This summer will undoubtedly be one of change at Newcastle United.
The promoted club has already signed Christian Atsu, and manager Rafa Benitez wants many more players to come through the doors at St James’s Park.
And the arrivals will be balanced out by departures.
The Gazette reported last week that out-of-contract pair Vurnon Anita and Yoan Gouffran were set to leave United.
Here, we assess whether the senior players who played a part in Newcastle’s Championship-winning campaign will stay – or go.
Rolando Aarons spent a large part of the campaign in the treatment room, but, having signed a new long-term contract at the start of the season, the winger has time on his side. Aarons could be loaned out next term to gain first-team experience.
Sammy Ameobi returned to Newcastle in January from a half-season loan, but he only made three appearances for the club. The forward is out of contract this summer and his career at St James’s Park looks to be over.
Vurnon Anita, out of contract this summer, was invaluable to United in the Championship. The 28-year-old made 27 league appearances for the club, but he’s not expected to get a new deal at Newcastle.
This has already been decided. Winger Christian Atsu – who scored five goals during a season-long loan at United – is staying, with the club having taken up an option to buy him from Chelsea for £6.2million.
Ciaran Clark was arguably Newcastle’s most consistent defender in the Championship. The 27-year-old, a surprise signing from Aston Villa last summer, was outstanding in the heart of the club’s defence and will surely be a regular in the Premier League.
Jack Colback is an experienced Premier League player, but does he figure in Benitez’s plans for next season? Colback, however, has two years left on his Newcastle deal, and could well stay and fight for a place in the team.
Karl Darlow was surprisingly dropped for the final three games of the Championship campaign. The goalkeeper was superb once he ousted summer Matz Sels in late September, and the 26-year-old’s best years are ahead of him.
Mohamed Diame was a big disappointment this season. The midfielder, a powerful player, was his own worst critic. But the 29-year-old will most likely be given another chance by Benitez in the Premier League.
Paul Dummett has had his critics in recent years, but he was a pivotal part of the Championship-winning team. The 25-year-old was consistent and competitive, and has a future under Benitez. However, he will face more competition for a place.
Rob Elliot was recalled for United’s final three Championship games. Newcastle won them all to win the title. The 31-year-old, looking to go to next year’s World Cup with the Republic of Ireland, needs to be playing week in, week out at this stage of his career.
Jesus Gamez came with a big reputation last summer, having played for Atletico Madrid and Malaga. But the defender only made a small contribution to the club this season, and he could be one of those who leaves this summer.
Dwight Gayle backed himself to score 20 goals this season after joining from Crystal Palace last summer. The striker bettered that target by netting 23 times. Gayle won’t be an automatic starter in the Premier League, but he’ll surely be a regular for Benitez.
Yoan Gouffran came in from the cold at Newcastle this season, but the out-of-contract forward is still set to leave this summer. The 31-year-old is looking for a long-term deal, and he won’t get one at United.
Massadio Haidara needs to be playing every week after four and a half injury-hit seasons at St James’s Park. And it’s hard to see him getting regular football next season in the Premier League. He needs to leave for the sake of his career.
Signed to bring Championship experience to United, Grant Hanley did just that. The defender did what was asked of him when he was brought into the side by Benitez. Hanley could opt to stay and fight for his place, but he’ll most likely want to play week in, week out.
Isaac Hayden will only get better. The midfielder was missed during his spell out with an injury in the second half of the season. Hayden, schooled at Arsenal, can run, pass and tackle. He should do well in the Premier League, given time.
Jamaal Lascelles captained Newcastle to the Championship title. Like the team, Lascelles had his ups and downs, but the 23-year-old, young for a Premier League centre-half, will improve over the coming seasons.
Achraf Lazaar, signed from Palermo last summer, didn’t start a league game this season. Fans only saw a few glimpses of what the 24-year-old can do, but his future seemingly lies away from United after an underwhelming campaign at the club.
Chancel Mbemba had a frustrating season at Newcastle, though the campaign ended on a high for the defender, who scored in the season-ending win against Barnsley. Mbemba is another player that could well leave in search of regular football.
Aleksandar Mitrovic is a popular figure with many Newcastle fans, but he might well leave in the summer. Benitez has his own ideas, and Mitrovic, having spent much of the campaign on the bench, might want a fresh challenge himself.
Daryl Murphy, a surprise signing, made an important contribution to United. Murphy ably led the line when called upon, and he didn’t waste too many chances. Also, the 34-year-old calmness and experience was invaluable in the dressing room.
Ayoze Perez struggled to make an impact for much of the campaign, but the forward’s talent isn’t in question. And the 23-year-old finished the season strongly. He should do well in the Premier League next season.
Matt Ritchie had an outstanding first season at Newcastle. The tenacious winger scored 16 goals and was a tireless worker in Benitez’s midfield. Ritchie will be an important player for the club next season.
Matz Sels was signed last summer after a superb season at Anderlecht. Sels started the Championship season between the posts, but the 25-year-old found the adjustment hard, and was dropped in late September. He could well go.
Jonjo Shelvey came into his own in the first half of the Championship campaign. Shelvey, signed in January last year, was disappointing in the last few months relegation season, but time and again he played match-winning passes. He’ll need to raise his game again next season.
Signed from Tottenham Hotspur after a season on loan at Sunderland, DeAndre Yedlin settled in quickly at Newcastle. A good athlete, Yedlin got up and down the flank and showed he could defend and attack.