Newcastle May Opt For A Single Striker Against Swansea

We know that John Carver keeps Alan Pardew well informed of what’s on the Newcastle fans’ minds, and apart from being upset that we lost to a mediocre West Ham side last Sunday, and by a Kevin Nolan goal of things, there have been pleas from the fans to play something other than 4-4-2 with two strikers up front, which often seems a waste.

Demba Ba – lone striker tomorrow?

We’ve often thought that when Papiss Cisse and Demba Ba are up front together and we struggle in a game, it’s a waste of a player, and we could better employ one in central midfield to first get a grip on the game.

We’ll see what Alan does tomorrow,  but Swansea do play three in central midfield, and with Yohan Cabaye out, we could again be overcome in midfield, and that’s not good.

Alan Pardew says he is well aware of the fans’ concerns:

“This year the midfield is an area where we haven’t controlled it.” “We are having a good look in there. Last year we coped no problem with having two in midfield, so we could play two strikers.”

“Sometimes we asked one of the strikers to defend the full-back when the opposition had possession. That is something we’ve done this year – the problem is that the fluency of our game comes through the midfield.”

“We need to make sure against Swansea that we don’t get bossed in that area.” “Last season we coped against three central midfielders with Cheick and Cabaye – and quite rightly because they are world-class players.”

“Swansea play three in midfield and that is a key element for tomorrow’s game.” “I think the concern that the fans have is the same as what I have.” “That’s not something that is lost on me.”

“We controlled games in the second half of last season with much more authority than we are at the minute. That’s what we are trying to get.” “The Europa League has meant we’ve swapped from system to system. That might be an issue.”

“All those questions – trust me – my staff and I have gone through as much as the fans have.” “Nobody is more frustrated than me.” “Do you think I wanted to lose to West Ham?”

An awful lot of  Premier League teams play in a 4-5-1 formation,  to ensure they can get a grip on the game, and when they move forward they push players up – a formation Manchester United play almost all the time – with Rooney hanging back and Robin van Perse the point man up front.

In times when you are struggling it’s important to get a grip on midfield,  so it could well be that Pardew will start with one striker – Demba Ba – up  front, at least until we show we can get a grip on the game with Swansea.

It will be interesting to see the team Pardew puts out tomorrow, and whether he sticks with both Papiss and Demba up front.

What do you think?

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26 comments so far

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 16, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    Comment #1

    Well, he must have been reading up on fans comments. He is a useless manager and is now just copying what the fans say. Get him out.

    I suppose if I had to think about it, I suppose it is possible that he was already aware, as he says, and maybe, just maybe needs some time.

    Nah, get rid of him now.

  • Carryingcoals

    Nov 16, 2012 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #2

    Tough tough game. Give us the answer Pards!

  • jawballsaswallwell

    Nov 16, 2012 at 10:54 AM

    Comment #3

    Ed, how about slowing down to 90. You’re likely to give yourself a heart attack at this rate.

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 16, 2012 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #4

    Carrying…..It will be a tough game, but it is a game we can do well in. Last season they truly dominated us, but to little advantage for them. That seems a little different this season, so we will need to show a bit more control imo. Pardew clearly knows this, will be interesting to see if he can do it.

  • check the toastie

    Nov 16, 2012 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #5

    looking forward to 442 then.

    Whats that all about having strikers covering full backs, thats the wide midfielders job, oh no it isnt, our wide middielders job is to defend our own box. Clueless.

    As for the remark about controlling games that only came about when he played with 3 in the middle, does he take us as absolute fools. We had no control on any game when we played 442 last year. It only works when you play hoofball, ala Man Utd home game goals.

  • Carryingcoals

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #6


    I think we will flood the midfield and have Demba up top on his own. However my worry is – who from midfield will step up and make a difference aside from Ben Arfa.

    I’m really not sure how tomorrow will go.

  • jawballsaswallwell

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:04 AM

    Comment #7

    West Ham coming to St James’ and leaving with the points could be considered a frustrating aberration, but Swansea doing the same, quite inconceivable. I forbid it!

  • Indian Magpie

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #8

    My advise to Alan pardew

    when you try to please everone you end up displeasing everyone so don’t

    Just try to please the fans

  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:06 AM

    Comment #9

    Tactics are very difficult to discuss ‘causs they tent to get simplyfied and you end up more confused than before.

    …most EPL teams doesn’t play 4-5-1 it is a very defensive formation and mentally as well.

    Man Utd play a variation of 4-3-3 with what is know as a false #9 this mean at times it will look like a 4-6-0. The false #9 serves a purpose – to crowd the MF, to create free space and to drag one of the oponents defenders out of position.

    Tactics are very important and when they are simplyfied like this they just don’t make sense.

    I have even heard people saying there isn’t much difference between a 4-4-2 and 4-3-3 and that you can easily switch between them – yes you can switch between them, but they are two completely different philosophies and they are set up completely different.

  • Munster Mag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #10

    Its a problem for Pardew because 4-4-2 has served us well , eg away to everton and home to man u last year, and in reality Fergie has been known for playing 4-4-2 for years. Its just that he has usually had players like Yorke and Rooney who can drop back into midfield and look comfortable there. I also think the fans will have to accept that if we start being overrun on the wings ( entirely likely, as Santon likes to get forward, and ben arfa doesnt like defending if he can get away with it ) , then the fans have to accept this. We cant have it every way. In many ways i’m more concerned with the drop in form of 90% of our players and all our key players bar Krul.

  • Graeme

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:09 AM

    Comment #11

    I now have tickets to tomorrows game and promise to produce an unbiased opinion tomorrow night, once I get back!!

    Ibiza, of course he is reading and taking us fans advice – how the hell else could he possibly achieve what he has done since he got here?? Wake up lol

  • Munster Mag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:10 AM

    Comment #12

    Jesper, thats not crrect. Man U never look like playing 4-6-0 . I was only listening last w/e to two ex man u players on the radio talking about Fergie’s traditional beliefs in 4-4-2.

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #13

    Carrying…I’m with you. Tough to call, hopefully not so tough to watch.

    Jawball…Make sure Pardew knows that. Knowing it is forbidden could make the difference.

    Indian….Firstly, he has to try and get a balance or he will lose his job eventually. Secondly, how on Earth do you please all of the fans or do you mean fans who share your opinions?

    Perhaps it should be, don’t try and please everyone, do what you think is ultimately right.

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    Comment #14

    Graeme….I’m just shocked he’s taking notes of others posters. We all knew he checked in to see what Kets thought, but he’s branching out now.

  • jawballsaswallwell

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:15 AM

    Comment #15

    Maybe Pards does come onto the blog to take in the views of the fans with the express purpose of doing the exact opposite. Which you’d have to think would be the wisest thing to do generally speaking, but on this occasion clearly not.

  • danishmag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #16

    I was thinking.. What are the chances of seeing Marveaux get a start tomorrow?
    I mean with Cabaye injured, could we see Marveaux take his spot in the starting 11?

  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:21 AM

    Comment #17

    Munster…it is true they have been playing alot of a diamond 4-4-2 on paper of late, but Rooney plays the part of the false #9 and have for a many seasons now.

    …would you call Nani or Welbeck or who ever is deplyed wide for taditional left or right MF.

    Rooney drops down the widemen pushes up and there it is 4-3-3. I think the fact that they have signed RVP and that he is scorings for fun has made Fergy reluctant to change.

    Who are those two Man Utd players who think they are playing a trad. 4-4-2?

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #18

    danish….I think there is a decent chance of Marveaux starting tomorrow. Who is confirmed as out?

    Colo, Cabaye, possibly Cisse?


    Maybe? Maybe Marv on the left and Shola playing behind Ba? I would rather see Marv get the start tomorrow. He looked lively last time out with some good ideas. Just needs some time on the field with the lads to help it come together.

  • danishmag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    Comment #19

    excactly my point..
    Marveaux did look very sharp in the europa league, last time.
    Though i am affraid, that we will see Either Cisse or Shola up front instead..
    Pardew does need to try new things.. NOW!
    So here is for hoping for Marveaux

  • jimmysmith

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:29 AM

    Comment #20

    Can Marv be trusted to turn up?

  • shpetmeister

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:35 AM

    Comment #21

    Long time i have been writing here! But i often read the comments and some are funny haha. But nobody has mentioned how crappy long balls we play and ba and cisse nevner wins a head duel on the air= we loose the ball. If we play 1 striker that should be Sholaaa !! Krul anita willo staylor santon – obertan tiote anita biggi shane ferguson- benny Ameobi on top. And get inn both bas in 2 half because thhats when we wake up! Good??

  • danishmag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 11:37 AM

    Comment #22

    And.. I do think that Pardew is the best manager we have had since the great Sir Bobby, And i have been saying that since last summer. That he would bring us back to great times. But as i see it.. Most of the team today, are players brought in by him. And he has som favorites. Which is a problem, if som of those players should be benched, and he cannot see it. 4-3-3 is without a question the formation we should be playing. Cissé and Shola on the bench and for europe.
    Ba is without a doubt our best striker!

  • Munster Mag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    Comment #23

    Jesper, with all due respect I’m willing to accept ex players opions of Fergie ahead of fans on here. He has always liked wide men but in a fluid formation,eg Giggs. Whatever about formation though, when we lost to them in the league cup, I thought they ( kids ) looked far better technically than us and a bit quicker too, even if we did compete well.

  • Munster Mag

    Nov 16, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    Comment #24

    Danish, Marveaux has shown nothing in the league that I can remember? What we do in europe isnt all that relevant. Playing Manitimo or Everton is a different level of physicality and pressure etc. At present, sadly, it Looks like Liverpool dodges a bullet when we steamed in for him. I hope he is given time though as I can see players like Anita and him working well together. One issue may be power and physique though. When people say guys like Enrique and Santon took a while to settle, they did at least have all the physical attributes to easily cope in england.

  • Ketsbaia9

    Nov 16, 2012 at 1:47 PM

    Comment #25

    Team for tomorrow:


    Santon Saylor Anita


    Ben Arfa Abeid Marveaux Ferguson

    Ba Xisco

  • AmericanGeordie

    Nov 16, 2012 at 2:32 PM

    Comment #26

    If we assume Cisse won’t play here is the lineup:



    With the players unavailable for Saturday I think this is our best lineup (the only possible improvement would be to bring Fergie into LB and move Santon to the right. I just don’t think AP will do that.) I think this is an ideal time to see Ben Arfa lined up in the middle of the park in a very advanced role with two defensive mids sitting behind him. This will really give him some free reign to attack and create. I think there are some goals to be had with this set-up.


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