Newcastle United fans’ initial jubilation following the Saudi takeover is beginning to be replaced with the reality of their current situation; a situation Eddie Howe has the task of turning around.
Since the takeover, Newcastle have picked up just two points from their last four Premier League games. They find themselves second bottom, the only side in the top flight without a win, and now five points from safety.
Newcastle are in the midst of a relegation battle. Talk of enticing the likes of Antonio Conte, Erik ten Hag and Unai Emery appeared fanciful. Instead, the new owners are set to appoint Eddie Howe as their new manager.
Given their current situation, Howe is the best manager they could get as the Magpies look to avoid the drop at the start of a new era.
Eddie Howe is the Best Manager Newcastle United Could Appoint
Howe Makes Premier League Return, but for How Long?
Eddie Howe is undoubtedly one of the best young British managers in the game. He guided Bournemouth from League Two all the way to the Premier League. Considering when Howe took over, Bournemouth were on the brink of relegation from the Football League, it is quite an extraordinary achievement.
Once Bournemouth got promoted into the Premier League, he helped the club stay there for five years. Their time in the top flight included some famous days including beating the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United.
Of course, Howe’s critics will point towards the amount of money Bournemouth spent to get into the Premier League. They also will point towards the expensive mistakes made in the transfer market prior to his final season at the Cherries, which led to their relegation.
The likes of Jordan Ibe and Dominic Solanke were bought for a combined £34 million. Neither were able to cut it in the Premier League. However, there are examples of Howe getting his recruitment right. The likes of Tyson Mings, Ryan Fraser and Callum Wilson spring to mind.
Howe knows the January transfer window will be critical for Newcastle’s season and for the chance to stay in the Premier League. He will be backed heavily by the new owners but knows, given their current predicament, there will be no room for error.
The 43-year-old is facing the biggest job of his career with many challenges. This includes having to deal with an expectant fan base, a squad bereft of quality, and cash-filled owners who will expect success sooner rather than later.
Huge Task for Eddie Howe
Howe will know he has to hit the ground running and get off to a good start. His first four fixtures in charge include three home games against Brentford, Norwich City, and Burnley. Quite simply, Howe has to get a minimum of seven points from those games. Failure to do so would pile the pressure on him straight away.
Their next four fixtures after that include trips to Leicester City and Liverpool and home games against both Manchester clubs. Given Newcastle’s current form, you wouldn’t bet on them getting anything from those four games.
Another big decision for Howe will be who to bring in during the January transfer window. In particular, Newcastle’s defence and central midfield need improving. Some big names have been linked with a move to Tyneside. However, will they come to Newcastle if they are in a relegation battle? Probably not.
Some Newcastle fans may be dreaming of doing a Manchester City and buying top world-class players, competing in the Champions League and winning the title. But that pipe dream is a long way away.
Newcastle should be thinking about the short term, look at getting players who can help them stay up. If they don’t it will be an unmitigated disaster for the new owners.
The dream of winning a first trophy since 1955, in fact, has never felt further away despite the newfound riches.
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