Wednesday Feb 14, 2018. 15:00
Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer says he is expecting Algerian Islam Slimani to have a big impact at the club.
The Fennec Foxes striker has joined the Magpies on loan from Leicester City for the rest of the season, though he is yet to make his debut for the club.
A niggling thigh injury has prevented the striker from appearing in both the 1-1 draw away to Crystal Palace and last weekend’s 1-0 win over Manchester United.
The 29-year-old should be fit to play in United’s next Premier League match, away to Bournemouth on February 24.
“I was not surprised the club did not spend more money in the January transfer window because of what was going on in the background with the failed takeover, and I know Benitez wanted to strengthen his squad more than he did,” Shearer told BBC Sport.
“But two of the three signings he did make - Kenedy and [Martin] Dubravka - have been excellent, and hopefully Islam Slimani will have the same impact in attack when he is fit.
“It has been obvious all season that Newcastle need more firepower and, although it worked against Manchester United, scoring one goal will not get them a win every week.
“It was not enough against Burnley in their previous home game when Newcastle created lots of chances and missed a penalty, only to see their 1-0 lead pegged back in the final few minutes.
“The reason they managed to hold on this time was down to their spirit and resilience, which are both positives, but they are going to need more goals to go with that too.
“This was a brilliant win, but it remains incredibly tight at the bottom of the table and there is a lot more work to do.”