Newcastle Win Possible Against Manchester City

Newcastle United put in a solid display at Stamford Bridge last Saturday, and there seemed to be few complaints from the Newcastle faithful, following two terrible displays against Derby and Wigan.


Sam Allardyce – solid performance on Wednesday night could get us all 3 points

But we’re certainly not going to maximize our points, if we keep giving our worst performances of the season against the worst teams. We played badly in those games but also against Derby away and Reading away, where we should have easily picked up maximum points.

Consistency is the goal for the Newcastle players and we mustn’t slip into those insipid displays we gave over Christmas.

Sam talked to the Newcastle World TV this morning:

“There were a lot of positives and we have to take them into what is a crucial, crucial game against Man City,” “Every player can take something from the game but now they have to make sure they keep to that level and not dip below it.”

“We have been robbed of a point by what was a blatant offside and I think the officials are the only people in the stadium who haven’t seen it.” “Before that we had long periods of attacking play and could’ve got a winner had the ball fallen to our players at the right time – as it did with Chelsea for both their goals.”

“But we have to get on with things and we have two big games coming up starting with Man City.” “I want the players to find a level of consistency because we’ve already shown what we can do this season.”

We could have even won that game at Chelsea with a little more luck, so it was a heartening performance, that’s for sure. But we now have to make St. James’ Park a fortress again, where we can hopefully pick up wins.

It’s a great chance for us on Wednesday because Manchester City are not a good away side, and we must attempt to get all 3 points with an attacking display. Nothing less than that will be good enough on Wednesday night.

What do you think?

Comments and opinions are always very welcome.

42 comments so far

  • carl

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:16 PM

    Comment #1

    i think we could get the 3 points, but only if big sam plays 442.
    beye taylor cacapa enrique
    milner faye emre nzogbia
    viduka martins

    with duff,owen, roz,butt,harper on bench.

    hes got to go for the win, especially now and at home, anything other will send the toon army crazy.
    but knowing big sam hel prob play

    beye taylor cacapa nzogbia
    milner butt smith duff
    and we will get beat

  • Rob Kirton

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:24 PM

    Comment #2

    Thoroughly expect a win:

    Man City: Terrible away record and have recently lost their mojo when playing at home – maybe also knocking their confidence.

    Will we actually win?

    From recent performances – 3 shots at goal will represent an big improvement. You never know we might just score from one. It may even be better than that – in which case I’d find it difficult to contain my excitement.

    I fear expectations and reality to be at odds yet again. Go on Sam prove me wrong !!!!

  • Edd Case

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:35 PM

    Comment #3

    Everyone’s crying out for us to play a 4-4-2 for once and really have a go the opposition.

    This game is a MUST for Sam to do that.

    I’ll be backing the team (and Sam for that matter) 100%.

    I just sincerely hope that not only do we win, but we start fresh in 2008 with a sensible formation and a sensible line-up, i.e with players in their best suited positions.

    Failing the above, any signs of improvement much welcome.

    Howay the lads.

  • Steeley

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:49 PM

    Comment #4

    “few complaints from the Newcastle faithful”

    Ed – do you even read your own article responses!?!? You really need to wake up and start posting some more neutral articles!!

    The Chelsea game was an improvement, but his tactics and out-of-place players were sh!te AGAIN!! If Sam doesnt start bucking his ideas up immediately, then I think the Chairman might just have to reconsider his thoughts on Sam’s position…..we have some big games coming up and I can feasibly see us dropping to 14th/15th if results dont go our way…..and trust me, the fans wont take long to let the chairman know how they feel when that happens!

    Still, Sam could make all this go away by playing ‘normal’ football! We are at hom to Man City so we need to go out and attack them:

    Beye Faye Cacapa Enrique
    Milner Butt Emre Duff/Zog
    Owen/Martins Viduka

    Prove me wrong Sam….PLEASE!!!

  • Obafan

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:51 PM

    Comment #5

    Carl – I can follow your team but got 2 comments on it:
    1. Enrique is not a player I rate that high, so for now Zog as LB and Duff as left winger.
    2. SA doens’t support flair players like Emre, so he will be on the bench and Butt in his position.

    So your 2nd team as SA will play will once again be not balanced enought to give us the 3 points. Hopefully if we loose (which I really hope not) he gets the sack, cause things need to change quicklyor we are going to have a relegation battle in April – May.

  • Craig

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:53 PM

    Comment #6

    I don’t just want a result on Wednesday, I want to be entertained. I want my money’s worth. I want to see us playing attractive football.

    Mort has came out today laughing off speculation regarding Big Sam’s future – I wonder how much a difference a defeat tomorrow will change that, if we do get beat, I feat it could become ugly.

  • joeys handcuffs

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:56 PM

    Comment #7

    This bloggs also on citys websites ,not to sound to patronising but this is a game we should win ,as daft as this sounds we have been quite lucky at home and very unlucky away.I have watched Newcastle many times this season and went to the game at eastlands,and this is not what you expect from a geordie team ,big sams trying to do a Bolton thats all he knows,and this will cost him his job.You cant tell me the fans will put up with this kind of football ,sorry but your team is very beatable home and away and as a neutral you should be scared of st james park under big sam at present every team fancies their chances look at Derby .

  • Hadrian

    Dec 31, 2007 at 12:56 PM

    Comment #8

    Obafan , you must get to watch the training sessions with sam to make that judgement on enrique?
    ive not seen the lad do to much wrong in games , zoggys probably made more defensive mistakes this season , no?
    jose certainly hasnt done enough wrong on the pitch to not be in the squad letting zoggy push up, surely?
    i mean we’ve had rozy let goals go in plenty of times and he still gets his game (i hope he comes good btw).
    baffles me this enrique thing , really love to know what the hell’s going on .

  • Steeley

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:00 PM

    Comment #9

    Craig, I think the papers and making their own headlines again – Mort cam out and basically said that he ignores all the rumours and rubbished being linked with a certain new manager (Shearer) – he specifically said that he wasnt looking for change in that context, but not about any other different manager coming in….so we’ll see what he says should results (and performances) not go our way over the next 2 or 3 matches!

  • Barrie cummings

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:03 PM

    Comment #10

    just because we havnt won more away game s doesnt mean you will win agianst my team man city anything is posible after all your back 4 is more shacky than ours

  • Steeley

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:03 PM

    Comment #11

    “All this makes me laugh and I find all this speculation tedious. There is a different name every week and there is just no truth in it.”

    My apologies, the specific name which the quote was taken in context of was Martin Jol, rather than Shearer.

    Anyway, on another matter, Allardyce is 4/6 to be sacked by the end of the season and 5/6 to be the next Premiership manager sacked….and the bookies dont often give their money away!!

  • scott 9

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #12

    well win on wednesday
    beye cacapa taylor enrique
    duff faye emre zog
    viduka martins
    this is the team we should play in my opinion emre attacking mid faye dmf
    however i think sam will play this team
    beye cacapa taylor zog
    milner butt faye duff
    smith martins
    witch is the wrong way to go about it at home but thats what i think hell play hope he proves me wrong

    baye taylor cacapa zog

  • Obafan

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:22 PM

    Comment #13

    Hadrian – The times he played for us (okay it was not often) he didn’t convince me at all. He kicks the ball upfront without watching and every time he played he didn’t look that solid.

    I can be wrong, perhaps the guy needs time to adapt the pace of the EPL, but he can’t be given years to do so.

  • Dragoner

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:24 PM

    Comment #14

    Despite the tough times we are in, everyone must smile a bit when you hear about Sunderland trying desperately to sign some decent players and getting rejected left, right and centre lol

  • Hadrian

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:28 PM

    Comment #15

    those long balls of his got us some assists for goals if i remember , he’s a young lad in a new place trying to impress the manager, im guessing he’s doing exactly what he’s been told todo when he knocks those long balls up the field .
    i just feel zoggy gets caught out at lb aswell , and if were going tobe caught out there regardless , id rather zoggy be allowed to move up to the middle of the park .
    sam has no chance of cash in jan at this rate , he’s not even used his most expensive signing , second most expensive one is in jail, and the third gets played out of position and is a goalless striker 🙁

  • carl

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:39 PM

    Comment #16

    agree hadrian, lets face it, big sam aint going to give enrique a game away unless were infront by a few. so id love to see him play wednesday, as yes he knock the ball upfield at times, but his defending is better than zogs, also hes long balls are pretty acurate and maybe he just does need to adopt to the pace. but playing zog in left mid makes so much more difference.i hope we just attack,attack,attack

  • Bill f

    Dec 31, 2007 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #17

    Or alternatively Duff as a LB and Zog as an atacking LM, I think it would work.

    We really should beat MC even if just working on law of luck and averages and Oba cannot keep missing or failing to score.

    I would put money on Owen starting probably with Viduka. (not my choice just a hunch).

    And what are my New Year wishes, apart of course from World peace, the end of Faminine and despair etc.

    We are unlikely to get a top six finish ( although I am still mildy hopefull) so the FA Cup is my first wish.

    My next is for the following players to come to the Toon (in order of preference) and I will use a smiley or sad face to denote my expectations.

    Junhinho, the supreme dead ball man and possibly the most creative and energetic MF player in the world. 10/20m. 🙁 if he leaves Lyon will go to somewhere much bigger.

    Heitinga, the best all purpose defender in Europe and can play anywhere at back and is great at sweeping up and covering mistakes and frailties of his teammates. 10m 🙁 I understand someone is already got him precontract.

    Crouch, he is the best English all round striker at present imo. More than a target man and gives a lot of options in attack. 🙂 for the right offer we could probably get him. 🙁 Benitez says he wants 40m for him (tongue in cheek, but!!)

    Arshaving, must admit that I can’t remember seeing him play but is getting such glowing reorts on this blog has to be worth a punt. 🙂 actually seems to want to come to us.

    Berbatov, could have been number one choice but for the fact we are not going to get him, probably going to ManU in Summer. 🙁

    Modric, only saw him in the England game but he really impressed. 🙁 🙁 will go to bigger club in Summer.

    Cambiasso, have seen him in several of the Italian league games recently and imo is the unsung hero of Inter. The workhorse who makes them tick, which every team needs.
    Have no idea whether we could get him, I would think very doubtfull, would you leave Inter to come to us. 🙁 🙁 🙁

    Just a few ideas I am sure there will be many who disagree with my choices but hey we probably will not get any new good players so its just a dream anyway and I like to try and start the New Year with optimism.

    So happy new Year to all my fellow bloggers from the one and only real Bill F. 🙂 🙂

  • iain

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #18

    the enrique things is funny, but his defending has been better than the zogs.

    he was awesome up against arteta one of the best wingers in the league.

    he might hump the ball up the pitch a lot but that just says more about fat sam then him.

    enrique longs balls have actually been passes into space rather than cacapa/roz teeing up the opo ch for a free header, martins scored from mone pass didnt he ???

    if one of spains most exciting attacking full backs who when i saw him was all pass and move for villareal – he took real madrid too pieces in one of his first games, is resorting to long balls dont you think maybe thats sams tactics showing through ???

  • Tom_Toon

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #19

    heitinga, lol, you’ve got to be joking, you have never seen him play if you think hes ‘the best all purpose defender in europe’, what a joke that is.

    I swear there are only a handul of us that actually name realistic targets.

  • carl

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #20

    it is reported this morning that ramos and his bosses have agreed to let berbatov go in january??? all i know is that berbatov was/is a toon fan , and shearer is a legend to him. i think he would come as in one report he says he is willing to go to a club that matches his ambitions? well that certainly doesnt rule us geordies out

  • carl

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:03 PM

    Comment #21

    iain – agree , i havnt seen any bad from enrique, and i believe he will be great for us, wish sam would just play him

  • Dragoner

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:07 PM

    Comment #22

    Tom Toon. lets clarify something, you are not a scout, you are a fan just like everyone else on here. You do not know who is realistic, it is just your opinion. I dont feel half the players you name are realistic targets but i dont say it to you every time you post. Stop thinking you know it all. I seriously doubt half the players you name you have actually seen play…in real life, and i still believe you to be a football manager player regardless of what you say

  • Bill f

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:09 PM

    Comment #23

    Tom_ Toon I would have been gob smacked if you had agreed with me, still if we all agreed the blog wouldn’t be much good would it??? I think he would be a good buy.

    Happy New Year anyway, 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Dragoner

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:11 PM

    Comment #24

    I too believe Heitinga isn’t the best all purpose defender in europe, but to laugh off Heitinga as a suggestion is absurd as he is a fairly high rated defender. Also, do you not find it rude to call someone elses suggestion a ‘joke’. get off your high horse mate

  • shirts

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:26 PM

    Comment #25

    I’d like to see:

    Beye, Cacapa, Taylor (though he’s been shaky), Enrique
    Milner, Faye, Enrique, Duff/Zog (as sub)
    Viduka, Martins/Owen

    I think Duff has lost some pace but he’s a smarter passer and worker of the ball these days.

    Enrique has that potential too. I don’t know, but I think he plays a slower, more thoughtful Spanish style, which is good–playing along the ground instead of lumping useless long balls.

    With Duff, Enrique and Emre, we’ve got better passing and service for the forwards (who’ve been starved for good balls) (which sounds rather pornographic).

    What are people’s opinions on Taylor vs. Rozenhal? I know Taylor’s a local lad, but I’m not convinced by him lately. Rozenhal’s been shaky too, though, hasn’t he? Have we got another option at center back? I’m drawing a blank.

    I think Faye was great on Saturday. Sit Butt, Smith and Geremi. Faye was better than all of them. If Faye gets tired, put Butt in for him.

    I also feel like Smith and Geremi are utility players, not starters, (let alone captains). Can anybody really make a case for Smith, other than effort?

    I mean, it’s nice that he’s got a mohawk to supply our requisite dumb football hairdo, but other than that what does he really bring?

    And Milner? Stop the fecking dance-floor heroics, mate. You’re not John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever and there’s no bloody Beegees soundtrack. Pass the ball quickly and well, lad. When you’re isolated, take the man on, but don’t try to dribble round the whole fecking midfield. Same for you Zogs.

  • mark

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:31 PM

    Comment #26

    Bill f – £10, 20m for Juninho? Having a larf? hes like 32 or something, more like £5million.

    Heitinga – good player but bit boumsong style sometimes.

  • Leo

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:33 PM

    Comment #27

    possible but unlikely…

    i think sam might have a new years resolution, play 442…


    beye cacapa faye enrique

    milner nzogbia butt duff

    martins owen

    would be a sevearly good team i think

  • dafttwat

    Dec 31, 2007 at 2:54 PM

    Comment #28

    my team to beat man city
    neville terry nesta carlos

    ronaldo kaka gerrard ronaldinho

    berbatov rooney

    No more unrealistic than the previous shite ive just read ,why would Berbatov come up here if hes got ambition, lets be realistic this season is about gelling and hopefully mid table we are not an attractive proposition yet for the bigger players, we should of gone for Erikkson or another big name coach to attract these players thats why were losing out on our main targets ,theres no appeal here for them,big sams the worst thing to happen to us since Gullet.

  • ObaFan2

    Dec 31, 2007 at 3:03 PM

    Comment #29

    Possible but unlikely 🙁

    Depends on team/formation.

  • Tom_Toon

    Dec 31, 2007 at 3:12 PM

    Comment #30

    I wouldnt bother naming a player if i hadnt seen them, lets get that cleared up. A blog is there for opinions and i can say what i want.

    Id like you to check all of my computers because not have i only not got it,ive never even played on it mate, i have generally good player knowledge.

  • Obafan

    Dec 31, 2007 at 3:13 PM

    Comment #31

    Heitinga is really not that good; he often gets very bad comments in Dutch football.

    Enrique perhaps is told by SA to kick the ball upfront, but the only thing I wanted to say is that he has not impressed me so far.

  • Bill f

    Dec 31, 2007 at 3:34 PM

    Comment #32

    Mark, I don’t think he is as old as that, I thought he was in his mid twenties. If he is then obviously the price would be lower and also would make him more of a possibility. His quality is such that I doubt if Lyon would let him go cheaply and think a 10m+ price tag is realistic whatever his age. You would get more from him than a certain 17m signing I am not going to name but I think we all know who I mean.

  • Tom_Toon

    Dec 31, 2007 at 3:38 PM

    Comment #33

    Yes bill hes 32 and will be 33 in january i believe, dont think he’ll be leaving lyon anytime soon and if it is it will probably be to reitre to brazil.

  • steve

    Dec 31, 2007 at 3:42 PM

    Comment #34

    Surely Smith won’t play, he’s just come out of hospital, hopefully he’ll be dropped on medical advice
    Oba and Owen up front for me and we’ll play 4-4-2, we’re at home ffs!

    my prediction – a defeat, come on lads prove me wrong!

  • Bill f

    Dec 31, 2007 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #35

    Tom-Toon Fair enough, but he looks good for a few years yet, I cite Nobby as a precedent. He might just see the Toon as a worthwhile challenge (if you are listening Sam).

    Dafttwat, I am not sure that Kaka and Gerrard would work together 😉

  • Bobby Ollox

    Dec 31, 2007 at 4:52 PM

    Comment #36

    A win is possible – if Derby/wigan can defy the odds against us, there is no reason we cant turn the formbook on its head against Man City

    Isnt this depressing though ? Hoping for a win, at home, against a fairly average and declining team.

    I wrote the other week that the match against Derby, was perfectly teed up for us to show the world what it really meant to be a Newcastle player , and a Newcastle supporter – if we couldnt do it then, I see no reason why we should be able to do it on Wednesday.

    Big Sam needs his goolies felt, to start delivering what his adoring public are demanding… change of plan Sam….

  • Elano

    Dec 31, 2007 at 5:56 PM

    Comment #37

    You will lose 2 0

  • AG

    Dec 31, 2007 at 7:26 PM

    Comment #38

    Man City – awful away record. Look who we have lost to. Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs, Blackburn.
    Drawn with Portsmouth, Fulham, Villa, Wigan. Won at West Ham, Bolton. Yeah, suppose that’s pretty bad, but Chelsea apart, all the defeats have been by a single goal. Oh yes, we are unbeaten at home in the league.

  • newcastlefan

    Jan 1, 2008 at 7:09 AM

    Comment #39

    I guess we can go for win only if Sam plays 442 formation and keep oba and maybe Smith/viduka infront.

    I suggest that keep Oba and smith upfront and use Viduka as substitute for Oba. Oba has not scored in the last game against Chelsea because he was playing alone upfront. Give him a chance.

  • Jack H

    Jan 1, 2008 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #40

    The game against Man City is the real acid test of the success, progress or otherwise of the Big Sam era. Remember that SJE was mooted by some enlightened voices as a replacement for Roader, indeed even his agent said he would be interested, but the toon job was a done deal by then.

    This game should finally give lie to the old chestnut of ‘give Sam time’, both managers have had the same time with the same underperforming material. Man City were able to subsidise their sensible acquisitions by taking a broom to the rubbish – and selling some it at an extortionate price to sucker clubs like NUFC who still seem utterly incapable of spending large sums of money wisely.

    If NUFC lose this game there are surely no more excuses for the reluctant chairman and ostrich owner to persevere with BSA or his hard man assistant. Man City are poor away, despite their elevated league position, and if they are allowed to reverse this trend at the expense of NUFC then what more proof will be needed?

    It would be nice to win at Stoke, just to have something to look forward to in the dark winter days. It would be great game for a new manager to take over as we are doubtless going to get a hammering at Man Utd whoever is in control.

    Business decisions are always hard, and burying one’s head in the sand tends not to make for an informed one. If Man City win and BSA remains in control then we should be demanding the chairman’s head on a platter instead; wherever that head may be currently buried.

    The fact we have had so many managers is simple, we tend to make very poor appointments that become all too obvious fairly quickly – with one or two notable exceptions such as Sir Bobby. BSA is not one of these exceptions, he is a plodder and the longer we hang on the further away the heady days of top 4 football become.

    And unless we believe we are a top 4 club, we will never be that again.

    Wakey, wakey!!


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