Can Stephen Ireland Be A Success At Newcastle?

It will be important for Newcastle United’s future, and also that of Alan Pardew as manager, that the Tyneside club buy sensibly in the summer, and hopefully significantly strengthen the squad.

Stephen Ireland – can he be a success at Newcastle?we hope so!

Alan took in the French Ligue 1 game last weekend,  when Toulouse lost 2-1 at home to Stade Rennes, so we wonder who he was watching in that game?

And of course we fully expect the Newcastle scouts to be out in force through the end of the season, as Alan makes up his list of transfer targets to present to Mike Ashley and Derek Llambias in early summer.

It would be good if Newcastle can get more quality players like Ben Arfa into the club, and the Evening Chronicle is reporting that Alan Pardew was impressed with Ben Arfa’s attitude, which is only one reason the Londoner was so keen to sign him on permanent terms last month.

Pardew told the Evening Chronicle today:

“You do have to be a certain type of player to join Newcastle United.”  “It’s difficult to put that into players.”

“You have to understand the passion, and the level of concentration you need to play in the first team at this club.”

“We have good players here who can do that.”

We are very interested to see if Stephen Ireland can make a success of his time on Tyneside, because if he can get to his best he would be a terrific acquisition for Newcastle.

The Aston Villa central midfielder is getting closer to returning from his knee injury, and he will hopefully be back in training next week with the first team squad.

But he will not be fit enough to play for the first team, until probably the game at Stoke City on 19th March, and there are 8 league games left after that game at the Britannia Stadium.

Alan continued:

“Stephen Ireland has settled in well because there’s a good group round him,”

“It makes life easier – and Shefki Kuqi has been the same because he has that group around him.

If Stephen can return to his best form this season, then the fee of somewhere around £8M for him, would be an absolute bargain for the Newcastle club.

We’ve always thought Stephen was a very talented player.

Comments welcome.


36 comments so far

  • 37 BEN ARFA 37

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:02 PM

    Comment #1


    NO, to be honest i think ireland will be a flop

    he played against us when we beat them 6-1 and looked lazy and a headless chicken.

    hope he proves me wrong !

    but i think he will go back to villa and under perform for the toon.

  • AndyE93

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:03 PM

    Comment #2

    I can’t really see where he will fit in if everyone is fit unless we change to 4-5-1 which hasn’t really worked that well for us. I can see AP probably going to 4-5-1 with either him or Nolan behind Best and Lovenkrands getting dropped. looking at our home games for the rest of the season i think that we should be aiming for around 11-13 points with possible points dropped against Bolton, Everton and Man Utd. That being said knowing us we will beat those teams and then lose to WBA Wolves and Birmingham.

  • 37 BEN ARFA 37

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:05 PM

    Comment #3


    how would 8 million be a bargain for ireland ?

    we got ben arfa for 6 million

    thats what i call a bargain….

  • AndyE93

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:14 PM

    Comment #4

    37BEN ARFA37 i think ed is meaning that if Ireland can regain the form he was in at City then 8 million will be a bargain. It would be as he was absolutely quality for City between 2007 and 2009 even when playing with supposed superstars like Robinho. Right now he is probably worth 4 million at best and that is only because of his reputation and past performances.

  • sirjasontoon

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:18 PM

    Comment #5

    Think his best days are behind him,even if he gets fit and plays some great football for us like he did at city there is no option in the loan deal to buy him anyway as far as I know.

    Good bit of business for Villa at the moment.

  • supermacnumber9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:18 PM

    Comment #6

    anyone know what wages he’ll be looking for?
    see how he goes for the rest of the season – but if he plays “too good” city may want their old player of the season back or up the fee.
    he should be an excellent buy for £6m
    but I would prefer us to sort out our forwards first before being tempted by more “bargain” midfielders

  • supermacnumber9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:21 PM

    Comment #7

    sorry – got confused (senior moment) he left city where he was brilliant for villa where he was crap

  • jesperfuglsang

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:22 PM

    Comment #8

    That is a though one, but Toulouse do have Yannis Tafer on loan from Lyon – maybe Pardew is looking at him as a replacement for Carroll. Ore maybe he’s looking at Cheikh M’Bengue as a replacement for Enrique if he leaves. Moussa Sissoko for our midfield is also a possibility.

    Sylvain Marveaux playes for Rennes and we have beeen linked with him before, so my guess is Pardew is having another look at him. Yann M’Vila could be nice as well 😉

  • supermacnumber9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:25 PM

    Comment #9

    here we ago again, bargain midfielders instead of forwards – “Newcastle and Fulham have both joined the race for Auxerre star Benoit Pedretti” – 30 years old for £6.

  • Tinman

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:25 PM

    Comment #10

    I think we should move to the much acclaimed 4-4-1-1/4-3-3 formation in April when we have a full squad. My best starting team would look something like: Offensively
    Simmo Collo Taylor Enrique
    Barton Gosling
    Ireland/Jonas Ben Arfa

    Simmo Collo Taylor Enrique
    Ireland Barton Tiote Gosling
    Ben Arfa

    In the summer looking for replacement for Best with him as back up centre forward, Hulk maybe, and an additional option to play the Ben Arfa / Jonas / Ireland role, i would look at Vela, who could well become a starter. Then we also could do with a replacement for Simmo, with him going as 2nd RB, and cover for Enrique.

  • BeeGuy

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    Comment #11

    Hey, I hope the guy does well, but based on the time NUFC players actually return from injury vs. when they are projected to be back, I’d say he might get a few minutes in the last two games of the season. On the bright side, that may mean Villa turns him loose. But if does become available, would NUFC then buy? On the negative side, perhaps he is just here to provide leverage on Barton’s contract negotiations.

  • supermacnumber9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    Comment #12

    absolute priority – a goal scorer in a no.9 shirt – then sort out the rest!

  • AndyE93

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:29 PM

    Comment #13

    Tinman i see you are dropping Nolan for a rather inexperienced player who has only played 4 minutes in a Newcastle top. Bit premature to say he deserves a place ahead of Nolan who has been good this season and his goals have been invaluable to our team. Not to mention he is a v good captain that can motivate the players throughout the game.

  • Tinman

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:32 PM

    Comment #14

    Barton becomes captain, showed the motivational skills neccessary in the Arsenal game, as did Nolan ;).. Yes Nolan has scored goals, but how many since a certain number 9 left? I see Nolan as a passenger throughout most of the game.
    I do agree that it might be a bit premature, so maybe think about that decision after a few games

  • desember

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:36 PM

    Comment #15

    At 8mil and probably equally substantial wages, I won’t say that Ireland is a bargain but if he performs he’ll provide that extra option for the team in the squad and at least from the bench. He looks like a good player that can allow AP to rest Nolan or Barton without losing too much quality – or perhaps even give AP a selection headache.

  • Tinman

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:36 PM

    Comment #16

    Agree supermac

  • AndyE93

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:37 PM

    Comment #17

    I’ve never really seen Gosling play so i don’t really no what to expect from him when he eventually becomes fit again but for this season i would stick with Nolan. See how Gosling does in pre season and then it’s up to AP i suppose. What type of player is Gosling and who would he possibly compare to?

  • TimToon9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:44 PM

    Comment #18

    8 for Ireland is a bargain if he becomes the fotballer he was for Man Shitty 2 years ago.. He was one of the best in PL.. So yeah, a f. bargain,..

  • Tinman

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:48 PM

    Comment #19

    Yea think your probably right, safest option anyway.
    Gosling is your classic box-to-box midfielder, however was deployed as right back and right midfield to cover for injuries whilst at Everton on occasions.
    He is a big powerful lad, 5’10”, pretty quick, has an eye for a goal. I see him kind of similar to Barton within our team except maybe a bit quicker, probably not as good a delivery, similar eye for a goal and Gosling being more energetic.

  • listie

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #20

    If he can get back his old form 8m is the v most we should pay.
    When is he due to be fit to play

  • TimToon9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #21

    And dropping Nolan, seriously? He is highly influental on the team.. This is the best team we have:

  • TimToon9

    Feb 24, 2011 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #22

    I would easily pay 12-15 for Ireland at his prime.. We got 35 for Carroll, and u would max pay 8 for Ireland in the shape of his life? Seriously?

  • 37 BEN ARFA 37

    Feb 24, 2011 at 2:08 PM

    Comment #23

    our best team at the moment..

    collo is better than steven taylor
    jonas is better than ireland on the left (good link up with jose)


  • Ezedoesit

    Feb 24, 2011 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #24

    I’m anxious to see how he’ll do. Joey said he’s the type of player that needs an arm around him. Hopefully the morale and spirit can bring back the player of 2 seasons ago (arguably the best midfielder in the prem). You don’t lose that kinda talent at his age. I just hope with these guys returning we start to pass the ball better in the final third. We’re gonna need that to bring out the best of guys like Ireland.

    Check out this funny video!

  • gorskino10

    Feb 24, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    Comment #25

    If he has the same terrible attitude and commitment like he did at Villa he wil be terrible but if he does he may be good depends how he fits the formation etc. and if he WORKS HARD if he doesnt he will be like Guthrie (nonexistant) in a match.

  • chuck

    Feb 24, 2011 at 3:35 PM

    Comment #26

    Errrrmmmm !a special type of player is it ?
    C`mon Al. we are all aware of the problems both Stephen and Ben have been involved in at other clubs.
    Not to say they may be ready to settle here and fit in, though Ireland has stated publicly in the past , his preference for Liverpool.
    As for kuqi or whatever his name is , the less mentioned about him the better.
    It`s not that I dont like either Ireland or BA, actually cant wait to see them play for the side.
    They can provide that quality and flair that is presently missing in the side.
    I just think Pardew should stop trying so hard to impress us with his bull***t in regards to everything .

  • cupiddstunt

    Feb 24, 2011 at 3:43 PM

    Comment #27

    If Ireland can recover his MC form then he will be a very useful addition and even possible purchase, a lot of how a player performs is by what the manager asks of him, and how the players around him respond, it worked at MC but not at Villa. So in my mind it is up to AP to see where the differences lay and get him playing like he did at city.

    As for the “funny vid” from “ezedoesit” @#25” it’s Really no more funny/stupid or ridiculous than any Schwarzenegger or Stallone film to mention just two who turned out repeatedly farfetched stupidity.

    When you take into consideration the audiences they are targeted at then this actually stands up quite well in comparison.

    Quite sad that people have to ridicule film makers that are basically still in their infancy when compared with American film makers.

    Seen any good Nicholas Cage movies lately?????

    If you want really funny,,,,,,,,,,, no I will rephrase that, if you want to watch a really STUPID film pick one of his or maybe anything from john woo.

    Anyway back to Ireland, handled right he could be a superb addition to the squad.

  • chuck

    Feb 24, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    Comment #28

    Look no sense in arguing who plays where.
    It`s different horses for different courses , same as different tactics against say Stoke as opposed to Arsenal.
    I would hope our esteemed manager is aware of that as obviously some on here ar not.
    Niggling injuries, resting certain player, the reason clubs need deep squads in the EPL.
    just consider we are lucky to have these talented players and no doubt they will all get time in the side .
    Thank goodness our dumbass duo (Ashley & Sancho Panza) had the sense to sign Enrique to an extended contract six months ago instead of leaving the possibility he could go for possibly less than we paid for him.
    When Pardew mentioned Enrique wanted to see us break the 40 points before signing, followed by his interview, which meant “Come and get me” it was clear to everyone he wanted away.
    Ah well, another fine fix you got us into !

  • coolcatcarter89

    Feb 24, 2011 at 3:58 PM

    Comment #29


  • hadthetshirt

    Feb 24, 2011 at 4:09 PM

    Comment #30

    8 games isn’t a lot to try and get some form and impress.He played 10 games for Villa and never looked half the player he was at city.

    here’s me saying nice to see no charva’s and 1st posts and there you go found one.I suppose it can be expected during half term 🙂

  • GeordieTwo

    Feb 24, 2011 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #31

    I hope he has grown up since his early Man City days with the 2 dead grandmother stories. He was poor for Aston Villa but didn’t really get enough playing time and now injured again. He needs a decent run of games like Barton did to find out what he can offer. He will have to impress quickly I think with Ben Arfa due back in April and probably Gosling before that. The competition for midfield places should be excellent. All the better for us!

  • technonasty

    Feb 24, 2011 at 5:16 PM

    Comment #32

    Agree with Tinman, when I watched Gosling play for Everton he looked like a very tidy midfielder. Very good touch and passing and able to thread a pass forwards. Like a younger Barton…really rate him. Hope he recovers well and develops for the toon!

  • The Leazus End

    Feb 24, 2011 at 5:28 PM

    Comment #33

    Gosling will be a fans faverite if he giving the time to rest

    anyone know what number ireland will wear

  • chuck

    Feb 24, 2011 at 6:50 PM

    Comment #34

    BA, Joey, Nolan, Jonas,Gosling, Ireland, Tiote, add kranjcar to that group and you got two players for each midfield spot.
    With a mixture of skill versatlity and muscle, as good if not better than most in the EPL.
    A decent striker, a replacement for Enrique and perhaps another CD, would guarantee another year of EPL football.
    There are plenty of good full backs around, trouble is, they are not all free agents, but with thirty mill. in the bank, hey !
    I mean it`s true that Ashley promised Pard`s he would spend , right ?
    As for Ireland, guys a good proffessional, not a one season wonder, no such thing and this could be his opportunity to show what he`s capeable of.
    If we could get Kranjcar who can play accross the midfield, would give us a great degree of versatility, onwards and upwards.

  • Nufc-83

    Feb 24, 2011 at 10:20 PM

    Comment #35

    ED steven Ireland a Right sided midfielder??????? he is a blatant CM or CAM he cant play right or left sided like i have seen some people putting on this blog. People will say look at Barton yet his crossing has made him quality in that position ireland is known for his through balls and shooting around the edge of the box. If Ireland gets to 70% of his city form he will be our best midfielder and well worth 8m. I agree with tinman that Nolan is just a passenger in games but pops up with odd goals (but has played alot as 2nd st). Joey has five goals this season and Nolan 10 so Joey would have around 8 at least if he was played CAM and also contributing assists and have high energy in the middle unlike Nolan. Ireland will take Nolans place no worries if he recovers form even if nolan has good leadership qualities or not. Timtoon you have missed Colo out from your team there really our best defender all season by a country mile wow thats retarded.

  • Ed Harrison

    Feb 24, 2011 at 10:27 PM

    Comment #36

    Nufc-83 – whoops you’re right – I corrected it – my mistake.


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