It is surely only a matter of time before Newcastle United announce their takeover. The Magpies are expected to be a force in the Premier League and in the transfer market thanks to their prospective new owners, but they need to plan wisely.
Appointing a world-class manager has to be their number one priority, but just one man cannot turn the club into one of the best in the league.
Newcastle need to support their new boss, not just financially, but also with a Director of Football, whose work in the transfer window behind the scenes will take plenty of pressure off the manager.
French outlet Le 10 Sport have claimed that the Magpies’ new owners want to appoint Paris Saint-Germain’s former Sporting Director, Antero Henrique, as their new Director of Football.
The 52-year-old is one of the most respected names in world football and his transfer deals over the years show exactly why.
Henrique was part of the team that managed the most expensive signing in world football. PSG, through his negotiations, convinced Neymar to switch Barcelona for the French capital and that move has turned out pretty well, at least on the pitch.
His best signing, however, was Kylian Mbappe from Monaco. The Frenchman was wanted by almost every big club in Europe but Henrique’s negotiation skills helped PSG sign him.
AS revealed at the start of this year that Henrique locked himself in with Mbappe and his father for two days and convinced them to snub Real Madrid in favour of a move to the Parc des Princes.
PSG’s huge financial power clearly helped Henrique in negotiations. However, the Portuguese director proved in his home country that he is more than capable of working wonders with a small budget.
Before joining PSG, Henrique was the Director of Football at Porto for 11 years, where he was responsible for signing a few of the biggest names in the world before anybody knew them.
In 2009, Henrique signed Radamel Falcao from River Plate for £3.5 million (Goal). The Colombian went on to play 87 times for Porto, scoring 72 goals and providing 17 assists in that period.
Falcao was shipped off to Atletico Madrid two years later when Henrique sold him for £35.6 million (Goal); 10 times the amount he had initially bought him for.
Hulk was another player Henrique brought to Porto for a measly £4.5 million. (Soccer News) The Brazilian was later sold to Russian giants Zenit for £39.5 million (BR), further increasing Porto’s incredible profit tally.
Good fit for Newcastle?
Henrique is the full package. The 52-year-old has an eye for talent and is a brilliant negotiator, both while buying players and when he has to move them on.
Newcastle will have to be smart with their transfers in the upcoming windows, and an experienced head like Henrique would guide them through that phase without too much trouble.