Newcastle United’s ‘key’ to European ‘fight’ as ex-defender makes transfer prediction
Jose Enrique believes ‘anything can happen’ for Newcastle United in the Premier League this season.
Newcastle have lost just one of their opening nine games and sit sixth following back to back 4-1 and 5-1 wins over Fulham and Brentford respectively. And Enrique, who made 129 appearances for The Magpies between 2007 and 2011, has been impressed with what he’s seen from Eddie Howe’s side.
The Spanish left-back once believed Newcastle would ‘never again’ fight to compete among the European places under former owner Mike Ashley. But under new ambitious owners, he feels they have a chance of competing at the top of the Premier League once they have key players back fit and available.
Allan Saint-Maximin has not started a match since August while £60million record signing Alexander Isak has missed the last two matches with a thigh issue.
“I love the way Newcastle have been playing,” he said via Lord Ping. “Bruno Guimaraes has just come back and Allan Saint-Maximin was injured and not [starting] in the team.
“When they have everyone back, they have a great team and if they have chances to get into Europe by the time January comes around, I believe they’ll do a signing or two and fight for European places.”
Enrique hasn't ruled out Newcastle qualifying for the Champions League, providing they make the right additions in January.
“Anything can happen,” he added. “Newcastle could get a Champions League spot - just look at what Leicester did when they won the title.
“Signing a couple of players in January is key for them but the percentage is really low if we’re being realistic.”