Santon Needs To Improve Defensively – Pardew

You cannot say that Newcastle manager doesn’t keep his players on their toes, and if sees the performance of a player going off a little, he lets them know, and that’s what he’s done with 21 year-old Newcastle left-back David Santon.

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Davide Santon – told to improve defensive part of his game

And as soon as we saw Massadio Haidara last week in the Ukraine we thought here’s a very solid left back who is good defensively, and that’s a part of Davide Santon’s game that has never been strong.

But David is very good at attacking down the left wing, and he’s set up a few goals over the last several games, and overall he’s been one of Newcastle’s best players this season, and has improved a lot.

This is what the Newcastle manager said today in the Journal about the 8 times capped Italian International:

“I think he has had a couple of games when he has been disappointing for me. And it has actually coincided with his call-up to the Italy full squad.” “You know sometimes that can happen to a young player.”

“You have achieved your goal so to speak, he starts for Italy and then just comes off it a little bit.”  “Trust me, I have worked hard with him this week to refocus him about how he got into the Italian team because first half of the season, he was probably our best player.”

“But I won’t restrict his attacking forays. In fact, I will be encouraging him more. But defensively, he definitely needs to concentrate a bit more.”

We’ve never had two good specialist left backs at Newcastle for a long while, and while Jose Enrique was here we never had a specialist left back that could challenge him, but that has now all changed with the arrival of Massadio Haidara.

And Davide will know that his first team starting place is under pressure, and it’s almost certain that Massadio will get two full games in the European League tie with Russian side FC Anzhi Makhachkala in the next two weeks, and that will give him a big chance to further impress manager Alan Pardew.

Davide Santon arrived from Inter-Milan almost two years and has been a big success at Newcastle playing 59 times for the first team.

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22 comments so far

  • check the toastie

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:22 AM

    Comment #1

    Play Haidara Left Back, Push Santon up the pitch for Jonas, is the solution, wonder if he has a word with Jonas about his lack of attcking threat, dont think so, Santon from fullback has created more then Jonas this season than Jonas has the last two.

  • saxonfenken

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    Comment #2

    I know this is old hat, but I can see Davide playing as a left or right sided midfielder soon, or in pre season next year

  • Novocastrian66

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:27 AM

    Comment #3

    Check, canny solution that mate once Haidara has settled in a bit. Hopefully we will win today and we can then stop looking over our shoulder and push on.

  • one Tony Green

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:31 AM

    Comment #4

    Sounds like a plan Check however Pardew is a bit slow. Jonas is a shadow of the player he was.

    Great news that the club have dumped Nile Ranger though. He is a plum

  • hotdog

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    Comment #5

    Still reckon a team mate should cover him if he bombs forward, which AP is saying he wants him to do. You cant say he is out of position if you want him to be on the oppo box, you cant run faster than the ball can you!

  • wynsleap

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    Comment #6

    If we played Haidara at full back and just let him defend and push Santon up in Jonas’ place it would leave us much stronger all round.
    We would have the permanent defensive cover at the back (that we so often need) and Santon can offer just as much as Jonas going forward but also the additional defensive protection down the flank when needed in a game.
    Both appear to have good ‘engines’ so it shouldn’t be a problem.

  • ballerfan2

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:35 AM

    Comment #7

    Can’t see it – not with all the specialist midfielders we have. Why play a defender over the likes of Marveaux, Anita, Obertan, Sammi. At the moment we are struggling to find a place for Ben Arfa. How can Pardew keep them all happy by playing Santon effectively in midfield?

  • hotdog

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #8

    Guti will be benched when Ben Arfa is fit, then you will have Gouffran and Hatem on the wings IMO

  • Harley

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #9


    Agree. I like the fact that we now have 2 good left backs, it’s great to keep them on their toes.

    If jonas is to be dropped I’d rather see Anita get a game as he looked great before he lost his place.

  • Harley

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Comment #10

    Not saying I want jonas dropped by the way as I actually like him as a player.

  • sirtoongospel

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:51 AM

    Comment #11

    Last week Santon drifted into the centre circle almost to put a tackle in when we had 3 other players closing it down. He didn’t win the ball and was completely exposed. No need for him to be in there.

    Going forward he is great, and he generally gets covered, even better now Mapou is playing who has serious pace. But it is when he drifts inside, the winger has a free run. He needs to keep his width better defensively, but he is young!! Pardew is there to help him surely?

    As a defender, Haidara has more tools. He is quicker, and better in the air, but we actually have competition at full back on both sides.

    As for today, we will win!!!

  • ash1001

    Mar 2, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #12

    We had this sort of discussion yesterday re AP having a go at players in public.
    Will that guy never learn, AP you either want Stanton to be a totally committed defender or you want him to bomb up the field, if its the latter then you need to provide cover for him when he does, as Jonas did for Enrique, or move the defensive line across to cover him.
    AP your the manager so sort the tactics out.

  • ballerfan2

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #13

    Ash – I bet Pardew at least gets Santon’s name right. It’s Pardew’s job to get his players to understand their role and responsibility for goodness sake. If that’s seen as criticism then God help us.

  • wynsleap

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:18 AM

    Comment #14

    ballerfan2 @ 7 – You say you’d rather play Marveaux, Anita, Obertan and Sammi.
    Have any of those given you a reason why they should be in the team? All very limited players in my opinion.
    Still think Santon would offer as much if not more than that to the team.

  • Crawfordladd17

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    Comment #15

    My solution would be get Ryan Taylor in a push Santon up to LM

  • Spuggy

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:23 AM

    Comment #16

    Yeah haidara has had one game against Europa opposition and no EPL experience.

    Nice one.

  • Spuggy

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    Comment #17

    Ed you need to change the name of the blog to pardew bashers.

    Same old tripe.

  • francesco-hba

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    Comment #18

    Pards is right. But why telling this problem in the newspapers??

    if he wants to learn thing to Davide, he has to say eyes to eyes, not talking in the medias… by this way, only one thing can happen, its that Davide can be frustrated and anger with Pardew…

    Ed, you say that Pardew isn’t afraid to talk about bad performances of his players in the press?? ok, thats true for Santon, Ben arfa, Obertan, BUT i never see the same thing with JONAS!! WHY?? imo, he’s the worst player this season, with willo and maybe tioté, … so, pardew isnt afraid but not for Jonas….. Argentine ‘s mafia?? lol

  • hatemorloveit

    Mar 2, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #19

    Santon is a player thats too overated in my opinion. He is not that effective going forward as he should be. He cant and wont use his left foot to save his life.whhen he does the cross is always terrible. When he cuts in, he doesnt have enough shots as he should do. He looses the ball so often when he tries to beat a man

  • juanpeterbeardsley

    Mar 2, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #20

    Unfortunately most teams now target Santon as a defensive weakness Tim Sherwood (spurs coach) confirmed this on Sky last year.Look at Southampton’s second goal Santon is up field and tucked in allowing them acres to go at, Gouffran realises too late to cover and Taylor who had a poor game not staying near or pressurising their forwards loses Lambert.

    AP has the right idea either they perform or they are out we have a decent squad now also if you have poor defensive full backs you end up with ineffective offensive wingers such as Jonas who does the business defensively but not always offensively

  • Sav

    Mar 2, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #21

    Doesn’t matter how good you are, a bit of competition makes you try that bit harder. Now, in Haidara, Santon has that. My money’s on the frenchman but we’ll see…

  • ash1001

    Mar 2, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    Comment #22

    To those that think I am Pardew bashing, OK maybe I am saying is that some things should be kept out of the press and public domain and this is one of them. Its between the manager/coaches and the player to chat about that in private.


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