There has been speculation that given Newscastle’s yo-yo seasons, a few Premiership clubs will be very interested in taking Newcastle’s young talent off Roeder’s hands this summer.
The recent spec surrounds Steven Taylor and Charles N’Zogbia, although if you want to be complete James Milner has to be included in any such discussion because of his talents and young age.
Instead of opining recklessly on their fates, I’ll restrict myself to commenting on their quality and whether they are good enough to go play for bigger sides.
I’d add that within the Premiership, there’s the top four, then there are the second-tier clubs such as Tottenham and Newcastle, and then there is everyone else who are ‘in season’ depending on their form and league position. Everton, Bolton and Blackburn have all laid claim to second-tier status, but they are not operating on the same budgets as Tottenham and Newcastle and that makes things a bit difficult for them.
Steven Taylor – Good kid, but I don’t see him replacing any center-back in the top four just yet. He could have been useful for Chelsea during their recent injury crisis, and I suppose Arsenal wouldn’t have minded his presence either. But at his current level, Taylor will be third or fourth choice at best, so he needs time to grow.
Any other club? Tottenham are an option (King and Taylor, with Dawson and Rocha as backups), but that’s a sideways move, so no go there.
Charles N’Zogbia – Same as Taylor, except that N’Zogbia could be a good investment for Arsenal (considering that they lack genuine wingers. Newcastle need not worry though – Arsenal aren’t looking at him, they’re looking at the next bext 17 year old (after the fantastic successes of Fabregas, Diaby, Denilson and Walcott (tongue-in-cheek)).
James Milner – A good prospect for the future and his direct style would make him a good impact player for any of the top four sides. My personal view on Milner is that he’s greatly under-rated and that Newcastle would have to work hard to keep him at the club this summer. I wouldn’t mind seeing him at United, and I doubt that Arsenal or Liverpool would mind him either. Chelsea? They already have Joe Cole and Arjen Robben, they’re not a class winger short like the others.
What do you guys think? Are Taylor, N’Zogbia and Milner good enough to earn a place in the starting XI of the top four (in a couple of years from now)? And where will they be next summer?