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FEATURE: Newcastle United transfers analysed from 2016/17. Hit or miss?

Newcastle United were confirmed as the Championship winners for 2016/17 on Saturday, win Rafa Benitez overseeing a return to the top flight for the Toon in his first attempt.

Transfer spending from Mike Ashley will be central to Newcastle’s successes, though will Ashley splash the cash or button tight?

Newcastle will be plying their trade in the top flight of English football in 2017/18, though 90MAAT take a look Newcastle’s transfers at the start of the 2016/17 season, and we ask the question. Hit or miss?

Dwight Gayle

Gayle was acquired by Newcastle for £10m from Crystal Palace, and has played a role of pivotal importance in Newcastle’s return to the Premier League.

A goalscorer and a player of undoubted attacking talent, Gayle has scored 23 league goals and registered two assists for Newcastle this season.

Benitez was aware as to the importance a player like Gayle would hold to Newcastle’s hopes for promotion, and in an economic climate of inflated transfer fees, £10m for Gayle represents outstanding value.

Gayle has played a huge part in Newcastle’s successes this season, and has been a huge hit for Benitez.

90MAAT verdict: HIT

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Ciaran Clark

Newcastle purchased Ciaran Clark from Aston Villa following their relegation from the Premier League, £5m the fee for a Ireland international to fill in at centre back for the Toon.

Clark has been in mesmeric form for Benitez, and has played a big part in their success this season. A rock at the back, Clark will look to cement his name in the Newcastle starting XI for their Premier League season, and alongside Jamal Lascelles they could form a formidable partnership at the back for Newcastle.

There were question marks over Clark’s consistency from his time at Villa, though he has dispelled all concern and has brought Newcastle back to their belonging: Premier League football.

90MAAT verdict: HIT

Matz Sels

Sels was brought in from Gent by Newcastle, £4.5m the transfer fee for the goalkeeper. Benitez had openly stated he was looking for a GK to challenge for the #1 position, though Sels has evidently fallen short of Benitez’s expectations.

Sels has been unable to force his way into the Newcastle starting XI, with a total of nine appearances this season between the sticks. For a £4.5m transfer fee, this does not represent excellent value for Newcastle, if you consider Ciaran Clark^ cost merely £0.5m more.

Newcastle were looking for a new #1 keeper, it would appear they haven’t quite found that in Sels.

90MAAT verdict: MISS

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Matt Ritchie

Ritchie was acquired by Newcastle for £12m in the Summer from Bournemouth, and the attacking ace has thrived in the Championship after temporarily dropping down a division to fight for promotion.

Ritchie has been incredible for Newcastle this season, contributing goals, assists and keeping the tempo of Newcastle’s attacking play – £12m very, very well spent.

Keeping hold of Ritchie will be key for Newcastle, and the attacking ace could well be lighting up the Premier League as an important part of Newcastle survival bid for 2017/18.

90MAAT verdict: HIT

Tom Newman

Founder and Editor at 90MAAT.

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Premier League Table

# Team MP W D L P
1 Manchester City 32 23 5 4 74
2 Manchester United 32 19 9 4 66
3 Leicester City 31 17 5 9 56
4 Chelsea 32 15 10 7 55
5 West Ham United 32 16 7 9 55
6 Liverpool 32 15 8 9 53
7 Tottenham Hotspur 32 14 8 10 50
8 Everton 31 14 7 10 49
9 Arsenal 32 13 7 12 46
10 Leeds United 32 14 4 14 46
11 Aston Villa 30 13 5 12 44
12 Wolverhampton Wanderers 32 11 8 13 41
13 Crystal Palace 31 10 8 13 38
14 Southampton 31 10 6 15 36
15 Newcastle United 32 9 8 15 35
16 Brighton & Hov… 32 7 13 12 34
17 Burnley 32 8 9 15 33
18 Fulham 33 5 12 16 27
19 West Bromwich Albion 31 5 9 17 24
20 Sheffield United 32 4 2 26 14

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