Newcastle have definitely strengthened their squad this summer by bringing in five new players and losing only two senior players in Nicky Butt and Fabrice Pancrate, whose contracts were not renewed.
Chris Hughton – team spirit will be important
And today Newcastle’s manager has said he thinks he can change the way Newcastle United play, when he finally has all players available for the first team.
It looks like four of those signings will be available for the game against Blackpool on Saturday, and three of them, Cheick Tiote, Sol Campbell and Hatem Ben Arfa will be available for the first time.
However, since Cheick has not been at Newcastle at all since he signed it’s doubtful that he will make the squad, although he could be on the bench to get into the swing of things at the club.
Dan Gosling is out until January with his cruciate ligament injury to his knee, but the Newcastle manager still believes all of his new arrivals can make a big difference.
Newcastle will no doubt go on the attack against Blackpool on Saturday, and it will be interesting to see if Hughton starts two strikers, which he has never done so far this season in the league. We expect Ben Arfa to play some part against the Tangerines on Saturday.
Chris talked this morning about how pleased he is right now with the new arrivals at Newcastle:
“I was delighted to sign those players and what that gives us now that we didn’t have before is options,” “What we have to have this season is a good enough squad to serve us in every game we play and Hatem Ben Arfa and Cheick give us something different.”
“Hatem is a flair player and he is a little bit different to what we’ve got and that gives us options.” “Our squad is definitely stronger. It isn’t just about what we’ve got today or the next day, it is about coping when we’re stretched with injuries and hopefully we are better equipped to do that now.”
And of course as well as having better players now at the Newcastle club, the team spirit will be all important this season, as the lads can battle it out with the best of them for those hard to win points.
Chris talked about the team spirit which is so evident on Tyneside these days:
“The spirit will be key,”“I think we are conscious that there are a lot better teams in the division than us and we’ll need to work hard to take points off everyone that we come up against.”
“But we have quality as well and if we are able to keep the team spirit that we had last season, we can go a long way with that.” “I am certainly conscious that played a big part in our success last year and I think the lads are too.”
Newcastle have already shown at Wolves that they can be a match even away from home, against the teams in the bottom half of the table, as they had enough chances in that first half to have wrapped up the win.
But they still came back from one goal down to get a vital point at Molyneux.
Newcastle will be expected to take all 3 points against Blackpool on Saturday, but it will not be as easy as it looks on paper, but a win will give Newcastle 7 points from their first 4 league games, which will be a great start for the Magpies this season.