Kevin Nolan Big Player For Newcastle United

Hughton has today come out and said how big a player Kevin Nolan, the captain,  is for Newcastle.

Kevin Nolan – captain in action on Sunday afternoon

Chris Hughton told The Journal this morning:

“Kevin is a big, big player for us. He is key to what we do,”

“What he does for us is play in the important role either off the front man or in the midfield and he will always get into goalscoring positions – that is what makes him important.”

“Even in a very tight game against Stoke, he was in that position to get our best opportunity of the second half. I have no worries about a player like Kevin.”

It seems that Kevin took some criticism for the display on Sunday, and maybe that was appropriate since he’s the captain, but he could well have been the saviour with two goals, if  he had put that chance away at the end – but he’s still going to get a lot of goals this season, especially as he now seems the penalty taker too.

We don’t really expect Hughton to make lots of changes on Sunday at Manchester City, but he may tweak the team a little, and we’re not expecting anything from the game, so it’s a good chance for the lads to put right what was another disappointing home performance last Sunday.

But players like Jonas Gutierrez, Sol Campbell, Shola Ameobi and others are all in good form and are making a case to start at Eastlands.

Chris continued:

“Of course, we have a lot of players pushing for a starting place against Manchester City, which is a very positive thing, “A lot of players come into my thinking and everyone has the opportunity to stake their claim in training during the week.”

“We have a good squad and the game against Chelsea proves that we have players who can come in and do a job for us.”

Hughton has also said today he is going to keep James Perch at right-back, despite his tragic own goal on Sunday.

There’s no doubt that Newcastle have strengthened their squad in the summer, and as they keep signing new youngsters – like Yven Moyo from Souchaux – they are doing all the right things in the transfer market.

Now Chris Hughton’s challenge is to make the team more professional and consistent, and if we can do that we can still have a surprisingly decent season.

That’s what we are hoping for, and a draw at Eastlands would be a great result for the lads, before the International break.

We certainly don’t want to stew on another defeat for two weeks, before we take on Wigan at home on 16th October.

Comments welcome.

27 comments so far

  • North Atlantic Magpie

    Sep 29, 2010 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #1

    He’s key to what we do.
    That’s funny, because what we do is lose, so Nolan must be key to us losing matches.
    Nolan is too slow. He always takes the pace out of our counter attacks.

  • Toon Sweden77

    Sep 29, 2010 at 10:55 AM

    Comment #2

    I like Nolan but he should not be “the key” to everything we do. That should be Ben Arfa as he has the best skills to what football is all about. Scoring and creating goals!

  • ToonArmy

    Sep 29, 2010 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #3

    The way I see it, Nolan works hard and has the battling spirit to back it up. Although, honestly speaking, he lacks the pace and skills to be our key player. Barton, Ben Arfa, Enrique and Jonas are our key players now and whether we succeed in the near future will greatly depend on their ability to deliver on a consistent basis. Oh and of course there’s Tiote too.

  • Tom4Nufc

    Sep 29, 2010 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #4

    Ed, I think that picture is 2 years old from the relegation season as we are wearing an Adidas kit!

  • shearermania

    Sep 29, 2010 at 11:04 AM

    Comment #5

    Perch is key to what we do ….
    Perch is the complete package:
    1.exelent defending
    2.exelent ball skills
    3.great crosser
    4.fantastic positioning
    5. great leader
    6.fantastic timer of tackles (all his yellows were down to the refs all got it wrong)
    7.great composure in front of goal (last demonstrated against Stoke)
    8. sublime tecnique
    9.electric pace

    it wont be long before the likes of chelski & man citeh come knocking with a huge offer…..
    we are just soo lucky we got him for now…..I reckon Hoots should make him vice-captain


    Sep 29, 2010 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #6

    Nolan is the key because he is the key holder the sooner hoots takes over being a proper manager the better as nolan isn’t a proper manager

  • danmcclew

    Sep 29, 2010 at 11:58 AM

    Comment #7

    It really p*sses me off reading people ridiculing our own players.

    @ Shearmania – Perch is a young lad learning the game in front of 52,000 fans, some of them idiotic like yourself. He’s new to the premier league, new to this area and mistakes will always happen. Quit being so harsh on the lad!!!

    As for Nolan, This lad certainly deserves his chance in the team this year. This guy stuck with us when we got relegated, and without him we arguably would never have been promoted out of the fizzy pop league. I agree he isn’t the most skillful of our players, but he brings things to the team that others don’t.

    Some of you have terrible bad memories.

  • Ericles

    Sep 29, 2010 at 12:15 PM

    Comment #8

    No one denies that Nolan contributes on his level.
    Howver, I am more and more convinced that CH talks as his arse guides him. For crying out load the bloke recently has really been coming out with some knee jerk comments. Skill, intelligence and pace are the key in the Premiership. I will give Nolan his due when it is due but he is not the key. The likes of Ben Arfa etc are the real key to the unlocking of opposition defences. Sorry about this but what a clanger CH.

  • perch

    Sep 29, 2010 at 12:24 PM

    Comment #9

    shearmania shut the fck up you prick .

  • lamus

    Sep 29, 2010 at 12:25 PM

    Comment #10

    Whatever anyones opinion of kevin around the rest of the pitch the guy scores goals and if he keeps fit I’m gonna stick my neck out and say he will score around the low to mid teens for us this season. He’s got 3 already so is on course for this. It may not be pretty but he does get in goal scoring positions every match he plays.

  • BeeGuy

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:00 PM

    Comment #11

    Yes, Nolan is a key man, now if the other teams would just understand that and wait for him to get into position, then everyone would see that.

    But, seriously, Nolan may be “the devil you know” for CH. No one else on the roster has held that position, or had a chance to convince CH that they would be better. I think CH is tough enough to protect himself and optimize the team by selecting those who will do the best, or their best, for the club.

  • Davies

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:01 PM

    Comment #12

    From the picture, it would also appear that Nicky Butt was playing as well. He made it up to the punditry box pretty sharpish at half time!!!

    Let’s not be too ready to heap too much responsibility on Ben Arfa. He is new to the team, the league, the country and the language. Yes, he can do his talking with his feet, but he needs to find them first.

    HBA had a blinding full debut, but so did Gutirrez and Colo, who both went on to have average/poor seasons. He will improve, as the Argentines have, but let’s not start binning our captain and one of our key players (which he is, whether you like it or not) in favour of our new toy, just because he’s looked a bit flash in lesser leagues and he had good game at Everton.

    I’d like to see more of Ben Arfa too, but I’d really rather the team did well, with or without him. Nolan has been good for us, both this season and last. He’s been instrumental to the morale and unity that we now have at SJP and he still makes an invaluable contribution on the pitch.

    I thought he was a duff signing when we got him from Bolton, but he’s won me over at least a dozen times.

    And yes, shut up shearermania, you imbecile.

  • NUFC_Richyg01

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #13
  • loothas

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:18 PM

    Comment #14


    Mate I get that its not nice when people ridicule newcastle players but in the case of the majority of people its players who people feel are not going to cut it in this league. I keep bringing this up but Smith and jonas, dropped for better players as Nolan should be because he just isnt good enough for the premier league. I think Perch deserves a chance coz he’s new but Nolan is an excellent championship player. I think the only reason why hughton is sticking with him is because he (rashly) gave the captains armband to him. Barton or collo for me…..

    But then again thats just my opinion and losts of you will strongly disagree 🙂

  • Rotonda heights

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:22 PM

    Comment #15

    If CH really thinks Nolan is the best man for that role, he is seriously deluded. Anyone of Loven, Arfa, Jonas or Ranger would be faster and more mobile.

    I’m starting to think that Nolan has got compromising pictures of CH !

    Refusal to have a plan B and Nolan will together be CH’s suicide note.

  • Ericles

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:30 PM

    Comment #16

    The Sky item does not bode well. For any manager to say he will not change tactics regardless of who we will be playing is courting disaster. CH is becoming very predictable and very obstinate and not what we want to see or hear at all. Will always keep the faith in the team but in CH? Not sure about him now. Come on CH – inspire some confidence and stop being a potential mouthpiece for Sky.

  • Rotonda heights

    Sep 29, 2010 at 1:36 PM

    Comment #17

    CH is being veyr ddefensice coming out and speaking about Nolan like that. maybe something’s touched a nerve.

  • shearermania

    Sep 29, 2010 at 3:00 PM

    Comment #18

    ah it makes me sick listening to these comments…..:he is not ready yet, give him time, we all make mistake……yhis is bloody buisness – if you dont do your job at work you get the sack – its that simple…..
    if they dont cut the mustard – see y0u later…

    ill challenge all of you to come up with great excuses why we went down this year after actually having a good crop of players in our squad…….im always backing our club….but certain individuals not – not if they are not good enough (in my humble opin ion)
    but dont you come shouting abuse after we’ve been relegated cause thats where we are going at this rate – make no excuse about that

  • steve1980

    Sep 29, 2010 at 3:14 PM

    Comment #19

    Nolan is a great option for away games and at home versus top table opposition. But saying he is “key” is worrying. At home against Blackpool & Stoke we were so negative. Carroll & Lovenkrands were sensational together in the championship, and indeed started in the game we played against the ‘pool at home earlier in the year. Why was 4 4 2 ok then, but all of a sudden 4 5 1 was needed a couple of weeks ago. That makes no sense. Its not like Blackpool suddenly got promoted and went out and bought loads of pricey players, they’re the same team, as are we. 4 4 2 produced a 4 1 win, 4 5 1 produced a 0 2 defeat. There’s a not so subtle lesson in there. Against City on Saturday, i would defo start Nolan, because the system he plays well in is perfect for that game – second striker when needed, 3 in the centre when required. I’d make two changes from Sunday, which i’ll say even though they won’t happen – change the right channel altogether, drop Perch & Routledge, replaced by R Taylor and Gutierrez. Ben Arfa didn’t have the best game against Stoke but he’s one of those players who is always likely to pop up and do something. Much as i like the lad, can we honestly say the same for WR? Perch is dreadful though. RT ain’t the EPL’s greatest right back, but in the absence of S Taylor & Simpson, he’s our best shot. His free kicks and delivery can be excellent. I still maintain he’s a well under rated player, just unfashionable. Look how class he was in the two CC games. Says it all. CC games is what Perch should be reserved for, and little else in my opinion. Final word – against Wigan, i would seriously like to see Barton & Tiote in the centre, and the Gateshead radgie plus the ‘krands up front. C’mon CH, positivity. Caution is one thing, but too much of it could spell real problems. In my opinion, it already has.

  • shearermania

    Sep 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

    Comment #20

    stevie…bang on son..

    action speaks louder than words..

  • Ericles

    Sep 29, 2010 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #21

    Also agree with Steve. Funny thing happening this Sunday – we beat City!!!!

  • Toon XI

    Sep 29, 2010 at 4:29 PM

    Comment #22

    It is interesting that most bloggers are questioning CH’s tactical abilities. I questioned his skills before and after the Villa game and got ripped apart by many fans. I do think tactics are CH’s downfall. He wad weak as an intern manager and still weak two years later. He is a great coach and manager off the pitch, but lacks insight and vision on matchday.

    He has earned the right to manage the squad so I’ll back him and hope he gets creative real soon. If he doesn’t we’ll be in deep trouble by Christmas.

  • geoff777

    Sep 29, 2010 at 5:14 PM

    Comment #23

    No Plan B and Nolan scare me too.

    Much rather have a second top class striker …

    Down on our luck and we’ve got the Sports Direct bargain bin blues ….

  • Tom Mo.

    Sep 29, 2010 at 7:35 PM

    Comment #24

    kevin certainly is a very BIG player…..


  • Majuro Magpie

    Sep 29, 2010 at 10:08 PM

    Comment #25

    Ben Arfa key to what we do…..? thats a laugh the guys been here 2 minutes. Nolan saw us through the dark days, and I think his personality has been a major plus point in getting the team spirit turned around, still hes a bit slow so lets drop him for some shiny new flash-dan-johnny-come-lately. The unglamorous Gary Speed used to get undeserved stick.

  • leedodd

    Sep 29, 2010 at 10:57 PM

    Comment #26

    Have You Seen The Price of the Sunderland Tickets ?? There Double the Price Nearly !!!! I think the Gates will be down Drasticly from Now on. The Directors stand is always quite empty I can see the rest of the ground being quite empty aswell now . We paid £35 for the tickets on sunday – The sunderland Tickets £49 whats that about ?? I recon a 30.000 gate ??. After sundays Game they had better beware !!!!! we love Newcastle United but were not that daft !!!!

  • hodnufc

    Oct 1, 2010 at 1:17 PM

    Comment #27

    Not a Nolan fan personally. His goalscoring record was great in the Championship, but he offers very little in the PL.


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