Newcastle Well Off The Pace Of Last Season


At this time last year Newcastle had just beaten Everton 2-1 at St. James’ Park and we had 25 points from our first 11 league games with 7 wins and four draws, but this year we have only 14 points in the league table and are in 10th position.

Kevin Nolan – after scoring the winning goal yesterday

And even when you look at the season before last, when Chris Hughton was in charge we garnered 17 points from our first 11 games and were in the top half of the table, so this is out worst start since getting promoted in May of 2010.

And for our relegation season, when e were still in turmoil after Kevin Keegan left the club we gained 11 points form our first 11 games, although four of those came in the first couple of games with a draw at Manchester United and a 1-0 home win over Bolton.

Next up for Newcastle in the league is Swansea at home next Saturday, followed by Southampton away eight days later, and then Stoke away on the following Wednesday, in a game we won 3-1 last season.

After the Swansea game we entertain CS Maritimo at St. James’ Park so we could be affected at Southampton and heaven help us if we are beaten at St. mary’s and hand the Saints only their second league win of the season.

Alan Pardew had talked before the Liverpool game about Newcastle picking up points in these next batch of games, but that hasn’t happened, and we are in danger of having a mediocre season, like Stoke City had last season when they played in the Europa League.

It could be that we don’t have a big enough squad and a enough good players to play two games a week, as the top clubs do.

What do you think?

Comments always welcome.

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21 comments so far

  • darthkir

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:25 AM

    Comment #1

    In my dream, I saw Pep Guardiola managing us…

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  • seancavaz

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:26 AM

    Comment #2

    Yeah let’s sack the manager! Ffs I’m deleting my account on here. The amount of crap I’ve read over the last few weeks is beyond a joke!

    So last season Pardew wins LMA manager of the year yet this year all of a sudden people are calling for his head! We’re 10th in the league, 4 points off 6th place and near enough qualified for the next round of Europe!

    Yes we ain’t playing well, Christ Stevie Wonder can see that. Yes we can all see the problem, too many hopeless long balls aiming to no-one in particular, therefore by passing our creative players in Cabaye(poor this season I’ll admit) and Ben Arfa. Once the confidence to play from defence through the midfield and into the channels for Cisse and Ba to burst the net creeps back into our game no doubt everyone will be claiming Pardew as a worthy 2 time to manager of the year again yeah!

    Opinions are what makes football great, however the last time I checked none of us are on Sky Sports or Match of the day giving our interviews to the press.

    So less negativity, think of where we’ve come from, get a reality check that last year far exceeded expectations and trust the management!

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:30 AM

    Comment #3

    We knew we didn’t have two ready made teams to comfortably juggle domestic and European competitions and that we would have to rely on some of the youth this season and that may not work as well as we’d like. How it seems, is that the youngsters are actually doing their bit tbh, I couldn’t really ask for much more other than them setting the world alight and single handed changing the course of games – perhaps a bit harsh.

    Our key players aren’t where they were last season….even Krul and Colo are off the pace and that is odd.

    I would imagine the biggest factor may be arrogance. We did really really well last season and maybe the players, in particular the newer ones have taken that for granted, perhaps they’ve forgotten the amount of work they put in to get where we did, I doubt Pardew isn’t telling them.

    There has to be some truth to the idea that it is harder for Pardew to implement the same ethic and ideals with the stop start schedule given Europa games, although this is something he will have to work out, as all managers with European games has to…but let’s remember, this is his first shot at it. Should we be accepting a manager without this experience? Personally, I think he did enough to warrant a chance, apparently the powers that be felt the same. It’s way too early to say whether it was a silly idea or not, those whose alarm bells are going mental, perhaps need to have a little think about what we should be expecting and when…realistically. Please don’t think I have my head buried in the sand and cannot find fault in Pardew (or Ashley), as I can, but I promise you, if we go back to the changing or manager each time things don’t seem to be improving at the rate fans want, we wont ever progress, without a miracle, and I don’t know about you, but I’m a bit old to believe in fairies.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:31 AM

    Comment #4

    Catchy…Apologies, just noticed I called you Cathy. It was a genuine mistake 🙂

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:34 AM

    Comment #5

    Sean….Don’t delete your account, we’re here to discuss NUFC, the thing we all love. The blog always goes through phases of change of attitude / opinion, you just need to take the occasional break and let the madness calm down somewhat.

    For the first time in a long time, I don’t feel the fans complaining will get the manager fired, so I’m less worried about the effect such negativity will bring. Still, it does seem extremely premature to be calling for his head (not everyone who is unhappy, duly noted). Give it time, these things have a way of blowing over, say with a few wins.

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  • jeff

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:34 AM

    Comment #6

    someone posted something about potential managers and martinez’ name popped up

    id love him here if im honest although i havent lost faith in pardew just yet!!!

    we need to play more aggressively at home and we need to stop playing such a rigid formation. absolutely none of the top 5 (or even every other team in the league) is as rigid as us. even fat sam plays five in the midfield!!! off topic but what a player diame is

    as for the starting line-up given yesterdays game, these are the players who shouldnt be starting next week.

    simpson – but we dont have any other options
    williamson – but he will
    jonas – sad that i hope he is not risked next game because of his injury
    ferguson – a lot of you on this blog hype him up, i remember in one article he was compared to baines and bale!! which was ridiculous. he is too small and too timid, he needs some rough-housing
    cisse – poor guy and positionally naive at times

    with that outta the way i wanna see this vs swansea!!! we can afford to play smaller players as they dont have many large guys except michu

    KRUL

    SIMMO WILLO SAYLOR SANTON
    ANITA BIGI
    BEN ARFA CABAYE OBERTAN
    BA

    actually scratch bigi, play abeid instead

    reasoning for obertan: look how fast teams like liverpool and other lamers hit us on the counteract. we look so susceptible when WE are taking OUR corners to the counter attack however we are such a slow team that when other teams are taking corners we offer nothing unless ben arfa can dribble through three players then release ba

    we need some pace

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  • hoppernufc

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    Comment #7

    I’m my opinion a lot of the so called European team should be starting in the premier league and vide versa, we are far too defensive and don’t get enough bodies in the box and that’s all down to tactics were still yet to play well did a whole match this season and on yesterday’s performance were getting worse, it’s quite worrying tbh

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    Comment #8

    seancavaz

    getting a new manager is not an option as very few people would work for ashley so with his 8 year contract he’s untouchable. Doesn’t mean we have to be happy with the crap we are seeing week in week out with no end in sight.

    If you look at pardew’s record he always has 1 good season then a complete reversal the following season. A bit like Roeder.

    We got an awful lot of luck last season but then picked up when Raylor sadly got injured but the
    blessing in disguise was benny finally getting in to the team and having to change to 433.

    I know a lot of people think we did well in spite of pardew not because of him. We should probably have got top 4 but we inexplicably changed back to 442 for the last 4 games of the season. Go figure!

    Why turn your back on something that you stumbled on
    and which worked for the mind numbing rubbish we are seeing now?

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  • jeff

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:38 AM

    Comment #9

    jeff to nufcblog.com

    why does no one respond to my critical insight. is it because i speak the truth or am i not aggressive enough???

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #10

    Hopper….I felt at the beginning of the year and mix of experience and youth should be played in both competitions.

    As far as the PL goes, not a lot as far as ideas of how to approach it have changed and that has probably caught Pardew out for now. I think he knows this and I am confident he’s trying to change it, I don’t feel it’s as simple as a quick change of formation and drop one or two players though, it does take time.

    Question for me is, how much time does he / we have?

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  • roshan MAGPIE

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #11

    I don’t think that europa league is affecting us cause we only play our fringe players there only most of our regular back play there so our only problem is players out of form

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #12

    Ibixza.

    Europe doesn’t seem to affect the other teams in it and besides we play almost a different team on thursdays so can hardly claim fatigue as an issue.

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  • catchy in norway

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #13

    seancavaz

    really man come on,, should we think of where we came from and think ourselfs lucky??

    no one claims to be pundits, or managers , we are just fans of a great football club, that is underperforming right now,

    and as fans we do have the right to point fingers and ask questions

    here is a fact for you,

    Chris H had a much harder job to do than pardew and with a more limited team,
    CH was placed in charge of a team that had just gone down and lost many of its star players,
    CH picked up the pieces and blitzed the league, he steadied the ship, had players like barton playing for him,
    the championship is a tough league,, that guy earned his respect from every one of us,

    now AP, he took over from CH and did not have to do anything, the team was in an ok position in the league, there was very little unrest in the camp, but some big personalities in there,
    the first thing that is done AC is sold, no real replacement, then the summer, whole sale changes to the squad, and in my opinion, we got better players,

    now if you can remember last season , we played shit football, and finished 5th, for me we had a lot of luck, and that is great, every team needs it, but other than luck there was no real tactics, smash it long, bla bla bla

    this season we have not had as much luck and the football is even worse, come on man,, we look like strangers out there,,

    every freekick and corner lets aim for williamson, hmmm is that working???

    most games lets not play with a left side, give the ball to HBA , he is magic, not working

    hmmm i know long ball to BA,

    i hate MASHLY, but is it his fault we are playing crap??? no,

    did we really need to but another player to get us playing football, mmmm NO

    new players would have been great, but we have good players at the club,, what we need is for pardew to grow some balls and drop the under performing players,

    coach them on a system (1 system) to starrt with, instead of the 5 or 6 that he is playing with right now,

    playing defensive, and we concede to many goals lmfao

    ps IBIZA its cathy here lmao

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  • hoppernufc

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #14

    I just feel like our Europa team is a lot more attacking and a few of those players should be given a chance too start in the league, they can’t do any worse than the ‘big name players’ who week by week fail to perform this season, for me santon has been our best player this season he was awesone yesterday I would love to see him on the Wing like what spurs done with bale, however I know pardew would never do that.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:48 AM

    Comment #15

    Jeff….Nothing personal. Martinez seems a decent manager and I wouldn’t want to take anything away from him, however, he’s not usually playing for a lot more than PL survival and there are weaker teams so he can afford to take a few more risks imo without backlash. He probably could make the jump up to a bigger team, but it is far from conclusive imo.

    As for your player opinions:

    Defense….We know the issues, not a whole lot that can be done right now, best CB is suspended, no real competition for Simmo, (just rotation players at the minute).

    Jonas…Still feel his work rate is really important, but there are certainly games in which someone else should / could be played instead of him.

    Ferguson…Looks promising and should be given chances, but isn’t this savior at LW some make out. He’s coming along nicely, at the minute, it isn’t much more than that for me.

    Cisse….I get the feeling he will be the sort of player to go through seriously conflicting spells of form. Either everything goes in or nothing does. Wish he had started scoring already, my faith in him over Ba in fantasy football has cost me big 🙂

    I like Obertan and feel he is improving greatly. Will he be anywhere near Ben Arfa? I doubt it highly, but I think that would be an unfair comparison. He has a role and is improving.

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  • jimiley

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:52 AM

    Comment #16

    Pardew claims we did not get the breaks yesterday. Thats because we lump the ball in the box and hope one of our two strikers get lucky. Lump and hope. That is no way to play football. We do not have enough quality throughout the team. Half the team are top class and the other half are squad players. The midfield creates nothing and is easily the weakest unit. HBA might score the odd goal and Cabaye will get a few but thats it. Jonas spidey outfit is moth eaten and I will be surprised if he ever scores again. What will the owner do about it. Nothing. His ambition is to stay in the league. Winning anything is irrelevant. Pardew has no say in the matter and will go along with it. We will only buy in January if we are drifting down the league and relegation is a possibility. 5th to relegation in one year? Unlikely but the team is going backwards. We have not played one convincing game in the league and we are a third of the way through the season. The tone is set. We are not suddenly going to be a top team again. No ambition and the good players are cheesed off and will probably want away next year because they are wasting their efforts on an owner and puppet manager who can only see pound signs. You reap what you sow.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:56 AM

    Comment #17

    Rotonda….It doesn’t? Are these teams that are used to balancing European football, much like I said the problem was…lack of experience?

    Who else is in Europe this season?

    Liverpool – New manager, no EL experience, not doing great on either level (also, they do have a thin squad).

    Spurs – Not really doing as well as before, are they? Have EL and CL experience, both the team and manager.

    If you want to then throw in the CL teams, all have experience and only really Man U doing “well” in both competitions, the others are doing well domestically, but average in Europe.

    I wasn’t claiming fatigue, more time to implement ideas in two competitions. It’s not impossible, but will take time to pick up.

    If at the end of this season we can find a way in to Europe again I will see it as a success. So many new factors for a lot of the club (remember, there is very little connecting the current regime with the one we loved and adored back in the 90’s, using that reasoning, Liverpool should be winning loads – I mean, they did it in the past, didn’t they?

    I’m not saying let’s not criticise anything, but let’s not just start the “let’s grab the pitchfork” mentality that is slowly creeping back in, it’s completely unproductive (as is blind positivity – I do see that, honest).

    Cathy…..Howay, this time of the month thing needs to end…you’re bringing everyone down (Half a joke) 😉

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:58 AM

    Comment #18

    jimiley…You forgot to add that it’s the end of the world in 2012…

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  • stuart no9

    Nov 12, 2012 at 10:02 AM

    Comment #19

    sean @2 ash fired big sam coz he didnt like his brand of football and we didnt either. why is pardew any different? also deleting your account coz people dont agree with you questions your debating skills, which in all honesty is what this blog is all about. i am not a pardew fan and have been abused for speaking my mind.so let me put this another way to save the abuse. AP is a great manager he has done really well for the club to get us into europe, however, i think he has reached his peakas far as taking the club forward is concerned. his style of football lately is not suited to the attractive blend of stylish flowing football the geordie nation are accustomed to, as big sam found out to his costs after only a few short months in charge. a more tactical astute person with a eye for flair will best suite this club.

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  • Consett Mag

    Nov 12, 2012 at 10:03 AM

    Comment #20

    Yesterday’s midfield in particular, but also out attacking performance was terrible.
    We didn’t get going until we were a goal down, and then we got few people in the box.
    Our crossing is worryingly poor, as is our passing game.
    I’m sorry but Williamson is a sub-standard defender.

    These weaknesses are being cruelly exposed due to injuries and suspensions, and our confidence looks like it is on the rocks.

    I think that the European adventure IS making our league form worse as the same team don’t play two games in a row – the team looked as if they are strangers …

    We were let down in the summer, with no new players coming in who are actually better than what we already have, and we are seriously short of any left wing quality – Jonas simply does not run a left wing and doesn’t even get us a few free kicks these days. He now offers no attacking threat.

    IMO we’ll finish just top half and will go out of Europe in the next stage – as soon as we play any half-decent side. We all know we’re in the easiest group presently.

    BUT WE ARE MAKING PROFITS … so all is good.

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  • seancavaz

    Nov 12, 2012 at 10:35 AM

    Comment #21

    Stuart @no 9 debating skills ain’t the issue mate, it’s a question as to whether or not I can be arsed to waste my time debating a pointless argument…..an opinion is that, all which should be respected, however there comes a time when some people’s opinion changes more then the north east weather, and becomes as predictable, and I haven’t got the time nor the patience.

    Forever a mag, through the good and the bad, but 31 years on this earth have taught me that unless I’ve got an Arabian relative I don’t know about then my views ain’t gonna make a difference to my beloved newcastle united

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