As expected, it was a very quiet end to the domestic summer transfer window for Newcastle United.
Departures were always more likely than incomings at St James’s Park – but Steve Bruce went with what he already has on his books, rather than dip into the market for lower league recruits.
With the window now closed, what constitutes Newcastle United’s strongest starting XI this season? Our writer Liam Kennedy takes injuries, illness and suspensions out the equation to name what he believes is Bruce and United’s best side for the Premier League.
1. Goalkeeper: Karl Darlow
Rewarded with a new contract recently, Darlow is one of the most in-form goalkeepers in the Premier League at the moment - and Newcastle United need him to be, with Martin Dubravka out long term.
2. Right back: Emil Krafth
The Swede impressed last time out against Burnley and although Man United will be less physical, he's probably earned the right for a run in the role.
3. Centre back: Jamaal Lascelles
The Newcastle United skipper, when fit, is an automatic pick to play at the heart of defence. There might be better technicians within the department sitting on the bench, but Lascelles is a leader and when he's not there, United certainly miss his presence.
4. Centre back: Federico Fernandez
The best defender in the United squad, arguably. Consistently solid, good with ball at feet, strong in the air and a good partner for skipper Lascelles. The Argentine ranks as one of the best players signed under previous manager Rafa Benitez, who had managed the former international previously at Napoli.
Photo: SCOTT HEPPELL