Rafa Benitez still seeking added competition for Newcastle squad

Rafa Benitez remains hopeful he will be able to add to Newcastle’s squad as the summer transfer window draws to a close.

Benitez says he needs to increase competition within the squad and, although he has been more active in the transfer market in the last week, feels there is still work to be done.

Newcastle’s pre-season concluded on Saturday with a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Augsburg, a performance Benitez was much more pleased with than the 4-0 hiding at the hands of Sporting Braga.

Benitez has so far brought Switzerland defender Fabian Schar and South Korea midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng to the club, while Japan striker Yoshinori Muto secured a £10m move to Tyneside during the week.

His desire to sign another new striker could soon be quenched with Sky Sports News understanding a swap deal which will see Salomon Rondon arrive at St James’ Park edging closer.

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Asked about recruitment in general, Benitez told Sky Sports News: “We are trying to improve things.

“We don’t have too much time but we have to try until the last minute of the transfer window to do the best for the team.

“I don’t know if we can finish, or not, the deals. We are working, trying to improve the squad for the first game of the season.

“Hopefully we can do something and it will be positive, because you have to increase the competition and improve the squad.

“If we do that – maybe it still could be a little bit late – it’s better than nothing and we can try to do well from the first game and see where we are.”

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