Toon did not take the chance to spend... now they are paying
EX-STAR SOLANO ON HOW TO SHOP WITH AMBITION
NOBBY Solano feels that Newcastle United’s lack of investment in the summer transfer market has left Rafa Benitez in a difficult position.
The Toon legend is not convinced the January window will solve all of the club’s problems and feels the Magpies’ chance to bolster their squad and help secure survival disappeared in August.
Benitez decided to stay on at Newcastle and used the limited funds he had to bring in players like Joselu and Javier Manquillo.
But in recent weeks, the pitfalls of the decision of United’s board to hold back funds are beginning to become apparent on the pitch.
Solano told the Chronicle: “Rafa knew that this season would be difficult once the club didn’t spend the money they needed in the summer.
“As soon as that happened it would have been obvious to him that the club’s main target for the season was to stay in the Premier League.
“I don’t think January will be a massive help to him, to be honest.
“He will have little money to spend and exactly who is available that will bring in the right quality in January? There aren’t many options out there at this time of year.
“It’s in June or July you build your squad and Newcastle didn’t do that.”
United go into the game against Leicester with teams like Burnley, AFC Bournemouth and Watford ahead of them.
Solano said: “Maybe they (Leicester) haven’t spent crazy money, but they have spent a decent amount and they are proof of what you can achieve when you shop with a bit of ambition.
“You just hope that in the summer that Newcastle spend well regardless of who is running the club.
“Then they can look to kick on, for now they are fighting to stay up.”
As well as two stints on Tyneside that made him a Premier League star, Solano also appeared for the Foxes towards the end of his career.
The Peruvian assistant manager said: “Both teams are looking for a win, but Newcastle need it more than Leicester.
“It will be difficult and it’s a hard season ahead. This will be an interesting game and Leicester are capable of coming at Newcastle if they want to.
“They are a good team and have been together for a few years now after winning the title.
“In that time Newcastle have changed players and not spent too much. As I say, Rafa’s main target this year is simply to stay up.
“You look at last Saturday’s game with Chelsea and you can’t even compare the two squads. One team was a £300m outfit and the other made up of bargain players.”
Solano will not be at St James’ Park this weekend but several former stars will grace the pitch at half time as the club celebrate 125 years since becoming Newcastle United.
[Leicester] haven’t spent crazy money...they are proof of what you can achieve when you shop with a bit of ambition
The former winger said: “I will always remember my time at Newcastle. My heart is still with the club and always will be.
“It was a big part of my life. I was just proud to be part of it for so long and I will always come back to the area.
“I hope all the Newcastle fans have a great day and they see their side get three points.”
Leicester spent £17m on Harry Maguire in the summer while Benitez used limited funds to bring in the likes of Joselu and
Rafa Benitez talks with his squad during training yesterday