As he points out, Southampton spent £13m over the summer on a reserve goalkeeper – yet we refused to spend over £10m on a striker; something which sums up the gap between us and so many other ambitious Premier League sides.
Here’s what he said when speaking to Coral today:
“The problem that Rafa and Newcastle have got, is that he is shopping in Aldi,”
“Where other teams in and around him – Southampton spent £13m on a reserve goalkeeper – Newcastle have spent £10m on a centre-forward.
“That is the problem that Newcastle United have got; we still go back to Michael Owen who is the record transfer from 2005-06.
“When you look at the market in which Newcastle are competing against, that’s the other football clubs whether that’s Brighton, Bournemouth, Southampton, or Fulham – who spent over a £100m, Newcastle are actually making £125m and not spending that in the summer.
“That is why it is so very difficult for Rafa and Newcastle United – he is not the problem at Newcastle United and I think most people understand that.”
He’s hit the nail on the head here – and the mention of how much our rivals spent on a back up goalkeeper compared to how much we spent on our new striker proves that.
As Alan says, the likes of Fulham are spending £100m, yet Ashley is pocketing our cash, hoping instead that Benitez can keep us up on the bare minimum.
Some fans may have to be careful what they wish for. It may not be fun to watch at the minute, but I’m quite certain any potential replacement would be doing worse than Rafa with this group of players.
As he’s proven in the past two years, if there’s anyone who can stop the rot, stay calm and turn things around, it’s Rafa – but a bit of help from Ashley may be needed in January.