Ben Arfa’s return and the fine games put in by a number of Newcastle’s fringe players on Tuesday night at Nottingham Forest, have convinced Danny Simpson that Newcastle have a stronger squad than last season.
Danny Simpson – challenges Matt Derbyshire Tuesday night
Certainly with Alan Pardew making 9 changes from the side that drew with Aston Villa last Saturday, it looks like Newcastle have some excellent players coming through in the form of Mehdi Abeid, Shane Ferguson, Sylvain Marveaux, Danny Guthrie and Dan Gosling to name only a few.
And the squad looks stronger, even though Andy Carroll, Kevin Nolan, Jose Enrique and Joey Barton have all departed this year.
Alan Pardew will bring Ben Arfa back slowly, and the Frenchman will likely only be a substitute on Saturday against Blackburn Rovers, but Alan will also have to ensure that some of those good up-and-coming players on show at the City Ground, get playing time too – somehow.
Danny Simpson scored with a cross for Newcastle’s 3rd goal at the City Ground (he meant to score – yeah right), was his second goal ever for Newcastle, and he thinks the Newcastle manager has more options than he had back in May:
“The squad is better all-round than it was last year. And I think we’ve got more belief, to be honest,”
“We have more attacking options and while we’ve been very good at not conceding goals this season, when we do like at Forest we are capable of hitting back.”
“There’s been a lot of talk about us not scoring enough, but we created a lot of chances. A few of the lads who came in look like they’re going to be really good players and they would be ready for the Premier League if they were called on.”
We have been very impressed with the new French players Newcastle have brought inover the summer, and all look good players.
Abeid and Marveaux were both good on Tuesday night, and we think Gabriel Obertan can become a good player for Newcastle, once he settles down a bit, and improves his final ball.
And Yohan Cabaye is very fast becoming a star player at Newcastle.
To be 4th top of the league, and in the 4th round of the Carling Cup, and unbeaten in what is the best start to a season since the heady days of 1995 under Kevin Keegan – cannot be bad.