Perhaps the worst aspect of Newcastle United's barren summer is that many could have predicted it when the disconcerting presence of Joe Kinnear was welcomed back to St James' Park in June.
During a transfer window that so urgently called for improvement to a desperately small squad, the great club stumbled through the summer haphazardly attempting to strike deals against the backdrop of an uninspiring hierarchy, failing to secure one meaningful transfer before last night's deadline.
Newcastle have secured the services of Loic Remy on a loan deal, who arrived at St James' Park with a calf injury and having taken part in little or no pre-season, along with the relatively unknown quantity of Olivier Kemen, signed on a free transfer from Metz.
But as transfer deadline day came and passed with no further new faces introduced to the dressing room, Alan Pardew will indeed be repeating what Newcastle fans sang at Morecambe last Wednesday. "Where are your signings, Joe Kinnear?"
From the moment Kinnear was put through to talkSPORT on that afternoon in June his three month reign as director of football has been an unprecedented disaster. Having coming so close to the precipice of relegation last season, the club screamed for a summer of stability without the threat of internal capitulation it has so often been susceptible to during Mike Ashley's reign.
Efforts to placate understandably frustrated Geordies have already been made. "Joe (Kinnear) has worked hard on numerous targets, particularly an additional offensive player," a statement from Alan Pardew released on Tuesday afternoon read.
"However some of the options that were available within our financial means were not as good as the players we already had and there is no point bringing in new players unless they can improve us and take us forward.
"We did the majority of our business in the January transfer window, signing five excellent first team players. With the strong squad we have we should all approach the season in a positive, optimistic frame of mind."
Given the brash and excessively confident claims made at the beginning Kinnear's tenure, such comments are unlikely to cut any ice with supports.
His nonchalant claims that he can "open the door to any manager in the world" in efforts to bring recruits to the club produced uproar in the north east and something between bewilderment and amusement elsewhere.
Suggestions that he farcically vetoed the signing of FC Twente defender Douglas, a deal carefully negotiated by former managing director Derek Llambias, only incensed supporters further.
Kinnear continued to fulfil the nightmares of Newcastle fans; that a man whose only involvement in club football in the past nine years came as a short and unspectacular five month stint as their interim boss was now steering the club through perhaps one of their most pivotal summers in recent years.
With his hands tied, all Alan Pardew has been able to do is reassure fans while simultaneously prepare excuses for Kinnear and Ashley. Not for the first time, the Newcastle boss made it clear the club needed another addition up front following the arrival of Remy, suggesting the void left by Demba Ba's departure still gaped ominously.
Regardless of what attempts were made to address this, the manager's pertinent concern should have been adhered.
That first interview where he proceeded to mispronounce half the club's squad with Del-Boy-esque inaccuracy gave the first clear indication that the 66-year-old was glaringly out of touch with modern football, a capital crime in an age where constant briefing and consultation with scouts over potential targets is so vital for someone with the words 'director of football' stamped on their office door.
The former manager heralded the simplicity of his job amid bold claims that he was capable of bringing in the players possessing the ability to transform the club into a Champions League contender, a statement bizarre enough at the time, incomprehensible now.
While a victory over Fulham on Saturday afternoon and the continued presence of Yohan Cabaye at St James' Park perhaps left Pardew slightly more confident at the weekend, it is likely to have little comfort today with the transfer window firmly closed until January.
The club held talks with Lyon striker Bafetimbi Gomis on a number of occasions throughout the summer, with the French club's outspoken owner Jean Michel Aulas appearing open to cashing in during a summer of belt-tightening at the Stade Gerland. No deal was struck, leaving the club back at square one.
Whether a repeat of last season is on the cards remains to be seen. The club will hope to avoid the injuries that plagued their squad last campaign, while the likes of Moussa Sissoko, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa and Mathieu Debuchy will hope to further refine their standing in the Premier League.
But ominously, Sunderland, Aston Villa and Southampton - those teams who finished around them last season - have admirably added to their squads. Broken promises just two weeks into the new season do not bode well for Kinnear, or for Newcastle's season.
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