Newcastle United are keen on OGC Nice manager Patrick Vieira as a potential replacement for Rafael Benitez after impressing in talks held back in 2015, according to the Telegraph.
The newspaper claim on their website that the 43-year-old Frenchman, perhaps best known in England for his time in Arsenal’s midfield, stood out when the Magpies were interviewing for a new manager back in 2015, the club eventually appointing Steve McClaren, and that he has remained on the club’s radar since.
It is stated that while Vieira, who is joined by the likes of Steven Gerrard and Mikel Arteta at the front of the shortlist at St James’ Park, has no intention of leaving Ligue 1 side Nice, he would be open to Newcastle making an approach in order to discuss a potential move.
That aforementioned list shows everyone what they need to know about the Magpies’ approach to appointing Benitez’s successor. They appear to think that appointing a young candidate with a lack of managerial experience is the way to go and while it might seem a gamble, it could also be seen as showing ambition to reinvent the club. Of the trio, Vieira is the most experienced and you wonder where Newcastle would find themselves today if he had been appointed four years ago. McClaren was an unmitigated disaster at St James’ Park and it looks as though the Newcastle chiefs made the wrong decision back then – one which they could rectify by appointing Vieira this summer. Of course, many out there will feel the biggest mistake has come in letting Benitez leave Tyneside after three years and whoever does fill the Spaniard’s place in the dugout has some serious shoes to fill.