With the news yesterday that Vurnon Anita was brought in to fortify the central midfield for Newcastle, there were question about who he would challenge for a first team spot, since both Yohan Cabaye and Cheick Tiote are already two of Newcastle’s very best players.
Vurnon Anita – will play in central midfield
Alan had also said yesterday in one of his interviews that a top club needed three top class central midfielders and they now have them with Anita arriving, and if nothing else it will keep Tiote and Cabaye on their toes, because Anita can play in either the defensive role or as a play-maker.
And as we have seen in pre-season, a certain 18 year-old Gael Bigirimana is also very competent already in defensive midfield, and he’s shown that in the Newcastle first team, when he’s replaced Cheick Tiote.
Alan has compared Anita with Yohan and Cheick today, in an interview in the Newcastle Journal:
“He’s a little bit different to Tiote and a little bit different to Cabaye and that was one of the reasons I thought he would be perfect for us.” “I think his game knowledge is good and this year, if we can, we want to build on what we did last year and control games.”
“If we are going to control games, we need to have the ball and he is going to help us on that side.” “Character is the top ingredient for a top player and he has that.” “His ability is, well you know when you come through the Ajax system, you have to have technical ability, trust me.”
“Even his passing on Thursday morning, you can tell he is at the level of our top players.” “We have a number of players we’re going to sleep on because we’ve had the top players missing for crucial parts of the pre-season because of the Euros and little niggles.”
“I’ve the other guys really up to speed, so I’m going to have to be really careful with my team selection.”
It will be very interesting to guess what team Alan will start tomorrow, and we’ll take a shot at that in our Match Preview later today.
Alan Pardew told reporters yesterday that Anita would be registered today, and would be available for the Tottenham game at home tomorrow, and the 23 year-old is very likely to make his debut in that game, in front of what we hope will be a sold out St. James’ Park.
And Anita came across so well yesterday in his interviews, and Alan commented what a first class character he is, and hoped he would be as good on the pitch as he is off it. There’s no doubt Vurnon will quickly become a big favorite with the Geordie fans.
Bringing in Anita to challenge for a central midfield place, is what Newcastle need to do in the other parts of the field too, and especially at full back, so there is adequate competition for places all over the pitch, and that’s always what the top clubs have.
Newcastle are getting there slowly but surely, and we hope we can make another excellent start to the season, as we did last year.