Newcastle Fixture List Getting Tougher

Things will not get any easier for Newcastle United, after playing 3 of the bottom 4 clubs recently, and getting a meager 4 points from those games against Wigan, Derby County and Fulham, the upcoming opposition looks an awful lot tougher.


Chris and Big Sam
– tough times for Newcastle United

The 4 points we got were lucky too, when you think we had a penalty with one minute left at Craven Cottage and scored an 87th minute equalizer against Derby County on Sunday.

Newcastle next five away fixtures are against Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal, Aston Villa and Liverpool. Squeezed in between them is a tough 3rd round FA Cup tie at Stoke City a week on Saturday.

Our next four home games are against Manchester City, Bolton, Middlesbrough and Manchester United. So the upcoming games will all be fairly tough, since Bolton Wanderers are now not the pushover they were earlier in the season.

However, in a couple of weeks we’ll also be losing Oba Martins, Geremi, Habib Beye and Abdoulaye Faye to the African Nations Cup. Alan Smith’s booking yesterday also means both the stand-in skipper and Nicky Butt are now on a total of 8 yellow cards and only two away from a two-match ban. Seems like we have lots of problems in the immediate future on the playing side of things at Newcastle.

So it will certainly not be easy for the club. But if the lads decide they will fight to the death in each and every game and show some of the spirit of former great Newcastle sides, you never know what might happen.

But any other games like yesterday and Sam will be in really deep water, that’s for sure.

Comments very welcome.

9 comments so far

  • carl

    Dec 27, 2007 at 2:32 PM

    Comment #1

    on the spot ed- something drastic has to change and quick, these next 10 games could put us too close to the bottom for comfort, we have the players capable, but unfortunatley i have lost all faith in allardyce, and it looks like the players have too, oh and i see allardyce has just named smith as captain, f@@@@@g brilliant! just knew he would keep him in the team.

  • steve

    Dec 27, 2007 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #2

    We’re going down going down going down – sing along

    I can see us getting a max of 4 points from the next ten games, even then we’ll probably blow it against Boro and Bolton, maybe only then will sam be sacked. It’s more likely players will play out of thier skins for the bigger games and maybe come away with a point against chelski thereby saving sam for another week – this is so depressing, I live down south and even Spurs and West Ham fans are taking the p!55 out of me (The Fulham fan said we were easily the worst team to visit Craven Cottage (I was there with him and even though we got the points we were sh!te).

    Hopefully I’ll be able to take the p!55 out of Charlton or Leyton Orient fans next year 🙁

  • Hadrian

    Dec 27, 2007 at 2:54 PM

    Comment #3

    i hope we get turned over and hung out to dry . no more papering over the cracks BS .
    if only we didnt put on that display at home with arsenal … that game bought him more time again , only for him to balls it up.

  • Tom_Toon

    Dec 27, 2007 at 3:41 PM

    Comment #4

    7 points and advancing to the next round of the fa cup form al the game you mentioned in my opinion.

  • Andy H

    Dec 27, 2007 at 3:46 PM

    Comment #5

    If we wanted to achieve anything this season it was obvious all the work had to be done in the first half of the season where the fixtures have been so kind. Not being unrealistic, with our squad we should be up in fifth or sixth easily now or maybe higher when you think back to all the stupid points we have dropped. That’s what I expected from Big Sam and the first few games were promising. Last season at half way Bolton were 4th but faded away. If we get any worse now relegation is a distinct possiblity. I have always thought we should give him time because with the league finishes he achieved we a less capable squad at Bolton seemed to make him the outstanding English candidate.

    I thought it would always come good and still might but my confidence in him is at an all time low like most fans and there must come a time when we say it is just not acceptable. The next ten games are a horrible thought when you look at how we have performed so far. There are so many games this season that in my opinion top any of the crap under the last to managers.

    Derby away was terrible. But then we had three good home wins against decent teams West Ham who we really outplayed, Everton – who are looking in great shape now and Tottenham. At this point Derby seemed like a blip but it was the same story at Reading. Big Sam has finally said it now, but it has been clear all season that he has no confidence in his squad. Trying to defend against relegation strugglers shows it clearly.

    He doesn’t do himself any favours with his team selections, but I’m not going to try and say I’ve got the solution to the tactics because a lot of the time I’ve agreed with him. He drops players who aren’t performing and brings in Emre, who I’ve wanted to start for weeks and we still lose at Wigan. I can’t understand why Smith was holding yesterday because he has showed his best form upfront and if he thought Butt’s perfomance against Derby meant he deserved to be dropped, which I’m inclined to agree with- Geremi was the ready made replacement. Playing tow dmf against a team 2nd bottom and with only Emre to create anything is not on. Negative tactics will be our downfall – not the shape I think we have had good games in 4-4-2 and 4-5-1 but shit games in both too.

    This is where I sympathise with Big Sam and can understand his complaints about the players. The Portsmouth game for example was just out of his control. He picked a 442 that he thought could win just like he had in the previous home games but on the day the players let him down.

    He is right when he says that when we are bad we are truly awful. And this sort of inconsistency from the players, forget for a minute Big Sam’s own inconsistency, is going to ruin hopes of decent league finish. Whatever team Big Sam sends out we have got the players to beat the like sof Wigan and Derby and at the end of the day its the players who win and lose us games. If they could show the same commitment they did against Arsenal we would have no problems – but they don’t.

    All his signings have shown ability but then looked awful next game. Rozehnal and Cacapa have both looked great on their day but on others like Bramble. And when they play shit – really shit like Rozehnal and Cacapa have done they are dropped. Only with Smith can Big Sam be blamed for playing him out of position and that’s fair enough because really he doesn’t offer enough to play in any position and that’s why it is ridiculous that he has been chosen to replace Geremi who was also only captain for is versatility. How many decent teams would play a striker as a holding midfielder in the next game.

    None of this has probably made sense. I am as confused as Big Sam as to why we are playing so badly and despite all of the horrible tactics and performances that have been worse than any team in the league. I still think he should, with his experience and credentials, be able to get us on track. We’ve seen a few decent performances but we have every right to expect the results against most teams.

    It’s down to the players to pull together for the manager and help the situation with a performance against Chelsea like against Arsenal and hopefully this time we can get 3 points. If we are going to keep him he needs to be backed with a lot of money in january because the players, in some areas just are not good enough. The worst thing we could do is to keep him and not improve the squad because nothing will get better. He needs the season at least. Beyond then. I don’t think he’s the man.

  • clinta

    Dec 27, 2007 at 3:47 PM

    Comment #6

    Yeah sam needs to go, not real keen to hear his excuses of “were short of players because of the african cup of nations” when we play poorly throughout january, we have a decent side, with alot more depth and money than some smaller teams who have out played us this season, 9 of these players he’s now blaming are his own. i hope the board don’t give him any money come january as it’ll just be wasted.

  • Eve

    Dec 27, 2007 at 4:25 PM

    Comment #7

    I actually think that we play better against the better sides. Like I wouldn’t be surprised if we drew against Chelsea, we just tend to play better against bigger sides. IMO anyway.

  • Chris Bunton

    Dec 27, 2007 at 5:24 PM

    Comment #8

    Eve your right, we do play better against the better teams. It’s just a shame that we then lose to the Derby’s and Wigans….look at Sam at Bolton, it’s the same pattern, he knows how to stop teams playing but this doesn’t work against teams that can’t play! If only he would focus on getting our team to play rather than stopping teams playing…this has to be the most negative tactic in football!! Like Hadrian, I would actually take a few defeats if it could guarantee Sam’s dismissal becuase this is just painful!!

  • stk

    Dec 27, 2007 at 6:13 PM

    Comment #9

    in truth i’d feel sorry for sam if he got the sack and yes managers are under pressure, but he shoots himself in the foot, blaming players and playing smith in defensive midfield.

    there was a rather shocking article on teamsqualk saying effectively we can’t be changing managers constantly. i agree, if we’d had 5 in the last 5 years or something. and that we’re lucky we’re top of the bottom of the league. what?! what rubbish logic to give a manager time! if we rotated managers all the time i’d understand, i mean roeder got a season and a half effectively, but 8 months into the job, its plain to see he aint the man. now whats all this about rotating managers constantly? i mean sbr was here for 5 years, hardly rotating, if we got rid, which we wont do till end of season, it would be a short reign but not terminated unjustly. 8 months is shorts, but ^souness lasted longer, gullit and dalglish lasted a year each, if a manager has a season of ineptitude no owner in their right mind would say ” oh hes only had a year, give him another see what changes”. its blatent to see allardyce will get players to suit his crap tactics to stop team playing. how negative! that would be so damaging in the long run. if you’re man enough to play a real game of football, play a real game of football, not frickin chess!!!


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