Newcastle United have conducted some brilliant business on the transfer front since January of this year. The new faces from Ligue 1, La Liga, and other clubs in the Premier League have brought that extra bit of quality and experience the Magpies have lacked in recent seasons.
In addition, the front office has also been focused on the long-term retention and development of young talent. This was recently demonstrated with the multi-year contract that was offered to and signed by midfielder Elliot Anderson.
There is no doubt that Eddie Howe has the right tactics in place and sufficient talent in this squad to fight for a top ten finish. Compared to previous seasons where the club’s sole objective was to maintain their Premier League status, a top ten finish is a great ambition to have, although some within the Toon Army think the overall goal should be locking up a European spot.
Reaching that level is not out of the question with the current squad if key players remain healthy for most of the season, but that goal is much more attainable if Newcastle United can secure the signing of a top talent like James Maddison from Leicester City. According to Scott Wilson from the Northern Echo, this transfer might be revisited in January after two summer bids were rejected by the Foxes.
Newcastle United need a player like James Maddison to fully elevate their status into European contenders.
With 36 goals and 24 assists to his name as a Leicester City player since 2018, James Maddison is exactly what Newcastle United need. His ability to effectively play across the front line makes him a versatile threat for Leicester City, and the 25-year-old is coming off his best season with 12 goals last term.
Newcastle United were held to a 1-1 draw with Bournemouth last time out despite dominating the game in every category, but the Cherries’ had everyone back defending and the Toon struggled to break them down. That is where Maddison comes in.
The Magpies are far too dependent on Allan Saint-Maximin to create a spark offensively, and the expectation that he can repeat his five star performance against Manchester City week in and week out is a difficult ask. In addition, record signing Alexander Isak scored a brilliant goal against Liverpool and found the net from the penalty spot against Bournemouth, but he is not receiving proper service.
Having a player like Maddison who has experience linking up with a dynamic striker like Jamie Vardy over the last few years would only benefit Isak and Callum Wilson to get golden opportunities in front of goal more frequently. Maddison’s vision in the final third combined with his ability to create space for others by attracting more than one defender is the missing piece of the puzzle for Newcastle United.
Bournemouth was the first team to park the bus against the Magpies, but other teams will follow suit with that strategy to frustrate Howe’s men. Adding Maddison to the mix in January would certainly resolve that problem as defenders would not know which threat between Saint-Maximin, Isak, and Maddison to address first.