Benitez now trying to sign defensive duo for just £9m – Brilliant business but fans aren’t happy

With Mbemba finally set to sign for Porto, it’s emerged today that Rafa Benitez is trying to tie up deals to sign Swiss centre-back Fabian Schar and Bristol City left-back Joe Bryan.

The Chronicle have confirmed our interest in Schar – who has a release clause of just £3m – and Alan Nixon claims that Rafa’s also pursuing a £6m deal to sign Bryan, with Benitez in desperate need of competition for Paul Dummett.

What’s disappointing and slightly baffling are the responses I’ve read from several NUFC fans reacting to the prospect of these two deals.

Don’t get me wrong, our approach this summer is uninspiring and more financial clout MUST be shown if we wish to sign a proven striker, but £6m and £3m deals for Bryan and Schar is anything but bad business.

Yes Rafa’s clearly being forced to fish out some real bargains, but both are worth much more. People would probably be raving about them if it was £16m and £13m?

Schar is 26, a Swiss international and a dead ball specialist who’s played over 30 times at Champions League level, whilst the 24-year-old Bryan is rated as one of the best left-back’s in the Championship – only being available on the cheap due to his contract at Bristol running into its final year.

They’re two very capable players, but it seems quite a few NUFC fans have presumed they’re ‘not good enough’ due to their availability on the cheap.

Here’s some of the responses I’ve on social media since news of Rafa’s interest in both today:

“Getting excited about a bloke worth 3 mil??!”

“Another relegated player and at 3m. Our ambition has no bounds..”

“Wow 3 million. Sure Leicester spent 5 times that amount on a reserve goalkeeper”

“We deserve better than this. We should be smashing our transfer record. Signing championship players and relegated players will just have us treading water in mid table again”

“I’ve never heard of him.”

“Championship player and relegated player – no thanks”


“Its embarrassing, we are doing business like a team in League 1. At this rate the Mackems will out spend us under Ashleys blueprint”

There’s a few fans (see below) who seem to see the sense in both deals – regardless of how ‘cheap’ they seem – however too many are presuming their price tag reflects their ability.

With funds clearly so limited Benitez will be making every penny count. A striker and number 10 will be costly, so if that means signing defensive cover on the cheap then so be it – especially if we can get two very handy players for less than £10m combined!

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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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