Newcastle United have made a slow start to the summer transfer window, largely due to the uncertainty over the future of the manager and the ownership of the club.
No one knows who is going to be in charge at St James’ Park, at boardroom level or on the training ground, and so the Magpies obviously can’t move on any transfer deals with much certainty.
It came as no surprise earlier this month, then, when TEAMtalk reported that the Magpies were one of eight teams beaten to Wigan Athletic star Nick Powell’s signature by Championship side Stoke City.
However, there are unlikely to be too many fans on Tyneside shedding a tear over this transfer blow. The 25-year-old is out of contract at the DW Stadium this summer, and it seems that he’s headed to the Britannia Stadium.
The former Manchester United flop likely wouldn’t have been much of a difference-maker for Newcastle, anyway. He scored eight goals from an attacking midfield position in the second tier this season, but can you really see him beating out the competition for a starting berth in the north east?
The likes of Ayoze Perez, Miguel Almiron, Matt Ritchie and Christian Atsu are all in situ at St James’ and would likely all be preferred to the Englishman were he to make the move to the Magpies.
Powell, although he’d be a free signing, would likely be too much of a risk for Newcastle. There are serious doubts over whether he could make the step up to Premier League level, whereas Rafael Benitez’s team need proven top flight quality if they are to progress.
So, as far as Newcastle’s supporters are concerned, the Potters will be welcome to Powell. The Championship is his level; the Magpies can do better.