Newcastle United’s glorious run has not only been interrupted but also further worsened with Benitez experiencing a serious shortage of players in is four-man midfield. With Jonjo Shelvey serving a five-match ban owing to disciplinary issues and Mohamed Diame away on his national duty, Benitez is desperate to bring in new players this winter.
And as per reports, the Magpies have enquired about Fulham midfielder Tom Cairney. Benitez has only Isaac Hayden and Jack Colback in his central midfield position and Cairney could be a brilliant option for them.
The Spanish boss has done a brilliant job bringing together a quality core of players, who have displayed some tremendous performances this season. And the fact that Cairney has caught Benitez’s eye points out the quality of the former Scotland under-21 international player.
Although Fulham wouldn’t want to part ways with one of their star players, they have put a price tag of 10 million pounds and given Newcastle’s financial prowess, they can meet that amount quite comfortably. Fulham are currently 9th in the Championship table, just five points behind the playoff position and they would be needing Cairney if they want to aim for a shot at promotion.
Cairney came up the ranks at Leeds United, where he stayed for nine years, before finally leaving in 2007. He was 16 when he left without making a single appearance for them at the highest level. It was Hull City then, who offered him a youth contract, where he scored in his debut match against Southend United in August 2009. He appeared for them 11 times but the Tigers were relegated to Championship that season.
He suffered a serious injury when he was on loan in Blackburn Rovers during the 2013-14 season, where he was out for three months. He joined them the following season permanently. It was his impressive displays there, which earned him a move to Fulham. Since then he has made himself a regular in the side and scored eight goals in 42 appearances in the 2015/16 season.
This season so far, Cairney has played 26 times scoring five times for Fulham and looks like the perfect subject for Benitez to study, who could further nurture him to a great player. Although Slavisa Jokanovic is quite clear and vocal that he doesn’t want to let go of Cairney anytime soon, given Newcastle’s stature and current league position would surely push the midfielder to give a second thought about staying in Fulham.
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