Steve Bruce made an unforgivable mistake with £20m sensation miles better than Fraser – opinion

Newcastle could have landed a far better player than Ryan Fraser had they gone for Eberechi Eze in the summer.

What was the story?

The former QPR starlet was the subject of intense transfer speculation over the course of the summer window, with numerous Premier League sides said to have been interested in his services.

Sky Sports claimed that along with Newcastle, the likes of Fulham, West Ham and Crystal Palace were all in the race to sign the England youth international, but in the end, it was the Eagles who got him.

It was revealed that Roy Hodgson’s side shelled out a total fee in the region of £20m to lure him across London, and whilst he may not have gotten off the mark in a Palace shirt just yet, he has shown enough in his time on the pitch that he would have been a real coup for the Magpies.

Better than Fraser

Whilst Fraser may prove to be incredible value for money given that Newcaste only signed him on a free transfer following his release from Bournemouth, Eze has all the potential to develop into a top-class player in this league.

Last season in the Championship, the 22-year-old bagged 14 goals and provided eight assists, and was one of the rare shining lights in a team that could only manage to finish in mid-table – Fraser’s best goal-scoring season in a league campaign has only seen him net him half that.

Former Newcastle striker Les Ferdinand, who’s now QPR’s director of soccer, waxed lyrical about the prodigy, claiming: “If you look at his soccering ability I could put him down as one of the best I have seen in terms of what I have been fortunate to play with in my career.

“When I see some of the things he does on a soccer and how comfortable he is on a soccer, I put him up there as one of the best I have seen. Whether he fulfils his potential to be one of the best I have worked with time will tell but in terms of his ability with the ball certainly he is one of the best I have seen.”

At only 22, Eze is several years younger than Fraser, and would have been the kind of exciting signing that would have had Newcastle fans off their seats. Instead, the Magpies took the more cheaper, and safer option, of the former Cherries man.

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