Sell before buying – Is it the right transfer policy?

Cabaye - An imporvement on Kevin Nolan?
Some may call this transfer window one of the worst in recent years with the Joey Barton saga coming to a head and the sale of our former captain Kevin Nolan to West Ham. However the business that has been conducted shows how the club could be trying to run itself as Mike Ashley suggests.

The signing of Yohan Cabaye was confirmed by the player himself after his last game for Lille. Many were surprised at how Newcastle were able to sign a player who had been previously linked with the likes of Arsenal and other big Champions League clubs, but a loophole was exploited in Cabaye’s contract at Lille that would allow us to pay in the region of £4 million for his services. During this time news was announced that Kevin Nolan was off to join Big Sam at Championship outfit West Ham. The fee apparently agreed between the two clubs was said to be around the £4 million mark and above.

Effectively the money that West Ham paid us for his Nolan may have then been used in order to pay Lille for Cabaye. That is a good way to conduct our business, use the money of the outgoing players in order to bring new ones in. It meant that the club were actually replacing Nolan straight away with a player who is much younger and looks set to be a very exciting prospect for the coming season.

There was further evidence of this perhaps with Wayne Routledge’s move to Swansea and Gabriel Obertan’s move from Manchester Unted to the Toon. Pardew commented that he had been in contact with Sir Alex for a while over the availability of the Clarefontaine graduate and stated that when Routledge was sold they knew it was now possible for Obertan to make his way over to the North-East.

In my opinion this was a very shrewd piece of business by the club. We were getting rid of one the players who frustrated many fans with his ability and crosses and, for just £1 million more than received from Swansea, we have been able to bring in someone who is of a higher quality.


The club does seem to be running itself with the evidence of these signings and I think even the free signings we have brought in add to the squad, although that may not be what some fans may be happy with. Many would like us to see us bring in a lot more players than we have.

Whilst watching Sky Sports News yesterday showing Obertan at Newcastle, the guy who handles the transfer TV thing, showed that there was only one or two clubs who had brought in more players than us. That speaks volumes for the way that Alan Pardew has been working during this transfer period. He has snapped up players who have been out of contract for absolutely nothing so that they add depth to our squad and he has also brought players in as soon as someone has left.

It has been a frustrating period for our manager in some ways; two of our top striking targets did not want to come to the club which must have knocked him back but I’m sure he will be working very hard to bring a striker in before the end of the window.

If the club is using this policy then it does work in some cases and in some cases it might not work. We have been replacing players who are surplus to requirements with players who are of a better quality so that the squad makeup is better than it is before. You can also argue that Dan Gosling and Hatem Ben Arfa will be like new signings when they play for us as we saw so little of them last year and they too have the chance to make an impact this year.

I have nothing against this policy, it makes sense to get rid of players who we don’t want and replace them with players who are hungry for action and are actually of a higher quality. It may leave the club in the best position financially as it means we aren’t over spending on players who are flops.

Do you think this a good policy or would you like to see something different?

About Zoë Vicarage

A lifelong Newcastle fan. Currently exiled in Sunderland studying Sports Journalism at the University of Sunderland Follow me on Twitter: @ZoeVicarage

138 thoughts on “Sell before buying – Is it the right transfer policy?

  1. MM theres a few toast there mate,if they have two or three opening bad results i say wenger will walk imo,wonder what odds are batty will know 😉

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  2. Fcking ridiculous way to run a club!

    What if you miss a target due to struggling to sell a player?

    The only reason we still got Obertan is cos he’s shite and nobody else wanted him.

    God only knows where we’d have been if we hadn’t have sold Carroll if we have to sell to buy even now. Doesn’t bare thinking about really.

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  3. Irish – Leeds want Smith but we’re pricing them out of it. I say cut him loose, despite his efforts in the Championship, he’s lost his way in the top flight. We’re playing hard ball on both fronts, which is all well and good if you’re skint, but we’re not. We’re really not skint. Let’s not go overboard on the frugality, eh? There’s a whole football season to get through, let’s make it worth watching.

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  4. I’ll be very annoyed if it’s postponed but maybe Arse will be tired after playing Udinese on Tuesday (and their squad will still be falling apart) 😀

    And more time for the lads to train together…

    Really really hope it’s Saturday though!! Got my mate coming up to watch in the pub 😀

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  5. Agree bowburn, we need to just accept that nobody really wants to spend money on Smith, but it would be worth it just to get rid of the man’s useless wages. If we can get rid of Smith, that is more wage room for a striker, or just plain room for another defender.

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  6. BBM i beg to differ, they want to loan him but won’t even pay 1/3 of his wages, i wouldn’t call that pricing them out

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  7. Don’t understand why the game would be postponed…it’s in Newcastle for fooks sake or are they rioting up there as well?

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  8. Newcastle have already told Smith he can leave for free but Leeds can’t afford Smith’s wages. they want a loan dela with us paying most of his wages- like we did for xisco last year

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  9. Cabaye just came on for Nasri. Playing the final 20 minutes or so. Would love to see a goal or an assist from him leading up to this Arsenal game.

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  10. Good post. I am a West Ham fan and can’t believe you forgot to mention Demba Ba. He is a fantastic signing and will be a huge success at Newcastle. Just wish we had got something for him. Huge respect for Pardew so good luck this season and don’t forget… Carlton Cole is still available!!!!!

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  11. We have to move on a few players to clear up some space in the 25man squad.

    we only have 6 defenders one less than last year. Sol Campell has not been replaced.. We need 8 defenders. Pieters can only come in as Enriques replacement, not as competition and we need another centreback.

    We now have 10 midfielders, Cabaye, Marveaux & Oberton replacing Nolan & Routledge. Happy with 10 midfielders if we are playing 4-2-3-1

    We have 5 strikers as Ba has come in. Carrol as an U21 was not listed. We are looking to bring in another striker to fill the 25th place. If we have the 8 defenders we need we only have room for 4 strikers so we need to let 2 go. Xisco & either Best or Lovenkrands.

    So we must find a way of moving on some of the players we probably won’t use. Unfortunately I don’t think this will happen now, but I hope we can move them on in January.

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  12. I’m hearing we’re asking for a fee, so they want a loan, that’s where the wages thing comes in. But it’s difficult to know the true story. I get the impression we’ll be squeezing every penny out deals after putting Barton up for free.

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  13. Funny how everyone is all of a sudden an expert on Obertan. People claiming he is “sh*te”, or he is “amazing” are just highlighting how little they really know about the player.

    He has started seven games and featured in a grand total of 21 since arriving at Man United two years ago. I strongly doubt anyone on here has watched him any more than 5 or 6 times in total, so how can you justify such fanatical statements?

    It is truly ridiculous. He is in a completely different environment and nobody knows how amazing or sh*te he’ll be. The fact that Man United fans are split on him indicates that he has probably been neither.

    Let’s just wait and see, shall we?

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  14. Pre, thanks for spelling everything out there. We really do need to move on some strikers and strengthen our defense. Even the reserves are light on defenders as airey has to play RB in his last match. Some definite worries, but I still have a lot of confident hope.

    Anyone know why we turned down the chance to re-sign bassong from spurs?

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  15. Smith’s showing his true colours by staying. He knows he’s not good enough but still wants to stay. What does that tell you?

    Maybe when the big earners are off the books Ashley might start spending some money? Dont make me laugh!

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  16. Think it’s more than that ice.

    Been hearing he is away since last season but its picked up a bit of gravitas over last 24 hours

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  17. HUGE HUGE let off there guys.Cabaye was down in pain after a tackle and a stretcher came to take him off.But he came back on and has completed the 90 mins I guess. 👿

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  18. “Smith’s showing his true colours by staying. He knows he’s not good enough but still wants to stay. What does that tell you?”

    What do you expect? This is his career; Everyone would do the same, so please stop with the bare faced hypocrisy.

    (Smith) ‘Knock’ ‘Knock’… (Llambias) “Come in!” (Smith) “..Erm…Excuse me, Derek. I’m not earning my wages, can you please cut them so I can move elsewhere and earn less money”

    …Yes, fantasy stuff, isn’t it?

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  19. I’m hearing we’re asking for a fee, so they want a loan, that’s where the wages thing comes in. But it’s difficult to know the true story. I get the impression we’ll be squeezing every penny out deals after putting Barton up for free
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    Even if he left on a free Leeds would still owe him his wages, unless he agreed to reduce them. He seems content to wait it out until his deal is up next year. Fair enough for him.

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  20. Icedog – Yup mate,I watched the match but had some work to do,so switched off just for a couple of mins and Twitter started going haywire that Cabaye has been taken off in a stretcher.Switched back on and he was back on the pitch playing.Hope the incident wasnt too bad. 🙁

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  21. Not one for elaborate claims but I have it on pretty good authority that we have agreed a fee with Liverpool for Enrique and he too has agreed personal terms. The only think holding it up is that we wont sanction the deal until we have signed his replacement.

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  22. El Toro…I see what your saying but not much of a football career if your not playing or even close to playing.

    If it were me I’d take a pay cut for first team footy…but he knows he’ll not get the wages he’s on here thus he remains for the money not his career

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  23. Stuart79 @ 109-

    At this point, I’m fine with Enrique leaving, just to get the whole thing over with. I hope you’re right about us securing a replacement first, but I wouldn’t hold my breath. That wouldn’t exactly fall in line with Ashley’s M.O. Whatever ends up happening, I just pray that we’re not trotting Perch out on the left side of our defense on Saturday.

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  24. And speaking of Perch, is he not an option for us to sell? I know he was garbage for us last year, but there must be some Championship clubs that would take him. I know we’d rather lose Xisco and Smith, but I’d rate Gosling, Ferguson or even Gutierrez as better fullback options than Perch. If we need to free up a roster spot, Perch seems like a good candidate.

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  25. Witters

    The school boy error you’re making is relating your circumstances with Smith’s. He is an employee, not a fan.

    Even then, mindsets and ideologies often change when money is brought into the equation

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  26. Zoe cracking read Toonsy touched on this the other day but your’s is better 😀
    In an ideal world I want to sell my car before I go out and but another one because I dont want to be stuck with a car that I dont need or use, but in footie if you wait you run the risk of losing out and missing the player you want, which is the problem we face

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  27. Sirjasontoon

    August 10, 2011 at 18:31

    ‘Sell the Gold reserves buy scrap metal’

    Nolan was a piece of rusty metal against Cardiff though. :mrgreen:

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  28. At the moment I can identify 5 of our squad that I do not expect to play. and a 6th that has one year left that I don’t expect to extend. That leaves us 19 + the promised striker. That is actually not bad, not many teams will have 20 players they can rotate and cover injuries.

    2 of the 5 have 1 year left so they can be moved on in January, 2 have 2 years left and Perch has 3 years left.

    What I guess I am trying to say is although it’s frustrating that we don’t have the squad places to fill, the situation will evolve, and is not quite as desperate as it sometimes appears.

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  29. Question for you guys, which player do you think will give Pardew the most headaches this coming season?

    …I’m going with Gosling. I have been really impressed with his pre-season performances. Seems to have a lot to his all-round play. Pace, technical ability, tenacity, late runs into the box.

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  30. El Toro, I would go for Gosling too. I’ve been impressed with what he’s shown too, he certainly seems to suit a cm role

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  31. Gosling is obviously a good player and better than we perhaps initially thought. Everton fans said he was slow but he doesn’t look completely pedestrian. His energy levels are amazing by the looks of it, could be another gutierrez but with more end product IMO.

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  32. Richie I think he got that already cause I think he gave it to Ice as payment for his work, but apparently it only picks up the racing channels 😆
    I think Gosling could be a bright spark, Also I was tattooing a real staunch liverpool fan tonight and he seemed pretty upset that we got Marveaux he thinks he is a cracking player and cant understand how we got him instead of them 😀

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  33. El Toro…the point I was making is that a career & money are two different things.

    You stated it was his career so what do you expect. I’m saying he’s staying for the money not his career, his career is over. He’s obviously motived by that over & above actually playing football.

    And I didn’t relate my circumstances to Smith’s but as it happens I’ve taken pay cuts for jobs / contracts because it was better for me.

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  34. DJG the Toffee fans could be just suffering from sour grapes Like look how many fans were bumming and blowing about how good Tugboat was last year Super Kev, King Kev, Captain fantastic etc he was getting called, and now look at what he gets called from the same people 😆

    Batty whats the craic lad and I hear Ice isnt too pleased with that bookies tv he can only get the racing channels but I told him there was nowt else on at the time. But I must say that 60ins one you got us was well worth the money the wee lad thought it was brill playing his Xbox on it 😉

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  35. I think the Jonas vs. Marveux and Barton vs. Obertan will be interesting. That will give Pardew headaches for sure. We have really improved the midfield IMO. If we brought in some good fullbacks and a top striker I think we would be top 6 or 7 I really do.

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  36. BBB –

    You can’t really be gutted, can you? I was gutted in February when big nose first said it, but not now. We just need a replacement in quick.

    Witters –

    Fair enough, mate. Well, I can guarantee you one thing; Smith will move to a good side when his contract is up here. Maybe not Premiership, but at least Championship level. So one could argue that his career won’t really stagnate much from staying put for the moment.

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  37. ET what do you call a good side ?
    BBM I have already got my head round that so its not that big of shock to me, in a way I will be glad to get it over and done with, then we know where we are

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  38. Just read on news now that we are looking at derdiyok from leverkusen as our new striker and that stoke want gutti and Airey has been loaned to hibs for 6 months .

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  39. Axel we’ve been linked with derdiyok for a while, i think in the january transfer window his name was mentioned

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  40. Big Dave –

    A decent championship side, or above.

    Just seen the Chelsea have appointed a new European scout. Great stuff! Was afraid Carr was on their radar.

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  41. “Not one for elaborate claims but I have it on pretty good authority that we have agreed a fee with Liverpool for Enrique and he too has agreed personal terms. The only think holding it up is that we wont sanction the deal until we have signed his replacement”

    Obviously I have no idea whether the rumour is true or not.
    But if that bit about not sanctioning the deal til we have a replacement is true, at least it shows the muppets have learned something from the Carroll saga.

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  42. “If it were me I’d take a pay cut for first team footy…but he knows he’ll not get the wages he’s on here thus he remains for the money not his career”

    Possibly. But the fact remains he is approaching the end of his shelf life as a useful player. Perhaps he feels that getting the big pay days in now is more important as he wont be footballing for that much longer – which is a totally rational human response. Many people would look to secure their future when they start getting nearer the end of their careers. It’s unfortunate for us but totally understandable from his point of view.

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