There’s no getting away from it, 2014 has been an absolute farce for Newcastle. At the turn of the year things looked okay in the North East, but the sale of Yohan Cabaye has had more of an impact that initially expected, with Alan Pardew’s men picking up just five wins in 10 and a half months. Shocking.
Owner Mike Ashley looks likely to stick by ‘Handsome Pards’ for the time being, but it’s clear to everyone with a functioning brain and eyes that major surgery on the Newcastle squad is needed in January.
Additions are at the forefront of the fans’ thoughts, yet in order to get some bodies in, deadwood must be chopped and quickly discarded. So, with that in mind, here are FIVE players the Magpies could axe…
There’s little sense in keeping an unsettled player at a time when full commitment and a solid work ethic is needed. Recent reports have suggested that Tiote wants to leave Newcastle after four and a half years, and although there have been denials on the subject, there’s rarely such smoke without some fire.
With Liverpool, Arsenal and Russian giants Lokomotiv Moscow all thought to be keen, a fee of around £10m-£15m is a realistic aim for the Magpies, who could use such funds to find a replacement and remedy other issues.
With just 139 minutes of Premier League football under his belt so far this term, Obertan appears to be far from vital to Newcastle. The French winger, snapped up from Manchester United in 2011, has been some way short of the success story Magpies fans were hoping for, with his inconsistent nature providing much more frustration than elation.
A move back to France could be an option for the fleet-footed winger, who, at 25, still has time to fulfil some of the potential he showed as a youngster.
Tipped for big things, the Northern Irish midfielder is now in need of a move. A loan spell at Birmingham last season produced a handful of notable performances, but his future at St James’ Park looks bleak.
A move down to Championship level is the obvious answer, with the 23-year-old undoubtedly of the level to succeed in the second tier before eyeing a big switch back to the top table in the future.
In his four outings so far this term, Anita has been off the pace by some distance. The Dutchman was signed with a decent reputation from his spell in his homeland, but since 2012 he has rarely impressed.
His versatility is both a benefit and a curse to Newcastle, with Anita able to cover a range of positions, but he’s been, as a result, unable to hold down a regular berth and really grow into a set role in the side. At 25 he will still fetch a respectable fee, rendering a sale sensible.
After missing 2013/14 with injury, Taylor looks unlikely to ever get back to his best. Although it’s a shame, Newcastle may just have to cut their losses on the full-back, whose dead-ball prowess and energy made him such a threat just a few years ago.
Taylor himself needs regular action if he’s to salvage his career, with a drop down to the Championship or League One two options open to the 30-year-old.