Not Many Games Left For Stephen Ireland To Prove Himself

It looks like Stephen Ireland will make his debut in Newcastle’s tough game on Tuesday night against Manchester United.

Stephen Ireland – makes his debut next Tuesday night

Stephen arrived on Tyneside on January 31st, which is 10 weeks ago last Monday, and it was the same day that Andy Carroll was sensationally sold to Liverpool for a cool £35M.

Alan Pardew was well aware that Stephen had a knee injury at the time, and he knew he wouldn’t be playing for a while, but not for this long, surely.

Newcastle do not have to pay anything to Aston Villa until Stephen actually plays for Newcastle, and it looks like it’s a play-for-pay loan deal, which in the circumstances is very good.

But Stephen has only 6 games left to prove himself now at the Tyneside club, although he may have been impressive in the training he has done since he arrived.

Stephen is one of the casualties of Gerard Houllier taking over the management job at Aston Villa, and he knows he now has no future at Villa Park.

And Alan Pardew has said today he thinks there is no pressure on Stephen to prove himself as a player, but he has to show he can do the job for Newcastle.

This is what Alan said about Stephen today:

“I don’t think there is pressure on him as a player, he has already proven he is a very good player at Manchester City,” “The question with Stephen is whether he can do it in a black-and-white shirt.”

“We’ve got this period between now and the end of the season where he has to show he can.” “If we don’t see it in the next six games, it’s highly unlikely we are going to bring him here permanently.”

“He has to be comfortable at the club and we have to be comfortable with him. This is a very important period for him. He will get a bit of the Manchester United game and then hopefully he can feature more heavily after that.”

“He hasn’t featured yet, he’s been injured since he got here, and we hope he’s going to feature heavily in these last six games. That will really beef up our offensive capability and, if I’m honest, it needs it.”

“Shola should be okay for the Manchester United game which is a big relief. We won’t risk him if he isn’t right but Stephen Ireland will be involved. He won’t start but he’ll be on the bench.”

We need to see Ireland play somewhere near his best form, and soon too, although he will be very short of match practice, having not played a game since last December.

But let’s hope he can play well for Newcastle in these last 6 games, and score a few goals too.

If he can do that, then it looks like Newcastle could well sign this player for around £8M in the summer,  with an alternative being a season long loan deal for him next season on Tyneside.

Comments welcome.

18 comments so far


    Apr 15, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Comment #1

    looking forward to seeing him play for us, finally get a chance to judge him on footballing terms instead of his mouth.

    Really hope he impresses and shows some Ben Arfa style quality because he seems to want to be a NUFC player.

  • ganiyu

    Apr 15, 2011 at 9:52 AM

    Comment #2

    Is there a possibilty of nufc winning the last 6 games??

  • cyprus

    Apr 15, 2011 at 9:53 AM

    Comment #3

    I’d start him and sub him at half time. This would be a surprise element for Man U, like Jonas was a couple of years ago (draw at Old Traf).

  • roshan MAGPIE

    Apr 15, 2011 at 10:05 AM

    Comment #4

    finally going to c ireland in NUFC shirt lets hope he hits his form when he was in man city

  • carrollsinger

    Apr 15, 2011 at 10:13 AM

    Comment #5

    I would start him team as followed
    Simmo colo willo Enrique
    Taylor Barton tiote (horah) guti

  • ganiyu

    Apr 15, 2011 at 10:20 AM

    Comment #6

    Another bad boy in the squad…..get rid off him

  • toonturtle

    Apr 15, 2011 at 10:23 AM

    Comment #7

    Want to see him do well, hopefully he can help us out with a couple of goals in the final few games.

  • North Atlantic Magpie

    Apr 15, 2011 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #8

    I don’t want to see R. and S Taylor in the team. They’re so bad and Guthrie usually bad too.

  • JP...from The Rock

    Apr 15, 2011 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #9

    Ed – Please don’t put this picture of Ireland up again – it gives me the shivers!!

  • damonmwade

    Apr 15, 2011 at 3:02 PM

    Comment #10

    @ ganiyu
    id rather have a team full of bad lads who do well over a team of good lads who do nowt, look at Owen he was a so called good lad but done sweet FA for the team

  • gorskino10

    Apr 15, 2011 at 3:30 PM

    Comment #11

    Just wait till all the people who think he has a lil bit of talent, see him play terrible not worthy or a 500k price tag let alone the reported over 6/7 Million we would pay to this injury ridden player.

    How long will they say “Oh give him time he isnt “Bedded” into the squad yet” “He just isnt match fit yet” “He is lacking confedence” etc…

    All those 6 games will go and you will see nothing posistive from Stephen.

  • chuck

    Apr 15, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    Comment #12

    A ridiculess premise that Ireland has to prove himself in these last six games.
    What exactly is expected ?
    The guy has just came back from a fairly long injury period, needs playing time to get back to match fitness and settle in to a completely new side.
    Gawd! what idiotic statements there are on this blog.
    He`s a bad boy ? ermm! so bareing his torso makes him a bad boy, cause i cant think of anything else he`s been accused of .
    Hell Joey`s a bad boy ! but he`s playing his ass off, if Steve can play anything like him (and i`m sure he can cause i have seen him) then we could use a few more bad boys on this side.
    So enough with the personal attacks, give the guy a chance, I for one expect him to be an outstanding player for Newcastle, lets see !

  • chuck

    Apr 15, 2011 at 4:19 PM

    Comment #13

    As for Pardew insisting he has to prove himself.
    Well it`s not exactly a secret that Pardew never puts his mind in gear before his mouth goes in motion.
    He`s becoming somewhat of a joke in that respect and he would probably do well to keep his mouth shut, at least he cant be accused of being an idiot if he says nowt!

  • Sav

    Apr 15, 2011 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #14

    Carroll had a couple of dismal outings for ‘pool before delivering in style last week. Lets hope we have the same patience with Ireland who is bound to be rusty.

  • MT

    Apr 15, 2011 at 5:51 PM

    Comment #15

    hope Ireland can prove his ability,show me he is still a good football player.Otherwise i don’t think
    he ‘ll be here next season

  • chuck

    Apr 15, 2011 at 7:44 PM

    Comment #16

    Really !

  • dave 1961

    Apr 15, 2011 at 8:38 PM

    Comment #17

    Just wish Pardew had to prove himself, as so far he’s only showed how inept he can be, I was hoping he could be a one team wonder. So far I see a man bluffing his way thru the job. just hope the new owners can bring the right manager in, man who would be king should be the job description, low pay massive bonus we need someone special!!!!!!

  • ddmacker

    Apr 16, 2011 at 4:05 PM

    Comment #18

    I don’t expect Stephen to play well or for long on tuesday, it’ll be the last 5 or 10 mins. Taking into consideration that he felt slighted at being a make-weight in a big deal and the new manager was a bit to strict for him, he played like a lollypop-lady on his last Villa game and was taken off. But now we hear that he has settled in and wants to play, well why not give him a chance? Personally I can’t stand him, he stands for everything that I think is wrong with the game today. Over-paid Prima-donna that can’t keep his mouth shut. I won’t be a regular in the CROWN in Stockport this week.


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