Newcastle have been very active in France in recent months and it looks as though a lot of our transfer activity will be focussed on the continent. Graham Carr and Pardew himself have both been frequent visitors to various game across the continent so I’d like to think that all of this legwork will pay off in the end.
With that in mind, Pardew has given us a brief update on transfer activity and potential contract talks via The Northern Echo.
“I can report there is nothing imminent in terms of contract talks. In terms of transfers, it’s gone ok so far. We’ve got a good handle on the players who are going to become available and I like to think we’re definitely in a better position than last year,” said Pardew.
He continued: “Forget about the finance, just in terms of the preparation work we have put in – we know the players who are going to be available. We’ve got more information, we’re better off than last year. It’s all our scouting team and our coaching team, who feed into Graham Carr and ultimately to me. I then go to Derek Llambias and ask for the financial side of the deal and whether it is going to work.”
The involvement of Derek Llambias doesn’t fill me with confidence. We saw recently how out of touch he is when he criticised the fans for making their feelings about Andy Carroll known at Anfield. According to him it was “just one of things that happen”. He just doesn’t get it.
In my mind he is one of the main causes of the division between fan and boardroom. Ashley may take the flak and the chants for it, rightly as he was his appointment, but it’s Llambias who is in charge of the day to day running of the club. I just hope that Llambias can deliver the goods this time, and by the sounds of it, so does Pardew.
“You can target good players, but unless you can pay for them, there is no point,” Pardew explained. “We have to get that part right as well. There is better value abroad, our market is over-priced. Are they more talented? In some cases.”
“You have to decide whether you want to enter the market here or abroad, but it depends on the players more than anything. You want a round peg for a round hole.”
I think, in light of all this plus a few other things like the double-rebuff from Kevin Gameiro and Gervinho, that this summer is going to be a most frustrating affair. It’s not going to be as cut and dry as it should be, but I’m not too fussed about that as long as, in the end, we have a stronger squad and team to show for it.
It could take a while yet though, and it’s not going to happen straight away by the sounds of it. « Who has been YOUR player of the season? | Chelsea v Newcastle – Premier League match preview. »