Former Newcastle Star Confident We Can Progress In Europe

Nikos Dabizas was a very good center-back who played for Newcastle for six seasons from 1998 through 2004, and during that time he made 130 appearances for the side, played in the Champions League and UEFA Cup under the incomparable Bobby Robson,  and scored 11 goals and he was also capped 70 times for Greece.

Nikos Dabizas – when he played at Newcastle

Newcastle of course play Greek side Atromitos FC in a two game qualifying tie to reach the group stages of the Europa League, and it will be two of the five games Newcastle will be playing in the first 15 days of the season, which is a tall order for any club.

And Newcastle will likely play a complete second eleven in the first tie on Thursday 23rd August in Athens, given that we play Chelsea on the following Saturday, less than 48 hours after the game against  Atromitos FC  ends.

But it seems that Nikos has no doubts that his former club will be too good for Atromitos, as he talked to the Evening Chronicle yesterday:

“It was good news for me when I heard the draw.” “My friend rang me from Newcastle to tell me what had happened.” “This happened a few years ago when Newcastle drew my ex-club Olympiacos.”

“But for me this is not a difficult tie for Newcastle.” “They have no great history generally.” “They have been to the cup final two of the last three years.” “And they did finish fourth last season so they are well balanced in that sense.”

“Newcastle would have to play very poorly and they would have to overplay their own capabilities for there to be a shock.”  “The standard of Greek football is not good. It is largely to down to the financial status here.”

“The philosophy is now about producing players from our own academies.”  “In the last 10 years it has been about buying players who have not been good enough and wasting money.”  “Now they have to do things in a cheaper way.”

“Hopefully they can bring some good young Greek players through. It is new era for Greek football and it is difficult to see what might happen.”  “There is very much a different atmosphere around the game these days.”

“I was at Newcastle  for six years. So I am as happy as anybody to see them back in Europe. It’s a nice feeling.”  “I’m not too cautious about them in the near future. The club are going in the right direction.”

 “I’ve done my UEFA pro-badges now. We’ll see what my options are.”  “I’m waiting to see what the next step is but it will be in the near future. The next chapter of my life is coming up.”  “It will definitely be in football so we’ll wait and see.”

Atromitos has refused to move their game back a day or two, so Newcastle have a little more breathing room before we play Chelsea on Saturday 25th August, in our second Premier League game of the season.

That does give the Greek club an advantage,  but it would be a real shock if  Atromitos can get the better of Newcastle over the two legged tie.

But that’s one of the early goals of the season for Newcastle – to qualify for the group stages of the Europa League – and it would be a disaster if we cannot do that, but we’ll take nothing for granted either.

Comments welcome.

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20 comments so far


    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:42 AM

    Comment #1

    that was fast!

  • Zero

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:43 AM

    Comment #2

    Eds cracking them off this morning lol

  • G

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:47 AM

    Comment #3

    Dabizas is a legend, for scoring against the mackems.

  • ochytoon

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:48 AM

    Comment #4

    Pretty sure we didn’t finish fourth or get to any cup finals recently…

  • rivettCatcher

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #5

    In Darlo there’s a guy who I see out on the weekends who looks like Dabizas.

    I asked if he was, but he wasn’t 🙁

  • geordie157

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #6

    Very fast!

    On the Gosling subject, i have to say i’m a fan of his, as he’s a box to box player and he does have a knack of getting in good positions in the oppositions box. Just hope he can stay fit, thats the key, as if he is with all the extra games he should feature quite regularly and the more games he plays the better i think he will get.

    I also hope his critics get behind him, it takes ages to recover from such a serious injury, give him time, plus he’s still young so judge him after this season not before its even started.

    Gosling and Anita vs Spurs would do the job nicely if Tiote and Cab don’t make the game.

    Also has our europa game been confirmed for tv yet?

  • stu.toon

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    Comment #7

    Ochytoon I think he was referring to artomitos

  • G

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #8

    Off subject, but just spotted this on f365’s live transfer blog:

    ‘10.54: Mino Raiola must be one very rich man. The agent is set to make £1.5m from Vurnon Anita’s proposed move to Newcastle, according to reports in Holland.’

    Is this an indication that Anita is gonig to sign? Or are dutch journo’s hard up for transfer news too?

  • rainrix

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Comment #9

    rivet.. i feel sorry for you having to have nights out in darlo 🙂

  • cupiddstunt

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #10

    ochytoon @ # 4

    I think if you read it again you will find that “they” are Atromitos

  • geordie157

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:55 AM

    Comment #11

    Also can we have a day with no Debuchy talk.

  • Zero

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    Comment #12

    Thats from the fee already agreed with Ajax but personal terms have yet to be struck, they are probs just presuming it will all go through

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Aug 15, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #13

    3 more nights people!!!

  • surreytoon

    Aug 15, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #14

    So where is Anita’s agents £1.5m coming from? The player over the length of the contract? Ajax? Us? This could be the sticking point.

  • pardews plan B

    Aug 15, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #15

    @157 you’re just setting it up now

  • stu.toon

    Aug 15, 2012 at 12:04 PM

    Comment #16

    I don’t see the point in agents, ruining the transfer system.

  • cupiddstunt

    Aug 15, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    Comment #17

    unless of course the parties involved expect nufc to pay all the fees, which to be perfectly honest I think if I were nufc I would be telling the folks involved that he is your agent you pay him, which in turn could well be holding proceedings up. 🙂

  • dave 1961

    Aug 15, 2012 at 12:09 PM

    Comment #18

    an agent get’s a % of all his client makes usually 10 % and i doubt that it will be anywhere near £1.5m.

  • Conaldo (The Wizard)

    Aug 15, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    Comment #19

    ibiza – only 3 sleeps ill spursday – its better than christmas.
    Official Spursday procedure – Everyone attending the match must wear pink morphsuits and tutus, and sing dagenham and redbridge chants. that ought to put spurs off.

  • HullMag6

    Aug 15, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    Comment #20

    Re gosling I said a few weeks ago he could be this seasons guthrie, frustrating this window but hell or high water howay the lads.


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