Observations On The Chelsea Defeat

nufc-crest.png chelsea-fc-emblem.png

Here are some observations on the game against Chelsea, in which we looked good in the first half but Chelsea just had too much class in the final period.

  • Newcastle played very well in the first half and we had two half chances that if we had taken may have made a difference but Michale Owen missed a couple of reasonable chances
  • Chelsea seemed to be flat in the first half and Newcastle more than matched them with solid defending and good passing, but the Magpies still couldn’t carve out any clear-cut opportunities
  • Chelsea had one chance in the first half when Ballack found himself through at inside left but he shot weakly over the bar
  • Both goalkeepers had little to do and half time came with the Newcastle supporters looking forward to maybe wrapping the game up at half time
  • Chelsea must have had a mini-blast at half time because they started the second half with a lot more urgency
  • They raised their game from the off and for the first 15 minutes of the second period Newcastle found it difficult to live with Chelsea. ell after all they are one of the best teams in Europe and were showing why
  • The Newcastle defense held out gallantly and young Steven Taylor made some great blocks, but the inevitable go-ahead goal came after 61 minutes when Ballack found room in the box from a Drogba free kick and headed home a simple goal
  • Newcastle tried to come back and with a little look they may have had an equalizer, but there was no doubt who the better side were in the second half.
  • And then Chelsea had the cheek to being on Frank Lampard, and Joe Cole was warming up – give us a break! 😀
  • Newcastle were just not good enough to hold Chelsea in the second half when they moved to the higher gear – but the last 45 minutes will have been a good education for our boys and they can learn form it
  • Newcastle’s performance this afternoon was a good one, and we have to remember that we were up against a tip-top team, and Avram Grant seems to have made the Blues even better this season
  • Mark Viduka was a huge miss in the second half, and we lost a little of our shape with Alan Smith deputizing
  • We need 5-6 top players this summer – as long as we can fill the squad with additional quality players, then the squad will be improved, and we’ll do much much better next season
  • Oba Martins was the star again today. He’s a unique player who we must keep and use every game as a striker next season – he’s just far too good to use in a bit part role
  • On the other hand Alan Smith just doesn’t look the part for Newcastle, and he’s probably not good enough to play up front for this team – that’s one thing that was abundantly clear in the second half today
  • It may also be an opportunity for Kevin to move a few players out this summer such as Ameobi, Rozehnal, Carr, Ramage, Diatta, Smith and N’Zogbia, which should allow us to bring in even more top players, as well as some additional top youngsters
  • There’s 7 players we can unload in the summer – who are probably not good enough – and we also need a bigger squad next year – so that’s why we’d like to see Kevin in bring in at least 6 top players – if we can get them to come

Comments very welcome.

34 comments so far

  • GazzaToon

    May 5, 2008 at 8:22 PM

    Comment #1

    well im sorry but i think kev’s interview has summed it up
    the fans are expecting too much and like he said we are not going to be gettin any more then 3 players in so all this talk about all these players leaving is stupid i doubt anyone will leave with maybe ameobi being an exception

  • max

    May 5, 2008 at 8:25 PM

    Comment #2

    i thought smith was responsible for both goals today. he first decided to try to push ballack instead of playing the ball with his ( stupid) head then when niky Butt (who was goood) had the ball on the edge of the box, he stole it from him and made a bad pass which was intercepted(im sure Butt would have cleared it) and chelsea made the most of it. He must go hes useless

  • daiv

    May 5, 2008 at 8:31 PM

    Comment #3

    Bringing on SMITH was a massive mistake and KK has to take the blame for that. Just because Smithy runs around like a mad dog in training does not justify him being on the bench.
    The team is not good enough against the top 4…just look at the results. Some have been embarrassing. KK is talking about brin ging in 1 or 2 players. Thats him saying that today. Talk of 6 or 7 new players is total bollocks. He is settling for mid table because MA is not coughing up. I’ve had enough of the court jester in the crowd being a fan. I want to seeis money on the table this summer or he can……..

  • Leo

    May 5, 2008 at 8:32 PM

    Comment #4

    Ed u missed out the fact that the ref was a right cheat and the linesman also

    then there was the fact that the chelsea players dived loads.

    i wouldnt let anyone leave our team if we are only going to bring in 1 or two players in

  • american pie

    May 5, 2008 at 8:35 PM

    Comment #5

    OMG!!! OMG!!! why is SMITH playing????
    i feared the worst when he came on and I was right!!! He couldn’t make a single right move.

    Conceded the first goal-couldnt handle ballack
    and why the hell was he playing on the floor lying down????

  • michael

    May 5, 2008 at 8:45 PM

    Comment #6

    Smith was rubbish, but Geremi was worst. Everytime he got the ball he lost it. I couldn’t believe how bad he was today. Smith doesn’t offer the quality, strength or pace needed as a striker in the premiership., hence his goal tally.
    Big Sam summed it up on TV when he said that Newcastle would need to spend 60 million quid to get near Chelsea.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 8:49 PM

    Comment #7

    smith is diabolical and if he watches his performance on tape he’ll understand why he got dropped in the first place….
    it saddens me that i get the impression that our owner seems reluctant to put his hand in his pocket… we are a million miles away from what we should be…we need quality and if mr ashley truley wants success he must realise meiocre isnt goodenough.
    i get sick of people saying we expect too much and all that bollocks… we are loyal fans, who sure voice our opinions alot but we turn up every week and give that team so much support… ashley needs to think about that and decide whether he wants us to push foward or be a mid table team.

  • Neil Snowdon

    May 5, 2008 at 8:56 PM

    Comment #8

    Dear Ed,

    Reality is losing 2-0 to the second best team in Europe currently.

    Reality is we’re not going to spend 200 million plus to compete with the big boys.

    Reality is some of the players are lacking top class – Geremi, Smith, Duff, Enrique to mention but a few.

    Reality will be spending some money on a number of reasonable players who will allow us to compete with Spurs, Villa, Everton and Blackburn next season.

    Reality is keeping our nerve and not reading too much into KK’s disappointed comments post defeat.

    Did anyone see Cuellar’s excellent performance for Rangers mid-week? A centre back of his calibre would be good. Dunne, coming back from injury, was roasted by Torres on Sunday.



  • Just Joe

    May 5, 2008 at 8:57 PM

    Comment #9

    I really think a lot of you are over reacting and taking the things Keegan said out of context.

    He didn’t say he wasn’t getting any money, only that he wouldn’t have enough to compete with the likes of Chelsea and Man U.
    All he is doing is reducing the expectations of stupid fans and board members who will soon start demanding a top 4 finish next season. It is unrealistic!

    If Keegan thinks we only need a few extra additions, then so be it. We have to trust him. It worked out for us after the January trasnfer window didn’t it…?

    I’m still confident there will be money to spend although we might need to temper our imaginations a little in terms of the caliber of player we will attract.

    Since this is my first post, I’d just like to say thanks to “Ed” for the coverage you have provided this season. Think you’ve definately taken over as the top NUFC news page now.

    Right, let’s keep the faith but not get too carried away ha!

  • SuperShearer

    May 5, 2008 at 8:57 PM

    Comment #10

    Perhaps I’m just being optimistic here guys but could KK’s comment about not having enough money be a very clever ruse to get players at a more reasonable price? It seems that there is a concern that due t MA’s wealth we may be held to ransom over certain players. It seems that by saying there is no money to spend that won’t happen. If this is the case I’m fine with whatever the club want to tell the press.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 8:58 PM

    Comment #11

    HARPER- 7- one good stop from ballack, not much to do.
    BEYE- 6- not his usual brilliant self.
    TAYLOR-9- solid,important blocks. great game
    FAYE- 8- again great game,couple of important tackles.
    ENRIQUE- 6- average, good ball to oba which nealry led to goal that was cleared off the line
    BUTT- 7- great pass to owen early on. good, steady performance
    BARTON- 7- Great energy, proving himself
    GEREMI- 4- rubbish, gave ballaway, crap freekick outside their area too. wasteful!
    VIDUKA- 6- not fully fit as we know, couple of neat touches though before going off at halftime
    MARTINS- 9- great energy, great ambition, tries to make it happen. good performance.
    OWEN- 5- quiet game,should of had 2.

    SMITH- minus 10000- CRAP
    DUFF-5- didnt get timeto do much
    ZOGGY- 5- last home appearence for toon?

  • Bazza

    May 5, 2008 at 9:01 PM

    Comment #12

    I read your comments with interest and as a Chelsea fan I think you gave us a hell of a scare in the first half and were unlucky not to get at least one goal. Owen seems to blow hot and cold and Smith is a waste of space. The whole game changed when Vidulka went off. Definite base to build on next year. Kev has done you a lot of good. Ta for the game. By the way I was sad to see that Duffer is not the player he once was.

  • daiv

    May 5, 2008 at 9:14 PM

    Comment #13

    Does anybody out there think SMITH should be in the squad (apart from KK)? Reasons please.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 9:16 PM

    Comment #14

    daiv, maybe alan smith’s mum does.

  • daiv

    May 5, 2008 at 9:21 PM

    Comment #15

    M Stockley
    £65K a week is not bad money for being diabolical is it? Crazy money in football…but nice if you can get . Smudger should be playing for Hartlepool Ladies or the U11s. Total rubbish. The worry is KK keeps putting him in squad. Thats why we lost today…he came on in 2nd half and we played with 10 men.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 9:25 PM

    Comment #16

    daiv i agree mate.its really cliche to talkabout money in football,but alan smith earns more money in a week than i doin god knows how long…. he contributes nothing, if onlyhe was as good at football as he is styling his hair.
    when he signedi thought right,he’ll be a good addition.i had him down as a winner and maybe not the most gifted but capable, but he has been dire… id rather play the hot lass fromthe club shop. maybe they can swap occupation for a week.

  • Scott H11

    May 5, 2008 at 9:29 PM

    Comment #17

    Our defence played well, but Geremi’s performance meant we played with ten men. We need more quality in all areas though. Martins was awesome today.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 9:40 PM

    Comment #18

    scott if you add smith to that mix in the 2nd half wemust have been playing with 9 men… barton,butt, faye, taylor and martins were excellent though

  • IrishMan

    May 5, 2008 at 10:47 PM

    Comment #19

    M. Stockley, I disagree with you about Barton – he gives away far too many brainless free kicks.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 10:49 PM

    Comment #20

    irishman, i think joey barton is a good passer of the ball and maybe he commits fouls but he will put in a tackle and he has bags of energy….

  • IrishMan

    May 5, 2008 at 10:55 PM

    Comment #21

    Yes, and Smith has bags of energy too! What is the point in giving away possession to a free kick in every second tackle?

  • Toon_Ksk

    May 5, 2008 at 10:58 PM

    Comment #22

    It does seems like alot of fans are very demanding and already expecting miracles.

    We will get to the top step by step, little by little.

    Those who are impatient, carry on complaining, the route to the top isn’t going to be smooth sailing.

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 11:00 PM

    Comment #23

    atleast he will make a tackle

  • IrishMan

    May 5, 2008 at 11:06 PM

    Comment #24

    Like you said, we’ll agree to differ.

  • Slam Dunc

    May 5, 2008 at 11:08 PM

    Comment #25

    Nothings changed from before today really. We lost 2-0 to one of the best teams in Europe after giving them a tough game in the first half.
    Keegan afterwards comments on who was not playing, Wright-Phillips, Lampard, Joe Cole, Ashley Cole, Shevshenko and says that Newcastle and others are miles behind the top 4.
    No big deal !!
    Anyway, on a celebratory note here are some pictures of Scottish Mags awarding their player of the year trophy before the game:

  • M. Stockley

    May 5, 2008 at 11:11 PM

    Comment #26

    yes mate. fair play for not threatning to come round my houseand punch me,lol…debates sometimes get too heated on here.

  • Sav

    May 6, 2008 at 12:29 AM

    Comment #27

    We didn’t find out anything we didn’t already know today, if we are honest. The result has no bearing on us and if it is a reality check for fans but more especially for Ashley, then Chelsea will have done us a favour. The loss at home to a real top side can only strengthen KK’s hand when he gets sat round the table with Mort and Ashley.
    Good to see the wisdom and detachment shown by Keegan. I reckon he is probably a wiser, cooler head than the first time he managed Newcastle. Far from being damaged goods by his experiences at City, Fulham, England and even in semi-retirement, I think he may be even better equipped than before.
    Smith and Geremi need to move on, I agree. Am I the only one who thinks Geremi looks like he is playing in wellies? But Zog is still a real talent and I hope he gets a reality-check and buckles down when the season is over. KK was crafty to wave an olive-branch to introduce him before the end. Not too late?

  • Toooooooooooooooooon

    May 6, 2008 at 1:32 AM

    Comment #28

    Alan Smith is the jinx….ask him to join real madrid and madrid will be relegated

  • Ausgeordie

    May 6, 2008 at 3:12 AM

    Comment #29

    As soon as Smith came on I thought we were going to lose. He is never more than 2 feet from another player and ends up crowding them out, or taking the ball from his own player and then playing a useless pass and then……standing still or walking whilst the play continues. He is NOT part of the team in any way shape or form and must go this summer. The less he plays the more he will want to move for first team football so if he starts in place of Viduka next week I’ll be shattered. We should start Carroll or go to four in midfield giving Lua Lua or Zog a run out.

    I’d love to get Jeremy Menez, Tim Cahill and SWP in midfield. Dunne and the rangers fella who sounds good at the back. Get Taylor a new contract he is the future John Terry if his last performance was anything to go by. For the forwards get Peter Crouch as we need a dukes replacement and re sign Martins and Owen.

    Get rid of Smith, Roz, Duff, Ramage, and Carr.

    Send out some of the younger kids on loan especially the strikers as it seems we have a few.

  • Jimmie

    May 6, 2008 at 8:09 AM

    Comment #30

    Why Smith!?!? This had been a perfect opportunity to give young Caroll a chance to shine together with Owen and Martins!

  • Eric

    May 6, 2008 at 9:07 AM

    Comment #31

    As soon as Smith came on we fell apart. KK made a mistake – he can make them you know!
    We should have sown up the match in the first 45 minutes. It was KK’s comments about not getting the players we need that confirmed my suspicions and comments on this site over the last few weeks. Still think we can create a challenging squad but not with Smith etc. The Gang of Four grip can be broken with the right squad. And who the hell let Fat Wham Bam Thank You Mam the Sham through the gate? Do not like Sky trying to rub our noses in his shite!

  • Graeme

    May 6, 2008 at 9:49 AM

    Comment #32

    Viduka went off, Dickhead Smith came on and we lost all shape, all focus.

    The smith of old is long gone, the replica we now have is past his sell-by date and should be moved out as quickly as possible.

    As I have said before, Assistant Corner Flag Attendant is all he is fit for.

  • geordie in taipei

    May 6, 2008 at 2:08 PM

    Comment #33

    We played great footy until ALAN THE F@@KWIT SMITH came on ! What a pile of absoloute sh@t he is ! Not only is he a striker that cant score goals, nor can he tackle, or pass , or head – but he managed to give them their first goal and have a hand in thier second – Cheers Smithy – now for your next trick why don’t u sod off !

  • Hamabi

    May 6, 2008 at 8:45 PM

    Comment #34

    When Smith came on, Martins’s impetus to drift out wide and skin Ferreira as he had done without too many problems vanished, as Smith dropped deeper and Martins had to as well to latch onto Smith’s passes, and consequently, Owen vanished too. Viduka himself wasn’t doing that much but his presence was enough to allow Martins free runs down the right and the middle knowing that he, unlike Smith, wouldn’t be near the centre-circle crowding up the area.

    Smith’s presence only seems to attract midfielders – both opposition and Newcastle alike – towards him. The former is understandable but midfielders need to always be in space, and with Smith on, the opposite happens. Midfielders shouldn’t need Smith to kill the ball and receive it – all midfielders, including Newcastle’s, can do that well enough.

    It was a shame that Keegan tried to fix what was not broken because I think both Beye and Martins were causing numerous problems while Chelsea were busy doing very little in terms of shooting.

    For Smith, meanwhile, he needs to go back to the drawing board and figure out which position he needs to be in – and fix himself to it. There’s no point in him being an attacking midfielder with a defensive midfield mentality, central midfield striking ability and striker positioning. Flexibility benefits players like John O’Shea but hurts players like Smith who just isn’t good enough for any one position – in fact, he’s equally bad in all of them at the moment.


You must log in to post a comment.