Viduka Weight Is Fantastic – Keegan

Kevin Keegan has given an upbeat assessment of Mark Viduka’s fitness this morning on the Newcastle web site.


Mark Viduka – can Newcastle keep this man fit?

Kevin talked about Viduka on the Newcastle United web site this morning:

“We knew he wouldn’t be able to train until two or three weeks into pre-season,”

“Then it will be light with a view to him coming into full-time training probably in the next four to five weeks depending on how he feels when we start to push him.”

“But I think what we will get now is no more problems with the Achilles. He’s working very hard on the things he can work on which is upper body, strength and his weight is fantastic.”

“So once he comes back into training it will just be the football and the quickness of that he’ll have to pick up on and that takes time.”

“These guys would have been training for four or five weeks and it’s not easy just to pick up on that having not done that training.”

“He probably won’t be fit for the start of the season but he’ll be pretty near.”

When Kevin says Mark’s weight is fantastic, we assume that means it’s down from last season, and that Kevin wanted him to lose a few pounds over the summer, and it looks like he has done just that.

We would hope that more is not better (or fantastic) in this case.  😀

The problem we always have with Mark is he has injury problems, and generally that doesn’t improve with age, and Mark will turn 33 in October.

He missed far too many games last season due to injury, yet when he played for Keegan during those last 10 games at center-forward, in a 4-3-3 formation, he looked better than good.

It’s going to be important ot get more games out of the Australian next season, and one thing Mark can do to help further his Newcastle career is to retire from international competition, but the signs are he will still want to keep involved, to some degree,  with the Aussie squad.

First thing though is to get him fit, and then we’ll take it from there, but here’s another player who can be key for the club this coming season.

Comments welcome.

51 comments so far

  • Spyro

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:48 AM

    Comment #1

    i knew it, i said on a previous article that Viduka looked thinner in one of official videos.

  • Ed Harrison

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #2

    Spyro – that’s good – he needed to lose a few pounds.

  • Will

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:55 AM

    Comment #3

    He played well at the tail end last season but i don’t think he is fit enough for this season. Look at Keegan’s remarks on pre-seasons, and the importance of having one, when he talks about Duff. So by that logic, Viduka won’t be very useful next year.

  • Spyro

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:56 AM

    Comment #4

    trust me Ed, it is clear to see how much weight he has lost just by looking at his neck. Things are going well with both Duff and Viduka in tip-top shape

  • Ever seen a mackem in Milan?

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:58 AM

    Comment #5

    He is important to us because no-one can hold up the ball for us well yet. Carrol’s job in a few years if he is still here.

  • Soren

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:58 AM

    Comment #6

    Just seen we’ve had a 18 year old danish player on trail this week and he played with the u-18 against Leeds this Saturday.

    From his club

    Theres also a few words from him

    Det er vildt fedt at få lov at komme derover. Når en stor engelsk klub inviterer, så bliver man da stolt, fortæller Martin Braithwaite.
    In english
    Its great to get over there. When a big english club invites you, you get proud.

    Vi spillede 0-0, hvilket er et meget godt resultat, når vi mødte et hold, der var ældre og større end os, fortæller han.
    In english
    We played 0-0 which is a pretty good result against a team that was older and more physical than us.

    Det er en stor oplevelse. Alt foregår i et meget højere tempo, og man er hele tiden i gang. Du løber bare hele tiden, forklarer han.
    In english
    Its a great experience. Everything is at a higher pace, and you are always going. You’re just runnung all the time.

    It also says in the end that Newcastle were satisfied with his trail.

    Hope my translation is understandable. hehe

  • Spyro

    Jul 21, 2008 at 11:59 AM

    Comment #7

    great Soren, thanks

  • Soren

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #8

    Ohh and to be abit on topic. Great if the Duke gets fitter to next season as he is just great to have up front. Strong, Technical and has eye for the goal.

  • Neil Snowdon

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #9

    Dear Ed,

    What with Duff and now Viduka losing the pounds KK should offer ‘weight watcher’ classes for those of us in need of some midriff reduction.
    With school hols coming up perhaps I should visit the training ground!



  • Patrick

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #10

    If the club sign Duke a few years ago, I would view him as the best replacement of Shearer. But as he’s getting old, it is better to find a striker who has a similar characteristic as him. By the way, where’s the news of Derdiyok?

  • laurent32

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:07 PM

    Comment #11

    viduka is the most important player in our squad imo. with him we are a different side and everything seems to click. owen and martins bag the goals the midfield is able to get forward more and we are just all round a lot better team. when hes out, we have no1 who can hold up the ball and bring others into the game and the strikers who are playing just get no service and are muscled out of the game. kks most important task this summer is to either get him fit, or find a replacement because neither smith or carrol are even close to his standard. the problem is theres no1 around with his class and first touch so i think this could be a problem for us in years to come when hes gone.

  • Spyro

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:09 PM

    Comment #12

    Ed Harrison

    KK’s has spoken positively of Cacapa. Ed can you make an article on this as Cacapa’s quality is a hot topic for discussion

  • SteveD

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:13 PM

    Comment #13

    It’s a popular misconception that Viduka is fat: he’s just got a very large head.

  • goochy23

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #14

    off topic ere, can we please start sum petition to get ALAN SMITH out of our club heres a guy who plays little cameos here and there, does absolutely nothin in a match and yet we must be payin him in excess of £50,000 a week is it just me or is that just wrong! anyway let me see GET SMITH OUT on yur posts if u agree

  • Liam

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:24 PM

    Comment #15

    if its true that he has lost lots of weight it will be great for his injury chances, because the less weight he has the less pressure on his bones joints and tendons- good times

  • gorskino10

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:25 PM

    Comment #16

    He needed to because he was SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO slow last year with everything he did he has past it in my eyes he cannot play every game as he gets injured too many times and cannot get over 10 goals in a season so what is his use??

  • Mitch H

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:36 PM

    Comment #17

    @ goochy23 ,

    Your right mate, we should out Smith asap. However, at the moment, & think KK thinks that Smith is needed at a utility player, because the squad is so small.

    Plus, which club is gonna want him?

    I think i’m right in saying he hasnt scored a goal in 3 1/2 years.

    Hopefully a club will come in for him soon, & we can re-coup some of his transfer fee.

    Getting him off the books would make way for someone who actually deserves to be payed 50,000 a week.

  • Gooderz

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:43 PM

    Comment #18

    Viduka must lose the right kind of weight though, or he’ll lose his strength and become far less effective just like Bernard after Souness cast him out in favour of Babayaro.

  • Pan

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:48 PM

    Comment #19

    @Spyro – I think we’ll see how good Cacapa is next season. Reads the game brilliantly. I rate him highly. People shouldn’t judge him solely on Portsmouth game!

  • goochy23

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:50 PM

    Comment #20


    i agree i fink kk does see him as a utility playa but why? yur right his last prem goal was a few seasons ago and in midfield i admire his passion and determination but simply not gud enough! ive noticed he tends to go missin in games and makes it up by lunging into challenges when not needed.

    dont hate the guy jus feel hes not good enough for our club, jus watch him when he played for us last yr. GET SMITH OUT!

  • ToonTimbo

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:54 PM

    Comment #21

    @ mitch!! Didnt smith score against roma in the cl and one in pre-season last year!! You make him sound like a bad striker!! lol 😉 2 in 3 1/2 years isnt as bad as none! justhasnt any in the prem!!

    I think we will get rid of him when we have got all the players we need in!!

  • LoonyToon

    Jul 21, 2008 at 12:57 PM

    Comment #22

    its totally off topic but why do people keep having a go at Alan Smith…the lad gives 110% EVERY time he pulls on a Newcastle shirt…granted, he hasnt had the best start to his Newcastle career (Nicky Butt anyone!!) but he wears our shirt with pride and gives blood sweat and tears for our cause…you never see him in trouble outside of football, never moans to the press if he isnt in the team (Luque) or is played out of position (Nzogbia)….He is a model pro and I hopes he stays, comes good and shoves two fingers up at the moaner and whingers out there who couldnt lace his boots….I for one will be 110% behind the lad if/when he plays next year…like I am 110% behind EVERY Newcastle player who gives there all…

  • Martin

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:00 PM

    Comment #23

    I don’t want to sign any silly petitions like this – what kind of message does that send to the players if they were to hear about?

    It puts them under serious pressure that they don’t really need! Granted he’s been pants and shouldn’t be on the 50k he’s earning BUT don’t start all this boo-boy nonsense again!

    He’s a newcastle player and therefore should be supported – just sercretly cross your fingers he never gets on to the pitch!

  • gorskino10

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:04 PM

    Comment #24

    Alan Smith
    110% ok he may do but thats not getting away from the facts he is crap, no goals for Newcastle UTD is beyond belief just dump him as Man UTD have killed his football ability.

  • MO

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:05 PM

    Comment #25

    hmm, i cant see him doing anything for us next season. maybe losing weight will make him less injury prone but id still like to see a new striker like him come in.

    a tall striker that gets 20 a season and can play well with martins and/or owen. berbatov would do nicely.

  • toonoot

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #26

    Viduka can go down the quayside any time he wants. Just keep him out of Greggs.

  • Faustino

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #27

    KK dishing the praise for Charley Zog for his attitude in pre-season training on the offical site – GET IN!

    A thin Viduka, a Duff hat trick and Zog with the right attitude …. will wonders never cease?

  • gorskino10

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:16 PM

    Comment #28

    “A thin Viduka, a Duff hat trick and Zog with the right attitude …. will wonders never cease?”
    Well if Smith scores then i will be in shock lol lets hope Zog can stay he is a dangerous winger but not good at passing he hogs the ball too much i feel.

  • figsdad

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:17 PM

    Comment #29

    Still need more players i see everton are after..


    and sporting are willing to let him go..

    forget modric or aimar this bloke the real deal..

    come on keegan get him here..

    wink wink

  • Tom_Toon

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:17 PM

    Comment #30

    Where is this new ‘signing’ 🙂

  • Nick Dryden

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:21 PM

    Comment #31

    david bowie – thin white duke
    i’ll get my coat

  • John

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:28 PM

    Comment #32

    in fairness to smith he did play a lot off games in midfield last year , defensive mid in fact….Lets see what he’s like playing in he’s favourite position…He does have a good attitude and gives 110% when he puts on the stripes

  • John

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:32 PM

    Comment #33

    Looks like Boulahrouz is off to Stuggart…Pitty thought he would off been a class signing, at the right price aswell…4m is nothing nowadays

  • Toon Sg

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:33 PM

    Comment #34

    Where is ” I Am Toon”? He said got new signing 2dae

  • ToonTimbo

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:40 PM

    Comment #35

    totally totally off the topic – so far its off the scale but when do ya recon a big club is going to sign Guillermo Ochoa?? Not that we need him with given and harps!!

  • Tom_Toon

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:44 PM

    Comment #36

    Timbo, Man Utd in january.

  • ToonTimbo

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #37

    y in january?? cant they get a wrk permit?? they should be able to!! How much??

  • Tom_Toon

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:55 PM

    Comment #38

    Im only guessing.

  • ToonTimbo

    Jul 21, 2008 at 1:58 PM

    Comment #39

    Well only time will tell on that guess Tom!! brave new toon fan made a guess that there will be three signings today and that doesnt appear to be right!! lol!! Now he wont be blogging anymore!! 😀

  • goochy23

    Jul 21, 2008 at 2:03 PM

    Comment #40

    again off topic anyone fancy SAHA? i know theres lots of reasons why not but make no mistake he’s a top class striker when he plays and is a capable target man, same mould as dukes. wat u reckon?


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