Allardyce – Players Need to Fight For Newcastle Shirt

Sam Allardyce has been training this week with those of Newcastle’s squad who have not been away on international duty.

While Newcastle have done well in their games so far this season we still haven’t seen a number of the squad participate much.

We still have Joey Barton, Jose Enrique, Habib Beye and Abdoulaye Faye yet to make their Premiership debuts for Newcastle. Allardyce also has Emre and Shay Given back from injury and Joey Barton is set to begin training with the squad on September 24th.

So competition for places is certainly heating up – which is exactly what Sam Allardyce wants.


Sam Allardyce – expects all players to fight for the shirt – good

Big Sam has to admit the current holders of the Newcastle shirts should make it very difficult for others to get into the starting eleven.

This is what Sam said today about his squad:

“The players at the moment hold the shirt and that makes it very difficult for the new players to get in the team,” “But that’s the sort of level of competition that any manager wants and I’m very happy to have it at Newcastle United.”

“The new lads (Beye and Faye) will be training and then we’ll introduce them into the squad as quickly as we can.” “We will do the normal assessment through the process of working with them on a day-to-day basis and then we’ll look to see when they are ready.”

Newcastle have had 12 players away on international duty during the current break, both at the senior level and the Under-21 level. Sam accepts that is a worry with regard to injuries, but freely admits it is a sign of just how good his squad is. So far we have no reports of any injuries from the games yesterday, so we’ll just have to keep our fingers crossed until they all get back home today at different times.

Sam continued:

“It’s a definite sign of the quality we have got that we have so many players called-up for international duty,”

“But it’s not just at senior level. We’ve got Charles called-up for France Under-21s which was extremely pleasing and of course Steven Taylor and James Milner for England.”

The next order of business of course is the league game at Derby County on Monday evening and if we can get 3 points there we’ll be off to a great start in the league. With Michael Owen’s heroics for both England and Newcastle recently we wonder how many Derby defenders will be defending against Michael. Owen’s presence will at the very least leave other players open in the penalty area. But Owen’s dynamic form of late has to make Newcastle fans confident of a win against Derby – but no game is easy in the Premiership, as we all know.

You can discuss the game on our forum before Monday evening.

Comments welcome.

6 comments so far

  • Mart

    Sep 13, 2007 at 10:16 AM

    Comment #1

    Derby at home will be desparate to wipe out the memory of letting in 6 against Liverpool and would be happy to take a point from us, especially with MO on fire.
    We should have too much firepower for them to cope with, but as you rightly say should not be complacent against any team in the premiership whatever their position.
    Still cant wait though……

  • Steve K

    Sep 13, 2007 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #2

    Derby are pants. Any effective, organised display against them will result in a win. There is at least two easy fixtures for all premiership teams this year against a dreadfully poor Derby outfit.

  • Lamesley Mag

    Sep 13, 2007 at 10:28 AM

    Comment #3

    We can’t be complacent at Derby but need to go there and grind out a win and 3 points.

    The squad has quality in depth and I’m looking forward to BSA introducing the likes of Beye, Enrique, Faye to the squad, but who does he leave out?

    Just can’t believe he’s remodeled this squad for a measily £10M!!!! Just a shame BSA did not arrive at Newcastle after Sir Bobby, as it’s history what Souness did with that team…….

  • evil dick

    Sep 13, 2007 at 12:52 PM

    Comment #4

    I’d take a 1-0 at this early stage in the season.

  • Moderated Bill (Formerly Bill F)

    Sep 13, 2007 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #5

    Evil dick, me too, it’s important to get the winning mentality instilled into the team.

  • Soren

    Sep 13, 2007 at 2:31 PM

    Comment #6

    No doubt we look good for the match agianst Derby, but as said, we must not get complacent with any team in the PL, wether it be Sunderland, Birmingham or any other team. We saw last year against Birmingham that surprises do happen. (Admit though, last season was a wierd season for us, but still no one had expected 2-5) But I don’t think it will be a problem this season, as the players have fought really well this season so far, and BSA certainly will pick the team, that are willing to fight the most. Still I’m pretty confident that we will win against Derby.

    hopefully keep a clean sheet again


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