Allardyce Big Fan of N’Zogbia – That’s No Surprise

Sam Allardyce thought Charles N’Zogbia had an excellent defensive game at left back when he first played him in that position against Carlisle United a couple of weeks ago.

Charles again showed his adaptability yesterday when he played left back again against Serie A club Sampdoria in the first half before moving to his more familiar position in left midfield after that.

If Charles cannot nail down a starting position in every game this season he’s still going to get a lot of playing time having proved he can play well at left back, left midfield and of course center-midfield. So he’ll be great to have on the bench when he’ not starting.

What a player to have available to you in your squad – and he can only get better!


Utility player Charles N’Zogbia – looking better than ever

Not sure what Charles’ best position is now – but he looked superb to us last week against Juventus especially in the second half as he kept breaking out of defense with lightning speed and looked so dangerous. He again had a very good second half yesterday and it’s looking like Charles has got himself super-fit.

Manager Sam Allardyce felt N’Zogbia probably pipped debut boy and goal-scorer Alan Smith for the man of the match honor yesterday. His adaptability in pre-season has pleased Sam, who is keen to have his players able to switch positions during a game.

All the nonsense going around about Charles leaving the club – we hope we can finally put that to rest. Let’s listen to what Sam had to say about the 21 year-old.  Sam not only heaps deserved praise on Charles for his excellent play but also for his willing adaptability.

This is what Sam told the Evening Chronicle today::

“Charles N’Zogbia was probably man-of-the-match for me.”“I know Alan Smith scored the goal – which was great for him on his debut – but Charles was probably the most consistent player.”

“It’s nice to see a young man of his capability coming in and playing a couple of positions for me – left-back and wide left.”

“His adaptability is superb. I look forward to him progressing and getting better and better.”

We think Charles will get better working with Sam – and to think that Charles was so annoyed with things at the end of last season it appeared  he would would leave the club. Looks like Big Sam arrived just in time. We have to give credit to the young Frenchman for forgetting all about what happened at the end of last season and getting stuck in during pre-season. He looks so fit now and he is playing for a manager who firmly believes in him and will not hold him responsible for the failings of the whole team.

We always thought Sam could start to bring out the best in some of our existing players and he’s already doing that with the likes of Luque, N’Zogbia and Carr to name but three. That makes it exciting for what the squad may be able to achieve this season.

Finally, no wonder Arsene Wenger has been after N’Zogbia for a few years. Wenger is no fool and can see a star in the making.
Unfortunately for Wenger Charles will become a future star, but that will be with Newcastle and not Arsenal.

Comments Welcome.

39 comments so far

  • Lassi from Finland

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #1

    This is what impresses me the most about Big Sam: he’s able to bring out the best in our existing players. It’s interesting to see N’Zogbia and for example Luque performing much better now – although I’m excited about the new signings, I’m also looking forward to seeing what our “old faces” can do.

  • t-g-w

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:11 PM

    Comment #2

    Glad Sam rates him so highly (as Charles deserves) because he didn’t get a game under Roeder although he had injury problems. A great prospect for the future and already a great player! Even Souness recognised his potential!

  • Irish-Toon

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:14 PM

    Comment #3

    And to think we almost lost Zoggy at the end of last season. Sam seems to be sorting things out at the club. If we can get the same reaction from the rest of the players as we have from N.zogbia and Luque this could turn out to be a decent season

  • Gallowgate Geezer

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:25 PM

    Comment #4

    The Zog is amazing..keep him at the toon for as long as possible!! A tru legend!!

  • Callum

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:26 PM

    Comment #5

    Imagine what Big Sam could have done with Bramble, but maybe he saw Bramble has no hope and thats why he got rid of him within days of getting appointed 😀

  • Nathan

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #6

    Did anyone else notice how fit Stephen Carr looked?

    He’s lost a load of weight and had a really good game in my books, surprised me

    maybe Sam IS a miracle worker…

  • Bosck

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:33 PM

    Comment #7

    Hopefully now people will stop going on about how we are supposedly going to sell N’Zogbia to Fulham for £3m. Irrespective of whether Diop comes, have been saying all along that there is no way Big Sam would let Zogs go, especially at such a ludicrous price.

  • Hammy

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:35 PM

    Comment #8

    Yeah NATHAN, I’ve noticed Carr has looked transformed, I am not his biggest fan but I begrudgingly admit he had a decent game against Sampdoria….if he can regain some form he could still do a job for the toon.
    I think though when you say he’s looking “fit” well you might want to rephrase that……..

  • Kash

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:35 PM

    Comment #9

    It really made me happy how Samps manager described us as a “strong team”. I know Sampdoria aren’t the team they used to be, but Italian teams are usually very well drilled, fit and hard to break down. But it seems we turned the tables on them and played like an Italian team ourselves (BSA specialty). I didn’t see the game, but I am very impressed with comments i’m reading. Optimism is running high, lets get in Drago and hopefully another 2 (DM and playmaker) and we will be a real force by November once BSA has the players all at full tilt. We definitely have the right manager now, FFS parting gift was to finally make a good decision!

  • D.

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:35 PM

    Comment #10

    I certainly noticed a marked improvement in Carr’s game. He still seems vulnerable on the counter attack or when players run at him with pace, but he was doing all the simple stuff without problem. He has lost a lot of excess bulk, too — just compare images from this pre-season to images from last season.

  • Tez

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:44 PM

    Comment #11

    By any chance do you think we could not get Carr to grow a few inches and then were sorted.

  • Hammy

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #12

    Charles is certainly a better attacker than FB but it’s great that he can slot in….he’d be great on the overlap…nice to see us using the wings again even if it’s just to pull opposition defences apart…
    Anybody wondering why Benitez didn’t go for Jose Enrique as he seems to have taken the rest of La Liga to Anfield….

  • Kash

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:52 PM

    Comment #13

    Hammy – I posed that question about Enrique on Friday, but reports suggest that we acted so quickly on that transfer that we pipped Rafa to it. I also think Heinze is going to L’Pool so, they’ll have 2 quality LB’s. But good work Mort and Cushing, as there hard work has got us a promising player. He looks very imposing too, my friend was at the game and he said that Enrique is stacked (with muscle)!

  • G

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:52 PM

    Comment #14


    Cacapa Tayls Rozehnal
    Milner Barton Nzogbia
    Owen Martins

    i like this team a lot 🙂
    subs to choose omg : duff, viduka, emre, luque, solano, enrique, baba, carr, butt, ……………..

  • Ryan

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:53 PM

    Comment #15

    Well looks like Sam won’t be throwing any of our recent defensive additions into the deep end at Bolton on saturday. Which leaves me guessing as to what the lineup will actually look like. I can only think that Nzogbia will be forced to play left back(if not him, who else?) I for one hope Martins starts.
    I have to admit still a side I fancy to beat A Bolton side under Sammy Lee. Would be disappointed though if Smith and Viduka start up front together with Martins on bench. OBA-OBAFEM, OBA-OBAFEM,OBA-OBAFEM, OBAFEMI MARTINS!!!!!!!!!

  • Hammy

    Aug 6, 2007 at 2:57 PM

    Comment #16

    Cheers Kash!!!

  • simen e

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:04 PM

    Comment #17

    i agree ryan. oba up front! 🙂 if we can get drago this week, i would settle for one more signing. a very good right back. dreaming of daniel alves, or micha richards 😉 !

  • Kash

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:07 PM

    Comment #18

    I can see Drago starting if we sign him. He’s the perfect player to beat the crap out of Davies, Diouf and Stelios!

  • Nick C

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:20 PM

    Comment #19

    Just got me tickets for Bolton. COME ON!!!!

  • steve

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:24 PM

    Comment #20

    @bosck – agreed, can’t see Sam letting zoggy go for 3 mil, if Dyers worth 8m then he’s gotta be worth at least 6
    Thought he had a good game yesterday and agree with BSA that zogs was prob man of the match, great to see him getting more from the players.

  • Nufc1000

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #21

    Call it blind optimism, but when I look at the current squad (including Enrique cos he’s as good as signed) I cant see anything but a fantastic season ahead of us. I dont think anyone can argue with the fact that our forward line is as good as any in the league now. There is not only quality but amazing depth and variation to all of our attacking players and I really feel this could be a recipe for success. If Allardyce can finally put an end to the dodgy defence, get the team well organised and most importantly, keep everyone fit, I think we will be more than fine. If you also throw in the fact that we have no European commitments this year I think we truly will be a force to be reckoned with. Top 6, Top 5…… Top….who knows?

  • Kash

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:42 PM

    Comment #22

    Drago is saying he may snub us to stay at Sevilla, so it seems to me he’s trying to push for a little bit more in terms of money. I like the idea of Drago, plus his versatility will be handy. Sign him!

  • JP from The Rock of Gibraltar

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:47 PM

    Comment #23

    I can’t wait for this season to start! Amazing work done by BSA and the new board. At long last I truly believe we will win something this year or at least be back in europe. For all the doubters out there… BEWARE NEWCASTLE UNITED IS BACK AND STONGER THAN EVER!!

  • Tom_Toon

    Aug 6, 2007 at 3:49 PM

    Comment #24


  • Dirk

    Aug 6, 2007 at 4:05 PM

    Comment #25 are carrying quotes from the player, in which he states thing like “money isnt everything” and he intimates that he is likely to stay at Sevilla.

    This doesnt surprise me, to be honest. I have seen a lot of people getting excited about this transfer, referring to him as ‘our player’ or ‘as good as signed’. Nobody is our player until they sign the dotted line, folks.

    This stinks to me of the oldest trick in the book – play up a move for yourself to a different club in the press, wait for your current club to give you an improved contract, then claim you never wanted to leave and are more than happy at your club. Nice one, Drago, thanks very much.

  • Tom_Toon

    Aug 6, 2007 at 4:23 PM

    Comment #26

    I still think he will come 🙂

  • Kash

    Aug 6, 2007 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #27

    @ Tom – I agree, he’s managed alot with Sevilla, but they’re going to lose players and Barca, Real and Valencia have all strengthen considerably. Sevilla will lag behind, and the lure of the premiership is extremely high. Plus he’s a Shearer fan (as all of us are!) so i’m hoping our Ambassador will be having a quiet word in his ear!

  • t-g-w

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:06 PM

    Comment #28

    I trust in Sam’s persuasive powers to attract Drago to NUFC – he has flown over to have a chat…

  • Ed Harrison

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:26 PM

    Comment #29

    Nick – great – good for you 😀

  • Ed Harrison

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:27 PM

    Comment #30

    The Drago news is only on GOAL – they are saying it’s on Sky Sports but not on web-site – was it on TV?

  • Graham

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:33 PM

    Comment #31

    1st of all Kash – i’m not a shearer fan – he caused too much trouble at the club in my eyes.

    secondly – i was very pessimistic when allardyce came to NUFC but i must admit i have been proved totally wrong. If he gets to speak to Drago again, theres only 1 place he’ll be playing next year – and its not in Spain!

  • Howie

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:35 PM

    Comment #32

    It is on sky sports wwebsite Ed, go to nufc team page on sky web. Enrique has signed and it says it is for £6m.

  • Graham

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:37 PM

    Comment #33

    Enrique signing confirmed!,,10278~1086086,00.html

    Roll on Saturday!

  • TOON1

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #34

    Photos of enrique on official website with Chris mort.No sign of Big sam.Looks like he is trying to get Drago!!!

  • apan

    Aug 6, 2007 at 5:57 PM

    Comment #35

    Breaking News: Sam Lands The Bull

    SAM Allardyce has swooped for his seventh summer signing at Newcastle United by clinching a deal for Jose Enrique Sanchez.


  • rich

    Aug 6, 2007 at 7:01 PM

    Comment #36

    yes yes, Sam is the Man and im so happy we have got him.

    lets all hope for a VERY LONG and succesfull reign under Big Sam.

    To me this shows that Sam has a velvet glove to his managerial side and hes perfect for us… with certain players he can use the iron fist.. for delicate future-stars like Zog he can use the velvet glove… what a guy!

  • 9thJune

    Aug 6, 2007 at 7:05 PM

    Comment #37

    Ed, sorry to disagree, but am I the only one who thinks Zog has looked like a fish out of water at LB. Sure Big Sam is talking him up and trying to give some confidence back to the young lad (nothing wrong with that) and maybe Sam does believe that Zog can become a LB one day but I don’t believe for one minute he was impressed by his performances there so far!

  • Shearer 4 pm

    Aug 7, 2007 at 8:49 AM

    Comment #38

    Milner-Barton-Emre-Duff/Smith[moving central attacking]/N’Zogbia[when not playing left back]

    bit confusing but that is what i would play

  • James

    Aug 7, 2007 at 2:20 PM

    Comment #39

    Was Awsome agaisnt sampdoria on the weekend and after smith he would have been a contender for man of the match. Made a good number of tackles and got up that left wing with James Milner.Saw Enrique as well and he looked like he was enjoying the match


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