MIKE Ashley will splash the cash this summer – but strengthening has been put on hold while Joe Kinnear carries out his review of the first-team squad.
The Magpies have rejected the chance to sign two defenders on free transfers – Douglas and Alex Pearce – as the new director of football asses the players manager Alan Pardew has at his disposal.
Pardew had hoped to sign a commanding centre-half this summer. But captain Fabricio Coloccini has since commited his future to the club after it was initially feared he would leave the club this summer.
That leaves Newcastle with the Argentinian, plus Steven Taylor, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Mike Williamson and James Perch all capable of playing in the centre of defence.
And while that situation could change if Williamson – who has been linked with a move to Cardiff City – or Perch leave the club before the start of the new season, it appears that strengthening the rearguard is on hold while Kinnear carries out his review of the Toon squad.
Ashley sanctioned a £20m spending spree in January on five French players when Newcastle’s Premier League future appeared in doubt.
And Kinnear says the Toon owner is prepared to buy again to help the Magpies challenge for trophies.
Kinnear said: “Mike wants us to be successful.
“He wants us to do something here.
“He doesn’t want us to be in the position we were in last season.”
Kinnear added: “I’ll be the one who sits down with Alan Pardew and says ‘let’s get this guy’.
“I’ll be talking to the chief scout as well.”
The Magpies pulled out of a deal to sign Brazilian star Douglas, who was available on a Bosman transfer this summer.
And another centre-half, Alex Pearce, has signed a new deal at Reading after Newcastle – and Liverpool – decided against signing him.
The centre-half was available on a free transfer this summer after letting his contract at the Madjeski Stadium run down.
Newcastle and Liverpool had both been linked with a move for the Republic of Ireland international, but neither followed up their initial interest.
Instead, Pearce signed a new two-year deal with Reading, where he will hope to guide them out of the Championship again.