Sol Campbell At Newcastle For The Great Challenge It Offers

Chris Hughton has said the main reason that Sol Campbell has come to Newcastle is for the great challenge it presents to the former Arsenal and  Tottenham defender.

Sol Campbell – number 5 is the old center-half number

Chris knows Sol well because while Sol was a youngster at Tottenham,  Chris was the assistant manager, and Colin Calderwood actually played with Sol in the Tottenham defense in the 1990s during that time.

So our two coaches know this former world-class player very well – and seem to have a very high regard for Campbell, who is  a model professional from all accounts.

Chris talked this morning about why Sol had arrived at Newcastle:

“The challenges are all there,” “I know the type of individual Sol is and I think he will be looking at it and if it is a good year for him, anything can happen.”

“The reason he has come is the type of challenge it presents and the stature of the club. Knowing Sol he will want those challenges to continue for as long as possible.”

“Whenever you sign a player I think it is all about timing,” “Around the targets we’ve looked at, you are going to get younger players with a better opportunity for sell-on value, but they are the balances you make.”

“Do you bring in a 24-year-old with great potential to sell on for double what you paid for him?”  “Sol is a ready-made player that can walk into your first team. You know it’s shorter term but it fits your need at this particular time.”

“Sol has always been on the agenda in the past but trying to sit him down and put pen to paper is another matter. The circumstances at this particular moment were right for him.”

Job one for Chris is to get Sol as fit as quickly and as safely as possible, and the Plaistow-born player is fit already, but not at all match fit – although he has continued to work out during the summer – and even on his recent honeymoon.

Chris continued:

“He has worked through the summer but there is a big difference between doing your work away from the training ground and the intensity here,”

“He has told me he was working during his honeymoon, so we’re grateful for that.”  “Probably the most important thing is we can’t take a risk.”

“We have to make sure when we put someone out there it’s the right thing to do otherwise you are leaving yourself vulnerable to a player picking up an injury.”

Campbell had just 14 starts last season – mainly due to the mistake he made when he signed on at Notts County for massive wages – but it just didn’t work out for either Sol or former England and Manchester City manager Sven Eriksson.

However Notts County still managed to get promotion last season – so that was a goal they had last year at this time – and they achieved it.

One question that Chris does not know the answer to is whether Sol can withstand a full season in the Premier League – but of course the first thing is to get Sol super fit – and then try to keep him fit for the season.

Chris continued:

“That is something we will very quickly find out,” “It’s not so long  since he was playing very regularly three seasons at Portsmouth.”

“Last season was different but he was available for a lot of games.”“They are the things we need to find out but he is a fit lad.” “The Premier League is very different from what we experienced last season with the amount of midweek games.”

“There are more weekend-to-weekend games.”

We have to hope that Sol turns out to be an enormous success at Newcastle next season, and if that is true – we must have a great chance of not only surviving,  but maybe even doing quite well in the process – maybe.

Comments welcome.

22 comments so far

  • Bucks mag

    Jul 30, 2010 at 10:48 AM

    Comment #1

    Toon Soldier!

  • howay man

    Jul 30, 2010 at 11:00 AM

    Comment #2

    aken from sky sports transfer clockwatch
    10:45 James Pearson: understands that Premier League new-boys are leading the chase for Fulham’s Ghana international defender John Pantsil. interesting…

  • Doha Mag

    Jul 30, 2010 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #3

    If Sol can get himself match fit and manage a minumum of 50% of the PL games this season, it could be successful for those around him!

    I hope his legs don’t let him down though ……

  • Charlietoon

    Jul 30, 2010 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #4

    I want Will and Collo to start and for Sol to provide back up

  • Timmers

    Jul 30, 2010 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #5

    Unrelated but so on Ashleys sports direct you can get the kit for a tenner cheaper with free premium league badges. MENTAL

  • freddie

    Jul 30, 2010 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #6

    You would think we had signed a world beater with all these sol stories. Not an oap.

  • Timmers

    Jul 30, 2010 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #7


  • stuart no9

    Jul 30, 2010 at 12:17 PM

    Comment #8

    freddie , sadly your spot things have changed since our owner sadly decided to buy our club.not long ago we wouldnt have settled for any one unless he had the potential to be a world beater,thats because we had ambition, a word that not one of 52000 fans dare mention,in case he is laughed at , not just in our city , but whatever city he is in following our once great club, he has managed to attach a stigma,to our club that mirrors his tack , cheap sports outlet.O k times have changed,i think players wages are a sick joke, transfer fees, barbaric, and things need to change, but one thing needs to remain, and that is ambition, once that goes , then the only reasonto go to SJP is purely to watch a game of football, the atmosphere, the exitement, have all gone.CH a man i admire very much , cant do anything at all to get that ambition back, his hands are tied , we are not building a club for the future,we are getting what we can, to survive, to stay in this league if we can, IF,we can. Sol, ? what a great player he was,asCH said a FORMER world class player the other comment in the article that shows me CH has no ambition, when he said ” or do we go for younger players with a good sell on value,” i feel very sorry for him, because any player worth his salt ,wont stay, or will be forced to move, or just wont bother coming at all, to a club that is flat,that is going to struggle in about 95% of the games, so lets try to keep things in perspective , Sol is not a great signing,you could beg the question WHY did he sign for us.

  • Rotonda heights

    Jul 30, 2010 at 12:39 PM

    Comment #9

    Nothing to do with now living round the corner then !!
    Is it me or does Sol look very rotund in the stomach department just now ??

  • GeordieDan

    Jul 30, 2010 at 12:49 PM

    Comment #10

    Anybody have any new possible transfer news?

    I’m really happy we’ve got Sol for a number of reasons but I would love some banter about possible Forward/Attacking midfielders coming to Toon.

    Seems to have gone really quiet over the last few days on any possible new options. A lot of it so far may be bollox but at least it’s a new bit crack for us to argue over eh?lol

  • Toon XI

    Jul 30, 2010 at 12:50 PM

    Comment #11

    He looked fat in the photo posted on the site yesterday. Iit could just be the clothing and camera angle…I hope.

  • geordielad880

    Jul 30, 2010 at 12:53 PM

    Comment #12

    i was really happy with the signing of sol campbell, not so sure after seeing his waist line, he looks about 18 stone, and i dont think its the camera angle

  • GeordieDan

    Jul 30, 2010 at 12:54 PM

    Comment #13

    BTW Stuart etc:

    Who would you have gone for then as a central defender?

    Someone that we could HONESTLY have got? Either for reasons to do with money or the fact we are going to be fighting right through next season to stay up again?

    It’s not like Puyol, Lucas, Terry et al are knocking on the Gallowgate door trying to sign for us is it? We have to build again to get there and signing Sol is at the very least an isurance policy that should help us shore up our defence if worst comes to worst and start that building process.

    Sol brings experience and respect to our defence and that alone is worth something to us right here right now.

  • toonie

    Jul 30, 2010 at 1:21 PM

    Comment #14

    Many are worried about that picture of Sol “Who ate all the Pie’s” Campbell.
    Regardless of the Honeymoon and knowing he was going to sign for a Premiership club paying very good money, you would think he would have been in better shape.

    Hope I am proved wrong, but having moved to the north east with his new wife (who is not short of a few bob) he might be looking for an easy ride into the sunset of his foot balling career. Take CH for a mug, accidentally pick up a training ground injury and take it easy whilst picking up a nice fat pay cheque … I certainly hope that is not the case.
    Camera angle my arse !!!

  • stuart no9

    Jul 30, 2010 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #15

    geordie dan
    your right all these great players are not knocking on our door to sign for us, like i said ” any player worth his salt wont come here. yeah sol brings experience to the kids, which is vital, however, on the playing side i hope the head is switched on for 90 mins, coz the legs wont be able cope. all i am saying is we lack ambition, am i wrong?and if i am how?

  • lewman

    Jul 30, 2010 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #16

    i doubt he would need the money toonie, plus he could have got more else where.
    also i bet his abs are a lot bigger than most peoples and a man of his size will eat an awful lot so a pot belly will be easier to get for him than the average person, plus his muscle mass will burn off a huge amount of calories a day without him even needing to exercise, so i reckon every one needs to relax a little as i bet he will be in shape in no time.

    has any one ever heard of sol campbell being out of shape at the start of a season.

  • ToonMad92

    Jul 30, 2010 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #17

    I dont really see what the deal is about , he is a good player i saw that last season when he played for arsenal most of the time he was solid , all this talk we need more ambition no not really the main objective for this season is just to stay up and then to build the squad , do we even want to spend big money on a defender again ? Collocini ? what a waste of 10 million in my opinion he is probably the best centre back we have

  • slazberger

    Jul 30, 2010 at 3:12 PM

    Comment #18

    financial suicide isnt really showing ambition imo. we need to take little steps over a few season to establish ourselfs in the PL again. the club is being run as any buisness should be.

  • cupiddstunt

    Jul 30, 2010 at 3:39 PM

    Comment #19

    Why is it that after all we have been through in the past we still have so called supporters that are only happy when we are throwing crazy money at big names???

    IT DID NOT WORK BACK THEN so why do you want to go back to it??????????????

  • Thump

    Jul 30, 2010 at 4:54 PM

    Comment #20

    Lacking ambition? We don’t lack ambition at all, we’re just being realistic. There’s no way we can mount a serious cup run this season and we aren’t going to get our runners up medals this season, are we? We have a lot of ambition, but it takes work to make that ambition a reality. This isn’t the same game it was in 1946 when it was all about club loyalty and support, it’s ran by money and without that we’ll be heading down to the conference.

    Sol is a very good signing for a few reasons:

    1. He can still do a good job on the pitch
    2. He can do an outstanding job in the training room
    3. He can show the younger players what to do, how to do it and most importantly WHEN to do it.

    He’s a big guy, missed pre season because he was showing his missus a good time, yeah he’s going to look a bit on the round side as we all would – christ sakes, it was his honeymoon! If you had his money I bet you lot would be packing the food and drink down you too!

    It’s a short term fix in an area we have always had problems with. Yes we need a good, pacey striker (I’d settle for a good, pacey attacking mid) and back up for LB and the wings but how many times have we lost games because we had a defence that was thrown together a few days before? CH is changing that and I’m more than happy.

    You lot want star players? I hear Michael Owen is after a permanent pay check, let’s get him back in, eh?

  • rknufc

    Jul 30, 2010 at 7:19 PM

    Comment #21

    sol campbell is a great signing which shows how well CH is working to get in good bargains…hopefully a winger/striker next

  • baro

    Jul 30, 2010 at 10:37 PM

    Comment #22


    Hopefully Ben Arfa next…… 🙂


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