Lee Charnley has revealed that the priority at Newcastle United is strengthening their squad before making any improvements off the pitch.
The Magpies’ managing director admitted the club are committed to adding players while they have money to spend instead of sanctioning a training ground upgrade.
In an interview with the Chronicle, Charnley did confirm that the club does want to upgrade their facilities, but that their spending will be based on priorities.
“You go and spend it on the training ground it means there is less to spend on the team. That doesn’t mean we don’t spend in all those areas, because we do, but our view has been at this point in time the priority is what goes on to the field,” he said.
“It doesn’t mean we don’t want to update the training ground. Does it mean at some point in time we would like to update the training ground? Absolutely, yes.”
It was revealed that training ground redevelopment was high on Rafael Benitez’s list during talks over the Spaniard’s future at the end of last season, and was a reason behind his departure.
There are so many different improvements needed at Newcastle, with no swimming pool or water facilities currently at their training complex. Charnley did admit that all parties were happy to eventually upgrade those parts of the complex, and catch up with other sides in the Premier League who could have left them behind in past years. Reading that the Magpies are setting priorities makes total sense though, after losing Benitez, Ayoze Perez, and Salomon Rondon, their squad and set up looked so depleted, and they definitely tried their hardest to fix that in the summer. Newcastle broke their transfer record and also were the ninth highest spenders in the Premier League, in what was probably the first summer where Mike Ashley could not be slammed for his transfer activity. Most of the areas that needed strengthening were added too, and by the sounds of Charnley’s interview, Newcastle looked certain to strengthen even further in January and the summer. If you ask any fan what they would want to see, they would most likely admit they want signings rather than a swimming pool for their players to use during training.