Federico Fernandez has signed a new contract to stay at Newcastle United.
The Magpies confirmed the news on Wednesday afternoon, as well as announcing extensions for Jacob Murphy, Dwight Gayle, Paul Dummett and Fabian Schar.
It was very late, but Newcastle have finally announced their retained list.
Andy Carroll is conspicuous by his absence, suggesting his second spell with the club is over. The striker is yet to be pictured as the players return for pre-season.
However, there has been no official confirmation about Carroll’s possible departure.
It’s been a quiet summer so far for Newcastle, where the most communication has come from the club shouting at the Premier League.
We’ve heard more from Amanda Staveley, the woman who wants to own Newcastle United.
The club’s transfer activity has been basically non-existent, with just three youth arrivals in the shape of Remi Savage, Charlie Wiggett and Cameron Ferguson.
But Newcastle’s best bit of business is keeping Fernandez.
New contract for Federico Fernandez is fantastic news
Fernandez was a Rafa Benitez signing, joining the club in 2018 from Swansea.
He signed a two-year deal, then agreed an extra year’s extension in 2020.
But this summer he was very close to leaving. There was a real fear that his time at Newcastle United could be over.
His contract was expiring, and at 32-years-old he could feasibly have been allowed to leave the club as he entered his twilight years.
Newcastle have a plethora of centre-backs, while Steve Bruce still wants increase his defensive options.
But keeping Fernandez at the club is sensible business. Right now, it’s the best bit of business we’ve done all summer.
Even at 32, Fernandez has a lot to offer. He never lets Newcastle down, putting his body on the line for the black and white stripes.
He’s a leader on the pitch, often wearing the captain’s armband in the absence of Jamaal Lascelles and Jonjo Shelvey.
His ability to speak Spanish also makes him a pivotal member of the squad for those who don’t speak English.
In moments of chaos, he is calm at the back. It’s very rare that you see a mistake from the Argentinian defender.
His experience is invaluable. And in a summer where spending could be limited, keeping Fernandez at St James’ Park is a brilliant decision.