Wednesday brought news of Newcastle United’s first signing of the transfer window and Rafa’s first as Newcastle manager.
Rather surprisingly the position Rafa has chosen to strengthen first is Goalkeeper with Southampton target Matz Sels joining from KAA Gent for a fee believed to be in the region of £5m.
Sels, born in Lint, Belgium, is yet to be capped at full international level although has been capped 19 times at U21 and below for his national side and at just 24 years old he’s long been thought of a s keeper who’d eventually challenge Courtois, Mignolet and the ageing Gillet (now 37) for a full cap.
After extending his contract at Gent only last summer it seems the £5m fee was too much for the Belgian side to turn down, having only signed the player themselves in January 2014 for a fee of around £100k.
A Champions League keeper with 18 clean sheets in his 53 appearances last season It is very unlikely that Rafa has signed Sels to keep the bench warm however and the signing will increase speculation that at least one of Krul and Elliot could be on their way out of the club. And with reports today that Krul has been lined up by Middlesborough amongst others in the red tops today it seems as though a move out will happen sooner rather than later.
With Rafa’s well publicised database of players, scouting network and contacts it is very likely that Sels has been on his radar for some time and he has taken this opportunity of not only getting the man he wants between the sticks to suit his style of play but potentially make a Net profit at the same time.
The Rafalution starts here!