North-East reporter makes interesting claim as he confirms Rafa’s interest in 6ft 3′ defender

According to the Northern Echo, Rafa Benitez HAS shown an interest in bringing Martin Skrtel to St James’ Park after claims from Turkey yesterday that we were now in talks with Fenerbahce over his potential signing.

Interestingly, Paul Fraser’s story also states that Rafa Benitez is ‘under the impression’ that Mike Ashley WILL give him ‘a lot of what he’s asking for’ if and when he signs a new deal – although it may be foolish of the Spaniard to believe what comes out of his mouth.

Back to Skrtel. The 33-year-old was brought to England by Benitez way back in in January 2008 after signing the Slovakian for Liverpool, however it seems the Spaniard is keen to be reunited with the no nonsense centre-back 10 years on.

Here’s a snippet from the Echo’s latest piece:

“Rafa Benitez has shown an interest in former Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel and that has been followed by claims in Turkey that Fenerbahce are expecting a delegation from Newcastle to have talks this week.

“The 33-year-old does not fit the age bracket normally associated with Newcastle’s recruitment policy under Mike Ashley’s ownership, although Benitez is keen to add experience to his side for next season.

“Benitez is under the impression that Ashley will give him a lot of what he is asking for once he has committed his future to St James’ Park, as he approaches the final year of his contract.”

Quite a few fans have responded negatively to the idea of signing Skrtel, however I’m not so sure what the problem would be.

Yes he’s getting on and may be a little past his best, but he would bring some much needed experience into our ranks (almost 250 appearances in the Premier League), he’d cost very little, he’s a player Rafa will know every well (and also plays in the same national side as Dubravka) and he’d be seen as a replacement for Chancel Mbemba – with him edging closer to a permanent move back to Anderlecht.

As a third or fourth choice centre-back, I’d be happy to see him sign.

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About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

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