One of the most pleasing aspects of post-takeover Newcastle United has been their recruitment.
While many would have expected PIF to plough millions into faded superstars and focus on celebrity over coherent squad planning, that has just not been the case at all.
Now, clearly, money has been spent but it is how far it has gone thus far that is so impressive. Bruno Guimaraes, Sven Botman and Alexander Isak have all hit the ground running and represent long-term investments, while Kieran Trippier has offered crucial experience.
So then, it’s disappointing to see Newcastle still labelled as simply a club to go to for the money.
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Indeed, Chelsea forward Christian Pulisic has often been linked with a move to St James’ Park in recent windows, with comments from Fabrizio Romano made in February suggesting the Blues would look for around £35m.
The American is struggling for much in the way of regular game time at Stamford Bridge and, at 24 but hugely experienced at the top level, would seem like a logical addition for a Newcastle team struggling for goals.
Still, the former Borussia Dortmund youngster has been urged to avoid making any move to Tyneside.
Speaking to The Action Network’s Wondergoal Podcast, USMNT legend and current pundit Eric Wynalda gave his views on the links.
“Newcastle would be about the money. A move back to Germany would be about familiarity,” he said.
“Milan would be about the story – Real Madrid would be about the perception.
“Either way, his new club will make most of the transfer money back in shirt sales. Just don’t ask for the Number 10 this time.”
Lazy view of Newcastle
Of course, money helps attract players to the club, there is simply no doubt about that.
However, to suggest joining a team on the up with major plans to challenge for trophies in the years to come is solely about the financial reward is, frankly, a lazy view of the landscape.
Little about the arrivals so far would suggest they are simply looking for a pay day.