If you just imagine that Steven Taylor had been playing on Wednesday evening, do you think Newcastle would have conceded those goals?
Fab Coloccini – didn’t have his usual good game on Wednesday night
Maybe one, but you have to think Newcastle would have been a a lot stronger at the back, but Steven wasn’t available of course, and we let in three very poor goals – again.
Fabricio Coloccini did not have a good game and was exposed by the speed of Shane Long.
Why didn’t we buy Shane in the summer, as he would have given us something different up front?
James Perch is getting a lot of criticism these days, but on Wednesday he was fairly solid at the back, but maybe it’s just that he’s not used to playing at center-back positionally.
But James has come in for unfair criticism for sure, and he’s played well with Colo in the last two games, and he’s only doing his best and is after all playing out of position.
We have to hope the Newcastle captain comes back with a decent game on Monday afternoon at Bolton, and also Cheick Tiote gets back to his old form, as he was only mediocre on Wedneday.
But Cheick is like he was in the first few games of the season, and trying to get back in the groove again.
The January window is coming up and Newcastle must bring in at least a center-back, but with the great Demba Ba away at the African Cup of Nations and Ba scoring 13 of Newcastle’s 23 league goals, we need another striker to help him out.
Be has 13 goals and Peter Lovenkrands, Ryan Taylor and Leon Best are next in line with 3 goals each, so we should still try to replace Andy Carroll, although the Senegal striker has been simply magnificent this season and again looked red hot on Wednesday.
He’s also such a good lad and so modest about everything, but the 51,000 fans there a couple of days ago applauded his great performance and two goal, s in what in the end was a lost cause.
But Alan Pardew has said it may be hard to bring in replacements in mid-season, because the January transfer window is so difficult:
“I think we’re having to look at our squad, because we’re stretched – especially defensively,”
“We have made some calls to try and find out who is available. It’s a difficult window; we want to try and get a good player in a window when teams don’t want to lose their good players, so it’s difficult for us and difficult for every team.”
“You locate a player but then they’ve got to get a replacement, and is another first-team going to let a replacement go? So there’s a knock-on effect.”
“It’s a difficult window and we’ll have to see how it pans out.”
It’s true that clubs don’t want to lose their best players half way through the season, and want to ensure they have an adequate replacement before they sell.
Is it only Newcastle who don’t seem to do that, and are willing to sell their best player on the very last day of the window, to ensure even if they wanted to get a replacement in, there’s not time.
That’s what Newcastle did last January and were a striker short for the rest of the season, and it was good that players like Best and Shola Ameobi and others stepped up to the plate.
In fact we still haven’t replaced Andy, since Be came on a free transfer and wasn’t supposed to be the replacement for Carroll, but he’s a better goalscorer than Andy Carroll will ever be.
We’re in a similar position now with center-back, and if we don’t bring one in we could be in some difficulty for the second half of the season.
Of course if Mike Williamson and Colo can form a good partnership again and stay fit, we’ll be okay.
One the center-backs we’ve been linked with is 23 year-old 6’4″ Douglas of FC Twente, and he would be a decent choice, and his contract runs out in the summer.
We think if Newcastle cannot get him through the door in January, they could go for him in the summer along with Ajax’s Belgium International Jan Vertonghen.
But it’s unthinkable that Newcastle will not bring in another center-back in January, but they’ve surprised us before, and of course Modibo Maiga will not be arriving, after failing his medical exam last week.
If Newcastle don’t bring in defensive replacement(s) in January, we will continue to fall in the league, although with 27 points on the board we just need 13 in the last 21 games to make sure we are safe this season.
That’s one way to look at it, but it would be great to start winning again and putting another good run together to surprise everybody.
We hope Newcastle can somehow get a top center-back through the door next month.