Not A Champagne Performance Yesterday But Who Cares – We Won


It wasn’t a great performance yesterday from Newcastle, but we’re certainly not complaining,  as the lads got a great 3 points against QPR,  in a game we were expected to win.

Alan Pardew shakes hands with Mark Hughes before the game yesterday
Good luck but not too much of it


That’s 4 points the lads have taken off  newly promoted QPR this season,  without conceding a goal, and that’s very good.

And we are now in the high position of being 6th in the league table,  with the same points total as Arsenal and  one point more than Liverpool, so we are not complaining about the performance yesterday or how we got all 3 points.

The last time Newcastle played in the league against Manchester United 12 days ago,  the lads gave about their best performance for a long long time, and  in front of a worldwide TV audience and a sell-out Geordie  crowd of over 52,000.

And  Newcastle got great headlines around the world for that superb 3-0 win, when we tore the Red Devils apart – well kind of. 😀

Alan Pardew is not trying to say it was a great game for the fans to watch  yesterday, but we  understand the lads cannot be brilliant in every single game, and no other team is either.

Newcastle fans were delighted when the final whistle went yesterday, and although Newcastle couldn’t get that second goal that would have killed the game off,  it was Newcastle’s 4th clean sheet in the last six Premier League games and that’s not too bad at all.

Newcastle now have eight clean sheets in the league this season and we had nine in all of last season.

This is what Alan Pardew told the local Tyneside press today:

“Listen, we’re never going to have a champagne performance week-in, week-out. We had the champagne against Man United.”

“It was more like a flat beer, but we won, which was the important thing. As a spectacle, it was hard to watch.”

We will have to wait and see if Yohan Cabaye’s ankle will be OK for the game at Fulham on Saturday, but the initial prognosis seems to be be good,  and hopefully the Frenchman has every hope of being ready for the next important game.

And the Frenchman who replaced Yohan yesterday – Ben Arfa – had another good game for Newcastle,  and is starting to look like his old self, and he certainly entertains the crowd with his great skills.

Alan Pardew has been full of praise for Ben Arfa since yeasterday’s game:

“Hatem came on the pitch after the injury to Cabaye and gave us the flair and work rate we’ve been asking.

“In the last two games he’s put himself in a great position. He made a big difference, and I’m pleased with that.”

“To be honest, I was going to change it in any case with Cabaye on the pitch.”  “I just felt we were losing that midfield area.”  “When you’ve got a team like QPR, sometimes you just need that extra body in there to get the ball and play.”

“Jonas got free, and we just created enough to get the goal from Bestie, who I was so pleased for.”  “In the second half we didn’t really open the game up. We kept it tight, and got the win.”

“We have to be happy.”

Newcastle looked a good side after the first 20 minutes, and they should have every chance of getting something out of the game at Craven Cottage this Saturday.

But Fulham were an embarrassment at Blackburn on Saturday, as they played against 10 men for all but 22 minutes of the game, after Yakubu Aiyegbeni – Yakubu – was sent off  – but Blackburn to their immense credit still won 3-1 for only their 4th win of the season in the league.

The red card means that Yakubu will miss the game against Newcastle in three weeks time at Ewood Park on February 4th.

Manager Martin Jol will want a much better performance out of his team this coming Saturday, and we expect another tough game at Fulham, and the game is again being televised live around the world.

Another three points could see Newcastle in 5th place in the league come Saturday evening.

Comments welcome.



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257 comments so far

  • planb

    Jan 16, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #1

    Pardew gave QPR far to much respect with his substitutions talk about trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory Ameobi should have went off after 60minutes he was blowing out of his arse and the descision not to play Ben arfa just shows pardew up, the kid came on and completely changed the game we are a different team when we play through the midfield instead of the high ball football

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  • boater

    Jan 16, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    Comment #2

    Planb – since you’ve cut and pasted I may as well do the same –

    planb – I disagree. We were comfortable throughout. I’m getting sick of saying this but Shola – whilst not doing well in front of goal himself – enables us to ping balls into the front 2 and support from midfield. I don’t know why people can’t make this rudimentary tactical observation and just see the surface reading of a game.

    Playing a high ball doesn’t bypass or negate the impact of Arfa – it allows him a fulcrum to play off.. we can’t just depend on heroic solo runs from deep midfield positions, we need to mix it up and pressure their defense higher at times. The goal was the perfect example of hitting the target striker early and supporting from midfield.

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  • G

    Jan 16, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #3

    It was an ugly match, but I will take 37 of them with one champagne result for the season, if it keeps us at this end of the table.

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  • Ponderous Pardew

    Jan 16, 2012 at 2:59 PM

    Comment #4

    Swansea are my new 2nd favourite team, wish we had the courage to play that way. We’ve got the players.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:00 PM

    Comment #5

    Rotunda
    You’re feeling rather generous with Mikeys money today mate,offsetting four million indeed,tut tut,have you taken in to account agents fees and petrol/carparking etc

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  • planb

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:01 PM

    Comment #6

    boater you plainly havent a clue about football if you think braying the ball up to shola and pushing forward is football thats championship rubbish building from the back is football all the good teams do it a team called wimbeldon used the hoof technique but a cant remember where they are now!

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  • Munster Mag

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:03 PM

    Comment #7

    PP @4 …you’re always complaining about Pardew. He’s the best manager we’ve had here in years!

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  • Beattie25

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:03 PM

    Comment #8

    @ colo-sus

    From the previous thread.

    Personally I do not think we will sign Cissokho or Erding but I will certainly not rule it out. I’m hoping that we do and will not rule it out any time sooner that 1st Febuary.

    I just think that when you accept fate it seems to be a negative thing so I try to remain positive. Whilst I don’t think we will sign those 2 I believe we will certainly keep our players and sign more than 1 new player. Who it will be time will tell.

    I just see Mike Ashley as a businees man, but even the tightest most ruthless business men can see that we are close to Europe. Not next season or the one after, but this season. Yes it’s going to be a challenge but with a bit more investment we could cement 7th place.

    Everyone is quick to point out the bad moments of our recent past but something is happening at Newcastle and I suppose what it boils down to is personal preferance.

    If you expect the worst too happen and something good happens it feels better, if something bad happens you can say I told you so.

    If you expect good things to happen and good things do happen you feel overjoyed, if something bad happens it feels 10x worse (I know, i’ve been there).

    Joke aside I am a positive person when it comes to Newcastle. The type of person that looked at releagation as a positive thing. Not to say that you are not, but I wish some fans could have a laugh and a joke about, create fantasys and dream teams and talk about the good things with regards to our clubs then coming onn every day to sl@g of our own players, say ‘we arent gona sign anyone’ and give up all hope for the future of the club we all love. (not an attack on you, just the current split of opinion from the fans of our club).

    Some of us do not share the points of view, that is fine, but it feels like there is a big divide. Not just here on the blog but in the stadium you can feel it. Those who think we are destined to fall and those whoe are excited about us getting back to where we belong. It’s like the fans support 2 different clubs. We don’t, we all support and love NUFC.

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  • DJM TOON

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:04 PM

    Comment #9

    anyone got a download of the match??

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  • toonarmydownsouth

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:07 PM

    Comment #10

    @ boater agree with ya shola got a lot of stick but people seem to overlook the anount of hold up play he does in midfield to allow us to get forward and get in positions to attack also last couple of games hes slotted some great passes through hes a big strong physical lad and pards knows how to use him

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  • Colo-Sus

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:15 PM

    Comment #11

    Beattie –

    On reading that I hold my hands up and say fair play, I agree with you 110%.

    I am of a similar stance hence me saying I wasnt being negative.
    I think the Erding story has some merit to it, but the Cissokho one is in my opinion a non starter.

    Fair play and at the endof the day we all want the same things.

    HWTL,

    Enemys no more haha

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  • Ponderous Pardew

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:15 PM

    Comment #12

    Munster Mag

    I am?

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  • BOOM BOOM THE 1ST

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    Comment #13

    `@ Ponderous Pardew really u have a 2nd team ok anyway ive seen the likes of swansea come up and play the “beautifule game” only to get relegated the following season.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:19 PM

    Comment #15

    Shola’s taken a bit of stick on here today I’ve given his performance yesterday a bit of grief myself,but really its not Sholas fault I think most people would be more than happy to see him come of the bench(look at the Spurs game) if the owner had of brought in a new striker which imo has had plenty of time to do so then Shola could be used as the impact sub his games most suited to.

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  • hrocks

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:22 PM

    Comment #16

    some kid is tweeting ryan shawcross and mathew etherington are at the training ground and its being reported on sky. has anyone seen this

    also my mate says we are being linked with mario gotze. he looks good on wiki has anyone heard about this to
    god i miss SSN

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  • Ponderous Pardew

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Comment #17

    Boom Boom

    No ordinary promoted side comprehensively beats Arsenal at their own game. And, what’s wrong with enjoying watching another team play? Or are you one of these ooga-booga fans, who likes to keep the game tribal? Love one team and vehemently detest every other.

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  • BOOM BOOM THE 1ST

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Comment #18

    @brocks are u tryna wind us fcukin up gotze not a hope in hell

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  • Colo-Sus

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Comment #19

    hrocks

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    Be good if its true

    heres hoping

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  • boater

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Comment #20

    plann – not sure you are thinking tactically on this one, sounds like you may be scapegoating a player on this one, easier to do than stand back and look at the bigger picture. We are by no means Wimbledon – we have mixed it up all season.

    If you think I know nothing about football, this is worth a read from David pleat who is one of the better footie tacticians around:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2012/jan/15/newcastle-hatem-ben-arfa

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  • BOOM BOOM THE 1ST

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #21

    yeah ur right there i h8 the lot of them i think u will find blackpool beat a lot of teams with that style of play where are they now?

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  • hrocks

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #22

    boom boom and colo

    i have never heard of him just read his wiki page and 1st thought is way out our price range 2nd why would a club let him go

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  • arroeben

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:29 PM

    Comment #23

    How long more do we have to wait to get a new signing on tyneside? But still, keeping players here is mor important.

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  • boater

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #24

    JFA/TADS – agreed completely. He’s a bit of a Heskey – takes all the flack, misses sitters, fans get on his back but still works hard to give us an outlet. If De Jong or Cisse signs, great he’ll be 3rd/4th choice.. but the club’s transfer activity – or lack of – is not his fault. as with other players who get it in the neck from supporters.

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  • hotdog

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    Comment #25

    #19 Good article – I know fans want to be entertained but QPR were so negative yesterday when 1-0 down. We didnt have to force the game we kept the ball brilliantly and that’s why Guthrie got MOM as the game suited him perfectly in the second half when Mark Hughes tactics were crap!

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  • Robby Bobson

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    Comment #26

    I recorded the game later that night and it didnt seem half as bad as it did at the time, we had some nice possession play in the second half to close the game out and HBA provided somethings nice on the eye.

    Also our defensive line is so impressive…we set up the back four across the penalty area, get the wingers to come back and do the closing down and the centre midfielders just in front.

    As soon as they have the ball in our half, we set that position up and its working so well. Sometimes it seems our fullbacks dont close down enough, but they clearly been told not to and to let the wingers do that.

    Anyway, good performance, we wouldnt have kept that lead last season i dont think.

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  • Robby Bobson

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:41 PM

    Comment #27

    hrocks…goetze is the hottest property in european football so i guarantee its not true.

    Shawcross too much and overrated, Etherington too old. All nonsense if you ask me.

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  • Ponderous Pardew

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:44 PM

    Comment #28

    I back AP and his ‘horses for courses’ methodology, but sometimes I feel we plod through the boggy well-beaten track, when we have a chance to take the scenic route, like yesterday. We could have been bold and swept them aside, instead we decided to keep them at arms length.

    But hey, we got the win, I suppose…..

    Entertainment is a huge part of the reason why I enjoy football., maybe taking precedence over accolades.

    Both happening in tandem is the trick!

    Boom Boom

    Swansea don’t play the same style as Blackpool did. On the most basic level, yes, they both play attacking attractive footy, but Swansea’s style is something ingrained in each player. A steady project.

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  • Toon1978

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:44 PM

    Comment #29

    Don’t know if you lads seen this….latest on Cissoko..

    http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11678/7436222/Cissokho-waits-on-green-light

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  • hotdog

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:45 PM

    Comment #30

    Well put Robby.

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  • jayphoto

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:48 PM

    Comment #31

    believe me when I say this, as a German, Mario Gotze is the best player we have produced for 30 years! He’s an unbelievable talent, you would be talking 40m to sign him, more than it would cost to sign Hazard! Bayern Munich would move heaven and earth to sign him also! I love this dream team we are setting up in the rumours tho! Geez, with Hazard, Gotze, Ben Arfa, Ba and Tiote… the worlds greatest team! All it’d take is a crafty 100m! 🙂

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  • magpiebop

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #32

    Shola and Best are decent players for us but shouldn’t be played together as they both play the same role. Ba plays well off both players as the eager runner and in his absence would like to see Vuckic or Gosling get the chance to play off Ameobi or Best.

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  • -Tendo-

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #33
  • hrocks

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #34

    jayphoto

    if u can convince gotze to come i will start u off with a tenner towards his fee. he looks bloody good

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  • ToonIcon

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:56 PM

    Comment #35

    Cissokho would be class were deff intrested but i think money’s ganna talk ganna depend on how much lyon and Cissokho want

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  • davybtoon

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #36

    hrocks are u toonruz he tweeted that very rumour about gotze

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  • davybtoon

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    Comment #37

    cissohko even confirming were in talks its jus a fee to b agreed by the sound of it

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  • Beattie25

    Jan 16, 2012 at 3:59 PM

    Comment #38

    I believe

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  • hainesy

    Jan 16, 2012 at 4:01 PM

    Comment #40

    Maybe Samba’s gonna come in! Sunderland and us are gonna bid between 5 and 6 million. He’s just stuck in a transfer request too. Spurs and QPR also gonna bid though :/

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