Titus Bramble returned for Newcastle on Sunday against Chelsea – having been rested since the disastrous second leg against AZ Alkmaar on 15th March – when the team went down 2-0 and out of the UEFA Cup. Bramble had a solid game against Chelsea at the center of the Newcastle defense alongside the ever improving Steven Taylor – very unlike his last display against Alkmaar – which brought lightly-veiled criticism from Roeder.
Bramble’s contract runs out at the end of the season and it is still apparently an open question as to whether Glenn Roeder will offer him another contract.
Most Newcastle fans must have thought they had seen the last of Titus Bramble after the Alkmaar game – but Bramble is an enigma – who for 99% of the time plays like an accomplished footballer and for the other 1% is out in gaga-land on his own planet.
I’m sure many managers will want to give Titus Bramble another chance in the Premiership – Harry Redknapp among them – if Roeder lets him go – because if they can get Titus to rid himself of his lapses in concentration – he can be an outstanding player – no doubt about that.
The question is will Newcastle hang on to Bramble?
Maybe a safe bet for Newcastle would be to offer him a two year extension – while in the summer bringing in two additional young central defenders (Curtis Davis and Anton Ferdinand would be good) and then let him fight it out for his place alongside Steven Taylor – who next season should become an automatic choice for the Magpies.
The assumption is that both Craig Moore and Oguchi Onyewu will be allowed to leave in the summer – so we would need to bring in two central defenders as well as full backs.
If it doesn’t work out for Bramble then Newcastle can sell him to the highest bidder. At least this way Newcastle would recuperate some of the $5M they paid Ipswich for him five years ago.
Let me know what you think – and for other Newcastle stories see our new blog dedicated completely to Newcastle United Football Club news.