Despite continuing interest from a number of Premier League clubs, the Shields Gazette reports that Rafa Benitez would be happy if Georginio Wijnaldum and Moussa Sissoko stayed at St James Park.
Speaking after the 6 – 0 over Bohemians in the latest pre-season tour match, Benitez said:
“Our idea is to keep these players, if it’s possible, but we know how football is now and the market and agents. Gini has trained really well, and I’m very happy with him.
And Moussa, I rate him very highly. He was very good for us at the end of the season and in the Euros.
We know what is going on. A lot of people will be asking for them, but, at the moment, we will see if they can stay and improve the team.
It not, we will find the best solution for the team.”
Everton are strongly fancied to bid for Wijnaldum and with Tottenham’s interest in the Dutch winger waning, seem favourites to sign him. Sissoko? Your guess is as good as mine with the club’s idea that £35m would deter buyers seeming to work.
Whether keeping uncommitted players is a good idea, remains to be seen but if Rafa can motivate them, they would be worth their weight in gold for next season’s promotion push.
Let’s hope this gets resolved quickly though, one way or another. We don’t need the transfer circus surrounding unsettled players as the season begins.