Newcastle's 10 worst signings under Mike Ashley
Photo Credit:(Gettyimages/David Rogers)

Newcastle's 10 worst signings under Mike Ashley

The Magpies have made a number of poor signings in the Mike Ashley era, some worse than others.

aaron-hindhaugh
Aaron Hindhaugh

Transfer talk is never far away from the main talking point on Tyneside and it sometimes leads to disappointment, despite a lot of hype.

Many managers have worked under Mike Ashley and many have failed to sign players that could change Newcastle United's fortunes.

The club lives by their ability to recruit well, or relegation is not too far away.

Below is a top 10 worst signings of the Ashley era.

10. Siem De Jong

The former Ajax captain and Dutch international was brought in to be a leader on the pitch and fill the number 10 void at St James' Park.

However, his career was plagued by injuries and poor form, most notably when he suffered a collapsed lung during a training session.

De Jong promised so much and could have been a talisman for the Magpies, but instead spent most of his time in the treatment room or on the bench.

He managed just 22 appearances over three season for the Magpies and gave Alan Pardew more of a headache then solve his problems.

9. Emmanuel Riviere

A promising striker that was bought from AS Monaco to fill the void left by Loic Remy who had been a major success the previous season.

However, the Frenchman did everything but that and Pardew famously said: "We know he will score goals." However, he did the opposite managing just three goals over two seasons.

Two goals came in one League Cup game and the other deflected off his shin in a 2-1 defeat to already relegated QPR.

The striker offered nothing for the Magpies and was only recommended by Chief Scout Graham Carr to be a backup striker to a more clinical and experienced striker.

Instead, the Newcastle hierarchy opted to allow Riviere to be the main man for almost two seasons.

8. Remy Cabella

One of the most talked-about and exciting signings under Ashley and Pardew so it was a real shock when he flopped as he did.

The Magpies had been scouting Cabella extensively for nearly three years and seemed to have snapped up one of the most talented players in Ligue 1 when he signed in 2014.

Like Rivere, Cabella failed to make an impact in the Premier League and struggled to cope with the physicality as he only managed three goals in 31 appearances.

He was shipped back off to France in exchange for Florian Thauvin from Marseille, and everyone knows how that ended up.

7. Florian Thauvin

The player that promised so much and has gone on to win a World Cup and become a full French international.

Thauvin is the best example of the right player, wrong club as he had all the talent required to become a star of the Premier League, however, he never settled on Tyneside and never really wanted to leave France.

The winger later admitted he did not want to make the move to Newcastle, but he could not turn down the move as the financial package offered to him was too good.

Thauvin demanded a move back to France after going down injured against Watford in the FA Cup as many fans believed he was not up to the task and would never make it on Tyneside.

The winger never settled at the club and was almost destined for failure from the beginning as he did not want to be apart of the club and was one of the reasons why Newcastle were relegated that season.

6. Sylvain Marveaux

Marveaux was one of the most puzzling signings during the Pardew reign as he was close to sealing a move to Liverpool, but was unable to agree personal terms.

However, he did not even come close to fulfilling his potential managing just 38 appearances in five years making him one of the more expensive signings under Ashley in terms of wages and what they got from that.

He was signed on a free transfer, thus putting him on high wages compared to other players at the club.

Marveaux was mainly injured for his time on Tyneside or not fancied by Pardew and those sides were not blessed with a lot of talent.

Like four out of the five names on this list, Marveaux returned to his native France where he found some form at Lorient scoring 12 goals in 51 appearances.

5. Curtis Good

The Australian centre-back was signed for a relatively low fee and as a teenager with a lot of potential with many top clubs from Europe looking at him.

However, it was the Magpies that got his signature and penned him down on a six-year deal.

However, he failed to make a single appearance during his time at the club and was never anywhere near the first team plans, struggling to get regular game time for the under 23s.

Although he was yet another relatively cheap transfer, he got six-years of high wages, for nothing in return which is something the club have put a stop to in recent years, not offering long deals for unproven players.

4. Seydou Doumbia

One of the biggest panic buys in the Magpies' history, Doumbie was an unproven striker outside of Russia as well as injury-prone.

Doumbia was desperate for a big move in one of Europe's top leagues and Newcastle gave him that option as Steve McClaren looked to guide the Magpies away from the drop zone.

Newcastle were struggling for goals in the 2015/16 season and the Magpies looked towards the Ivorian, which did not help their cause as he made just the three substitute appearances.

He was signed McClaren but never got a chance under Rafa Benitez as he was rumoured to be overweight and way off the pace compared to his teammates.

Doumbia's loan deal was not extended as the Magpies were relegated and he signed for AS Roma where he signed a three-year deal and two of those were spent out on loan.

3. Henri Saivet

The strangest January season, especially during a crisis season under McClaren when goals were needed a holding midfielder was signed.

Saivet arrived with a good pedigree having stood out when he played against Liverpool in the Europa League earlier that season for AS St-Etienne.

However, despite his pedigree, he never got a chance under the former England manager and nothing changed under Benitez.

Saivet has had a chance to impress under three different managers and none of them have thought he has been up to the standard of the Premier League.

He has had three different loan spells since being at the club having only mustered up five appearances.

2. Facundo Ferreyra

Probably the strangest signing during the Ashley era, he was recommender by then captain, Fabricio Coloccini but failed to make the grade.

Rumours that Coloccini only suggested his friend as a way to get the striker out of Ukraine where there was political trouble with Russia at the time.

However, no matter the actual reason he was not good enough for the Premier League which shows as he never played one minute of football for the Magpies.

1. Xisco

The worst transfer under Ashley no doubt, not the worst in terms of footballing ability though.

However, this was the signing that caused Newcastle fans to turn on Ashley for the first time.

Xisco was signed under Kevin Keegan's nose and the Spaniard caused an Earthquake at St James' Park as tensions got worse and the sour taste is still felt by many Newcastle fans.

The Spaniard managed nine appearances in five years and was also cited during the tribunal between Keegan and Ashley.

That was the start of fan unrest on Tyneside and Ashley has never been able to recover since.

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