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17th Oct 2021

Who can keep Newcastle United in the Premier League?

Callum Boyle

Everyone’s talking about Newcastle’s ‘next step’ – but first they have to stay up

Newcastle United are now the richest club in the world after a Saudi-led consortium took over in a £300 million takeover. Unsurprisingly, a Premier League team being bought by a despotic regime has led to some controversy (and a questionable song).

With Steve Bruce now gone, attention turns to who his replacement will be.

While supporters and pundits alike have hypothesised on who could take the Magpies to the ‘next level’, the more pressing concern for the 19th-placed and winless team is simply staying in the Premier League.

With that in mind, here’s six candidates who could be well equipped to take on the task and lead Newcastle into an era of wealth and fortune, or at the very least safety.

Graham Potter

This would be an appointment which would likely receive a great reception at St James’ Park. Graham Potter has established himself as one of the most exciting managers in the league at Brighton & Hove Albion, who have made a flying start to the season. Crucially, as well, he has experience towards the lower end of the Premier League.

For all the wealth the Magpies now possess, they still have another two months to go before the January transfer window and, right now, they need results and consistency. Potter would also be a perfect long-term fit, with his exciting style of play likely to be well-received with current players and new recruits alike.

Nothing drastic needs to be done overall. His attacking mindset could help propel the likes of Allan Saint-Maximin to an even more frightening level, with new additions likely to make them the fourth worst team in the league at the very least. As with anyone who comes, their season will be a success providing Newcastle stay up, and with Potter’s stock rising rapidly, there may not be a better time to persuade a young, vibrant manager to come in and lead them to the future.

Sam Allardyce

Sam Allardyce is a mastermind at keeping teams in the league (except from that disastrous spell at West Brom). You get what you see with ‘Big Sam’. Organised, structured, resolute and generally awful football, but football which would likely see an end to Newcastle leaking goals. The main downside is the fact that he appears to be very much from the same school of management as Steve Bruce: the old school.

The owners want to get the fans on their side straight away and reappointing Big Sam may not be the best option, but for a quick-fix solution, there probably isn’t many better candidates for that role. It doesn’t even need to be any longer than just this season. It would buy time for the owners to find a a truly high-profile manager who could build on Premier League survival and take them to dizzy new heights.

Claude Puel

Okay, hear me out on this one. Fans of Southampton and Leicester will be pulling their hair out and warning Newcastle fans about the boring football, but one thing you can’t deny is that Claude Puel can grind out results. Sure, the results aren’t enough to challenge at the top, but that’s not what a side who have yet to win a league game should be thinking about right now.

Puel will make them extremely hard to beat and to be fair to him, during his last two stints at Premier League level, he managed to unearth some top talent who drastically improved the squads he took on. He has an understanding of the league too, which is vital for any team involved in a relegation battle.

The Frenchman wouldn’t pull up any trees, nor be the man to win them a league title, but he will comfortably help improve this Newcastle side and lay the foundations for the next man to come in and really make the big jump to competing for trophies.

Eddie Howe

There was once a time when Eddie Howe was linked with jobs such as the Arsenal and England roles – he was even close to Celtic in the summer – but lo and behold, Howe is still jobless.

The Newcastle job might be the perfect chance for Howe to prove he is just as exciting a manager as he was during his time at Bournemouth. He is no stranger to relegation battles, with the 43-year-old regularly involved in them during his spell on the South Coast.

Furthermore, Ryan Fraser and Callum Wilson showed incredible form under Howe, with the former struggling to adapt during his time in the North East, he may help bring the best out of him again.

Howe is still a young manager, and his youthful energy could be a breath of fresh air in comparison to what they currently have.

Roy Hodgson

This one is very much like Allardyce. Hodgson isn’t in it for the long haul. Ask fans of Crystal Palace and they will tell you that while it wasn’t glamorous, without Hodgson, they wouldn’t be in the Premier League and now marching towards a bright future under Patrick Vieira.

He has enough experience and know-how to know to lead this side away from relegation. It may take a couple weeks to adjust, but the results will come. They don’t need to be spectacular, Newcastle need to start picking up results. I’m sure as long as he didn’t put Callum Wilson on corners then he would be just fine too.

Hodgson’s knowledge of the game may also help when it comes to strengthening the squad in January. His extensive contacts could lead to finding some hidden gems who can set the tone and play a role in survival. Or at the very least he can sign Christian Benteke.

Chris Wilder

If you erase that second Premier League season at Sheffield United, Chris Wilder’s managerial record is phenomenally good. Even including that season, it’s still very good. At his beloved Blades, he dragged them from one of their lowest ebbs and made them into an extremely entertaining side.

Now, granted, Newcastle are a bit better off (£320 billion better off) than Sheffield United were, and Wilder could be an interesting prospect to help steer them away from the bottom three and at least see how far he could take the Magpies.

Wilder is the sort of person that will make you run through brick walls for him. His management style isn’t the same as a modern manager. He has a tough love approach, but he can win games and get results, all whilst playing an authentic style of football which certainly doesn’t bore supporters. Sometimes you have to go for wild decisions and this could be one that pays off.