Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce admits there is still work to do with his Newcastle defense but Sam is encouraged by the many options available to him.
Five of the Magpies’ nine summer signings were defensive recruitments as Big Sam set about tightening Newcastle’s poor rearguard.
And now we only have 3 players out injured now so Sam has a wide selection available for the team on Monday evening against Spurs.
Sam Allardyce – has fixed Newcastle’s defense already – and it will only get better
Our defense by common agreement has been poor for years and years and we were impressed when Sam announced his first mission was to bring in players to solidify Newcastleâ€™s defense. Fixing your biggest weakness as a first priority? What a concept. But as weâ€™ve found out Sam is down to earth and an excellent manager for Newcastle United.
The Newcastle boss has still to decide on his preferred back four, and that is also true with the full team, as we now have most of our players back from injury. Abdoulaye Faye and Claudio Cacapa are the latest pairing at the heart of the backline and we think they will retain their positions for Mondayâ€™s game following a powerful display against Everton.
But Allardyce says that, while players will be disappointed if they are not in the team, he is more than happy to have so many defensive permutations at his disposal. Sam told nufc.co.uk today:
“I had to be brave after the Man City game and change things at the back,”
“Having that defensive flexibility is so important because we all know that one of the biggest weaknesses here has been the defense.â€
“It’s still not right but we did limit Everton in the last game to just a few opportunities and things are getting better.â€
“We have got lots of options at the back and Steven Taylor and David Rozehnal would’ve been disappointed to miss out against Everton.â€
“But it’s my job to disappoint people when I think I need to and they have got to take it on the chin and come back fighting.”
We should have won the Everton game by a score-line of 3-1 but for a mistake by Shay for the second goal. If Shay had let the ball go it would have drifted wide but he turned it into his own goal so giving up 2 goals was a little disappointing and not reflective of our good overall defensive performance against Everton.
Here’s our current injury situation according to PhysioRoom.com Injury League Table:
M Viduka Calf Muscle Strain 22nd Oct 07 S Ameobi Groin Strain 22nd Oct 07 P Ramage ACL Knee Injury Apr 08 S Carr Hamstring Injury 22nd Oct 07 C Babayaro Groin Strain 22nd Oct 07 D Duff Sprained Ankle 3rd Nov 07
But we know that Vuduka, Carr and Babayaro are now back in training so we only have 3 out injured, which is great news. But this now gives Sam a wide selection of players for Tottenham.
What do you think the team should be for next Monday? You can also comment from now until after the game on our Newcastle United Forum on the Tottenham game â€“ and anything else you want to start as a topic of conversation. Don’t forget that Alan Smith is suspended and cannot play in this game.
Comments and entries in our Newcastle United Forum are always very welcome.