Club legend Alan Shearer has called our transfer business “encouraging” and believes Callum Wilson can get the goals to help us avoid a relegation battle this season.
Our record goal scorer was talking to BBC Sport on the eve of the Premier League’s opening weekend and spoke about his former club and their hopes for the campaign ahead.
Here is what Shearer said in full:
“As for my old team Newcastle, well we are not going to be in the mix for the Champions League places but there have been some signs that things are possibly on the up at last.
“The signings that Steve Bruce has made so far are definitely encouraging – we desperately needed a goalscorer but buying Callum Wilson has covered that off.
“He is a player I think highly of and he is capable of scoring the goals to keep us out of another relegation battle.
“Our top league scorer last season was a midfielder, Jonjo Shelvey, with six goals so it was pretty obvious that our attack was somewhere we needed to improve.
“Ryan Fraser will help in that area too.
“Callum is 28 and a proven Premier League goalscorer – he was valued at around £30-40m a few years ago but Newcastle have got him for £20m, which is a steal.
“If he hits form he might just get back in the England squad too – I hope so anyway.
“He contacted me before he joined to ask about the club and the area.
“As you can imagine, I was very positive about it all.
“In fact, I would have given him a lift up to St James’ Park to sign his contract, if he’d wanted one!”
Wilson admitted that he reached out to Shearer before finalising a move to the North-East and big Al’s comments here confirm that to be true – which shows just how desperate we were to bring a striker through the door!
Surprisingly, there is an air of optimism ahead of the new season due to our recent transfer dealings after a frustrating summer that left supporters feeling disenfranchised because of the takeover saga.
Judging on last season’s finish and the activity we have made in the window, we should be trying to get as close to that top 10 as we possibly can but it will be tough.
There are now seven or eight quality clubs in the Premier League’s top half all challenging for the same position – so I think as long as we aren’t struggling to survive our supporters will be happy.