Newcastle have quite a few games coming up in the next few weeks. Although our next game is next Saturday against Fulham at Craven Cottage we have another 5 games before early January, and hopefully our injury list will be improving this coming week.
Abdoulaye Faye – we hope he’s fit for next Saturday’s game against Fulham
Three of these games are very winnable games – against Fulham, Wigan Athletic and Derby County – so with any luck we can be fairly well positioned for the January transfer window. Weâ€™re sure Allardyce and Chris Mort have some targets already identified. Sam is also keen to get the injured back to being available. Our current injury list is the following.
Player Injury Return Date Carr Hamstring ? Faye Calf ? Owen Thigh 15Dec07 Babayaro Back ? Cacapa Knee 15Dec07 Ramage Knee Apr08 Duff Ankle 8Dec07
With any luck we hope that Faye will be available for next Saturdayâ€™s game. Taylor and Rozehnal played well against Arsenal on Wednesday and Sam Allardyce talked to the Shields Gazette before yesterdayâ€™s win against Birmingham:
“Against Arsenal, (Taylor and Rozehnal) were very, very good, but it’s about getting players like Faye and Cacapa back and ready.â€
“At the moment we don’t have a lot to juggle with, and it’s important that when we go into the Christmas period â€“ when three-game weeks come up pretty regularly â€“ that we’ve got enough to change the team.â€
“That’s going to be key for me. I’ve got to make sure I catch the level of fatigue and make brave changes as a manager to put fresher legs in, even though we might have got a result.â€
“I hope I’m going to be faced with that problem where the squad is fit and winning football matches, and I’m changing the side because I want somebody who is fresher on the pitch to give his all.”
Rozehnal of course blotted his copy book for the first goal yesterday and if Faye is fit again, weâ€™d expect him to take his place alongside Steven Taylor, who looks like he’s back to his best form. But we just cannot keep giving away these sloppy goals, like we did yesterday. It gives us a mountain to climb every game, and surely the new players are now more used to the demands of the Premiership, and know they cannot take any chances.
It’s now 14 games and way back on 1st September, since we last kept a clean sheet in our 1-0 win against Wigan at St. James’ Park. That record just has to be improved if we are to move up the league again, and it will be a good measure of just how well we’re doing in the future.
We’d like to see some new faces in the January transfer window, but we’d like to see players who already have Premiership experience. If we can get Tal Ben Haim in from Chelsea, he would be an excellent acquisition for us, and we think it’s possible we could get him from Chelsea.
What do you think? Who should we bring in during the January transfer window? Let us know – comments always welcome.