Alan Pardew says the players last night gave him exactly what he had asked for.
Alan Pardew – last night at the City Ground
And that amounted to some good performances from his “fringe” players, which will not make the task of picking a team for the Blackburn home game at home on Saturday, very easy at all for the manager. That’s good.
Peter Lovenkrands proved again he will score goals if given the opportunity, and the brace he scored last night gives him 28 goals in 77 total appearances for Newcastle, and two goals in four appearances this season.
And certainly the squad is not lacking in confidence, with the lads 4th top of the Premier League table, with 9 points from five games, and now through two rounds of the Carling Cup to the 4th round, the round of the last 16.
It seems that Pardew is smelling a good Cup run this season, as he had this to say today about the Carling Cup:
“What is important to us is getting another two wins. If we do, then we can attack the cup.” “I have to pay tribute to the players and make sure all of the group are getting enough game time.”
“I will look at the Premier League fixtures and make sure we are competitive.” “I told the players they could not do any more than make my job difficult and they have.”
“They all produced and they all know they played well.” “Any game where you make nine changes you cannot expect a team to be nailed down and not make any errors.”
“If I had lost the game I would still be in positive mode.” “We had some great performances.” “Ben Arfa had a 60-minute game through the middle, Marveaux’s effort and application, Sammy and Obertan were great – and Peter bagged two goals.”
“Mehdi always wanted to be on the ball and never stood off. Guthrie also chipped in and played well.”
Newcastle are in the round of the last 16 so a win in the next round puts us in the quarter finals, and a win then puts us through to the semi-finals, and of course two more wins after that and we’ll have won the thing.
And since both relegated sides West Ham and Birmingham reached the last four of the competition last season, and Birmingham even went on to win it, there’s not reason why Newcastle cannot do that too, and that would be great because we’ve never won the League Cup.
The French lads of Ben Arfa, Mehdi Abeid and Sylvain Marveaux were all outstanding last night, and 19 year-old French U 19 player Abeid could be the surprise player this season, if he keeps putting in assured performances like he gave in the center of the midfield.
Two of the goals Newcastle conceded were from Newcastle errors, so the defense could have been tighter last night, and we’re sure the two Taylors, Steven and Ryan, will return to the back four for the game on Saturday, with Steven currently showing his very best form for the Magpies.
It was a good win last night, and we saw that the squad is maybe better than we had first thought, and that things may just be looking up big time, with a win against Blackburn.