With Newcastle United sitting comfortably in the top half of the Premier League table after nine games played, Rafael Benitez’s ability to organise a side could be the primary reason why The Magpies already look well placed to avoid a relegation dogfight.
Newcastle have conceded just eight goals so far in 2017/18 – a tally only bettered by both Manchester clubs, Tottenham and high-flying Burnley.
And if there’s one position if Newcastle’s squad that does not require strengthening, it is at centre-back. Despite gifting Southampton an equaliser by giving away a penalty in the 2-2 draw at St Mary’s on Sunday, Florian Lejeune already appears to have built up a good understanding with captain Jamaal Lascelles.
Ciaran Clark and Chancel Mbemba, meanwhile, provide quality in reserve.
This has not stopped Newcastle from planning a January move for Benfica centre-back Lisandro Lopez, however. O Jogo claim that Benitez was interested in the four-time Argentine international in the summer but The Magpies were unable to meet Benfica’s £9 million asking price.
Lisandro has struggled for game time at the Estadio da Luz recently, starting just six Primeira Liga games last season and one so far this with youngster Ruben Dias moving ahead of him in the pecking order.
This, therefore, gives Newcastle a great chance to sign a player Benitez has wanted for some time.