Newcastle Have Mini-Season To Qualify For Champions League

It seems that Alan Pardew is a keen fan of basketball.

Alan Pardew – can he take Newcastle into Champions League?

Alan gave the Newcastle coaches a copy Phil Jackson’s book – More than a Game.

Phil is the former Chicago Bulls and LA Lakers basketball coach,  and I’m busy reading the book Phil wrote with Charlie Rosen, who was a former college basketball player.

Phil talks about what he did at the Lakers, to get the very best out of his two big stars – Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant, and he coached a team ethic approach to the game.

Kobe Bryant in particular finally saw the light,  and Phil was able to win 5 NBA Championships at LA, to go with the six he won with Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls.

It’s not surprising that Alan Pardew has been able to bring the very best out of Ben Arfa, and at the same time have the lad fully embrace a team ethic.

The Newcastle manager invited BBL champions Newcastle Eagles over on Monday to the Benton Training facility, to have both a basketball game and a football match against teams made up of Newcastle players.

Alan Pardew has studied different tactics and methods used in American sports, and he spent time after the game talking with New Yorker and Eagles coach Fab Flournoy.

This is what Alan said about Monday:

“We can learn from them, absolutely.” “America has led the way very much when it comes to the technology of sport.” “We’ve caught up to a certain degree.”

“But you can always learn things from other sports and I’m sure me and Fab will share information as we go along.”

Flournoy said it was great to join Newcastle at their training facility:

“It’s fantastic to come here and see how United do it.” “The biggest thing with our clubs in Newcastle is that we stick together. We can promote each other’s sports, sport here is so important for young people.”

“Alan Pardew extended his hand to us.” “It was great to see the guys mixing and having a laugh but at the same time appreciate everybody’s skill level and what they bring to the table.”  “The biggest thing with United is if they get that top-four finish.”

“It will be the crème de la crème for the city.”  “The one thing people forget is that where they came from just three years they went through relegation,  but have played their way back up.”

“It will be a great finish for them and a great story.”

It will be a great story alright, and there is a mini-season of five games still remaining for Newcastle, and if they do well in those games the impossible might just happen, and Newcastle will again be in the Champions League.

That’s still very much possible if Newcastle can maintain their good form of the last several games, and Alan was down to earth when he said:

“We have to win, it doesn’t matter how. We just need to win.”

He’s right there.

11 comments so far


    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    Comment #1


  • Lee Dodd

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:10 AM

    Comment #2

    I hope we can But The Chelsea and man City Games Will be hard. Best We can get is a Draw . We can beat the other 3 .

  • Dannyo

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #3

    Yup, we have to win no matter what. Great to see AP have that mentality, that means the staff and the squad have it aswell.

  • martoon

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    Comment #4

    A bit slow with this story Ed – it happened 2 days ago! Apparently Pardew scored a bullet of a header in the football match and the Eagles were allowed 13 players!

  • Tsunki

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #5

    Like pards i can only see stoke ahead of us. Worrying about chelski etc is moot if we fail against the likes of stoke and wigan, which, as history demonstrates, is entirely possible.

  • Beattie25

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #6

    This season is like a soppy Hollywood film. I see it now. Pardew is lying in a hospital bed after a failed assanitation attemp from one of Abramovih’s Russian goons. He lies there coughing and spluttering. Benny is at his bed side. Pardew reaches out and takes Bennys hand.

    Pardew says ‘Hatem, do not weep for me, you have to go on’
    Benny says ‘But Alan, we need you, we have so much that we were going to do together, how can we go on without you’
    Pardew repleis ‘I can pull through, but you need to keep going, give me the strength to fight. You and the bos you can do this, with or without me.’
    A single tear rolls down Ben Arfa’s cheek. He says ‘But boss…’
    Pardew jumps in ‘But nothing…

    (And then Pardew delivers the most pivotol line in the fil)

    ‘..We have to win, it doesn’t matter how. We just need to win.’

    We see the fire in Benny’s eyes as Pardew slips into a come. Hatem looks into the heavens above and screams ‘Chelsa…. I’m coming for you!’

  • martoon

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #7

    Tsunki @5 I totally agree. Maybe it is because of years of disappointment but I still have this horrible feeling we are going to slip up against teams like Stoke!

  • Minato

    Apr 18, 2012 at 11:49 AM

    Comment #8

    I have to completely agree with you Tsunki also. However I think I’ll take a more positive view than Martoon. Arsenals loss to Wigan further illustrates how unpredictable this season has been and I bet it will continue in this vein. This kind of unpredictability could be crucial for us..

    The best way is to just take each game as it comes. Stoke will be no pushovers and I expect a very tough and narrow win to keep our hopes alive. I think of all the teams around us in many ways we have the least pressure. While champions league would be fantastic, qualifying for Europe has already exceeded our expectations. For me the others have that pressure of dealing with what will happen if they fail to gain a place.

    Thusly I don’t think losing this game (stoke) or dropping points will necessarily end our hopes either. If Arsenal lose against Chelsea they are right back in the mix and if Chelsea lose that only potentially increases the gap between us. Either way we win. Spurs face Qpr who seem to have a habit of tucking away the better sides.

    I could go on about this all day but given the inconsistency of the sides around us I think three wins from the five and a draw would be enough (taking into account a loss against city and a draw at the bridge). Not impossible but very tough. Take each game as it comes and hope our competitors continue to help us out.

    Either way succeed or fail its been a fantastic season!!!

  • russtoon

    Apr 18, 2012 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #9


    haha, give Edd a break mate hes on the other side of the world practically, can i suggest you post the story then so all of us guys n girls are kept up to date by you TUT!! haha

    Just keep the faith, results at the min are going our way, keep flying the positive vibes at St James Pk HWTL

  • obatoyou

    Apr 18, 2012 at 1:39 PM

    Comment #10

    Best we can get is a draw??


    Newcastle 1-0 Chelsea

    Newcastle 3-2 Man City

  • Munster Mag

    Apr 18, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    Comment #11

    I can see Barca struggling tonight, losing 2-1. They are getting tired and Chelsea will try to bully them everywhere.


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