Steve Harper Admits He Was Miffed At Losing First Team Place

Steve Harper will be playing in Europe tomorrow night in Madeira, when we play Maritimo in the group stages of the Europa League, and it’s been six seasons since we last played in a European group game.

Steve Harper – got the hump last summer

And after Demba Ba’s comments about being benched on Monday night, and it looks like Gabby Obertan is also not a happy camper at the moment, Steve Harper has admitted for the first time that he did not take losing his place to Tim Krul as professionally as he could have last summer.

Maybe that explains why Alan Pardew played Rob Elliott essentially as the number two last season, when it was obvious that Steve was next in line, at least in terms of ability to the extremely talented Tim Krul.

Steve’s game on Monday night was his first in the Premier League since April of last year, and Steve’s in the last year of his contract at Newcastle, when he will have been at the club for 20 years, after joining from Seaham Red Star in the summer of 1993, when Kevin Keegan was the manager.

Steve was very steady as usual on Monday night, and he had this to say in the local Newcastle press today:

“If you’re left out you’re entitled to be a little bit disappointed but when you get your opportunity, take it.” “We’ve got a game on Thursday where hopefully players will come into it looking to show the manager – like Demba did at Goodison – that they’re still a part of it as well and desperate to get into the first team.”

“I probably didn’t think a night like this would come again.” “It looked a long way away.” “It was probably a little bit my fault as well. When Tim Krul started last season admittedly I got the hump a bit and let my standards slip.”

“At half-time the manager was not a happy man.” “He said in the dressing room it was the worst we’d played under him.” “He made a very bold substitution, which is credit to him because it certainly worked. ”

“When you’re 1-0 down away from home you need to get the next goal and that’s what we did.” “Then he made another change and went three up front away from home, which shows he really has that commitment to win a game away from home, which I’m sure the fans love.”

We’d love to be a fly on the wall at half time, when Alan Pardew makes his comments to the players,  and Jonas has already said Alan was not a happy man at half time – who was?

And we cannot let a couple of unhappy players upset the team spirit at the club, and if Gabby Obertan is unhappy at not being in the side, then he should put all his energy into training and becoming better than he is at Newcastle.

But with the experienced Jonas Gutierrez playing an important role for Newcastle these days, and he’s now vice-captain to his Argentine team-mate Coloccini, and Ben Arfa our best player so far this season, it’s going to be hard for Gabby to start in the Premier League at the moment.

But the Frenchman will get his chance tomorrow night in Madeira,  to show what he can do – and let’s hope he puts in a great performance for the team.

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15 comments so far

  • Ollieh51

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:21 AM

    Comment #1

    OberToon was our best player on the pitch in our last outing.

    He was rested for the Everton game as a result and I’m hoping he can have another good game tomorrow.

    Well done Harps, always the bridesmaid but we’re all happy to have him as our back up keeper at the minute.


  • davybtoon

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:24 AM

    Comment #2

    If any player is happy at not playing then I would want them out of the club u need players to b unhappy at not playing means they care

  • Ollieh51

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:31 AM

    Comment #3

    @ Davybtoon – or you’d want them fighting for a position every day in training etc?

    I personally think that that is why teams like Arsenal, Chelsea and United can have such a good youth set up/reserve team.

    Their young players (like ours now) know that there is achance be it through injury/in a cup to play and so have to perform to a given level every time.

    It’s a good place to be in and we’re seeing some players come through as a result.

    If players believe they are better, they will need to play well enough to be wanted by another club.

    We’re in a good place at the moment.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    Comment #4

    I really hope Demba Ba doesn’t read this blog,a story blown out of proportion and people on here calling him vermin and wanting him sold,be a different story when he bags his next hatrick.

  • Ian Toon

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #5

    davybtoon- sorry on the move. Last post. I agree. This season could really be the making of a number of our youngsters. Been watching academy/ reserves for years and this crop of youngster look the best for a decade. Thought Abeid would have been knocking on door but he seemed to disappear of radar and hear talk of him going out on loan.
    Last night showed a lack of defensive cover.

  • Ollieh51

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:42 AM

    Comment #6

    @ JFA – Posted this on the last thread…

    Sorry but where has all of this come from?!

    Ba’s agents need a smack in the mouth and we have known this for some time.

    Pardew hasn’t even commented on this other than once mentioning that people were upsetting the apple cart and now a percentage of people on here are having a go at Ba for being a mercenary etc?!

    He stayed over summer FFS! If he wanted to leave, he would have done so by now, end of.

    Pardew said why he rested him and Ba proved he’s the boy at the minute.

    Big storm, tiny tea cup, and the media jumping on this and the OberToon ‘refusal’ and Cabaye’s alleged unhappiness shows how far from the mark the recent reports on us have been!

    Lets just focus on supporting the lads for what they’re showing us on the pitch yeah?!

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #7

    Good morning all,

    Jail….It’s surprising really. Not like fans normally jump to conclusions is it? I would hope none of the players read this blog. Some bizarre things are said at times. Wouldn’t exactly be a confidence boost

  • jawballsaswallwell

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:44 AM

    Comment #8

    Of course they can play together, they did it in the 2nd half of last season when we had that great run of form. Pardew needs to convince Ba to accept a wide role when needed, it would be pathetic if the pair of them can’t reconcile this problem. If this is really just about Ba wanting to be the 1st choice striker then Pardew needs to help him get his head out of his arse if that’s the case because Cisse can’t play wide and he can, it’s that simple.
    I think really Ba just wants to play and his agent is a shit stirring prick.

  • davybtoon

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #9

    Ian toon thought abeid played well at right back

  • Ian Toon

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #10

    Ed- yesterday described the Demba Ba so called issue as making a mountain out of a mole hill. He was spot on.

  • Ian Toon

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:51 AM

    Comment #11

    davybtoon- H e looks as if he could play almost anywhere- he’s an intelligent player. Pre season would have bet on him being in the squad by now. But in a midfield role could be a good sub for EPL being versatile-LOL

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:52 AM

    Comment #12

    JFA & Ollieh
    Completly agree like im mean ffs demba cant get a break!
    He was called all summer a money grubbing mercenary and he’d be off the second someone came in for him, despite the lad coming out several times saying he loved the club and was happy here
    Then when he was still here after the window its only because no one came in for etc.
    Then he says he’s not happy for bieng dropped as the in form striker, well so what who wouldnt be!?
    Get off his back and support the lad

  • Jail for Ashley

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #13

    Very surprising coming from probably the most rational and level headed bloggers in the country,I mean none of us would suggest that Mashley should fall into a pit full of scorpions and tarantulas,would we ?

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Sep 19, 2012 at 9:58 AM

    Comment #14

    Jail….Absolutely not. Just kisses and cuddles for the big man, that’s what we all want.

  • Lee Dodd

    Sep 19, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #15

    What we all need is a Win On Thursday and a Good Win Against Chrissy Hughton’s team !!!! Cisse Needs a Goal then he will be back again as he is not fireing on all cylinders yet !!!


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