European Champions League Is Newcastle’s Top Ambition

With Alan Pardew continually telling the fans that the league is the most important priority this season, we suppose it follows what the club is trying to do as soon as possible is get into the Champions League, and we last qualified for that league back in 2003, when Bobby Robson had us in 3rd place in the league table, behind only Manchester United and Arsenal.

The big money in European football is definitely in the Champions League, which is the most elite football league in the world, and the Europa League is a poor second in terms of money available, although winning the Europa League – we essentially won this same competition back in 1969, when it was known as the Inter-City Fairs Cup – would be prestigious for our club.

Alan Pardew has come out and said that if Newcastle can qualify for the Champions league it would be like winning a trophy:

“Obviously, we want to win something – you shouldn’t be in the game unless you want to win something.” “Winning for us would be actually qualifying for the Champions League – that would be winning for us, 100%. It would be like winning a trophy.”

“But our fans would like to see a nice big cup, I am sure, and hopefully we can achieve that somewhere down the line.” “We are getting to the stage where there’s a mentality and a quality in the group that could win a competition such as this.”

“We have to just try to win every game that we enter and see where our goals are come Christmas-time when we can really start focusing on what we want to achieve this season.”

“I think he’s still, knowing Alex, smarting from that and he will be looking to put that right on Wednesday, so we will need to be on our toes.” “I watched the game against Liverpool and I don’t think United were at their best and that’s dangerous, to play United when they haven’t played well and won at a place like Liverpool.”

“We are on our guard and we will go and hope to play well ourselves.”

Pardew was 7 years old when Bobby Moncur lifted that Inter-City Fairs Cup trophy – a game I watched in the home leg at St. James Park, when we beat Újpest FC 3-0 and then won the away leg 3-2.

We’re not sure qualifying for Europe is as big as winning something,  because we qualified for the top European League just 9 years ago but haven’t won anything for 43 years.

But the strategy Alan Pardew is following this season is to play the best team he can in mid-week in the Europa league and the Capital One Cup, that allows him to always play his strongest team at the weekend in the league.

And we’re not sure all Newcastle fans agree with that – especially when we see top teams like Tottenham playing their top teams in the Europa League this season.

What do you think about this – should we be playing stronger side during the week?

Comments always welcome.

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9 comments so far

  • erinashilan

    Sep 26, 2012 at 8:52 AM

    Comment #1

    Come On The Lads~~!!

  • G

    Sep 26, 2012 at 8:54 AM

    Comment #2

    I would love us to play our best possible team for every game, however, our squad is still sadly lacking in depth. Much as I would love to see us qualify for CL, I can’t see it happening this season. Another EL place for next season would satisfy me though.

  • TorqToon

    Sep 26, 2012 at 9:10 AM

    Comment #3

    Gotta agree with G ! I think CL position is a big stretch! Think we should aim for that (or course!) but I would be happy with EL position. In an ideal world we would play our strongest side in all competitions, however with the size of squad we have, and the amount of games involved, this isn’t possible! On tonight’s game, we should go at it as we do the Europa league. Mix of youth and experience, blood our youngsters and let them show us what they can do! I’m praying for a cisse goal tonight to boost the lad, and enforce the neggers back into hiding!

  • Graeme

    Sep 26, 2012 at 9:19 AM

    Comment #4

    We simply do not have the squad to enable us to compete at all levels and there is no sign that our illustrious owner has any burning desire, or ambition, to achieve it.

    Yes Ed, I was also there for that game, in the Leazes, where else!! Maybe we can do it again before too much longer!!

  • 89Norcal

    Sep 26, 2012 at 9:37 AM

    Comment #5

    CL quali and a decent run in the tournament will be a slow but steady venture. I don’t see us pulling any miracles with the thin squad we have and extra burden of EL.

    So long as our owner doesn’t become the inhibitor of our growth:

    1.Talented youth players: check
    2. Proper class in our XI: check
    3. Subs and reserves getting solid experience in EL: check
    4. Bolstering the squad during transfer windows: uhm..not check 🙂

    With what AP has to work with, quali for CL won’t come easy and it won’t come fast. I’d say maybe by the time 2013-2014 season ends we could be in 4th IF we strengthen.

    If we don’t, our best players might look to greener pastures and give in to the interest from bigger clubs.

  • beefman13

    Sep 26, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #6

    Greame, with respect, im sure last season you would have said people were mad if they had mentioned us getting in to europe, and could have made the champs league until the last day!

    For me our squad may not have the depth of the city, man utd, chelsea, maybe even arsenal or spurs but we have a great desrire spirit and hunger which can overcome almost anything.

    Our illustrious owner has got us to this point in time and i think we are in a great place, we have the spine of our team coming back ie colo tiote and hopefully krul, we will in my opinion strengthen again in the next window, another very good season in store for us i believe.

    We have half adozen players who would fit in to almost any team anywhere in the world, for me we do have ambition, the team and club on a whole have ambition, we are still moving forward in my opinion and will only get better.

  • numba9

    Sep 26, 2012 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #7

    If champ league is target I think u need to spend bit more than 3 mil to build 4 it. And not just kids 4 future . Some 1 that can come in and do a job straight away defenders certainly

  • Graeme

    Sep 26, 2012 at 10:28 AM

    Comment #8


    Agree with you completely. But, how much more confident would you feel if one or (I’m dreaming) even two of our alleged summer targets had been pursued to fruition??

    Would we not be a lot more comfortable with a Debuchey at FB, a Douglas at CB adding vital improvement to the squad and creating strength in depth?

    We are a much improved team to when we returned to the Premier League, there is no doubt about it – with a little judicial spending in the summer window, we could be even better and that was the point I was making.

  • toonincheek

    Sep 26, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #9

    CL is the bigger target.
    That’s not just because of the money but the prestige that goes with it.
    Cups are all very well, but dmestic cups give us EL only.

    Winning the EL is one helluva target – some great teams in that.
    Over the past 10 years, how many EL winners have beaten the CL winners in the follow-up head to head?
    You would expect maybe 1 in 10 ?
    I don’t know how many EL winners have won those games, but it’s certainly more than one in the last ten years.


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