Viduka Threatens To Play Again At Newcastle

News yesterday that Mark Viduka, the 33 year-old Australian, who spends 90% of his time in the injury room these days, is threatening to play again for Newcastle, before his contract expires in the summer.


Mark Viduka – recovering from Achilles problems

This is not personal with Mark, because we know he’a a good guy, but he’s really not up to playing these days physically, and with just one abortive start for Newcastle this whole season, he is hardly earning his wages at the club.

However, the news is that he has a chance of returning next month should he suffer no setbacks, but Mark requires a good few games, once he’s physically fit, to get back to full sharpness, so we’ll not hold our breath that he can help Newcastle in the relegation battle.

Chris Hughton talked about Mark’s condition with the local Shield’s Gazette yesterday:

“Mark’s still on rehab, and he’s still one that we’re assessing,” “We’re hopeful he’ll be back in two weeks – that is if he has no setbacks.”

“Mark’s one who, because of the type of player that he is, whatever period he’s back for it will be a good thing.”

“However quickly we can get him back it’s worth it, because of the type of quality that he has, but we’re also wary that it’s a balancing act of being fit and being ready for the vigours of the important games.”

There’s now no way that Newcastle will renew Mark’s £60K/week deal, and the club has to be careful about these free agent deals in the future, that we don’t vastly overpay for a players’ services.

We expect that Mark has already been told his contract will not be renewed, and he may well go home to Australia to finish his career there.

That’s where Mark started in 1995 with the Melbourne Knights, scoring 40 goals in 49 games before moving to NK Dinamo Zagreb in 1998, where he scored 40 goals in 81 games, and then of course he moved to Celtic in 1998, where he scored 30 goals in 37 games, and then went onto Leeds in 2000.

There’s little doubt in his prime, Mark was one terrific striker.

Comments welcome.

26 comments so far

  • Kash

    Mar 27, 2009 at 10:57 AM

    Comment #1

    Could do with him, but he’s such a sicknote, that I find his presence a waste!

  • Bill F

    Mar 27, 2009 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #2

    Just hope Chris don’t make the same mistake as with Owen and stick him straight back into the team. Incidently thinking about my chickens entrails comment yesterday, I wonder if this is how they are picking the team at the moment. 🙂

  • Sav

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #3

    Should have done the honourable thing and retired on medical grounds but there’s as much chance of that……

  • Toon Graeme

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #4

    Im not gonna hold my breath – he will probably look at the ball and get a groin strain!

    This season he has done nowt for we at all. Apart from the back heel to Duff which resulted in a goal and winner against spuds.

    He might be an alright egg but that means bubkis in the big scope of things.

  • Kash

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #5

    The Insurance pays his wages anyway, so it’s pretty much the same as really!

  • Kash

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #6

    What does Bubkis mean?

  • beyethegreat

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #7

    hes a world class player

    when fit but hes hardly ever fit

  • RyanToon

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:10 AM

    Comment #8

    i cant wait until this WASTE OF SPACE viduka leaves the club!

    its ok saying when his fit his class but hes NEVER FIT!

  • BT9MAG

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #9

    When one of your highest paid players is ‘threatening’ to play for you, that’s when you know things are bad!

    Here, in a few years time, people will be talking about ‘doing a newcastle’, buying loads of world class players and then watching as they fall apart (almost literally in some cases)…

  • komfort

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #10

    this bloke likes the easy life..there’s no chance he’ll put his neck on the line for us, it’s criminal when you see the money he’s picking up.

  • Whumpie

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #11

    The irony is, he could still be very important. What we lack at the moment is that spark of unpredictable brilliance in the last 3rd of the pitch, and that is exactly what Viduka does.

    What I can’t remember – it’s been that long since he played – is whether he has taken long to get back up to speed when returning. Anyone got any recall of that?

  • bennytoon

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #12

    BT(MAG- that made me chuckle. What world class players are you reffering to? None of them would even make a trop 4 side .

  • Kash

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #13

    @Whumpie – He tends to make a quick impact, as his mobility has always been limited.

  • Kash

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:26 AM

    Comment #14

    @Benny – I think BT9MAG was meant to say reputed. You of all supporters can appreciate that sort of comment!

  • clinta

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:41 AM

    Comment #15

    Clearly not up to the riggers of the premier league anymore, perhaps if were in the championship next year he’ll be some use.

    His best of ending south to the A league though and playing a couple seasons for his home city.

  • Ericles

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:47 AM

    Comment #16

    Viduka – I have put your wheelchair outside the Strawberry but you can buy your own beer!

  • Whumpie

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:48 AM

    Comment #17

    With Duff out, he could be useful. In a relly scrap, one goal is usually what makes the difference, and I think Viduka can set up at least one in most matches (before being helicoptered to hospital with a broken tongue or something)

  • BT9MAG

    Mar 27, 2009 at 11:49 AM

    Comment #18

    Kash, yeah, perhaps that would have been a better choice of words…

    But Benny, what I was getting at is that (much like Spurs recently) we’ve thrown money away buying ‘reputable’ players from top clubs –

    Owen from Real, Oba from Inter, Smith from United, Duff from Chelsea…Other players had the backing of the pundits or the international pedigree to add clout to their transfers i.e. Viduka, Coloccini etc.

    My point is, all throughout the season people (pundits, journalists, fans, rivals) said ‘Newcastle have too much class to go down’ … and if we do go, people will then refer to any team with a squad full of ‘names’ who are struggling as ‘doing a newcastle’ just like they do with leeds when clubs collapse financially

  • Ross

    Mar 27, 2009 at 12:26 PM

    Comment #19

    “threatens” Ed?….if what we’ve heard is right about him potentially returning for Stoke then i have no problem with that, even if he just gets 20/30 mins. They’re incredibly physical and we need someone a bit bigger up top to stand up to them. Its either that or hope that our midfield suddenly start threading balls through to oba/loven left right and center so we can use pace to tear them to bits-somethign i havent seen us do consistantly, for a long time.

  • Kash

    Mar 27, 2009 at 12:34 PM

    Comment #20

    Are there any business owners commenting or reading on this blog?

  • big boomer

    Mar 27, 2009 at 12:52 PM

    Comment #21

    whumpie you must not have watched him play in the last year (mind you not many of us have) but he has been absolutely useless.
    There are at least five or six better options than fatty

  • wanyno009

    Mar 27, 2009 at 2:13 PM

    Comment #22

    I’m sure if he pops up in the last min against villa and scores the winner some people wont complain !!!

  • DJG

    Mar 27, 2009 at 4:10 PM

    Comment #23

    If we can get the ball to him maby, coz he won’t go the the ball thats for sure.

    Class player but his heart just isn’t in it at Newcastle, he needs to pack in when the close season comes, how the hell Australia thinks he can go back and play for them in the world cup is beyond me.

    At the same time if he was miracleously fit and scoring for Australia at the age of 35 it wouldn’t suprise me. He was fit, strong, even quite fast and could play a whole game for Middlesborough this time just 2 years ago. As soon as he got his 60K a week contract at NUFC he was straight down the kebab shop. I bet he can eat a large donna or 2 aswell.

  • Tom_Toon

    Mar 27, 2009 at 9:30 PM

    Comment #24


  • Rodzilla

    Mar 27, 2009 at 9:40 PM

    Comment #25

    .| |.

  • Rodzilla

    Mar 27, 2009 at 9:46 PM

    Comment #26

    DJG , I’ve seen him dislodge a whole doner meat spit in Munchies on the Bigg market, and devour it like a corn on the cob.


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