Tavern feel is lacking in sufficient quality and depth are the full backs areas, as although DeAndre Yedlin has performed solidly at right back, there have been many unconvincing moments as well.
And for Benitez’s side to move to the next level next term, those inconsistencies need eradicating – Fredericks’ arrival would do just that.
Clearly, the 25-year-old has been one of the best full backs outside of the Premier League in the last few seasons, with the Englishman playing a key part in helping Fulham win promotion this term with nine assists in 47 Championship appearances, including three in the play-offs.
Add in his five assists for Slavisa Jokanovic’s side last term in their run to the play-off semi-finals, and Fredericks continues to consistently produce the goods for the Cottagers – the sort of consistency that Newcastle will be striving for next season.
And with pace to burn as well as genuine defensive discipline, the 25-year-old appears to be an upgrade on Magpies defender Yedlin, and as such would improve the first team at St James’ Park heading into the new season.
And any improvements to the starting eleven will only seek to help Newcastle make strides in the Premier League next season, and given they finished just ten points adrift of seventh place Burnley this time round, European football is very much a genuine target.
As such, the addition of Fredericks this summer to Benitez’s squad would certainly enhance their European hopes in the 2018/19 season.
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