Jesus Gamez Signing Shows Power Shift at Newcastle United

Published on: 08 July 2016

Newcastle United are close to completing the transfer of Atletico Madrid right back Jesus Gamez.

This shows the power shift that has gone on behind the scenes at St. James' Park, with new manager Rafa Benitez firmly in control of things.

Mike Ashley would famously never buy anyone who was over the age of 25-years-old, as the value of the player would only decrease over time - never increase.

And in Gamez, the club know that they will have to cut their losses for the right back eventually, maybe even in the next couple of years. But ever since Benitez has come on the board, this 'velvet rafalution' has started to take place, slowly but surely.

Where once chief scout Graham Carr pulled all the strings, and relied heavily on his contacts in the French market, this transfer window has been all about the manager and the influence he wields.

That much was evident from as early on as June, when a couple of transfer stories broke about young strikers playing in the Spanish second division. There has been nothing to suggest the Magpies will make those signings, but the indication from the club is clear - Rafa is leading the way now, and his contacts and his knowledge are the new gold standard.

So it revolves around to the transfer of Gamez, which could be completed on Thursday - wrote theChronicle. Newcastle have been crying out for a leader at the back, and for someone with experience to shepherd them through the upcoming Championship season. The 31-year-old brings both of those things to the table.

He's also a good footballer, and many pundits in Spain are surprised that the Atletico man will be taking a step down to the English second tier. That is exactly what United need, the type of solid, vocal and reliable players to benefit themimmenselyin the short term.

Gamez has Champions League experience, playing against teams such as Real Madrid and Bayer Leverkusen. Coming to Tyneside and facing Burton Albion will be a world away from that, but the fact that the club are bringing him in shows how dramatically the power lines have shifted.