Alan Shearer – Three Home Wins Can Save Us

Alan Shearer was pleased with the second half performance this afternoon, but he can rightly ask what the lads were doing in the first half, when we again went a goal down before the break. We have to show more urgency and spirit, right from the very first whistle, and that urgency was missing today, until the last 30 minutes or so.


Dowie, Shearer and Hughton – Newcastle’s 3 wise men

But after the game Alan was not happy it took so long for the Newcastle players to wake up at White Hart Lane, and if we are to be truthful, we deserved nothing from this performance.

Alan said:

“I’ve just said to them, very pleased with the second half but give me an explanation why there’s no urgency like that from minute one,”

“We have our own ideas, our own theory as to why but we have to start games in the first minute like we finish them in the last 30 minutes.”

Newcastle are now in a rather precarious position in the league and are second bottom on just 30 points, and a full 4 points from safety.  We now have to hope that Middlesbrough and Hull City, who both have tough fixtures from now on, will not get many more points, so we are able to catch Hull, who are 4 points ahead of us but with a worse goal difference.

But we will need to rely on other teams now, because we’ve squandered far too many points since Christmas.

If Newcastle can win their 3 home games against Portsmouth, Middlesbrough and Fulham, we may still stand a slim chance of staying up, but more urgency and spirit is needed from this side, and we’ll not get many points with performances like this one over the full 90 minutes. The good news is that the 3 teams we have to face at home, are nowhere near the quality that Spurs showed today.

Shearer told Sky Sports after the game:

“They had the better of the game in the first half, but having said that Steven Harper has not had much to do,”  “We were disappointed with the way the goal happened, I think it was from our corner. But at 1-0 down there was still everything to play for.”

“I think in the second half, the spirit was there and we now have to convert that into goals and chances.”  “There is pressure on us. People have been saying for six weeks that we have to win our home games. Certainly we have to win at home to Portsmouth a week on Monday.”

Darren Bent hit the only goal of the game this afternoon, after 23 minutes, and Shearer has agreed that Newcastle have to win all their remaining home games against Portsmouth, Middlesbrough and Fulham.

Shearer continued:

“We’ll be expected to win those and we have to win those starting with next Monday against Portsmouth. My attention is now on that must-win game.”

After a poor first half performance, Steven Taylor limped off at half-time with a recurrence of his ankle problem, and Shearer introduced Martins and Mark Viduka after 60 minutes, after Alan Smith had come on for Taylor after the break.

Alan continued:

“I’ve asked them for a reaction at half-time and they gave me it,” “Effort wise I’ve got no complaints. You’ve seen the urgency, you’ve seen spark and belief that they can pass it around.”

“I want to see that for 90 minutes. Then we’ll have the chance of taking three points instead of one or none.” “I still believe we have got enough.”

Martins and Viduka seemed to make a difference in the last 30 minutes, as Viduka set up Oba at least twice, only for Martins to have no luck with his finishing, but he looked dangerous nevertheless, after he hadn’t trained all week.  However, it seems obvious he still has a groin strain, in case anybody ever doubted that.

And this little outing will not have helped that injury, but it’s all hands to the pump right now, although the ship sank again this afternoon.

Michael Owen was almost anonymous for the whole game, but there was little service provided to him, to be fair to the captain.

Martins provided a good attacking spark up[ front, and he had the ball in the net but had handled (it looked accidental) before he scored, and he probably should have been awarded a penalty after former Newcastle stalwart  Jonathan Woodgate seemed to bring him down, just as he was about to shoot.

Shearer talked about that incident:

“I felt at the time it was a penalty,” “That’s three decisions we haven’t got in three games.”

Alan is already starting to sound like an experienced manager. 😀

But you cannot blame Alan himself for not being brave, although that charge can be aimed at some of our players this afternoon.  Shearer introduced both Viduka and Martins after 60 minutes, in an attempt to get some goals, and some points.

“We put all of our big guns on at the end, because if you’re going to get beat you might as well get beat going down fighting,”  “I thought we were more of a threat in the second half with Mark Viduka on, Oba Martins on and Michael Owen. The problem is getting those guys onto the pitch fitness wise.”

“The other problem is we haven’t got a left-back. We have got one left-back at the football club (Jose Enrique) who is injured at this moment in time.”  “We changed it for last week’s game (against Stoke), and it worked, and I knew this game was going to be tough with the way Spurs play – with two wide men. But we didn’t get started in the first half.”

“Steven Taylor was then feeling an injury so we had to make a change and we put Damien Duff back there, and I thought he did a good job.”

We’re not sure how S.Taylor, Martins and Viduka will have come through this game, as far as their fitness goes, but certainly Viduka and Martins added more threat to the front-line, but whether they will be fit for our home game against Portsmouth a week tomorrow, we just  don’t know.

But that game is a game we MUST win, if we are to survive this season, and a win can give us the confidence and impetus the lads seem to so desperately need right now.

Three home wins in our three remaining games could do it for us – but we need some luck and a lot more heroes need to step up to the plate, if we are to survive this season.

Comments welcome.

151 comments so far

  • mark_k1234

    Apr 19, 2009 at 7:34 PM

    Comment #1

    What has happened to Kevin Nolan? He did nothing today along with the useless Nicky Butt, I can’t belive it but Alan Smith looked more effective than both of them???

  • chuck

    Apr 19, 2009 at 7:45 PM

    Comment #2

    Is it a brains trust (the above photo) or the “The Three Stooges” ?
    Hear Shearer was satisfied with the second half.
    he was pleased with last weeks second half also. All i can say is he is easily pleased..
    Al stop f***ing around with the team, play your experienced people forget miracles from the kids , aint gonna happen and perhaps the schedules will work in our favor,

  • baztoon

    Apr 19, 2009 at 7:58 PM

    Comment #3

    3 home wins would save us but it aint going to happen. Simple fact is the players are crap

  • jimiley

    Apr 19, 2009 at 7:58 PM

    Comment #4

    Its obvious Shearer is not up to the job. But thanks for trying Al. Still my hero. Too inexperienced (changing formations before the game has hardly started) and too close to the players. Will he drop his mates Owen, Butt and Duff? You all know the answer. You can blog about giving youth a shot but youth won’t replace those three hasbeeens. We tried to get rid of Butt three years ago and he is now always in the team We have no midfield. Excluding pens, how many league goals has the entire midfield scored? FOUR. Pitiful. Shameful.

  • Toon_Factor

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:06 PM

    Comment #5

    V Pompey







    NO BUTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    NO R.TAYLOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    NO NOLAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:07 PM

    Comment #6


    That was my biggest fear with Shearer coming in as manager…
    He is too close the the has beens and played in an era when they were decent. Unfortunately all of the above mentioned are now utter utter tripe (yes Beardsleyschin) Owen is utter tripe and perhaps the only exception is Duff who on his day is average…
    Taylor and Nolan, especially Taylor (who keeps taking our set pieces) is a joke…
    Who told this boy he could take a decent free kick???

  • Toon Graeme

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:07 PM

    Comment #7

    Well its settled in – the defeat.

    You have got to say Tottenham didnt really make Harper brown his pants. Bents goal could have gone either way – but it went in.

    Tottenhams passing was miles better than ours and as for the fact we had what 2 corners and a free kick in the space of seconds and got f’all out of it.

    Did anyone watch Pompey yesterday! Must win game – play like that again and we will loose.

    I can invisage myself in Benidorm on the last day of the season and crying when he go down!! Im going to go to the geordie bar I know so I can be around my fellow toon fans.


    My faith is thin bare and I am actually depressed. Especially seeing that FA cup match. How far we have fallen.

    My wife is still mad at me for throwing a cup accross the room at full time!!

    There is no GOD.

    Ashley look peeeed off and Llambias (mr 43 points) looks disheveled. GOOD.

    Think how we all feel.

    Please tell me I am not alone if feeling so low.

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:13 PM

    Comment #8

    Toon Factor

    Id go for:

    If Enrique is injured play Duff, if S Taylor is fit play him instead of Carroll.
    And i Barton is not fit play Smith as DM. (maybe Coloccini).





    Bench: Krul, Carroll, Owen, Colo, Duff.
    Bring on Owen later on for Martins because he has groin strain, and Carroll for Viduka who wont last whole game. And Smith for Barton who wont last whole game either…

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:15 PM

    Comment #9

    Toon Graeme

    You are not alone…

    I am here with you…

    Although Im far away, I am here to stay…

    You are not alone… 🙂

  • Soren

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:15 PM

    Comment #10

    Three home wins will see us staying up, and I can see it happen!

  • Nick D

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:18 PM

    Comment #11

    Toon factor – truce mate. that’s actually a fair team there.

  • Isaac Hunt

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:19 PM

    Comment #12

    3 home wins might not be enough in any case!

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:19 PM

    Comment #13

    Why is it quiet on here…

    Where’s all the Owen lovers to tell me how fantastic he is and how his goals will save our season.
    Believe it or not I was hoping I was wrong about him but I seem to right in saying he is tripe and wont score.
    Come on… argue with me!!! Tell me how wonderful he is.
    Tell me about his excellent passing game that had yielded two assists in 4 seasons.
    Come on…

  • daffy

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:20 PM

    Comment #14

    3 wins enough ? yeah assuming you 1 . win them ( unlikely ) & 2 . expect none of the other teams fighting & scrapping not to pick any points up ( unlikely ) = relegation.

  • Shot Bru

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:20 PM

    Comment #15

    Toon Graeme things to be positive about: next week Boro are away at Arsenal and Hull are at home to liverpool. Barton and enrique should be back on Monday. Viduka and Martins looked good today when they came on in a 433 formation. If we beat Pompey that means we’re 3rd bottom 1 point behind Hull. The only thing that looks negative is the fact that you’re gonna spend a week in Benidorm of all places 🙂

  • Toon Graeme

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:21 PM

    Comment #16

    Did anyone see the Pompey match yesterday. I did and so did Shearer and Dowie.

    If we play like we did – they will beat we too.

    We must get behind that team and blow the roof off the rafters at SJP week Monday.

    Get your tickets and get there.

    Will it do anything? Who knows. But we have to keep it up 90 mins and give – not the pompey fans sh*t – but the pompey players!!!!!!

  • ToonRich

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:22 PM

    Comment #17

    Chuck, comment #1…The experienced guys havent done the job; owen, duff, butt even nolan and r.taylor are experienced and should have done better. I cant see our reserve players do any worst at the moment. I say give Carroll & Ranger a start together with Oba free behind them, Al can always bring on MO or Viduka. Edgar also deserves another game if we have any more injuries in the back four.

  • Toon_Factor

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:22 PM

    Comment #18

    Wonder when bennytoons guna start because Im ready for him!

  • Soren

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:22 PM

    Comment #19

    Toon Graeme – you’re not alone

    JJJ – I like your starting XI, thats about the same team I would put out to fight against Portsmouth.

  • Toon Graeme

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:25 PM

    Comment #20

    Shot Bru – yes I agree the dukes did make a difference – but we need goals goals goals!

    If I hear one more commentator refer to Shearer as the 2nd Messiah – I am gonna track em down and spank em geordie style.

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:26 PM

    Comment #21

    Toon factor

    The reason I dont rate your team is because it leaves us too thin in midfield…
    And the reason for that, is that Owen is part of the midfield… and he wont defend in any capacity.
    Jonas gets back but he likes to operate out wide and that leaves barton who isnt 100% fit having to cover for Jonas and Owen in the centre…
    That leaves the left hand side wide open for attack and Matthew Taylor is a good attacking wing back and he’ll take advantage of a lot of space which leaves Beye very exposed.

  • Toon Graeme

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:27 PM

    Comment #22

    Ow fcuking hell – Bennytool. Forgot about that prick!

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:29 PM

    Comment #23

    Lol, basically Toon Factor, its almost identical to mine (so dont rate is the wrong way to say it), except you’ve picked Owen… haha. So we pretty much on the same line of thinking…
    Pity none of the managers are though…

  • Toon_Factor

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:29 PM

    Comment #24


    “That leaves the left hand side wide open for attack and Matthew Taylor is a good attacking wing back and he’ll take advantage of a lot of space which leaves Beye very exposed”

    Yes well we wont need to worry about Matt Taylor since he plays for Bolton not Portsmouth

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:30 PM

    Comment #25

    Actually, when Benny comes on here and tells us how much better the Spuds are… all I can do is agree with him… Because quite honestly… as much as I love Newcastle… we do suck! 🙁

  • Shot Bru

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:30 PM

    Comment #26

    Howzit JJ you well bro, like your team but would have Owen in there rather than Lovenkrands.

  • Rorycn

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:31 PM

    Comment #27

    I was expecting a defeat, but still see us staying up. Think we’ll beat pompy and boro and take a point off fulham and i reckon that will be enough. Can see hull and sunderland slipping below us.
    Keep the faith!

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:32 PM

    Comment #28

    hmm, good point Toon Factor…

    Still prefer Lovenkrans over Owen though.

  • daffy

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:34 PM

    Comment #29

    rorycn – sunderland have the points on the board & play west brom next week , dont think so marra.

  • Toon Graeme

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:36 PM

    Comment #30

    Night lads – Im really fcked off. Hope I wake up better. Gonna be a long week.

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:36 PM

    Comment #31

    Hey Shot Bru

    Ye, its a tough one… I just like to have the extra pace up front… but we could also use Lovenkrans as an impact sub.
    Plus I cant stand Owen but he can be useful in the “hole” against weaker teams…

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:38 PM

    Comment #32

    Toon Factor

    What about Niko Kranjcar down the left… he is a classy player and the one player we wouldnt want to give any space to in Portsmouths team…

  • Girth

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:40 PM

    Comment #33

    can see sunderland silpping below us?? based on what? open your eyes man..
    3 out of wba, hull, boro and us, its that simple

  • Toon_Factor

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:43 PM

    Comment #34

    We despretly need to win all 3 home games I dont think Ill be able to bare the last day drama

  • JJJ

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:44 PM

    Comment #35

    Quite right Girth

    Scum are 5 points ahead and playing quite well.
    For me, Hull and West Brom are certs to go down, meaning its between us and Borough.

    38 points will be enough to stay up. But even then we have to win two and draw two of the last 5 games. Not easy at all with our current squad.

  • Ben_BKK

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:45 PM

    Comment #36

    JJJ, Krancjar is out, thankfully for us.

  • beach

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:51 PM

    Comment #37

    I’m a Spurs supporter who was at the game today. I was struck by the way in which you guys kept up a minute’s applause during the tribute to our ex player, Jimmy Neighbour. There is no way that would have happened with the majority of other teams who visit the Lane. I hope you make it out of the relegation zone. Your Club deserves that.

  • Ashley Hole

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:51 PM

    Comment #38

    Mr Positive

    Poms 3pts
    Liver 1
    Boro 3
    Full 3
    Aston 3

  • Ashley Hole

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:52 PM

    Comment #39


  • DJG

    Apr 19, 2009 at 8:53 PM

    Comment #40

    Good is Krancjar out.

    It will be a MIRACLE if we stay in this league. Only one formation can do it I think and it depends on players getting and staying fit.



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