Newcastle transfer talk: Former Man Utd playmaker available for free

Shinji Kagawa - former Manchester United midfielder. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Shinji Kagawa - former Manchester United midfielder. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) /

Newcastle United are in need of a playmaker, and one veteran is available as a free agent in January.

The next couple of weeks will consist of transfer gossip surrounding Newcastle United from media outlets around the world. The Magpies are not heavy spenders, especially in January, but they have been active in each transfer window over the last few seasons.

January is usually a month in which Newcastle United navigate the loan market, and that is the expectation this time around as well, however, one or two permanent signings also cannot be ruled out. Four players have been linked with potential moves to St. James’ Park over the last two weeks, but here is one shock move the front office should consider.

Newcastle United are the masters of free signings, and one veteran playmaker who is a free agent at the moment is former Manchester United and Borussia Dortmund midfielder Shinji Kagawa. At the age of 31, the Japan international still has a few good seasons left in him, but it would take some convincing for Lee Charnley to act seeing that Kagawa’s last full season in one of Europe’s top leagues was three years ago.

Kagawa’s most recent opportunities were in Turkey with Besiktas during the 2018-19 campaign, and Zaragoza in the second tier of Spanish football last term. After parting ways with Zaragoza, Kagawa is now free to negotiate a deal with any interested party.

Kagawa made a name for himself as a playmaker in Germany and England because of his constant involvement in meaningful action in the final third. Over the course of his career with both European giants, Kagawa registered 58 goals and 53 assists, and despite now being out of his prime, Kagawa still managed to score eight goals and completed four assists in 47 games in Turkey and Spain.

The Need for a CAM

Newcastle United are far too dependent on Callum Wilson for their goals this season. Other players, especially those in midfield, need to up their game and start contributing with more goals of their own. Miguel Almiron was expected to orchestrate the majority of attacks for the Toon while also scoring in double figures, but he has fallen short of both objectives.

Joelinton has now taken over the number ten role, and the Brazilian has impressed in that slot, but it has only been one game. Moreover, fans know that consistency is a major problem for the the club’s record signing, which is why securing the services of Kagawa would be a smart move.

His experience in the Premier League and Bundesliga, paired with his proven record for setting up big plays would have a positive impact on the Toon. Would Kagawa be a regular starter for Newcastle United? No, but he would spark competition in training, and he would a be reliable option when rotating the lineup, or filling in for an injured player.

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For a player of Kagawa’s caliber, being available for free is the best possible bargain a team could ask for. Newcastle United desperately need more creativity and experience in the squad, and Kagawa fits the bill for that criteria.