It is to their credit that Newcastle owner Mike Ashley and Managing Director Derek Llambias moved quickly in January to strengthen the squad, which was never big enough to withstand the additional games in the Europa League this season and with our many injuries too, things looked very gloomy after we had lost at home to Reading 2-1 on 19th January.
Moussa Sissoko – brought in for £1.8M – what a great acquisition!
But then some magic seemed to happen, and we quickly brought in four players ion four days after the Reading defeat, and in total Newcastle paid out £18M in transfer fees for five very good players, in order to rectify the mistake that was made last summer.
Mike Ashley and Derek LLambias deserve to be complimented for that, whether you love them or hate them.
And Alan Pardew was obviously thankful for those new players, and now he’s trying to do his utmost to save the season for Newcastle and their fans by getting as many wins as possible through the end of the season.
Alan was interviewed today in the Independent, and he was asked if he had ever thought of how things could have been, if no reinforcements had been brought in during January:
“No, I don’t really think like that. I don’t think there would have been any chance of signing Sissoko, for example, or Mapou in that summer window.” “Debuchy, we know, could have possibly got over the line, but it’s difficult to say. At the time, it seemed the right thing.”
“It’s that momentum, it changes the outlook of players as well as staff, directors and supporters.” “All our supporters will be looking closely at this game. It’s a key game and we have got to make sure we get something out of it, a positive result.”
“We are much more aggressive in our play. We have tried to be aggressive all year, even with teams that perhaps didn’t have the quality to play that way.” “We have always played on the front foot, as Manchester United and Arsenal proved, but ultimately, we didn’t have enough to win those two games.”
“I always enjoy it, but you don’t want to have defeats. I don’t like any time when we lose and we have had some tough weeks when I was looking at the squad and knew it wasn’t good enough, not strong enough.” “It’s difficult to go into games like that.”
“So it’s been nice this last few weeks to have a strong squad – strong enough – and not only that, but to get results on top of that as well, because it doesn’t always go hand-in-hand.” “Your squad comes together, but it takes a while for it all to click into gear. “Fortunately, we almost hit the ground running when the new guys arrived.”
Newcastle signed Mathieu Debuchy, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Massadio Haidara, Moussa Sissoko and Yoan Gouffran in January – and Newcastle have looked a very different and a much better side since that time.
And now we hope we can win as many games as possible through the end of the season, starting at Swansea tomorrow afternoon – and of course we’re still in the Europa League.
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org