If The Telegraph’s Luke Edwards is to be believed, Newcastle had the chance to sign Alex Tuanzebe earlier this month – but ‘couldn’t afford’ to pay the loan fee Man Utd were demanding.
The centre-back ended up sealing a move to Aston Villa, however North-East reporter Luke Edwards claims that a move to Tyneside was Tuanzebe’s preference for the sake of game time.
He hasn’t started either of Villa’s opening two Premier League matches and will do well to get in their starting 11 ahead of club captain Tyron Mings and highly-rated Ezri Konsa, making many wonder why he opted to join Bruce’s old club instead.
However, The Telegraph state that we weren’t able to afford the alleged £5m package – which presumably included his wages for the season and a loan fee for his services.
After a recent rich list revealed that our disgraced owner gained a whopping £769m over the last 12 months, I’m pretty sure we could’ve made this one happen. Instead, it seems the powers that be opted against it and allowed this one to slip away.
Bruce will tell us that everyone’s been hit hard by Covid as Mike Ashley hides behind the pandemic, yet finances released over the past few weeks suggest we got away with it lightly compared to some Premier League clubs – who’ve ironically gone on to spend considerably more than ourselves this summer!
Getting rid of Carroll, Atsu, Lejeune, Saivet and Muto will have cut well over £150,000 per week off the wage bill. Issues may exist around cutting down our 25-man squad to make room, but we’ve been crying out for an athletic centre-back for a few seasons now and it seems a very decent one was keen to sign.
Yet, in true Mike Ashley style, it seems we’ve been happy to scrape by with the bare minimum, leaving our squad slightly weaker than it was at the end of the 2020/21 season.