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Ben Arfa - play this lad as a withdrawn striker?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.
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org