Transfer latest: Unwanted Newcastle players 'close' to exit

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez says a number of his unwanted players are edging closer to the Newcastle United exit door.

The manager admits he needs to balance the books at St James's Park, and players will have to leave before he can significantly add to his Magpies ranks.

The likes of Tim Krul, Achraaf Lazaar and Emmanuel Riviere have been told they are surplus to requirements by Benitez, while the club are open to offers for Jack Colback, Henri Saivet and Grant Hanley.

And Benitez has revealed that the process of moving players on is close and that deals for reinforcements, with just just nine days of the transfer window left, are not too far away either.

"I think we are closer (to moving players out) than two days ago," said the manager, whose side take on Nottingham Forest in the League Cup second round tomorrow.

"But I still do not know how close. We are still working on players behind the scenes."

While a number of players have no future on Tyneside, Benitez says that every single one of them has acted in a professional manner, off the field and in training.

He explained: "Some of the players know they will have to leave, they knew that a long time ago.

"They have to be professional while they are here, and they are doing that.

"We have too many players around. They are here, so the way you approach every training session has to be a bit different.

"When you have so many days and weeks, and so many players around, it is not easy. We have players who we know will leave, but they are still around. That is not easy."

United could well be one of the busier sides in the top flight as the window comes to a close, with a goalkeeper, wide player and another defender all being considered by the manager.

And Benitez has made no secret of his need to add this summer.

He reiterated: "Some teams need two or three players because they were already in the Premier League, but we are coming from the Championship and need more players.

"I think we have a different situation to other clubs. The transfer window is open, but we were coming from the Championship and when we were in the Championship we knew we had to sign players for the Championship.

"Now we have to move some players. We have to wait until September 1 and we know things will be different. We are working on moving players out and moving players in."