Yanga-Mbiwa And Haidara Push For Starting Roles


The Newcastle defense last night was magnificent, especially after we had scored through a Shola Ameobi penalty on 64 minutes, and Metalist Kharkiv threw everything they had at the Newcastle defense, but Tim Krul made four top class saves – and James Perch cleared off the line, and Newcastle showed once again they are a strong and very committed and resolute side these days.

Massadio Haidara metalist

Massadio Haidara – had an excellent debut

We were particularly impressed with new boy Massadio Haidara making his debut – and it was the first time we’d seen him play a full game, but he put in a resolute performance, and he’s a very good left-sided defender.

Mapou Yabga-Mbiwa put in a great display alongside Fabricio Coloccini, and Steven Taylor will see he has a real challenge to hold on to his center-back berth.

This is what Alan Pardew said after the game about these two lads:

“It was a bit of a case of ‘Into the lion’s den’ for Massadio, but he coped very well,” said Pardew. “I thought he was up against a good player, but he showed he’s got great potential for us.”

“Mapou is what he is, a quality center-half and we now find ourselves in the fortunate position of having Steven, Mapou and Colo – who are all producing top-drawer performances at the moment.”

“It was an important period because if we had conceded with ten minutes to go, it might have been difficult for us. But a couple of key minutes and some critical defending saw us home.”

We still expect Mathieu Debuchy, Steven Taylor, Davide Santon, Cheick Tiote, Jonas Gutierrez and Yoan Gouffran to come into the starting line-up on Sunday, after getting a rest last night, and the team against Southampton should be fresh enough.

And Cheick Tiote should be fit, after missing the game last night with illness at the last moment, but Vurnon Anita came in and had a very good game in the holding midfield position, after knowing only an hour before the game he would be starting and this lad is a very good experienced player too.

So Newcastle fans will have seen just how strong our squad has become – but now we simply must win against Southampton and start pulling away from the relegation zone.

It’s as though our season just started last night.

Howay The Lads!!

Marc Gillham is from Durham and is at Hull University studying business and marketing. He is engaged in a project to help non-league clubs make decisions regarding sponsorship. Please help Marc with his research by filling out this questionnaire – thanks.

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44 comments so far

  • Wayayman

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    Comment #1

    Repost from last post of last thread 😉

    I’m sure this has been said before (but I can’t be @rsed to read all 132 previous posts!) but Danny Simpson (who i think is an absolute parcel) had an decent game last night. Alright, he still looks totally lost going forward but he actually tackled yesterday and looked well up for it. Great to see Debuchy’s arrival really has mad him buck up his ideas.
    Still want him to leave at the end of the season though…

    Hiadara was a revelation, maybe him and Santon on the LW could be an unstoppable force for us?
    Mapou was immense, both he and Haidara read the game so well making it look like they have blistering pace when actually their footballing brains just anticipate the danger.

    This was a tough tie, and a baffling referee last night too, we’ve done very well and the team spirit was there for all to see.

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  • rainrix

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:25 AM

    Comment #2

    Ibiza… I dont care if people see my wrong doings, its better to be feared than loved. Although they should see its all for the good of the club. Do you not find it bizarre that i start preaching the word of shola and the next match he scores? Exactly if thats the price we pay so be it! 🙂

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  • obatoyou

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:26 AM

    Comment #3

    Morning ladies!~
    I think Anzhi will be a tough challenge, tough to see us getting through, glad we have the second leg at home to be honest.. that way we know how strong we’ll need to be. It’ll be a matter of who scores more at home.. Russia’s not an easy place to go. This is for a spot in the quarters, cmon!~

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  • rainrix

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:26 AM

    Comment #4

    Ah haidara did really well coming into a crucial game in a hostile stadium, i though he looked better than santon defensively, maybe because he didn’t get forward as much but he looked strong in the air and the tackle, has a decent turn of pace as well. Early days but promising signs.

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  • Griff-toon

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:28 AM

    Comment #5

    Good morning everyone 🙂

    Super happy with beeing in the last 16 of the Europa Cup! Still a lot of good teams in it and its going to be tough in the final 8!

    But its exiting to be in it!

    Oh and I agree with Pardew that the defenders where good! Haidara impressed me and although Santon looks a bit better going forward I though he looked the stronger of the two in terms of defending

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    Comment #6

    TS, (Re post from last thread)

    I had arguments with people last season about Tiote with people saying he gives the ball away too often. last season he didn’t his pass completion was excellent. This season however, playing in a team low on confidence has led to him having to alter his play, and attempt things he didn’t do last year. He has being trying to shoulder more responsibility and to take things on himself when he shouldn’t. That is why he is giving it away more.

    I agree when he keeps it simple he is excellent and rarely gives it away, and I also agree that playing with Sissoko/Cabaye/Anita will help him get back to what he did so well. But rather than just picking our best 11 players, I’d prefer to pick our best 11 players for the game.

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  • rainrix

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:30 AM

    Comment #7

    Just had a look a anzils squad, etos the only stand out name to me although i wont write them off. That traore bloke looks a monster 6ft 8 and 9 goals in 16 apps. How the hell do you counter that 🙂

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  • toonarmydownsouth

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    Comment #8

    138toonarmydownsouth // Feb 22, 2013 at 9:28 AM

    Personally for now i’d start with anita over tiote, tiote needs a couple of sub apperances to find his feet again but also know he’s not untouchable, i think perhaps pardew has overhyped him and he thinks he is now a garunteed starter
    Also see nothing wrong in having a midfield 3 who can rotate through out the game which sissoko cabs n anita would do very effectivly imho!

    On last night, as great as it was there were 2 negatives for me, cisse and marveux
    Cisse looks shot, his confidence is non existent his runs our poirly timed and he is picking ua p stupid amount of yellow cards lately for lashing out at players
    Personally i’d bench him vs southampton start gouffran upfront, give cisse a rest from the spotlight let him get his head straight

    As for marveux, he was so unimpressive and just plain greedy on the ball last night, really cut an infuriating figure

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:34 AM

    Comment #9

    I think Haidara will prove to be a very astute signing. Mapou is class, despite me not seeing the game last night when I have seen him he has been superb for France and Montpellier.

    On Sunday though I would expect Taylor to come back in to the starting 11. I’m not sure whether it would be Colo or Mapou I left out, but I suspect Mapou will have to make do with a bench spot. My reasoning is that in Rickie Lambert they have a striker who will try to bully the centre half, and I feel Taylor is best suited to dealing with this sort of threat.

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  • TorqToon

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:36 AM

    Comment #10

    Rainrix – The same way we countered Crouch when we took down stoke in their own backyard mate! 🙂

    He is a monster, but if tackled properly, ie one in front and one behind, it is do-able.

    Yes they have some excellent players, and going over to Russia to play is going to be tough, but we showed last night the grit and determination to battle hard, and that will all be needed out there.

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  • TorqToon

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:37 AM

    Comment #11

    TADS – Gotta agree about Marv.

    Such a cracking player at times, but frustrating at others!

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  • yorkshire_magpie

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    Comment #12

    Rainrix. I watched traore play against liverpool scored a really good goal at the start but then he missed numerous chances throughout the game. He’s very strong and powerfull but it seems like he’s finishing lets him down.

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  • Transfer Sage

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    Comment #13

    tads

    I think its a good point on cisse being benched for gouff up front. The only problem then is that the wide places will be occupied by jonas and obertan as hba isn’t fit enough according to pardew.

    Cisse is still making good runs and in the last few games gotten into the right positions but failed to score. He is still getting in the right place just struggling to finish.

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  • rainrix

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #14

    Torq… I only just realised he’s an inch bigger than crouch :). Although given the choice i’d rather face crouch than traore.

    I must admit i dont know what to expect, if we can go on a bit of a roll in the league it would be a huge bonus. Last night we saw that ability to grind out results that we’ve been lacking a bit this season. Quietly exited 🙂

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  • obatoyou

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #15

    Rainrix –

    Anzhi just bought someone called Willian for 30 million pounds…
    he may be cup tied. not sure
    Curious that Metalist had a Willian too…

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  • WWYCD

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #16

    What a odd thought it is thinking we have quality depth at CB haha and Willo is still knocking around who is a solid back up. Was impressed with Haidara as well (not surprising considering he has been playing first team footy for some time)

    Not sure I am seeing the hype around Anita, hes a busy tidy little player but am just not seeing a world class player, which I expect considering the money spent on him

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  • Transfer Sage

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #17

    William will be available for anzi won’t he? played champs league with shakhtar so be ok to come into their europa league team.

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  • RooneyToons

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    Comment #18

    Does anyone else think its time Anita started ahead of Tiote?
    We look like a completely different team with Anita alongside Cabaye.

    I know he’s lightweight but he’s like a little terrier chasing that ball and he’s great at retaining possession unlike Tiote.
    He’s been at fault for so many goals this season and its not like he’s offered anything else apart from a yellow a game.

    And as for the amount of shots he’s having wtf… People need to stop shouting shoot its giving him a free licence.
    He’s the second worst shooter after Williamson… Ok maybe Simpson as well

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  • TheToonKing

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    Comment #19

    Anzhi will be really tough.

    Eto’o, Bousouffa, Traore, Jucile, Zhirkov, Willian, all good good players.

    Their defense is shaky tough. I think it’s definitely a winnable tie for us, but we’ll need to be at our best.

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  • RooneyToons

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #20

    Willian is amazing and played for them last night so yeah he’ll face us

    Unfortunately

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  • seantoon

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #21

    Does that mean we might have a glimmer of hope of our games being on channel 5 now that the scum haven’t qualified. Or will it be tottenham and Chelsea. Does my head in!

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  • obatoyou

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #22

    can’t wait, game is on in 2 weeks, in between we play saints home and swans away, could be a mad long unbeaten run, our team so awesome these days, got that optimistic feeling back

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  • Transfer Sage

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #23

    wwycd

    I’m with you on the Anita front. A good player no doubt in my eyes but nothing truly special.

    Look at somebody like jack wilshire…a better passer but this season has added beating a man or two in midfield to his game which frees up more space for him to pass into and also puts teams on the back foot.

    Anita is justa good passer in midfield…I don’t see him playing 60 yard balls to feet like gerrard or xabi alonso….and i don’t see him threading the ball through the eye of a needed like fabregas or xavi.

    I think he is good but just that.

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  • rainrix

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #24

    yorkshire… Thanks for the report, i imagine we could handle him on the ground easily. We’ve just been a bit horrific at defending set plays this season.

    Oba… For 30mil he should be good then? 🙂

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  • ichrisho

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #25

    Quality Result last night – 1st Half had that awful feeling that we just weren’t going to score… I do feel a 3-at-the-back 5-3-2 formation coming on – very Mourinho looking I think… it would work well for away games…

    Krul
    Mbiwa Collo Saylor
    Debuchy Santooon
    Anita Tiote Cabaye
    Sissoko
    Cisse

    Defo for the Swansea games…

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  • obatoyou

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Comment #26

    good thing is, Chelsea play in Romania when we play in Russia….which is an early game for us…..hopefully they’ll show us on tv… Tottenham played an early game last night in France, so our game wasnt showed till much later… the net stream was pretty damn good tho, much better than a couple years ago

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  • ichrisho

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:49 AM

    Comment #27

    @ Sage – Anita looked all Puffed out by 35 mins in… Dont think the surprise that ardew dropped on him helped… also I hear that Tiote wasnt injured… it was the fact that the Belgian ref has sent off 7 players in his last 9 games… Tiote would have been gone by 15 mins in!!!!!

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  • martoon

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:49 AM

    Comment #28

    Morning all – yeah Anzhi is a tough tie but if you look who is left in the last 16 it could have been worse!
    You can’t out head tall players like Crouch or Traore you have to make sure you are first to the knock downs.

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  • WWYCD

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:50 AM

    Comment #29

    Sage
    Yeah fully agree hes a good player just not amazing. As for him over Tiote or even Perch (as much as it pains me) hes not the same player as them and in the PL I like a tough tackling wall who wont let anything past him, a real CDM, whereas Antia is more a conduit player

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  • Rylandhall

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:51 AM

    Comment #30

    I think Pardew should be looking to put out the following on Sunday in our must win game against Soton… thoughts?

    Krul (if fit)

    Debuchy — Taylor — Colo — Santon

    Tiote — Cabaye

    Gouffran — Sissoko — Jonas

    Cisse

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  • Kazzy

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #32

    Can Willian play pretty sure he is not elligible cuz debuchy played for lille in champions league and he wasnt alowd to play

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  • ichrisho

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #33

    Its nice to see that all of us can now actually PICK a team… Typing Willo before made my hand limp… 🙂

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  • Transfer Sage

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #34

    wwycd

    Yep. A good player just doesn’t seem to excel in either an attacking or defensive department…..just decent in both.

    With two good attackers in sissoko and cabaye it’s nice to have a solid DM (tiote when in form, or perch) who wins the ball and will just play the simple pass to the attack minded players around him.

    Perfect example, claude makelele….good tackler, read the game well, never did anything beyond his ability, just pass it to those who can influence the attack.

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  • Transfer Sage

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    Comment #35

    kazzy

    you can pick one player from champs league to play in europa….we chose mbiwa who played for montpellier.

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  • WWYCD

    Feb 22, 2013 at 9:57 AM

    Comment #36

    Sage
    Fully agree

    I think the trouble with Tiote atm is he is out of form and trying to do too much which makes him look weak but his hassling and off ball work rate haven’t dropped which is a good sign

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  • ichrisho

    Feb 22, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #37

    Anzhi Makhachkala v Newcastle
    Basle v Zenit St Petersburg
    Benfica v Bordeaux
    Levante v Rubin Kazan
    Steaua Bucharest v Chelsea
    Stuttgart v Lazio
    Tottenham v Inter Milan
    Viktoria Plzen v Fenerbahce
    Matches to be played March 7 and 14

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  • ichrisho

    Feb 22, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #38

    Biggest teams left are Lazio and Inter Milan… We could take them at SJP…

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  • blew

    Feb 22, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #39

    I thought we came under pressure after the substitutions were made, which rocked the balance.
    The back 4 were great, even Fannius Rattus at RB.
    Mbiwa is calm and reads the game, AP should have him in at the start, but he hasnt the balls to drop Colo or Taylor for PL games. The lad is also fast.
    Special mention for Haidara great game.
    We need Anita to start for his all round game.
    Only downside was Marveaux, a luxury.

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  • FatmanJoe

    Feb 22, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    Comment #40

    I’d be tempted to play Haidaira again at LB against Southampton and play Santon on the left wing. Keep the momentum going with the lad as he was immense last night and certainly young and fit enough not to run out of puff!

    I’m definitely worried about Colo playing two games in quick succession. Looked off the pace last night so can’t see how he’s going to play again on Sunday.

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