Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew is unlikely to spend big in the summer transfer window and will instead focus on the wealth of talent already at his disposal to lift the club back up the Premier League.
The Magpies disappointed this season after overachieving in 2011/12, finishing 16th and coming close to a final-day relegation battle. Although the majority of football betting punters agree the team is too good to go down, there was a nervous few weeks as Newcastle remained dangerously close to the drop.
Pardew was allowed to act on instinct in January and spent over £13m on five new players, a move that pulled them clear and secured Premier League status for another term. However, come August the same battle must be fought again and this year the boss can’t go running to owner Mike Ashley for more funds.
With Papiss Cisse, Yoan Gouffran and Moussa Sissoko up front Newcastle posses a formidable forward line capable of pulling this side to a top-half finish, while their defence should remain strong despite the impending departure of Fabricio Coloccini. Pardew will be allowed to replace the unsettled skipper and may even bring in a further centre-half to compete with Steven Taylor, but is unlikely to do much else before the window closes.
Quite simply, his splash in the January sales must be good enough to see Newcastle through this coming season and, unlike many other Premier League teams, the Magpies could get off to a good start.
With minimal disruption to the squad Pardew effectively has a two-month break to give his side a massive pep talk and send them back out onto the field as solid a unit as he left them. In-play betting fans should seriously consider Newcastle to punch above their weight in the opening weeks of the season and, even if they do slump as Christmas approaches, the Magpies will contest the top half come April.