NEWCASTLE United’s transfer-window efforts ended in failure – with the club bottom of the Premier League’s spending table.
The hoped-for deadline day signings didn’t arrive.
And the club’s owner, Mike Ashley, and director of football Joe Kinnear came under renewed fire from frustrated supporters after a summer of inaction on Tyneside.
Newcastle’s only acquisitions were £2million loanee Loic Remy, signed from Queens Park Rangers on a year-long loan, and 17-year-old midfielder Olivier Kemen, who joined from Metz for an undisclosed fee.
United manager Alan Pardew had last week been optimistic that the club would sign another striker, or at least one “flair” player.
But the transfer window closed without any more incomings or outgoings at St James’s Park.
And the summer’s three departures – Steve Harper, Danny Simpson and James Perch – have left the squad numerically weaker than it was on the final day of last season.
A late attempt from Newcastle to sign 20-year-old goalkeeper Jonathan Bond was rebuffed by Watford. United were looking to sign cover for Tim Krul and Rob Elliot in the wake of Harper’s departure.
Yohan Cabaye remains a Newcastle player after Arsenal failed to return with an improved bid, but the midfielder’s actions over the past fortnight have left fans questioning his commitment.
Cabaye, having refused to play in the club’s first two Premier League games, made his seasonal debut in Saturday’s 1-0 home win over Fulham.
London-based Kinnear was appointed in June with a brief to oversee United’s recruitment.
The 66-year-old shelved a proposed move for one longstanding target, FC Twente defender Douglas, soon after taking charge.
And United’s interest in the likes of a number of players, including Bafetimbi Gomis, Demba Ba, Florian Thauvin and James McCarthy, came to nothing, with Ashley unwilling to pay what their clubs were asking for.
Kinnear had boasted of his contacts across Europe after his appointment. But his efforts in the transfer market have been mocked on Tyneside and elsewhere.