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Newcastle United Offload 11 as Pardew Fights Hard to Keep Top Talent

Mapgies hope to keep players who took St James’ Park side back among the ‘big-boys’.

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ON the day that Newcastle United released 11 professionals, including three senior members of the first team squad, Hatem Ben Arfa has revealed how life on Tyneside has transformed his character.

After weeks of speculation and uncertainty, it was confirmed last night that Danny Guthrie, Peter Lovenkrands and Alan Smith will not be returning to St James’ Park next season.

There are also a number of reserve team players on the look out for new clubs. Sammy Adjei, Philip Airey, Ryan Donaldson, Stephen Folan, Jeff Henderson, Tamas Kadar, Greg McDermott and Patrick Nzuzi are the others to have left Newcastle.

Now Pardew will be focused on trying to strengthen a squad that sealed a fifth place finish in the Premier League last season.

He has the distraction of having to deal with the uncertainty surrounding Danny Simpson, who has 12 months remaining on his contract and could be sold, and Demba Ba, who has a £7m release clause in his contract.

SOURCE: Northern Echo

Indeed Alan Pardew would do well to try his hardest to keep Demba Ba at St James’ Park this summer, an issue not helped by the release clause placed on the prolific striker. In many ways the Magpies boss may well become a victim of his own success, clearly taking Newcastle United to within a whisker of a top four spot will have the effect of bringing his top performers to the attention of Europe’s ‘elite’ and this summer will surely be about keeping hold of said players.

However, what happens if Mike Ashley gets a sniff of the millions he could make from the sales of the likes of the aforementioned Ba, Cheick Tiote, Yohan Cabaye and Papiss Cisse? Four players who cost the club a grand total of around £17m who could all in theory be individually worth in excess of that total.

Pardew has worked wonders, not just with a fairly average budget but also has had to deal with the loss of crucial first teamers like Andy Carroll, Jose Enrique, Kevin Nolan and Joey Barton and despite investing a small portion of the transfer funds accrued from players sales, Newcastle United have a stronger team now than they did when the Wimbledon born 50 year old took over.

However the Newcastle United squad does lack quality in depth in certain key areas and though the loss of these 11 players will not further diminish that quality, Pardew will hope that clearing the way for new players and their wage packets will prevent Ashley from considering offers for any of those crucial players who helped to propel the club back towards the top of the Premier League table.

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