Supporters of Newcastle United will travel to St James' Park full of optimism about a new, more enjoyable future now Mike Ashley has departed the club thanks to the Saudi-backed takeover, which made the Toon Army the richest club in the world, overnight.
They face Tottenham in their first game of the new era this weekend, but while the Geordie faithful will be rightly excited about what might happen over the next decade, it will take time, hard work and a lot of investment to move Newcastle up the Premier League table and away from any possible relegation fears this season.
BetVictor are offering odds of 2/1 for them to be relegated, which makes them the fourth favourites for the drop, behind Norwich City, Watford and Burnley.
Newcastle have made another slow start
Newcastle are still looking for their first win of the season and have picked up just three points from a possible 21 on offer in the Premier League, their second worst start to a campaign this century.
A slow start has been a common theme for The Magpies in recent seasons and they have a poor record of failing to win any of their opening seven games in four of their last seven Premier League campaigns.
Whether the takeover will have an uplift in fortunes remains to be seen, and with no new players able to sign until January, Steve Bruce has a big job on his hands. But will he be around for much longer?
Steve Bruce unlikely to remain in the Newcastle hot seat
Despite being a Geordie, Steve Bruce has never been a popular manager at Newcastle and after a poor start to this season, his days looked numbered before the Saudi takeover.
There are a host of managers already being tipped to replace him, with Frank Lampard at the head of the market at 3/1 with BetVictor. Lampard was sacked by Chelsea last season and remains a relatively inexperienced manager – so might the new owners look for someone who has been there and done it.
Former Borussia Dortmund boss, Lucien Favre has been installed as the 6/1 second
favourite to replace Bruce, whilst Antonio Conte could return to the Premier League and is being offered at odds of 8/1 with BetVictor to take the St James’ Park job.
Other’s being tipped include Steven Gerrard at 8/1, who has done a good job at Rangers, and Belgium head coach Roberto Martinez, who is also also at 8/1.
Who might join Newcastle in January?
Whenever a club comes into money a wide range of players are linked to them and this takeover of Newcastle is no different. It would appear that no player will be out of the club’s price range and some of the world’s biggest superstars could soon be plying their trade at St James’ Park.
However, there are reports that the new owners will only make £100m available to spend on players over the next four years. Instead, they want to grow the club organically and invest in youth development, the upgrading of facilities and to make the appointment of a sporting director to lay the foundations for long-term success.
That won’t stop the speculation though, and the likes of Jude Bellingham and Timo Werner are already being linked as possible new signings in the January transfer window.
Another clear favourite in the market is Burnley and England defender, James Tarkowski, while ex-Liverpool midfielder, Philipe Coutinho, is another possibility, as is Jesse Lingard who still has an uncertain future at Old Trafford.
Here are some names being linked with a Newcastle move:
- Jude Bellingham
- Timo Werner
- James Tarkowski
- Philippe Coutinho
- Jesse Lingard
- Alfredo Morelos
- Aaron Ramsey
- Georginio Wijnaldum
- Paul Pogba
- Paulo Dybala