Things Getting Better Every Day – Duff

Damien Duff, who – dare we say it – is starting to show us his old form these days, thinks that Newcastle United are getting better by the day, under new manager Kevin Keegan.


Damien Duff – playing very well since his return from injury

The Irishman had an excellent first-half in Saturday’s 3-0 FA Cup 4th round defeat at Arsenal, but then went missing in the last 45 minutes, as Arsenal stepped things up appreciably.

Damien talked today to the Newcastle United official site about Saturday’s game, and how things are going with Kevin:

“Things are definitely improving here with a new manager.” “In the first half we played Arsenal off the park.” “We limited them to long-range shots and got into some really good positions, but we just couldn’t capitalize.”

“I don’t think the scoreline was a fair reflection on the game.” “We took our foot off the gas in the second half, and when you do against a team like Arsenal you get punished.”

“Our fans backed us all of the way through,” “Fair play to them for that, there were so many of them at Arsenal and it’s such a long way to come.”

“It would have been great to go in at half-time ahead.” “We were happy enough and we thought we could nick something, but it wasn’t meant to be.”

We can judge just how much Newcastle are improving, and we need more of that first half performance,  when we play Arsenal again tomorrow night – but this time hopefully for the full game. If we can do that we may be able to get some kind of result tomorrow, which we need badly.

The lads should know they are fighting for their places at Newcastle United, because we expect quite a few signings in the summer, now that Kevin has almost said there’ll not be many – if any – new signings in January.

So we need to see some upbeat performances from the lads, not only to raise the confidence of the players, but also to raise the spirits of the Newcastle fans, who cannot be too encouraged at the moment.

But here’s an excellent article we just read from Lee Ryder on his blog, which is not only truthful, but very upbeat on what’s happening at the Newcastle club. It certainly cheered us up when we read it today.

Every Newcastle fan should read it.  😀

Here it is.

Comments welcome.

94 comments so far

  • Jon

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:36 PM

    Comment #1

    Let’s get rid of Duff…He sucks and he’s too left footed.

  • jaypierre

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:39 PM

    Comment #2

    i dont agree with you he is a hell of a player just wish king kev keeps him….

  • ToonRich

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:42 PM

    Comment #3

    Jon, thats what you get with a left winger!!!

    Not a very constructive comment was it…

  • rem

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:47 PM

    Comment #4

    What hes left footed?!!! thats a good thing. We want someone left footed on the left.

  • Mehzeb

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:48 PM

    Comment #5

    Duff is performing well, indeed.

  • Chicken

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:52 PM

    Comment #6

    Ed – there’s a big mistake in your headline – I’m pretty sure it should read “things getting WORSE everyday”.

    OUT the FA Cup.
    JW turns us down.
    Dennis Wise joins us.
    Barton back in the squad.

    Where do we go from here?

  • Nomis_jade

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:56 PM

    Comment #7

    I like duff. He is no where near as good as he was at chelsea bu thats cos he has been hampered by injury. But he is getting better and he showed that on sat with a few good runs to the by line in the first half. He just needs more time.
    Time is what KK needs the most. It looks as though dukes wont play on tues but it jsut shows that he is another player that KK will want to try up front with owen. And until we get a more regular partner for owen we may not see the best from our strikers. They need time to form a partnership. But KK needs to see all his players have a go so lets give him the time he needs.
    Finally i think wise is a good appointment. It seems his main role will be to take care of the academy side, and i think thats a really good idea cos he will teach them alot. And ok he mite make some suggestions to kk as some good signings but kk will have the last say.
    So we are still waiting for a number 2?
    Could that just be given to Terry mac?

  • Nomis_jade

    Jan 28, 2008 at 6:59 PM

    Comment #8

    Not that i really want terry mac but kevin seems to like him?

  • Chris F

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:14 PM

    Comment #9

    ffs, just cos we haven’t signed anyone in the last week, everyone’s getting ridiculously pessimistic again. (chicken, i’m looking at you here)

    everyone needs to put things into perspective, we’re not gonna get relegated, but we’re not gonna fly up the league either, so just accept it.

    we played some good footbal vs arsenal, mainly in the first half, but if we play like that week in week out we’ll certainly pick up points along the way, as not every team is as good as Arsenal are.

    people really need to stop jumping on the team/club’s back at the drop of a hat.

    it’s not gonna change overnight, just live with it.

  • AlexW

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:21 PM

    Comment #10
  • sparetheman

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:24 PM

    Comment #11

    Here here Chris.

    We’re as bout as fickle as fans come. We only need to look back these past few weeks to see how astonishingly crazy our reactions are and how quickly our mood changes. From the pessimism under Allardyce came the joy with the Keegan appointment. Almost immediately after the appointment came the increased expectation. We suddenly got linked with a stupid amount of players and people thought with a flick of switch we’d get all these world class players to come to us. We’d be linked with 5 players a day and it seemed like we believed them all! Now Woodgate has turned us down and we’re out of the cup, it’s all doom and gloom again, and I see Keegan haters already appearing. If you just take a step back and actually look at the events of the past few weeks, you’d really begin to understand how mental Newcastle fans are.

  • CJ

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:27 PM

    Comment #12

    I would have been very disappointed if we had signed Woodgate. He is quality but will rarely play.

  • Tom_Toon

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:29 PM

    Comment #13

    How about Huddlestone to replace Butt.

  • Tom Cairns

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:30 PM

    Comment #14

    totally agree sparetheman, cant say im not guilty occasionally. the main thing is though that this is for the long term and already we have seen a big improvement in our play!

  • CJ

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:35 PM

    Comment #15

    We played very well against Arsenal in the first half even Steven Carr played decent again. Damien Duff had a decent first half but he’s been back back over a month now and he still looks knackered. When Oba, Beye, Faye get back in my opinion we will be a lot stronger and with 1-2 signings hopefully we could push up the league.

  • CJ

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:45 PM

    Comment #16

    Tom Toon 13

    Huddlestone would be a great signing.

    Young English

    Great Passing and Vision


    Can defend and attack

  • hanz-emre

    Jan 28, 2008 at 7:45 PM

    Comment #17

    Chris F yea seemed some ppl are yet to accept ‘defeat/bad days’ this season had been long over (might be in Oct/Nov ’07)…hard to please them. All they want is the short-cut way to be elite team once again. To those have a faith in what Duff said as KK did in last 2 games & hopefully being better game by game.

  • C

    Jan 28, 2008 at 8:17 PM

    Comment #18

    Hey does anybody know where chris mort is? Maybe he´s bringing home a player!

  • Chicken

    Jan 28, 2008 at 8:19 PM

    Comment #19

    Sorry (Chris F et al) but i’m about as level-headed as toon fans come (I must have been the only one who thought 8th was a realistic target for us at the start of the season).

    I always said BSA should have been given more time – and I still think that because we aren’t going to be any better off come the end of this season with KK in charge.

    The reason why I despair so much is because I find some of the decisions that have been made in recent weeks astonishing, and not in a good way. I am quickly losing confidence in the Ashley Mort partnership – they may know a lot about business, but at the end of the day football is STILL a sport.

    1) Sacking Sam with no replacement lined up.
    2) Approaching Arry for the job.
    3) Giving a man the job who has a reputation for nothing apart from jumping ship when the going gets tough.
    4) Not sacking Barton.
    5) Not being able to attract anyone of quality during the transfer window.
    6) Giving Dennis Wise an “executive” management role at the club.

    IMO I cannot see sense in any of these HUGE decisions that have been made.

    I hope I am soon to be proved wrong, but I really cannot see anything but more shame, pain and ridicule ahead for my beloved NUFC.

    Such a shame. Rant over.

  • nufctj

    Jan 28, 2008 at 8:20 PM

    Comment #20

    Duff would be on any squad I would put together! He plays with passion.

    As for Barton what choice does the club have but to try and get him back on track? We can’t sell him at this point. He is rock bottom and can only go up…

    or to jail…

  • petworth magpie

    Jan 28, 2008 at 8:46 PM

    Comment #21

    I like the idea of replacing Butt with Huddlestone but I’d also like the idea of replacing Butt with my grandmother. What an overrated, under performing geezer.

    As for Duff, he just doesn’t play for the team, he’s greedy and forces everything. Way too sloppy in possession. I’d flog him off as soon as.

  • Tom_Toon

    Jan 28, 2008 at 8:51 PM

    Comment #22

    Im officially depressed nd excited.

    Middlesboro are scouting Chikhaoui but we have scouts at the ANC so they could be a dream move for me personally and others when they see him play, but if he goes to Boro ill cry.

    Dont think he’ll go to any with Arsenal, Inter, Bayern, Lens, Leverkusen, Ajax, Lyon, Marseille all wanting him.

    Do Boro really have more ambition than us?

    Ino i go on about Chikhaoui but he will be one of the worlds best players!

  • ObaFan2

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:06 PM

    Comment #23

    sparetheman, some may be fickle but not all.

    Have faith KK and Mort are doing what they believe is the best for this club and for me that’s good enough.

    Duff is beginning to play more like his old Blackburn days but seems to run out of steam. 45-60 minutes about right for him atm and he can run the opposition ragged.

  • Neil W

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:34 PM

    Comment #24


    Pardon whats about to come but you are typcial of the no nothing Toon fan that is blighting the life of the Club.

    1) Sacking Sam with no replacement lined up.

    – Sam had to go after failing to cut the mustard with Chris Mort regarding his plans (signings, playing style) – Mort is a cold eyed city lawyer, not some Bolton Chump, and acted ruthlessly as he should.

    2) Approaching Arry for the job.

    – that was less then ideal but MA was convined by a close friend – he will learn.

    3) Giving a man the job who has a reputation for nothing apart from jumping ship when the going gets tough.

    – Or rather, serious attacking football and he quit (he shouldn’t have but still) when the Board lost its nerve and started to interfere.

    4) Not sacking Barton.

    – He is a serious corporate asset, not a fecking shelf stacker at Tesco’s. If you plough the best part of £6M into something you owe it to NUFC to try to sort it first.

    5) Not being able to attract anyone of quality during the transfer window.

    – IN January. With two weeks. Get real. Plus we have (I suspect) turned down some right numpties and fortune hunters.; Instead we have signed three young stars and kept funds for the summer. Very sensible.

    6) Giving Dennis Wise an “executive” management role at the club.

    – If you had bothered to read into the role it is about developing the youth and scouting side of the club. An area that is DW’s passion and also where for over 20+ years we have lagged behind the rest of the top flight.

    So to recap –
    No money wasted.
    Young talent brought in.
    The Scouting and Youth side boosted.
    KK has inherited quality coaches such as Steve Round and also a top notch technical back room staff. That is an area where we have lagged behind all our rivals until Sam arrived (his only positive legacy)

    I would say that is pretty good.

    Now, who else wants to moan?

  • Chicken

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:35 PM

    Comment #25

    There’s a wee interview with Steve Round at the top of this page if anyone’s interested.

    And just for Tom Toon there’s a pic of Chickentikka (or whatever his name is) if you scroll down a bit.

  • Graham

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:40 PM

    Comment #26

    Chicken – calm down man! Its gonna take a couple of years – if not longer to do this properly. Not like in the past when we have just thrown money at the problem.

    Answers to your questions…

    1) This should have been dealt with more proffesionally, granted. But we were going down hill faster than a well oiled skatedboard with fat boy Viduka on board. something had to be done – Ashley has admitted he wished he done it sooner.

    2) I’m sure they approached many managers – Redknapp has a knack of changing poor teams into decent ones – which we needed badly. Not my choice either but I believ that we now have the man in place as long as we give him time.

    3) Couldnt work with the new structure at nufc first time round so left – that was his choice. But a tidle wave of pressure pushed him into the england job and he managed to get city promoted with a record points haul. He’s a man of passion and his passion is at nufc.

    4) If we sack Barton now we will have to pay up his contract as he is still innocent at this moment in time. If that changes then so be it.

    5) We are an average mid table club. Why would Carrick, Berbatov, Deco etc etc etc want to come here at the minute? I personally think that footballers should be attracted by the challenge not the glory but thats footballers for you.

    6)Like Keegan – give him a chance. You dont like him because he used to play well against us and he’s small! If Keegans ok with this then so am I.

    Lets not get too excited too soon. keegans been in the job a little short of 2 weeks and already were getting frustrated. Is that not what partly got Allardyce sacked in the 1st place?

  • Chicken

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:42 PM

    Comment #27

    Neil W – who the fcuk are you?

    No nothing? I think you mean know nothing. And I know plenty thanks very much.

    And as for blighting the life of the club. Haha – are you fcuking serious? All I’m doing is speaking my mind and airing a few of my opinions on a fans blog – that’s the point of this place, is it not?

    I have never ever booed my team and nor do I ever plan to – however I would seriously consider giving that little scumbag (barton) a piece of my mind if he could actually hear from where I’m sat.

    Now get over yourself – if I wanted advice I’d call the Samaritans.

  • Graham

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:42 PM

    Comment #28

    Neil W – couldnt of put it better myself!

  • milnerfan

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:46 PM

    Comment #29

    Why are some people moaning that we havent signed any1? Surely its better to wait and bring in quality players, rather than buying low profile fringe players just to make up the numbers????? I think KK will get rid of alot of players in the summer.

  • Graham

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:48 PM

    Comment #30

    NeilW – tha Samaritans can be found here…

    Tel: 0845 7909090


  • ObaFan2

    Jan 28, 2008 at 9:54 PM

    Comment #31

    More swearing and picking on someones grammar on a blog isn’t such a good idea.And (lol) starting sentences with an “and” ain’t too good!
    As for the points made I think some good answers have been given but again it’s opinions, no one’s necessarily right and no one’s necessarily wrong!

  • Chicken

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:01 PM

    Comment #32

    ObaFan2 – spare me the English lesson mate. If you’ve read anything apart from the tabloid sports pages in the last 15 years you’d know that it’s now perfectly acceptable to start a sentence with the word “and”.

  • ObaFan2

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:03 PM

    Comment #33

    Lol ok if you say so!

  • Graham

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:12 PM

    Comment #34

    Obafan2 – Pleased to see that you used a capital L in your lol!

  • ObaFan2

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:14 PM

    Comment #35

    That’s what 15 years of reading sports pages does for ya. 😀

  • Chicken

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:15 PM

    Comment #37

    Yes but he’d be marked down on punctuation.

  • ObaFan2

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:23 PM

    Comment #38

    Cool !

    And (lol) Barton “now has a nightly curfew at his North East home at 7.30pm, except on match days.” Late enough for the children I suppose and a treat out on match days.

  • Hadrian

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:26 PM

    Comment #39

    exiting times ahead , times articles are great news to me .

  • Mats

    Jan 28, 2008 at 10:28 PM

    Comment #40

    Why is Alves not being mentioned?


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