Newcastle United's failure to land a host of key targets has been down to their refusal to cave to the wage demands of prospective new players. Moves for Arsenal's Lucas Perez and Kieran Gibbs and Sandro Ramirez, who has joined Everton were thwarted by a salary structure which sees the club unwilling to offer more than £70,000-a-week.
Jonjo Shelvey is the club's best paid player, earning £3.6m-a-year, but the Toon are not keen on any other member of the first team squad exceeding the former Liverpool and Charlton Athletic midfielder. And according to The Chronicle that policy led to the club ending interest in recruiting three players this summer, a window in which manager Rafael Benitez has become increasingly frustrated over the lack of signings.
Spanish striker Perez wants in excess of £70,000-a-week - a demand which could yet delay his inevitable return to Deportivo La Coruna - and was immediately out of Newcastle's price range as they considered a loan move. Gunners teammate Gibbs is another who priced himself out of a move to St James' Park, having asked for £80,000-a-week to move to their Premier League rivals Watford.
Meanwhile, Newcastle turned down the chance to sign Ramirez, the former Spain Under-21 international who has moved to Everton, due to his wage demands which totaled £120,000-a-week. A move for Tammy Abraham also broke down over agents fees as the Chelsea youngster headed to Swansea City on a season-long loan.
The situation has been exacerbated by the failure to offload some of the deadwood in the Newcastle squad which includes Emmanuel Riviere and Henri Saivet.
Deals to sign Stoke City forward Joselu and Kenedy on loan from Chelsea are set to be completed in the coming days yet the revelations regarding Newcastle's rigid wage structure further exposes Mike Ashley's unwillingness to back his manager in the transfer market. The owner pledged to give Benitez "every penny" gained from returning to the Premier League - which could rise to an estimated £170m - yet those funds have not been forthcoming.
Benitez reportedly wants five more signings between now and the end of the summer transfer window on 31 August. The Daily Telegraph understand that along with Joselu and Kenedy, Benitez has identified Michal Pazdan of Legia Warsaw, while a left-back, a striker and a goalkeeper are among his other targets.