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Alan Pardew On The Defensive – New Defenders Needed

9:27 pm, Wednesday, May 16th, 2012 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 64 Comments

It seems the weakness of Newcastle this season has been in defense.

Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa - Magpies have watched this player all season

Newcastle seem now and again to completely  collapse away from home,  and this year that has happened at Fulham, Tottenham and Wigan, and in total we conceded 14 goals in just three games, and in all three games we conceded four goals or more in one half.

It’s not good enough for a Newcastle side that will be trying to make top four next season, and it’s an area Alan Pardew has detailed as one he needs to fix.

And with 34 goals conceded away from home,  Newcastle have the 7th worst goals allowed on the road in the league, and only Norwich City, Wgan Athletic and the bottom four sides have conceded more goals away from home.

Alan Pardew had talked earlier in the week about needing to strengthen in defense, and he had this to say:

“At the back is an area we need to strengthen. We’ve let in too many goals,” “We have to tighten up at the back. We finished with only a plus-five goal difference.”

“We let too many in and didn’t score enough to win 21 games – that’s the truth of it. “But to win 19 means you’ve been really tight all year.”

“We’ve had to grind wins out and next year we are going have to make sure we win 21 games with a little bit more style.”

“It’s important that we don’t rest on our laurels, that we understand we have taken the Club on a huge leap forward, finished above some great teams below us, and then try to improve on that.”

FC Twente’s Brazilian 6’4″ center-back Douglas,  and Montpellier captain Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, who has just been called up in France’s provisional 26 man squad for Euro 2012, have both been linked with a move to Newcastle during the season.

And Lille right back Mathieu Debuchy, and PSV defender and Dutch International Erik Pieters,  are all defenders Newcastle have been watching for a while,  and Newcastle almost brought in Pieters last summer.

We’ll probably see two good defenders arrive in the summer, and more if Danny Simpson leaves.

And Alan said last week on the call-in show on BBC Radio Newcastle,  that he had been impressed by some youngster on trial at Newcastle.

Alan would like to bring in a top young center-back, and from some of his comments he seems to have been impressed by at least one youngster currently on trial at Newcastle.

That could be Lucerne’s 18-year-old defender Valentin Gjokaj, or it could be Marseilles France Under-19 international center-back Christophe Lowinsky, who are both currently on trial and both are highly rated young defenders.

If we were to hazard a guess,  we’d say that Lowinsky has been impressing the coaches in training, but certainly defenders seem to be Alan Pardew’s priority this summer.

More competition at the back is what’s needed for next season.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Tags: Danny Simpson · Newcastle News · Transfer News and Rumours


64 responses so far ↓

  • 1 spitfire_ // May 16, 2012 at 9:29 PM


  • 2 G // May 16, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    That Vincent Kompany would look canny in a toon top, but meanwhile in reality, I think we need both full back and centre half cover more than any other playing position for next season. When we got beat, we got really beat. Knock out the tonkings, and our season would have been so much better (and it wasn’t half bad saying that).

  • 3 check the toastie // May 16, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    Gud words by Pardew, gud that he knows we have scaped thru so many games this season it is untrue, next year maybe we will show a bit more ambition in outplaying teams and securing more comfortable wins.

  • 4 redondo77 // May 16, 2012 at 9:42 PM

    I don’t think we are qualified to play in BPL, we should be playing in Ligue 1.

  • 5 redondo77 // May 16, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    debuchy, mbiwa, colo, santon
    hba, tiote, cabaye, marveaux
    cisse, giroud

    that’s already 6 french nationality, 8 french speaking.
    we should start applying for french citizenship and learn french national anthem.

  • 6 ToonDownSouth // May 16, 2012 at 9:50 PM


    You’re aware we haven’t signed those players, aren’t you? ;)

    Liverpool and Spurs have been – allegedly – watching Mbiwa, and unfortunately they can offer wages that we cannot. Same applies to Giroud.

    The only thing going for us is that we have a good reputation in France, and good relationships with a lot of people.

    The thing that goes against us is that the Montpelier president is an absolute cock.

  • 7 Munster Mag // May 16, 2012 at 9:54 PM

    I coukld be wrong, but I think Mbiwa is about the same height as Colo. If this is the case, we wont sign him to play as a regular centre half. I would say Douglas or some unnamed large unit id far more likely, along with Debuchy.

  • 8 mondziu // May 16, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    TDS – let Spurs have Mbiwa then and we’ll settle for Verthonghen. Ha!

  • 9 tarie4 // May 16, 2012 at 9:55 PM


    1st of all, giroud is out of our price range, and it would be Ba up there and not him. 2 Jonas is above marvaux in the winger department, 3. Saylor is a starter wen fit, so that makes it.. 3 French players, and 5 French speaking players ;)

  • 10 davybtoon // May 16, 2012 at 9:57 PM

    Spurs have agreed to sign vertoghen if u believe the rumours he was at there last home game

  • 11 mondziu // May 16, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    Well they can’t sign them all, can they? Even ‘Arry said that when talking about Ben Arfa – ‘we coulda had’im, but you can’t sign’em all’

    Well, CAN they?

  • 12 davybtoon // May 16, 2012 at 10:00 PM

    I’d rather alderweild n mbwia over vertoghen

  • 13 catchy in norway // May 16, 2012 at 10:02 PM


    sorry but i think you will find jonas takes a back seat this year, if marv is fit , he will start before jonas.

    agreed on saylor, he when fit is a good goal CB, but its the cover we need, as we know he will get injured

  • 14 mondziu // May 16, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    I would love Jan, he looks like a complete player, but I think it’s a little unrealistic since we missed out on Champions League.

  • 15 rich_toonfan // May 16, 2012 at 10:04 PM


    I think marveoux is well ahead of jonas as a winger…jonas has a poor end product

    And giroud might be out our prive range but rumours he will be availble for between 10-13 with a release clause

    Saylor is a starter when fit….but he has not played over half the games in the last 4 years.

  • 16 mondziu // May 16, 2012 at 10:07 PM

    I think Jonas’ fate depends on our summer aquisitions. And I don’t mean wingers, I mean defence. If we have a solid defence, we’ll see Jonas less, but until then he will be a key player.

  • 17 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:09 PM

    Bet we get players not on the radar through the door.
    If we pull in anyone on here’s list I’ll be a bit surprised. Carr has got everyone (including a few on here) doing a Dennis Wise – scouting via YouTube – he’s doing the real thing and will find the talent we need. That CB we missed in January might have cost us the CL position btw…Pardiola won’t want to let that happen next season.

  • 18 redondo77 // May 16, 2012 at 10:09 PM

    I know we haven’t signed them and probably won’t.
    Just in case if we do, isn’t it too many french player?
    I don’t have anything against french players, but isn’t this supposed to be english league not french league heheheh. i rather we signed argentinian or italian players, so nufc becomes multi – nationality hehehe

  • 19 tarie4 // May 16, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    Guys, was just wandering, does tiote ever do interviews??

  • 20 ToonDownSouth // May 16, 2012 at 10:13 PM


    Do you know if Richardson is one of the players being released this summer? I couldn’t rmember if his name was mentioned or not.

    I do hope not, and from what I’ve seen he’s got a very good footballing brain on him. He really stands out.

    But then again, I thought Dan Taylor was going to be a star, yet we’ve let him go! Shows what I know.

  • 21 catchy in norway // May 16, 2012 at 10:13 PM

    iv seen him once at the end of a match
    but he must do them, there always quoting him in the press

  • 22 ToonDownSouth // May 16, 2012 at 10:14 PM

    Also, don’t under value Jonas.

    He’s probably the 3rd name on the team sheet behind Krul and Colo. Pardew loves a player who works incredibly hard.

  • 23 Beattie25 // May 16, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    Would anybody try and take Bertrand from Chelski?

  • 24 catchy in norway // May 16, 2012 at 10:17 PM


    yes he does,


    he also said the goal +5 was not good enough, and jonas is a big part of us not scoring goals, he dont create or score enough

  • 25 rich_toonfan // May 16, 2012 at 10:19 PM

    Agree Jonas is important….but as a defensive mid….not a winger.

    Also I think next season we need to win games with quality not hard work.

    Obviously the players need to work hard but we want to win games the way arsenal and spurs do….not by grinding out results.

    It was perfect for this season but next year we will improve and can see us spending more time with the ball and less chasing it….so jonas for marvin martin for example.

  • 26 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:19 PM


    Pards also loves his utility players – Raylor, Perchinho and Jonas all fit the bill and will get plenty of match time as they are adaptable. He has a strategy for dealing with injuries and keeping the dies stable and that is by relying on a few guys who work hard and can adapt. The key is work rate and commitment for utility players.

  • 27 redondo77 // May 16, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    i voted Jonas, because he never made the headlines. i like him, hardest working, great individual, loyal, never complain.

  • 28 rich_toonfan // May 16, 2012 at 10:20 PM


    yes and no…..we have 2 promising young left backs…santon and fergie (although he looks a better winger)

    i think if we sign a left back he needs to be established.

    I would take sturridge if they get rid of him…..he is selfish and not great playing wide but through the middle like when he was at bolton he is very good.

  • 29 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    * dies = side

  • 30 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:22 PM


    Do we need a guy like Sturridge when we have Ba and Cisse ? He’s everything you say – selfish and not good wide…

  • 31 mondziu // May 16, 2012 at 10:25 PM


    I have to agree with you on the fullback front.

    For Sturridge, however I believe his selfishness would be a problem fitting into the team. He would also, despite his age, command wages probably above what we are willing to offer to a young, upcoming striker.

  • 32 rich_toonfan // May 16, 2012 at 10:27 PM


    we certainly need at least one more striker

    we cant rely on shola and best for the month (miimum) that cisse and ba are away….we need to bring in a good striker who will push cisse and ba for a place.

  • 33 redondo77 // May 16, 2012 at 10:29 PM

    we should get barton, tim cahil, djibril cisse, balloteli

  • 34 davybtoon // May 16, 2012 at 10:29 PM

    Tds no Richardson isn’t being released Inman dummitt n tavernier all being kept aswell the last r all 20year old now I’d expect them to b involved in the first team squad next year, I kno they rate dummitt n tav extremely highly

  • 35 redondo77 // May 16, 2012 at 10:30 PM

    also get lee bowyer and kieron dyer back

  • 36 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:32 PM


    Agree we need another striker – maybe even 2 but the 3rd pick ought to be a young guy with maybe a 2nd tier record – Championship or France 2. Pards can bring on through our team building approach. We need a Ranger…but no gangstas.
    Hope Shola supersub will still have a tactical role but couldna do 90 mins

  • 37 rich_toonfan // May 16, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    And the comment about carr finding these hidden gems…

    he did that last year for 2 reasons.

    1. nobody expected us to sign good players (well no media so the stories didnt get a look in)

    2. clubs will see us coming in and maybe make thngs more public….hoping to start a bidding war..even if we back out others might come in

    I think with our growing reputation it will be harder to keep deals quite.. there is already more speculation in the papers regarding our transfers compared to last season.

  • 38 rich_toonfan // May 16, 2012 at 10:34 PM


    i would agree in usualy circumstances the third choice could be a young guy (especially if we only play one at a time) but with the 2 main lads off for over a month we need a one who is ready then have a younger, unrpoved striker as 4th choice with shola.

    Would love us to get rhodes but fear he could be too pricey.

  • 39 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:35 PM


    That means we’ll have guys trailing Carr. Bit MI6 ish

  • 40 davybtoon // May 16, 2012 at 10:37 PM

    I think ranger will get another chance

  • 41 davybtoon // May 16, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    I akno we all say Carr finds hidden gems but really when you look we jus scouted properly cabaye was a French international n was instrumental in Lille doin the double in France, cisse was second top scorer in Germany for 2 seasons in a poor team, santon touted as one best young full backs in Europe

  • 42 MagpiesFlyHigh // May 16, 2012 at 10:42 PM


    Yeah – someone on the Rhodes scale of potential ought to be our 3rd level pick – need to cover injuries too.
    Long has been less than spectacular but is still developing – Rhodes prob in same mould.

  • 43 davybtoon // May 16, 2012 at 10:47 PM

    Another reason why Carr is so good a lot of these players he’s watched since they were 17 n he actually puts years of work n knowledge into it, we’re a lot of big clubs scouts jus recommend flavour of the month sometimes they get lucky n sometimes there duds

  • 44 supatoonkid // May 16, 2012 at 11:17 PM

    People are complaining about Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa’s height but I’ve seen him play & he’s not massive (neither is he small) but he has a great leap & is a powerful header of the ball also we need a quick CB who can deal with pacey forwards like Shane Long & Odemwingie; Mbiwa is just that & for £6-7M he’s worth it. Mbiwa & Debuchy are my picks for the new defenders but Alderwereid is also a good choice if we miss out on Mbiwa but please not Douglas as he’s so slow & wreckless.

  • 45 Troleibusiukas_LTU // May 16, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    As for strikers:
    Best OUT,
    Loverkrands OUT,
    Ranger OUT

    Rodriguez IN
    Luuk de Jong IN


    Guthrie OUT
    Smith OUT

    maybe (Gosling) OUT, but i believe in him

    Amalfitano IN
    Diame IN


    Simpson OUT,

    Debouchy IN
    Douglas IN,
    Pieters IN.

    That the 6-7 players out
    And 7 players in.
    That leaves us with two extra players. Corgnet and Hoillet.
    Presuming Demba and Tiote stays. If Not they must be replaced.
    Our squad will look much stronger with improvement like that. We will be ready for europe and cups, espescially if Vukcic, Abeid, Fergie, Sammy, Tavernier, Dummett, Inmann, Streete steps up.

  • 46 supatoonkid // May 16, 2012 at 11:21 PM

    And on the forward front I think we need two forwards; a natural CF like Jordan Rhodes or Jay Rodriguez & a forward who can play out wide or in the centre like Junior Hoilett or Wilfried Zaha. Any two of them would be good competition/backup for our current set of forwards.

  • 47 Troleibusiukas_LTU // May 16, 2012 at 11:22 PM

    But i agree, Mbiwa is much better that Pieters (Even Boisen, that Dane is better) IMO, and maybe i would take Alderwereid instead of Douglas.

  • 48 NUFC STEVE // May 16, 2012 at 11:32 PM

    Just watched crewe game they have some lovely young players.POWELL CLAYTON WESTWOOD LEICHT SMITH.Would be worth trying them wit 2 mil for powell and Clayton.

  • 49 NUFC STEVE // May 16, 2012 at 11:37 PM

    Don’t know how people think we could work a team with CISSE BA and DE JONG.Defo not possible.
    1)all 3 will expect regular Prem lge footie
    2)de Jong would cost too much without getting money from another
    3)All 3 are very similar out and out no.9s

  • 50 supatoonkid // May 16, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    @Troleibusikus what I don’t get mate is you suggested in your list of transfer targets you suggest we sign Pieters but later comment that you’d rather sign Mbiwa as Pieters is shit (make your mind up) also I would be very surprised if we signed a LB now because Santon is wearing that no. 3 for a reason as he is our LB with Jonas, Perchinho, Fergie & Paul Dummett all able to provide cover there but we need Debuchy as Simpson can be good but also a liability on a series of occasions also overrates himself massively so that’s why he’s leaving & then with Debuchy he’ll receive back up from Raylor, Perch & Tavernier also hopefully Mbiwa if he signs on.

  • 51 alanrichie // May 17, 2012 at 12:24 AM

    If we signed Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Marvin Martin and Debuchy i will get Pardews name tatoo’d on my but!

    Would be an excellent window that^

  • 52 Brutooon // May 17, 2012 at 1:45 AM

    Van Aanholt !!!! sign him

  • 53 jonobbad // May 17, 2012 at 1:51 AM

    Don’t see what the big deal with marveux is? People have seen 45 mins v everyone n I think it was the luton game, and all of a sudden he has automatically got Jonas place. I reckon some of the fans are taking after Dennis wise. Getta grip.
    Oh and BTW Diame is also ridiculously overrated

  • 54 darthkir // May 17, 2012 at 2:07 AM

    we need a very quick CB, thats for sure.

  • 55 Brutooon // May 17, 2012 at 2:16 AM

    Marveax is an injury prone player. he play 4-5 games then he be injured the rest of the season.

    Good Player

  • 56 Gudmundsson // May 17, 2012 at 2:26 AM

    NUFC should really look at this guy Bjorn Bergmann he scored both goals for his team today and has good talent. he is playing in Iceland U21 squad.

  • 57 Dyer8 // May 17, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    In :
    Douglas (Twente), CB
    Mathieu Debuchy (Lille), RB
    Moussa Sissoko (Toulouse), CM
    Junior Hoilett (B’Burn), WG
    Jordan Rhodes (Huddersfield), CF

    Best XI :
    Ben Arfa———————–Marvo

    Sub : Douglas, Hoilett, Rhodes

  • 58 PontiusLee // May 17, 2012 at 3:33 AM

    this next year is the perfect year for our young guns to get a run out.
    pre-season, carling, and the FA cup games should be used to get them out there.
    maybe even use them for europa league games.
    just a thought, our youth squad looks great.

  • 59 ToonDownSouth // May 17, 2012 at 3:34 AM

    Ed, you really have broken the blog!

  • 60 hdavid23 // May 17, 2012 at 6:39 AM

    bring in Hoilett, De Jong, Douglas, Pieters and Debuchy and were good

  • 61 Londtoon // May 17, 2012 at 7:46 AM

    The best thing about this interview with Pards is that he is already setting the target of 21 wins next season. Just like he targetted 10 wins in the last 10 games and we got an outstanding 8.

    Long live his thorough and hands on attitude.

  • 62 hdavid23 // May 17, 2012 at 7:57 AM

    btw, have u guys seen this?

  • 63 davybtoon // May 17, 2012 at 8:14 AM

    Soth Africa pre season to b announced this week playing In the vodacom challenge with Orlando pirates n kaiser chiefs n another team yet to b confirmed

  • 64 NEWEXPATMAGPIE // May 17, 2012 at 12:34 PM


    Good shout for van Aanholt! Currently on loan at Vitesse Arnhem! from? Chelsea i think?

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