Newcastle United supporters have been downbeat in the Transfer Tavern this week after seeing their side lose 1-0 to Burnley on Monday night, thus suffering a fourth Premier League defeat of the campaign.
Rafa Benitez’s men went into their clash at Turf Moor off the back of a three-match unbeaten run in the league, having drawn against Liverpool and Southampton before edging Crystal Palace 1-0 in their preceding game. Yet they were unable to record back-to-back victories as a Jeff Hendrick strike 16 minutes from time secured a narrow success for Sean Dyche’s side, who in turn moved above the North East giants into seventh place in the Premier League table.
Thus, several of our resident Newcastle fans have been despondent this week and are trying to forget about Monday’s clash, with many already turning their attentions to Saturday’s crucial encounter against Eddie Howe’s Burnley at St James’ Park.
Yet Monday’s disappointing showing at Burnley did highlight that further reinforcements may be needed at Newcastle in January, and one man they must look to land is Manchester United outcast Luke Shaw, having been reportedly interested in the defender earlier this year.
The England international has struggled to make a meaningful impact under Jose Mourinho and as such has been restricted to just two appearances in all competitions this season, both of which coming in their Carabao Cup campaign.
And with a World Cup on the horizon, the 22-year-old will surely be on the lookout for more regular first team football in the second half of the campaign, and that’s why Newcastle must launch an audacious move for the £16.2 million-rated ace (as per Transfermarkt) in January.
Ultimately, the Magpies are struggling somewhat in the left-back department this season given Paul Dummett’s injury in the first game of the campaign, which has since seen centre-back Chancel Mbemba and right-back Javier Manquillo deputise in that position, to varying degrees of success.
And although Newcastle have defensively been reasonably solid so far this term, having conceded just nine goals in ten games, adding a player of the calibre of Shaw would significantly bolster their options, as the 22-year-old is an asset both defensively and going forward.
He has shown glimpses of his Southampton days since moving to Manchester United back in 2014, but needs a run of games to consistently get back to that level, a level which also propelled him into the England reckoning with four caps in 2014 – it looked for all the world that he was going to be the Three Lions’ next long-term left-back.
And Newcastle will be able to offer him that gametime, as there’s little doubt that a fully fit and firing Shaw is a better option than the current left-backs at Benitez’s disposal, and the prospect of a World Cup with England is likely to bring the best out of him.
Shaw has featured just once for his country in the last two years but with Danny Rose only just working his way back to fitness, the chance is certainly there for the 22-year-old to stake a claim for a spot in Gareth Southgate’s squad – he’s arguably just as good if not better than the other options in that position when fit and confident.
But that fitness and confidence isn’t likely to come on the bench at Manchester United, and with Newcastle needing someone like Shaw and Shaw needing somewhere like Newcastle, it’s a move the Magpies must seek to make in January.
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