I’m interested to see some of the local journalists running stories on various lists of Newcastle United players.
The common question being asked is whether the club should try and ‘cash in’ on these players.
Most of the names mentioned are very similar on the various lists and are the Newcastle United players who tend to stand no chance of getting a game, even in the current circumstances.
With no takeover happening, certainly not in the foreseeable, the theory goes that Newcastle ‘cashing in’ on these players will add some cash to the transfer kitty provided by Mike Ashley, which some journalists have claimed will be around £30m to £35m, but many fans wouldn’t be surprised to see it proving to be nearer to zero.
Earlier this week I looked at the Newcastle United squad and gave my opinion on which of the current 28 contracted players I saw as being of the quality to be first choice next season, then those who are PL back-up level (in my opinion), then the rest who ideally needed to move on.
I thought I would repeat the exercise on these 28 players but in terms of estimated transfer value in today’s transfer market, feel free to disagree:
£30m (or more possibly / probably) – Saint-Maximim
£20m – Almiron, Lascelles
£15m – Dubravka, Shelvey
£10m – Hayden, Gayle, Joelinton
£8m – Schar, Lejeune, Woodman, Sean Longstaff
£4m – Fernandez, Manquillo, Dummett
£2m – Clark, Darlow, Gillespie, Yedlin, Murphy
The remaining players (as well as Yedlin and Murphy) are the ones who the newspapers are generally talking about Newcastle ‘cashing in’ on – Krafth, Lazaar, Aarons, Atsu, Saivet and Muto (Carroll also has no transfer value for me if we did want to sell him).
The reality is that none of those in the last list could be ‘cashed in’ on, instead you are talking about Newcastle spending money to move them on. To get them new clubs, NUFC would have to pay off or subsidise their wages to get them off the books, rather than adding money to any transfer kitty.
Newcastle United due to a lack of proper investment for years and the disastrous decision by Mike Ashley to force out Rafa Benitez, have ended up in a very difficult situation of having an ageing squad that lacks quality in many positions and / or strength in depth.
When looking at the problems the squad has and the value of players as I have suggested above, you also have to take into consideration that amazingly, exactly half (14) or the 28 players currently in the squad, have only one year left on their contracts – Clark, Schar, Gayle, Hayden, Fernandez, Yedlin, Darlow, Atsu, Carroll, Aarons, Lazaar, Saivet, Murphy, Woodman.
Whilst this may be a relief that the likes of Saivet, Lazaar, Aarons and others have 11 months left at most, it lowers the values for players such as Hayden, Schar, Gayle and Woodman, plus puts the club in a difficult position potentially, such as refusing to sign a new contract and aiming to leave for nothing next summer.
With the suggested values above, I think that for example Dubravka is worth more than £15m and Hayden more than £10m but I don’t think other clubs will necessarily see that. Which is a good thing, especially in the case of Dubravka!
Bottom line is that ASM is our only really big asset, Almiron and Lascelles would probably go for decent prices, then you have the likes of Dubravka and Shelvey, no doubt the midfielder would always have some clubs prepared to give him a try.
After that you don’t really have any great saleable assets.
The likes of Schar and Lejeune have had injury issues and I would guess aren’t as highly rated as Newcastle fans see them by other clubs, on what they have achieved in the Premier League so far.
Sean Longstaff is still potential and has had injury issues, I think a few clubs would still pay £10m for Gayle who shortly turns 30, BUT zero point Newcastle selling him when that would leave us with Joelinton, Muto and Carroll who struggle to muster any goal threat at all between them!