Things At Newcastle Not As Bad As They May Appear

There’s a really good saying that when things are good, they are never as good as they may appear, and on the other side of things – when things are bad, they are never as bad as they appear – and that’s one way to keep things balanced in the ups and downs of life – and of football.

Ben Arfa – play this lad as a withdrawn striker?

Some of the doom and gloomers are back in full cry because Newcastle have made only a moderate start to the season, but things could have been so different if that Yohan Cabaye free kick had gone in right at the end of yesterday’s game.

But it didn’t and now we have two weeks to get through before the lads have their first chance to redeem themselves – but that’s at Everton.

And the way you judge anybody in any job, is not how they perform when things are going along great – that’s the easy stuff – a measure of a man (or a woman) is how they react when things are not going well and they are up against it.

So we get a chance to see Alan Pardew under a little bit of pressure, maybe for the first time in a long time at Newcastle, and we’ll see how he can turn things around for Newcastle, and get back to our winning ways – hopefully.

The main criticisms of yesterday were that Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse again lacked bite and a cutting edge up front,  but there were some good things that came out of the game:

  • Vurnon Anita looked great yesterday, and he was so at ease at full back that we think he’ll be a starter soon, and maybe at the right back spot, and remember he played a full season at left back at Ajax. And the way he went down the wing and put in some good crosses was great to see – this lad could become a starter at Newcastle from now on.
  • We’re a little amazed at how good Gael Bigirimana looked yesterday when he came on in midfield after about 30 minutes, and looked the part, and he’s not only a tremendous buy at just £1M for Newcastle, but he looks a star of the future
  • Yohan Cabaye showed he is getting back in form in Newcastle’s midfield, and as we said earlier,  he could have been the Toast of the Toon today if that free kick had gone in just before the final whistle, but Brad Guzon made another excellent save
  • It looks like both Cheick Tiote and Shola Ameobi could be back for the Everton game, and it will be good to have Cheick back in there with all the energy he provides to the side, and Shola is a good option right now, with Ba and Cisse strangely quiet up front

And Alan Pardew has hinted he has different options up front, and surely one of them is to play the in-form Ben Arfa as a withdrawn striker, and maybe give Adam Campbell a run-out, to see what the 17 year-old can do in the Premier League.

After Ben Arfa’s fantastic goal yesterday,  if Campbell had been available off the bench, he could have scared the living daylights out of the Aston Villa defenders with his speed and close ball control and the way he runs at defenses.

Campbell’s worth a try, and we see that Liverpool have given their top 17 year-old Raheem Sterling a chance – so why not Adam?

Things may not be as bad as they look at Newcastle right now.

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19 comments so far

  • ochytoon

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:28 PM

    Comment #1

    Pards banned for two games following improper conduct at Tottenham game.

  • Nufc-83

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:29 PM

    Comment #2

    Cabaye was anything but a positive yesterday and i can only describe his performance as disgusting.

  • bollance

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    Comment #3

    Pardew out of his depth.. No way. Not a chance. How can he go from manager of the year to out of his depth in a matter on months?

    The challenge he has is to get the players playing again. In my opinion he is fantastic at getting player to perform at the top of their game as he is an excellent man manager.

    I expected a win against villa but there were simply too many player playing under par or at least under the level we expect after last season.

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    Comment #4

    Is Ed implying some people are only vocal when things aren’t wonderful? Surely not 🙂

    I think Ed is spot on with this article. Just like when things are going well, doesn’t mean everything is perfect, just as when things aren’t going so well, not everything is terrible.

    How many teams have started a PL campaign “slowly” and then gone on to do well? Maybe not win the league, but that is not our aim. Top 6 is definitely achievable, top 4 is a push, but it always will be.

    I see lots of positives with Newcastle at the minute and the causes for any concern are fixable, whether that is a change in tactics / formation or the need for new players come January.

  • MykToonFan

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:32 PM

    Comment #5

    If we wanted to hurt the opposition at home I would try to play both of our pacy French wingers. Marveaux, Obertan and Ben Arfa in the same team would terrify slow defenders.

  • Munster Mag

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    Comment #6

    To suggest this ,manager is out of his depth is just plain silly. I think Football Manager has a lot to answer for.

  • toonking

    Sep 3, 2012 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #7

    after the way this weekend has been for us not only with transfers but also the result i think the international break has came just when we need it during this international break pardew should watch dvds of both A how much better we did using a 4-3-3 also he needs to learn that subs are meant to be useds when things arn’t looking good so noway should he be bring on 2 subs when it is almost full time.
    finally start dropping and rotating players more often with games otherwise you end up with players who do as good as rooney does for england (rubbish).

  • blew

    Sep 3, 2012 at 5:12 PM

    Comment #8

    Myk no 5 Totally agree with you. Ba and Cisse have not fully recovered from fasting, but they dont get any service, your suggestion looks good, with Oba Marv and Hatem let loose. Jonas is a liability and should be replaced

  • beefman13

    Sep 3, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    Comment #9

    Ed, for me that is one of your best most positive posts,
    you are right we are not in to bad a place at all, and young adam campbell would frighten the life out of defences be it the europa league or premiership, he would cause earthquakes given a chance, imagine the last 20 mins he gets his prem debut on the shoulder of the last defender and he would close the show, different type from the two africans but more explosive and better link up play even at 17!

  • puretoon

    Sep 3, 2012 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #10

    I would play young Adam Capbell ever game as he’s got speed and looks an excellent player. I would def play Adam over Shola as Shola’s not fast enough and can’t play 90 mins. Infact at mo I’d also drop either demba or Cisse too.

  • New kingdom United

    Sep 3, 2012 at 5:56 PM

    Comment #11

    Anita Saylor Collo Santon
    Tiote Bigi
    Cabaye Marv


    Would love to see 1 striker upfront and to pack the mid field against stronger opposition or away from home.

    4 – 2 – 2 – 1 – 1 HBA free role Cisse loan striker upfront.. and use Demba as an impact player instead of Shola……Ba Cisse Ba Cisse …somebody has got to rest.

    So sub Marv for Ba or Cisse for Ba …and when we home go all gunz blazing 2 upfront.

  • ballerfan2

    Sep 3, 2012 at 6:05 PM

    Comment #12

    Spot on with this article Ed. Must say it worries me though when people start having s go at Jonas. Certainly he didn’t have his most distinguished game yesterday but the guy gets through so much graft for the team that doesn’t necessarily catch the eye but is so important. Oba, Marv and Ben Arfa (?) all together – who is going to do the work that Jonas gets through? I don’t see these three, talented though they are, doing it. More than anything, though, it is vitally important to get Cabaye back on his game. Whenever he is missing of out of form we don’t function properly. Has anyone else noticed that?

  • FatmanJoe

    Sep 3, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    Comment #13

    I watched te game again today at the gym and studied cabaye throughout. I really watched coz I was disappointed with him to begin with and I have to say people are being far too harsh on the lad. He looked a bit slow and his corners were bloody awful but his reading of the game was superb, he picked out some graceful passes and on more than one occasion he made some very threatening runs that had his team mates seen him or threaded the pass through properly cabs would have been well through on goal. Ben arfa was guilty of this twice.

    I think people need to realise that he hasn’t had the same pre-season as everyone else and isn’t at his best yet. But he was in no way ‘disgusting’

    If you don’t believe me do what I did, watch it again and focus intently on him. He’s still there don’t worry.

    And on second viewing bigi looked even better. What a find! 😉

  • nufcusa

    Sep 3, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    Comment #14

    Newcastles start to the season has been hectic and we have come out of it reasonably well. Truthfully 4 points from those three games is nit the end if the world. I just thought they might cone with the spurs and villa results reversed.

    We are a good team but people saying we “should” beat spurs a ms villa and we “should” get a point at Chelsea. What planet are you on? We have 4 points but in looking at our games played we could easily have been on 1 or 3 at this stage if spurs had spoiled the party and their had been a variation in the villa result.

    Our 2 strikers always start the season unable to fuel their bodies correctly and understandably look a little sluggish. We now have time off prior to Everton to take stock and get the lads up to speed again. 4 points from Everton away and Norwich at home totaling 8 from 15 having playe 3 of last years top 7, including 2 away games would be a very solid start.

  • Dearka

    Sep 3, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    Comment #15

    i would like to see this formation 1-4-2-3-1 play in newcastle next match

    Anita, Saylor, Collo, Santon
    Tiote, Cabaye
    Orbertan ,HBA, Marv or Gutierrez
    Cisse or Ba

  • leefire

    Sep 3, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Comment #16

    Anits S Taylor. Colo. Santon

    HBA. Cabaye. Jonas
    Cisse. Ba

    Subs. Bigi. Campbell. Sammy. Shola. Marv

    I think we have a great squad and think we have some exciting prospect in young Campbell and Sammy. I love Cisse and Ba and think people are being a bit harsh there goals ill come very soon its what they do.

  • matt11_25

    Sep 3, 2012 at 9:34 PM

    Comment #17

    Ed encouraging this change up front is driving me crazy. Demba and Cisse need time to build a partnership!! And the whole team needs to adjust and create more opportunities for them. It can be a deadly duo especially with Ben Arfa slotted in behind as CAM.. that will be attacking football. For fooks sake!!!

  • matt11_25

    Sep 3, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    Comment #18

    Thank you leefire glad to see some common sense

  • Brutooon

    Sep 4, 2012 at 12:00 AM

    Comment #19

    1) apart from cabaye freekicks, his corner kick didn’t get past the first defender!

    2) Anita should be our first choice right back! he did more overlapping than danny simpson did in 3 seasons!

    3) play 4-3-3 with a midfield of Bigi, Tiote and Cabaye. drop Jonas for god sake!

    4) i do agreed with Ed, give Adam Campbell a run. This guy need GAMES to prove himself


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