Why Newcastle United were right to offload Chancel Mbemba
The now-former Newcastle United defender Chancel Mbemba has completed his permanent move to FC Porto, for a fee of £7.14m. The DR Congo international played 59 games for the Magpies before deciding to leave St. James’ Park.
The 23-year-old, who joined the north-east club from Anderlecht in 2015, wasn’t a regular under manager Rafa Benitez last season, appearing in only 11 games. This probably stirred him to move elsewhere in order to get some game time.
Meanwhile, Newcastle need money if they are to spend on new players this summer, so getting rid of one of their fringe players to raise some cash is a smart deal. Mbemba is a very good talent but never seemed a perfect fit for Benitez’s system, hence, offloading him is the right choice made by the Magpies.
Now, they can spend that money on someone who can be a prominent part of the manager’s “structural football.”
Here’s why the club was right to sell Mbemba:
Right decision from Newcastle
Mbemba is a versatile defender, who can play as a centre-back, left-back or as a defensive midfielder. This helped him a lot upon his arrival under Steve McClaren but couldn’t harness much impact when Benitez took charge.
The Congolese possesses the attributes of a high-class defender with his tackling, interception rates and also aerial duels to dominate the centre-forwards. However, he lacked consistency and got caught in a wrong position on a number of occasions.
So, inspite of his good qualities and traits, Benitez never fancied him to offer regular game time last season. Therefore, it is a dexterous move by the Spaniard to sell the player because he has the attributes to make an impact at another club.
This is probably the right move for both parties because Mbemba might also be looking for a way to play some games, as he is only 23 and has plenty of football left in him. Benitez has in turn received some money to spend.
So, Newcastle United were right and smart in selling the Congolese international to FC Porto.