The purpose of pre-season is to get the Newcastle both physically and mentally fit, and also match-fit for the important games coming up in August when our lads play three very important games in the first eight days of the season.
Alan Pardew – creating that magical team spirit again
And one of those games is the first leg of a two leg qualifying tie against opposition we wont get to know until the draw is made on August 10th – which seems just a little ridiculous – but we must qualify for the group stages of the Europa League.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew, whose star has risen high since he joined the famous Tyneside club, is very clear what the role of pre-season is for his Newcastle troops, and he had this to say today in the Evening Chronicle:
“This German trip will be a case of really working hard on the physical side and mentally, going into the games and trying to tune up a little bit. In the past, it’s about getting players physically fit.”
“Times have changed – our players have all come back more or less the weight they left, apart from a little pound here and there.” “Some have actually lost a couple of pounds.”
“It’s about getting back in the groove mentally.” “Getting back in the team ethic, and understanding what we do.” “It’s trying to get that mental strength for the season.”
Alan Pardew will be hoping to rekindle that great team spirit all the players showed last season, and this is really another bonding trip, much like the American tour of last summer.
The lads will all eat together and start to get to know each other a lot better as the summer wears on, and Newcastle showed last season just how important great team spirit is to any top side.
There’s a little less uncertainty right now than we had last season at this time, with Jose Enrique wanting away from Newcastle, and that’s always a negative influence in the squad – when somebody’s not happy on Tyneside.
But at the time Alan Pardew was trying to persuade Jose to stay, and we’re sure he would have stayed, if he knew just how well Newcastle would do last season in finishing in 5th place, but the Spanish U21 International, at the time, thought Newcastle lacked ambition.
Of course Jose wasn’t to know just how good the two new signings – Yohan Cabaye and Demba Ba – would turn out for Newcastle – two of the very best signings by any club last summer.
But Jose’s left now and he’s Newcastle history, and we just have to hope our lads can be as good or even better next season than they were last term.
And yes, we know that’s asking quite a lot – but somehow we feel very positive about the future at Newcastle these days.
What do you think?