It has been an extremely tough summer so far for anyone involved with Newcastle United as owner Mike Ashley continues to run the club with self-interest as his sole concern.
Ashley has completely failed to gauge the situation that the club found itself in at the end of last season, with the sky being the limit this summer, and expectations have crashed back down as the start of 2018/19 approaches.
The club’s one signing so far this summer has been a good one, with Chelsea flyer Kenedy rejoining on a season-long loan after impressing so much last term, but the Magpies are in dire need of several more signings if they are to improve in the coming campaign.
And those players will have to come cheap as Ashley tightens the pursestrings, with the vast majority of Benitez’s budget to come from sales of players such as Aleksandar Mitrovic.
That may force the Spaniard into the loan market again, and there is one player who he must keep a keen eye on in the coming weeks.
As reported by Sky Sports, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has opened the door to a loan exit for talented starlet Phil Foden, with the club to wait until the end of pre-season to make a decision on his future.
It was expected that Foden would remain at City to continue his development after breaking through last season, but a loan move away now looks like it could be on the cards, and Newcastle must put themselves in the frame to be his destination.
The diminutive England youth international has been touted as the nation’s next big thing, and it is easy to see why.
The 18-year-old has a wand of a left boot, with his passing range and close control allowing him to create openings with ease going forward.
For a central midfielder Foden has a keen eye for goal, and his prolific form for Manchester City’s youth sides and success with the England set-up illustrate his vast potential.
According to the Chronicle, Foden’s agent is well known to Benitez, and that could play into the Magpies’ hands.
Benitez must now use this contact to position the club at the front of the queue for his signature should a loan be decided upon, with the signing of the sublime Foden sure to act as a massive boost for the Toon this summer.