There are a number of players like Fab Coloccini, Yohan Cabaye, Papiss Cisse, Demba Ba, Tim Krul, Shane Ferguson and Haris Vuckic away on International duty over the next couple of weeks, but there’s also a large majority of the Newcastle squad remaining on Tyneside, and they will be having a well earned break after 5 games in just 15 days at the start of the season.
Steven Taylor – in action against Olympiacos in pre-season
We didn’t do quite as well as we had hoped for, but it wasn’t too bad a start, and we should do better when some of the lads get back to near their best form.
It also looks like Alan Pardew and the coaches could be holding some bonding sessions, like the paint balling they did last year
Steven Taylor thinks the lads deserve a break, and he had this to say on the Newcastle site today:
“The lads need it.” “With playing European football on top of the Premier League games, it gives us a chance to get our legs ready and refresh ahead of the next match.”
“Team bonding could be anything – a golf day, paintballing or anything like that. I don’t know.” “The gaffer will surprise the boys and it should be good. As long as everyone is together then that’s the main thing.”
“It’s what Newcastle United is all about – team spirit.” “We keep touching upon that. Last year we were a very tight unit. We are a small squad, we realise that, but if we stick together then we won’t go far wrong.”
“It’s a massive honor for the lads who are going away to play for their country.” “But it’s great for the rest of us to recover and if there are any little niggles or anything like that, then it gives people time to get back.”
The Newcastle team spirit is going to be very important this term, as it was last season, and the lads are just a little up against at the moment, but no doubt they will be going all out for the win at Everton in just under a couple of weeks time.
That will be difficult, but we won there two years ago 1-0 with a goal from – now let’s think – yes it was Hatem Ben Arfa, with another screamer.
It was a little like the one he put in on Sunday, but he hit the one at Goodison Park with his left foot – just to make it interesting.
But then of course the Frenchman broke his left leg in two places and was out almost a full year.
It will be very important to keep Ben Arfa fit for the season, and the same goes for Steven Taylor, who is again showing he can form a very solid partnership with Fab Coloccini at the back.