Newcastle Try To Narrow The Gap – Fabulous Week Lies Ahead


Alan Pardew has told everybody who will listen to him, that the Premier League is Newcastle’s number one target in the coming season, and that comes ahead of the FA Cup, the League Cup, now called the Capital One Cup,  and the Europa League.

Alan Pardew – tough challenge for manager this season

It’s going to be a lot more difficult this season for manager Pardew, because Newcastle have qualified for the Europa League and Alan will need to use his squad wisely, and utilize as much as the squad as possible throughout the season.

And Alan will get a good try at that in the first 15 days of the season, when we have to navigate through three tough league games against Tottenham, Chelsea and Aston Villa, and two qualifying games against Greek Super League side Atromitos, in order to qualify for the group stages of that competition.

This is how Alan talked about the upcoming  season this morning in the local Newcastle press:

“It is going to very much be about how we progress in the Europa League – we still have to qualify, so we’ll get through those two games and then we’ll have to look at the matches and how we are going to schedule them.” 

“Without a doubt, I can tell you now that the Premier League is going to come first for sure, and we want to try to push from where we were last year, push those Champions League teams.”

“We were the closest to them and we are going to try to narrow that gap if we can.”  

We can all take a checkpoint on 3rd September during the International break,  after we have navigated those five tough games of the season, and we would hope and expect that we have managed to qualify for the Europa League group stages, and then we’ll see how many league points we have accumulated from the first three games of the season.

Alan Alan has said this on the web-site today – he cannot wait to get going:

“We’ve got a fantastic first week with Spurs, then the Europa League against Atromitos and then Chelsea.” “It is a fabulous week for us to look forward to and we are in good shape.”

“The league just keeps growing, and the Barclays Premier League is without doubt the most competitive league in the world and, I think, the best entertainment.”  

“We can only do our bit here to make sure we bring a brand of football that is exciting and that our public will love.” 

Last season we had taken 7 points from the two home games against Arsenal (0-0) and Fulham (2-1), and the game at Sunderland (1-0 with that stunning Ryan Taylor winning goal) , and we did well in those first three league games.

Of course we didn’t have the two European games last season to contend with, but we did have the League Cup game at Scunthorpe, which we just managed to win 2-1 after extra time, with that stunning Sammy Ameobi goal.

It will be harder this season – but that comes with a thing called success. 😀

And who knows,  if we can get close to those top four clubs in the coming season, we may even be able to sneak into 4th place, which we almost did last season,  and then we’ll be in the qualifying round of the Champions League next year at this time.

That sounds good – very good.

And one thing we should get to know shortly is what is the official target of Newcastle this season,  last season it was to finish in the top  ten in the league – and we managed that rather easily.

Comments welcome.

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287 comments so far

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    Comment #1

    Having Bills son run out of vaseline is too good for Ashley.

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  • nico

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    Comment #2

    Toon 2 Spurs 1

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  • Spuggy

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:38 PM

    Comment #3

    If the target is top 4 this season then we must sign Debuchy and a CB, no two ways about it.

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  • ToonDownSouth

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    Comment #4

    Spuggy

    Why Debuchy? :/

    Don’t you think it’s a bit weird that if he’s as amazing as everyone seems to claim, why has no other club paid the valuation?

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  • ochytoon

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    Comment #5

    Wondering whether we are delaying signings until after we’ve booked our place it the Europa League. If we only had domestic challenges then I reckon we could scrimp by with our current squad.

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  • ochytoon

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #6

    Sky Sports have been talking about Liverpool for 15 minutes. What’s the betting we get 5.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #7

    Ochytoon,
    I have had similar thoughts on that myself,maybe even our targets are waiting to see if we make it before commiting them selves as well

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  • Spuggy

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #8

    We won 6-4! Campbell a really exciting prospect and could be used extensively in the cups and Europe.

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  • check the toastie

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #9

    Looks like Nile Ranger is on Gardening leave, couldnt understand the decision last year to give the lad a 5 year deal. Think it was just as Pardew came in the door, Hughton to blame i imagine, maybe a reason why he was binned, letting some of the squad behave unprofessionally.

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  • JTOONJ

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:47 PM

    Comment #10

    TDS

    Because clubs may be waiting until he puts in a transfer request? Price goes right down?

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  • ToonDownSouth

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #11

    If he was going to hand in a transfer request, I’m sure he’d have done it by now lol.

    If he’s as good as has been made out, I’m sure Chelsea would have just stumped up the cash by now – or someone similar.

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  • Spuggy

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #12

    TDS

    Cause I think Debuchy would work perfectly down the RW linking up with Ben10 his international team mate. Would be a strong partnership.

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  • GeordieToon89

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #13

    Nolberto Solano?@NolbertoSolano

    Good luck to all the teams (and fans) I had the honour to play for in England but especially Newcastle United.

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  • ochytoon

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #14

    Spuggy
    A really attacking fullback partnered with a winger who doesn’t defend. It’s potentially a nightmare.

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:54 PM

    Comment #15

    Well I wont get my hopes up today and wont be disappointed if we er …lose. Its always shaky at the start of the season, so I wont read anything into the first 4 games as we settle in. I expect today we will be all guns for 35 minutes, concede one on the break then huff and puff all night to grab an equaliser.

    With my predictive powers at full tilt then we should win easily 🙂

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  • Ruddy Marveaux-lous

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:55 PM

    Comment #16

    GT89

    Club legend. That is all that needs to be said.

    Can’t see Debuchy handing in a transfer request, no matter how badly he is treated by the club and their fans. At the end of the day he is a Lille boy through and through, it’s a shame that their fans don’t recognise all he has done for the club and allow him to leave.

    Ajax fans and club wished Anita well for his move to a bigger club, shame Lille and their fans cannot do the same for a man who has given them 20 years of service.

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:57 PM

    Comment #17

    applause please for ochytoon who has nailed it. Doesn’t anyone else think we might have a bit of a tough time plaaying Debuchy with HBA? Its dire at times with simmo, Debuchy might be able to track back better but with HBA we need a rooted RB who loves his job and controls his area.

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  • bills-son

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    Comment #18

    Shadow boxing and getting knocked cold in the first round is par for the course for JFA.

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  • hatem786

    Aug 18, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    Comment #19

    1st man city
    2nd man u
    3rd NEWCASTLE

    and newcastle will sign debuchy for sure

    good luck with the season everyone

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  • Spuggy

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    Comment #20

    Isn’t that why we have Anita and Tiote to cover the FB runs.

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  • Spuggy

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #21

    Also if HBA doesn’t track back and work hard he’ll be dropped. I thought his defensive play in the 2nd half of the season was better than you’re making out.

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    Comment #22

    Ruddy – these continental johnnies sometimes have a more passionate view than us stoic Brits ha ha. I’m still trying to get my head round smuggling a pigs head into a major derby (well not exactly but major rivalry) so you can heave it down by the corner flag at the opportune moment. Then still walk out at the end. We may have deep feelings for our club but Lille fans may expect even more loyalty from a player who was theirs man and boy, maybe it’s just sheer disappontment venting out. Think AC but nicer guy and no pony tail.

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  • leavemyarselona

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    Comment #23

    Best way a good rb and good winger work is to no each others weeknesses and work together to each fill in for each others.. Exactly how beckham and neville worked well the understood each other

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  • AMEOBI

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    Comment #24

    Ochy,

    We’ve already been on.. They all think Newcastle will finish in top 5 and beat spurs.
    I was like wow they said that? Haha

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  • hatem786

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    Comment #25

    tha magpies should play 4-4-2 this year
    krul
    debuchy colo saylor santon
    ben arfa cabaye tiote spiderman
    ba cisse

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    Comment #26

    Spuggy if that’s why we got Anita then why not just play him FB? Are we expecting our middle line to be dragged sideways and back again this season? Urgh.

    Yeah HBA made his presence at the back known but have you got a count of telling tackles he got in? admittedly one of his robs went straight to a wonder goal but he aint exactly converted to a jonas-style defensive switcher is he? 😉

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  • ochytoon

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #27

    Ameobi
    Oh right, didn’t realize that haha. Would’ve preferred if they’d slated us to be honest, I like the team to play without pressure.

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  • bills-son

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #28

    Tsunki/ochytoon – even worse than the hba/simmo right was the ba/santon left in the 433 at the end of last season. We were very lucky to win games where the oppo had loads of possession and chances. I think Pards knows this and it will be interesting to see how he lines the team up when everyone is fit. Anita isnt here to warm the bench and Tiote and Cabaye are nailed on to play. I think only one of Ba and Cisse will play regularly.

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  • Ruddy Marveaux-lous

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #29

    Tsunki

    The thing that grated on Andy is that he had just been offered the No 9 jersey, an iconic number for any Newcastle striker but for a local one it was massive and people felt he “betrayed” that trust for personal development, I don’t feel this way but certain sections of our fans may do and that is a fair enough way to see it.

    Had Andy played for 20 years and at the peak of his career wanted a move to a bigger club rather than the sideways step he made (or step back depending on how you look at Liverpool) then perhaps we may have been more forgiving.

    The whole Figo pig head fiasco…he did move from Barcelona to Real Madrid, in Spanish circles that’s worse than moving from Newcastle to Sunderland and he was one of the best players in the world at the time but I understand your point, maybe on the continent they wear their heart on their sleeve more so than we do but I still think they should show some understanding of why he wants to move on, he has given his life to that club, what more do they want from him?

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:07 PM

    Comment #30

    thanks hatem for putting spidermag in your line up. Getting tired of those pants formations whenr they forget he exists like ha ha

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  • Ruddy Marveaux-lous

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    Comment #31

    I personally think that Jonas will play LM today but will predominantly be used in the middle whenever Marv gets up to speed, he isn’t the same winger type player and is very useful spraying the ball about and working hard in the middle of the field, just hasn’t got the pace anymore to beat his man down the line, or the agility to cut in past him.

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:13 PM

    Comment #32

    bills-son man that makes me laugh and cry at the same time that is such a cringeworthy combo all right, we must have been desperate. Santon clearly needs a season or so under is belt (as all FB’s do imo) before bombing down the line, and none of that should happen with a new pairing – absolute suicide. Plus I don’t know how everyone else feels but if Ba is kept lost in the wilderness on the left side this season I would pay for his bus ticket to the next club myself.

    Ruddy – I know what you mean about Carroll, many hours of ins and outs we have spent on that one. BUT, I still think if he was here 20 years man & boy and decided to leave at the peak of his powers that would be the ultimate betrayal. If he left when hs powers were on the slide, no problemo.

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  • toonking

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Comment #33

    now that the season has started can we not just forget about having high expectations of signing debuchy and just accept who we have got already. If pardew has said he could be only signing 1 more player this summer the it has got to be a CB because saylor is too injury prone to be risked in cup games and if the premier league alone is hard enough for willo imagine how hard it will be having cup games too and on top of that the chances are colo is almost certain to feature in both at later stages.

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    Comment #34

    oh unless of course said player moved to a FOREIGN club at the peak of his powers. And definitely NOT to the unbathed at ANY point. Wow! caps are GOOD! 🙂

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  • Fostino

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    Comment #35

    rumour has it owen is coming back to the sunderland on a pay as play deal…..he will join an old toon favourite in saha and both we believe have already moved their trusted massage beds and telly’s into the treatment room for the upcoming season

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  • Kyo

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:18 PM

    Comment #36

    PSG want Debuchy but Lille won’t sell to a rival.

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  • Tsunki

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:19 PM

    Comment #37

    ok 2 questions –

    I habitually get to the game minutes before KO, so can anyone tell me exactly when the doors open? I want to know when this half price food n drink thing starts and ends on the Impari card he he he.

    2nd question – does the half price on drink apply to the alcoholic genre?

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  • toonking

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #38

    bill son
    if only one of the dembas are likely to feature in the starting 11 why were loads desperate not to loose ba during the clause?
    cisse is surely the better of the two ATM so would therefore be certain to start, then i can see ba more annoyed and just wanting to leave besides maybe spurs could offer him a contract as they do need a forward and with the money we got for ba we could buy carroll who will feel happy enough as he knows he will still get more playing time than he will at pool.

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  • Zebras4Life

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    Comment #39

    Minneapolis USA is buzzing for a toon victory. 830am and the bloodys are flowing. Gonna be a damn good day. HWTL

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  • bills-son

    Aug 18, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    Comment #40

    Tsunki – i’d play 3511

    Simmo Staylor Collo
    Raylor Anita Tiote Cabaye Guti
    Hba
    Cisse

    That system gets the best out of Raylor and Guti’s workrate down the flanks and releases Cabaye forward with Hba with Tiote and Anita holding back. I wouldnt be surprised if Pards has this system in mind.

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