Newcastle United are reportedly looking to sign players from Germany and Spain.
In recent years, signings from both markets have been both successes and failures. Ayoze Perez arrived at St James' Park in the summer from Spain and has impressed, whereas Germany has brought the signings of Papiss Cisse and goal-shy Luuk de Jong.
They are undervalued markets, and stars can be available for low prices if scouted correctly. However, it is not talent that Newcastle need to sign to improve their squad, but players with Premier League experience.
The current Toon squad is a strange blend of ageing veterans and young prospects, with not much in-between. The likes of Moussa Sissoko and Daryl Janmaat, who fill the ‘talented and young’ market, will likely be the centre of transfer wars in the summer, and the Tyneside club would do very well to keep them for next season.
The make-up of their squad is very strange, meaning that there are few natural leaders in the ranks. The young prospects have no players to look up to as Premier League legends, and there is a lack of character that could not be solved by recruiting from abroad.
The club needs to look at the English market and sign players that will bring experience of the top flight to club. This type of player is needed in so many situations, and it is one of the reasons that Jack Colback - an underappreciated arrival in the summer - has been such a success for the Magpies.
It should be players like Colback who are targeted in the summer, as they bring something to the squad that is missing. English players may cost more - Newcastle were lucky that Colback signed on a free - but the club should be willing to put the money towards the signings if they intend to snap out of the rut of fragility they currently sit in.