Alan Pardew may be disappointed that Newcastle haven’t signed any of their big transfer targets this summer, but he seems extremely positive about things right now, and of course in the last two pre-season games Newcastle have dominated the games at Den Haag and Hartlepool.
Alan Pardew – impressed with many performances on Tuesday
And while the lads were frustrated a little in Holland and didn’t score, the flood gates opened a little at Hartlepool on Tuesday night, and Newcastle won that game 5-1 and were three goals up after only twelve minutes.
And not only that, but some of our fringe players were outstanding in that game, including Shola Ameobi before he went off injured just before half time, and two of our French wingers Sylvain Marveaux and Romain Amalfitano also had very impressive games.
Pardew had this to say today in the Newcastle Journal:
“It was important to get three games in the first week or so we were back because it’s vital we are up to speed and that I can pick and choose any player I want to for games.” “And when I look at the group who played at Hartlepool, I have to say that I could put any of those players into the first-team. They really played well and passed the ball so crisply.”
“We really enjoyed playing on a good pitch because we’ve played on a few thick pitches over the summer; the ball ran a bit faster and that suited us. We had some excellent performances.” “We are trying to instill more of a passing game and I thought that showed the other night. We really moved the ball around quickly and I’m sure the fans enjoyed it.”
“I don’t want to single anyone out in particular because they were all very, very good.” “But Sylvain was great. Romain had his best game since joining us and he is getting into tune with what we are doing.” “His work rate was terrific. Life is easier when everyone works hard.” “Gabby got a fantastic goal. That was a high-class strike that will do him the world of good and should make him a lot more confident.”
“We want him to be more positive in the team and he showed this pre-season that he’s got that in him. I was very pleased with his little cameo.” “And it was good to see Hatem Ben Arfa get the second-half on Tuesday. He got a little taste on Tuesday night and we are getting him up to speed.”
In our poll for Man of the Match on Tuesday night, Sylvain Marveaux is ahead rather handily with 54% of the vote followed by Romain on 18%, Shola on 9% and new boy Gael Bigirimana on 5%, and the former Coventry City midfielder again showed what a good player he already is.
Newcastle will play at Cardiff City tomorrow afternoon in the final pre-season game, before we take on Tottenham Hotspur on 18th August, in what promises to be a very tough first couple of weeks of the season.
We have two two qualifying games in Europe on August 23rd and August 30th, and if we get through the tie, we’ll be in the group stages of the Europa League, and e’ll know our opponents when the draw is made around 12:30 pm today.
But we have been very impressed with some of our youngsters in mid-season, which is one reason why we think the squad is stronger than it was at this time last year.
What do you think?