Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez has bemoaned his side's lack of progress in the transfer window which has produced just one new first team arrival less than five weeks out from the start of the season. Florian Lejeune has joined from Eibar and though Christian Atsu has made his loan from Chelsea permanent the Toon have been otherwise frustrated this summer.
Long-term target Tammy Abraham decided against a move to the north east, instead joining Swansea City while a recent £8m bid for Norwich City's Jacob Murphy has been rejected. The Magpies have also abandoned attempts to sign Adama Traore from Middlesbrough after being quoted £15m to acquire the winger, according to the Northern Echo.
Benitez had been promised "every penny" Newcastle recouped from earning promotion and player sales, by owner Mike Ashley, seemingly providing the Spanish boss with upwards of £170m to build a squad capable of achieving survival in their first campaign back in the top flight. But there are now concerns Ashley has U-turned on that promise.
"It's not easy for a lot of teams because the market is a little bit crazy," said Benitez, according to Sky Sports. "We have to try to do our best. The top sides have a lot of money. The other teams are spending too, but we will see what we can do.
"We know where we are - that is not ideal because everybody wants to see a lot of players signing already, but we have to keep working and see what we can do. We can do nothing other than just keep working to find the players that we want, and hopefully we can do it."
Managing director Lee Charnley appears to be the main source of Benitez's frustration over Newcastle's lack of progress this summer, with the club preferring to wait until later in the window when they believe the over-inflated prices they are currently being quoted will be reduced.
The Daily Telegraph understand the ex-Real Madrid, Liverpool and Chelsea boss wants the club to submit a second bid for Murphy - who Norwich value at £12m - after he impressed him in the Championship last season. The 2005 Champions League winner is mystified over the lack of resources available to him despite promises from Ashley to the contrary when he committed his future to the cluib earlier in the summer.
A deal to sign Chelsea's Ruben Loftus-Cheek also appears destined to fail with the former England Under-21 international likely to become Frank de Boer's first signing at Crystal Palace. Joining Palace would allow Loftus-Cheek the chance to stay in London for the 2017-18 campaign, a far more attractive proposition for the 21-year-old than upping sticks to Newcastle.