Gael Bigirimana, James Perch, Vurnon Anita and of course Ryan Taylor were the pick of the bunch last night in Athens, Greece and now Newcastle must have a decent chance of making the group stages of the Europa league and six more guaranteed games, when we take on Atromitos next Thursday night at home, but we cannot be over confident.
Gael Bigirimana again looked impressive last night
Substitutes Romain Amalfitano and Adam Campbell also caught the eye late in the game, and it was a decent performance from what was really our second team, with Ryan Taylor running the show for Newcastle, and Ryan will be pushing for a first team starting position now.
Adam Campbell at 17 years and 236 days old, became the youngest player ever to represent Newcastle in Europe and beat Andy Carroll’s record by 64 days and three hours – approximately.
Alan Pardew said that Adam earned the record, and the gaffer seemed fairly pleased with the overall performance of the side last night:
“Adam is a really nice lad. I was aware that he would make history if he came on, and I wanted to give him the tag. He richly deserves it.” “It is all about Chelsea now. That is the priority for us.” “It really will be a great week’s work for us if we can get a result down there.”
“We go home with some new experience, and certainly for some of our players because they won’t get that time on the ball they had tonight in a Premier League game.” “Sometimes you can be uncomfortable with time, trust me. I have been there as a player, so I know.”
“You pick out the wrong pass and you can lose confidence.” “But I tonight, everybody used the ball well. We could have had a little bit more devil in our game, but otherwise, I was really happy.” “They have shown us tonight that it ain’t going to be any push-over and it ain’t going to be a foregone conclusion.”
“So we have got to be right and we have got to make sure that the team is strong enough.” “But that team I fielded tonight, I thought we got it just about right, and now we have got to get next Thursday right.” “Our retention of the ball tonight was first-class, like we showed at Hartlepool and like we showed at Braga, and that’s been important.”
“Your sight needs to change for Europe a little bit. The tempo of the game is slower, you have to be more patient.” “There were a lot of really good things tonight. We put the ball in the box at the right times and carried a threat, and I just thought the pre-season experience helped us tonight, and hopefully we can take that forward.”
“The hospitality we have received on this trip has been absolutely overwhelming, and I would like to thank Atromitos for that. It couldn’t have been better.”
Now Newcastle have very little time to get ready for their tough assignment at Stamford Bridge tomorrow afternoon, which will be broadcast live around the world and has a 5:30 pm kick off time,
The Newcastle squad are due to fly out of Athens to Farnborough Airport today to prepare for the game with Chelsea.
There are injury worries concerning Cheick Tiote, Demba Ba, Fabricio Coloccini and Shola Ameobi, and all have been receiving treatment for knocks, and as we reported earlier today, if those four are fit Newcastle could field a completely different side than started the game last night in Athens.
That tells you that the Newcastle squad is slowly but surely becoming stronger, and that’s good.
Maybe it will be even stronger by September 1st?
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