Keegan So Impressed With Our African Contingent

Kevin Keegan said today he feels the squad has been given a big lift, since our four African players returned from the African Cup of Nations in Ghana.


From top left clockwise – Faye, Beye, Martins and Geremi

Kevin told the Evening Chronicle today:

“If you get four international players coming back into the squad, it is bound to make a difference.” “They are not internationals for any other reason than they are very good players.”

“They give us options, we can play different ways with them.” “They are different players to the ones that were here before, big and strong in the case of Faye and pacey in the case of Beye.”

Our form has been terrible since our last league win on December 15th against Fulham at Craven Cottage. The only good performance was when we won 4-1 in January against Stoke City – but that was in the FA Cup. And we’ve only kept one clean sheet in the league since then, against Bolton, in our 0-0 draw at home on 19th January.

In the last 9 league games we’ve lost 6 and drawn 3. We’ve conceded 21 goals and scored just 5 goals. So what do we make from these stats?

A big improvement is overdue of course , and we can start that tomorrow. 😀

Keegan continued to talk about the return of our four returning African players from Ghana.

“When you have got a small squad and you lose four players, that’s a lot to lose.” “Any club losing that amount of players would feel that the squad is a bit short as they are all inter-nationals playing at the top level.”

“It is great to have them back and I have been very impressed with the attitude of them as well.” “They have come back and I know when you get a new manager in, it means a new beginning for a lot of players, so you do get an initial wave of enthusiasm.”

The four players, whether you like them as players or not, are solid and positive characters, and excellent professionals. We’re very pleased to have all four in our squad and we think they can all do a job for us this season and in seasons ahead of us – it certainly sounds like Kevin is impressed.

Comments very welcome.

13 comments so far

  • Marty

    Feb 22, 2008 at 3:19 PM

    Comment #1

    He should be as this is some of the best quality we have,strong,fast n can pass the ball!

  • Tooner

    Feb 22, 2008 at 3:34 PM

    Comment #2

    If it is clockwise from the top left, Geremi and Martins are listed incorrectly.

  • Mighty Mouse

    Feb 22, 2008 at 3:35 PM

    Comment #3

    Emre out with a calf strain…what a fookin waster.

    How on earth is this guy always injured?


  • Ian

    Feb 22, 2008 at 3:56 PM

    Comment #4

    Four of my favourite players, I agree Emre is a waste, he is supposed to be the finished article a top international midfielder, to me he isnt.

  • Callum

    Feb 22, 2008 at 4:16 PM

    Comment #5
  • Callum

    Feb 22, 2008 at 4:24 PM

    Comment #6

    Damn, no Martins again for tomorrow 🙁

  • iain

    Feb 22, 2008 at 4:58 PM

    Comment #7

    i wonder if geremi disapeared at the right time for the ACN. imo he would of took a lot of stick imo for the final few games under sam.

    hopefully a change in manager will let us see the half decent geremi not the joke of a footballer that had been playing in geremis shirt.

    if emres injured then imo as much as a think hes a good player i have really had enough of his niggly injuries. he makes carr look fit at times.

    another one who seems to be trying to get booted out of nufc.

  • Ian

    Feb 22, 2008 at 5:10 PM

    Comment #8

    I hope Martins can play and it is pure tactics, otherwise I cant see us winning unless Gerami, Beye and Faye make the difference, I just cant see our other strikers scoring any convincing goals, if Martins isnt playing then this is the game where Owen especially but also Viduka should show us that they are worth their wages, because at the moment the two of them to me look as if they belong at Reading or a similar club not with us and definately not at one of the top clubs.

  • Ian

    Feb 22, 2008 at 5:16 PM

    Comment #9

    Iain I think you are right, Gerami escaped at the right time and regained some confidence in the cup games, he was terrible on the wing, nobody with the remotest bit if football knowledge would have left him out there for even part of one game, that is one of the moves Sam made which made people wonder if he wanted the sack.
    Gerami looked very promising when he played central, it would be great if we already had the central midfielder we all know we need.
    We can only hope that the Lyon game took it out of Man Utd and they arent on top form, or they put out a weak side.

  • Leo*

    Feb 22, 2008 at 6:40 PM

    Comment #10

    then maybe he will play them tomorrow, i damn hope he does.

    beye faye taylor enrique
    milner geremi nzogbia duff
    martins owen

    thats probly the strongest team in my opinion, but obvious injuries will change that buggering team sheet

  • Leo*

    Feb 22, 2008 at 6:41 PM

    Comment #11

    yep i agree i hope geremi has come back from the african cup of nations with a boost of confidence, and his right boot is still flaming hot for a good freekick

  • Callum

    Feb 23, 2008 at 6:19 AM

    Comment #12

    Leo – I like that team although KK will play Butt instead of geremi and Smith instead of Martins… and Enrique wont even get a chance, I think he’ll be gone in the summer

  • Ian

    Feb 24, 2008 at 6:30 PM

    Comment #13

    can you believe it Gerami on the flaming wing against Man Utd!! He is useless on the wing, central midfield he is good!!


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