With it being revealed by Rafa last night that Florian Lejeune has done his cruciate knee ligaments, Newcastle will now be in the market for ANOTHER centre-back – and the man Benitez could turn to could well be Swansea skipper Federico Fernandez.
The Argentinian international was strong linked with a move to Newcastle just last week (prior to Fabian Schar’s arrival) and has been once again this morning, with Alan Nixon claiming that Benitez now wants him on loan – with him set to be without Lejeune for at least 6 months.
Benitez will have several options, but a move for Fernandez could tick quite a few boxes and looks very likely to me. Here’s why:
- He was named as one of three centre-backs Benitez was deciding between prior to Schar’s signing
- It’s reported that he could be available on loan after Swansea’s relegation – and a temporary deal would suit us down to the ground while Lejeune’s out.
- He’s a captain and has Premier League experience (over 100 games for Swansea) – and Lejeune’s replacement needs to have that to be able to settle in quickly (this is the main reasons a move for free agent Diego Reyes seems unlikely and too risky?)
- Benitez will know him very well, having worked with him at Napoli prior to his Swansea move in 2014.
#nufc now believed to be looking for ANOTHER centre-back after Lejeune injury.
— Lee Ryder (@lee_ryder) July 28, 2018
It’s a hunch I get partly based on the reports linking us with him and partly based on the fact it would just make sense in our current position.
We may have Lascelles, Clark, new boy Fabian Schar and Paul Dummett who can operate in the middle, but a centre-back is needed after Lejeune’s injury and it really wouldn’t surprise me if Federico Fernandez is the man Rafa now turns to..