Alan Pardew and the upper brass at Newcastle United may have lost the dressing-room over the sale of star midfielder Yohan Cabaye late in the mid-season transfer market, says club record-breaking striker and one-time manager Alan Shearer, 43.
With a passing accuracy of 82%, a chance creation of 33 from 1,502 minutes of Premier League football this season until his exit and a clear willingness to shoot (63 times) yielding seven goals, Cabaye had proven to be one of the division's most versatile midfielders - now, after a £19m switch to Paris Saint Germain, he is one of Ligue 1's.
As the transfer was not secured until January 29, Newcastle were left with little time to adequately replace a player of his magnitude and his sale now poses significant questions over the club's chances of achieving something extraordinary this season - like pipping Manchester United to a Premier League finish within the spots that would seal a passage into the Europa League next season.
Shearer, on talkSPORT earlier today, Wednesday, said: 'If you're going to let your best player go, you have to have a plan for someone to come in.
'You can't let him leave and then bring no one else in. That just can't happen. It sends a bad message out to the fans and, if you're a player in that dressing room you must be thinking "where are we going?"'
Shearer has been outspoken over Magpies affairs of late, pointing to the ambigious nature of Joe Kinnear's presence at St James' Park, indicating that it was a 'strange appointment' in the first place, as per BBC, before claiming that the resignation is perhaps an acknowledgment that he did not do his job - whatever that was.
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