'Dreamland' - Jonathan Woodgate issues stark reality check to Newcastle United fans after Saudi takeover

Former Newcastle United defender Jonathan Woodgate has claimed that the Toon Army’s supporters are in “dreamland” if they believe they can convince “world-class” players to join the club in the near future.
Jonathan Woodgate. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)Jonathan Woodgate. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)
Jonathan Woodgate. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)

The Magpies have been linked with a host of illustrious names since a Saudi-funded takeover made them the richest club in the world last week, but Woodgate has questioned how realistic it is for their new owners to pursue such high-profile talent right away.

Speaking on BBC Radio Five Live, he said: "If you look at it and what they (the owners) have to do, they have to build the infrastructure from the bottom over the years.

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"If any player has got anything about him, he goes to Real Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester United. No disrespect to Newcastle, he ain't going up the road to them.

"It is hard enough trying to get players up to the North East, I know playing for Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Leeds, it is difficult to get players up there.

"All the top players have got money, they want to win trophies, they want to play in European finals, they want to get to World Cups, they don't want to come to Newcastle. No disrespect but I am right.

"Alan Shearer was a world-class player and signed for Newcastle because he is from Newcastle, he wanted to fulfil a dream. There are not many more world-class players in their pomp playing for that club.

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"For the Newcastle fans to think they are going to get Kylian Mbappe and all these top players, it is dreamland, you have to build it. It isn't easy, you can't just buy success. It doesn't work like that in this league."