Newcastle United are still without a director of football.

Following the appointment of Eddie Howe and the departure of Lee Charnley, it seemed like the next step would be choosing a sporting director.

Reports emerged earlier in the month that ex-Chelsea chief Michael Emenalo is the favourite for the role. He’s even travelled to Saudi Arabia and met with PIF.

However, progress appears to have stalled. And the Athletic have provided a somewhat worrying update on the situation.

The Athletic have provided an update on Newcastle's sporting director search.
(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)


Newcastle director of football decision might be delayed

They report that Newcastle may wait until after the January transfer window to make a final decision on a director of football.

That would leave the January dealings in the hands of Amanda Staveley and the club’s head of recruitment Steve Nickson.

The Athletic add that the delay has nothing to do with the candidates. Rather, the club want to take their time to ensure they get the right person for the job.

Emenalo is still being linked, and he reportedly already has a plan for the January transfer window and beyond. The 56-year-old is ready to join the club immediately.

Michael Emenalo is the favourite to become Newcastle United's director of football.
(Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

A calculated risk worth taking?

The January transfer window is going to be absolutely crucial to Newcastle’s hopes of survival.

The squad desperately needs reinforcements, and it could be the difference between staying up or going down.

So is delaying the director of football decision a risk that is worth taking?

The new owners have already proven that they will take their time to ensure they get things right. But could the pace of proceedings actually jeopardise Newcastle’s top flight status?

Failing to get the right players in in January could seriously hinder our survival efforts. And relegation to the Championship would set the PIF project back at least 12 months.

The new Newcastle owners are under huge pressure.
(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

The longer we continue to struggle, the more pressure there is on the January transfer window.

This is another example of the timing of the takeover hurting the new owners’ ambitions early on. They need to make big changes immediately, but they also want to take their time to ensure they don’t make any major mistakes.

If Emenalo is the right man for the job then they need to get him in now. But if PIF have eyes on someone else then the wait must continue.

It’s an incredibly difficult situation, such is the mess that Mike Ashley left us in.

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