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News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Howay The Lads!!

Newcastle Could Be Flying High This Season

12:54 am, Tuesday, March 12th, 2013 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 68 Comments

Steven Taylor has revealed how manager Alan Pardew told the team before the game against Stoke City, that if the lads could win the game, then he could make an all-out assault on the Europa League competition.

Steven Taylor 2

Steven Taylor – had great game on Sunday

But after the Reading defeat in January, things didn’t look too good and in four days in the following week Mike Ashley brought in four new players and with Mathieu Debuchy having already been acquired in early January, that was five top french players for around £18M.

And on Sunday when Massadio Haidara came on for Davide Santon in the second half for his Premier League debut, all five new Frenchmen were on the pitch at once for the very first time (and seven Frenchmen were on the pitch in total – including Cabaye and Marveaux), so it tells you just how good these new players are.

This is what Steven Taylor said:

“The manager wanted a positive result against Stoke so we can move on to Thursday and really go for it.” “We can do that now and give it our all.”

“All the lads have done well but they had to. With the position we were in a few weeks ago, we couldn’t afford those lads to take their time settling in.”

Alan Pardew has already said he will name his strongest side for Thursday’s return game against Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala, although Mathieu Debuchy and Yoan Gouffran are not eligible.

A win will take Newcastle through to the quarter finals, and then the immediate challenge is to play a decent team at Wigan on Sunday, but Newcastle have shown they now have strength in depth in the squad.

There’s even reason to think we can win these two upcoming games, and then Newcastle United will really be flying high.

And that’s where we want to be, after what we’ve already been through this season. :(

Howay The Lads!!

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Tags: Europa League · European Competition · Newcastle News · Premier League

68 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jamiemac // Mar 12, 2013 at 1:02 AM

    I keep seeing over the last few days people saying we’ll be playing Lazio if we win? Can someone explain this to me when the draw is taking place on Friday?

  • 2 Blaydon-Toon // Mar 12, 2013 at 1:08 AM

    What is our strongest side ? Will be Interesting to find out on Thursday night !

  • 3 matclarke4000 // Mar 12, 2013 at 1:13 AM

    jamiemac – the uefa website appears to be confusing a few posters. our tie with anzhi is placed next to lazio’s, making it seem like the winners would play one another, when in fact the draw is on friday. could be any team left in the competition

  • 4 Jamiemac // Mar 12, 2013 at 1:27 AM

    Ah thanks matclark, that would indeed explain why people are getting confused

  • 5 Diggedydaws // Mar 12, 2013 at 1:32 AM

    We have got to get straight at them, right down their throats from the off.

    I get back in country at 11.00 on Thurs and I shall be straight on it untill kick off, cannit wait for this game to start!

    I know the league is a disapointment this season but europe feels like when Bobby was here, it’s where we should be every season if we’re all honest.

    I just really hope Pards plays 4-3-3 is all.


  • 6 NUFC_LEAZES END // Mar 12, 2013 at 1:50 AM

    With debuchy and goofy cup tied I’m hoping formamteam like this.

    Santon/simmo saylor m’biwa haidara
    Tiote/marveaux cabaye sissoko
    HBA cisse Jonas

  • 7 Novocastrian66 // Mar 12, 2013 at 2:08 AM

    Last Eight of the Europa League;
    Rubin Kazan, FC BAsel, Spurs, Bordeaux, Chelsea, Fenerbache, Lazio, Toon.
    Who would you fancy out of that lot?

  • 8 jimmysmith // Mar 12, 2013 at 2:11 AM

    I hope we play Campbell, because real players often can cut it at 18. If he struggles then he likely won’t make it, but still will have plenty of time to fulfil whatever potential he has.

    I thought he looked confident and capable for the very short time he was on, so I hope we have the opportunity in games to give him more minutes.

    He’s a geordie and I think we really want to have as many geordies in the squad as we can, provided they are good enough of course. That’s why I want Carroll back and support Shola, they are geordies and good enough to contribute.

  • 9 pedro // Mar 12, 2013 at 2:30 AM

    Not sure if it was picked up in England but Coloccini was at the San Lorenzo game on Sunday. It was in the paper here this morning, saying Colo had met the players and was seen hugging Marcelo Tinelli, the Vice-President.
    Surely he will be on his way in the summer

  • 10 NUFC_LEAZES END // Mar 12, 2013 at 2:33 AM

    As long as we don’t get spurs, chelski or lazio I’ll be confident

  • 11 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 3:12 AM

    I have got terrible ear ache / infection. Can’t sleep a wink. Anyone up wana talk toon?

  • 12 cisse_the_legend // Mar 12, 2013 at 3:39 AM

    Yessir! What sort of team do u see us putting up vs Anji at home?

  • 13 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:09 AM

    I hope / expect we go…

    Simpson- Saylor – yanga – haidara
    Anita – cabaye
    Benny – sissoko – marv

    I am a Simpson fan, obv he’s no debuchy but think he deserves to play. Think Anita is much better suited to el than prem and considering rioted form and anitas limited opportunities, he deserves to Start. Toss up between marv n obertan, but its a no brainer really, spesh after the decisive pass on Sunday.

    The rest picks itself. I think we will win !

  • 14 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:10 AM

    What do u think

  • 15 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:11 AM

    Rioted = tiote lol.

  • 16 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:12 AM

    He is a 1 man riot if theres ever been one though !

  • 17 LeToonARMY // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:18 AM

    Simpson Yanga Taylor Santon
    Perch Cabaye
    Ben Arfa Sissoko Guti

  • 18 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:18 AM

    Marv better suited to Europe aswell, like Anita. There is issues with them in the prem, I wouldn’t play them in the same team in the league but have no such issues with starting them in europe.

    holy f$*?(ing hell my ear hurts, as bad as when I had wisdom tooth issues. Please please give me lots of sympathy, whoever may read this, it would be much appreciated.

  • 19 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:22 AM

    Interesting. I think haidara deserves to play as he’s looked good when he’s played and started the past 2 Europe games. Santon hasn’t quite been cutting it recently. I like perch a lot, think dm is his best position, id take him or Anita there. I want marv instead of Jonas tho. Jonas gives security n I know marv is better infield than on wing but in europe with possession he can drift more and maybe just maybe score or assist, something Jonas fails to do

  • 20 toonicle // Mar 12, 2013 at 4:55 AM

    I would like to see santon given a run at LW in the preseason next year, see how it turns out. He obviously prefers to be attacking up the field than worrying about defending and who knows, maybe he will be a natural and Haidara can take the fullback spot. It would also save us having to buy a left wing in the summer lol.

  • 21 cisse_the_legend // Mar 12, 2013 at 5:02 AM

    Sorry for the late reply ba.. Was watching Sherlock.
    I doubt we will see either Anita or Simpson. Perch will start if not Tiote. I see Santon and Debuchy. Gotta go with the best defence.

  • 22 Assam Toon // Mar 12, 2013 at 5:07 AM

    @LeToonarmy, pretty much agree with ur line up. Jonas is a necessary evil for the defensive cover he provides to santon. But how about putting haidara and marv in their place? Of all the present players we have, Jonas might be someone who can become a part of the St james park furniture, like shola and Harps. We might be the only team in england to have a defensive winger. With all the free kicks he win, imagine how important he would have been, had we been a good set piece’s team.

  • 23 Rozzy // Mar 12, 2013 at 5:22 AM

  • 24 firasroxnufc // Mar 12, 2013 at 5:29 AM

    Agree with your opinions lads. But I really believe santon should be given some time. Defensively he’s improving and although he’s somewhat error prone I think his potential is immense. Without a doubt he should have his place on thursday. I’ve known haidara for 2-3 years now; my brother actually played with him at ACBB, which was his childhood team. he’s an extremely solid player don’t get me wrong, but very much defensive minded- although he did appear to be offensively convincing on sunday. Point is- Santon’s got it all in his locker. He must be on the pitch on Thursday. Otherwise- get Hatem, papiss and marveaux up top. behind them put cab aye, cheick and moussa. Now thats a team. AGREED?

  • 25 Mister Tuff // Mar 12, 2013 at 6:33 AM

    cisse_the_legend @21 -you’ll have a hard job seeing Debuchy playing as he is not eligible — we are only allowed one ex CL player and that is Mbiwa.

  • 26 dembademba // Mar 12, 2013 at 6:59 AM


    yaya sanogo would be an interesting one. Occasionally becomes world class on football manager (moussa always becomes world class) or drifts into mediocrity. Worth a punt for sure if free

  • 27 jimmysmith // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:01 AM

    Why is Pards all of a sudden seemingly modelling his appearance on Catweasle?

    Pull yourself together man, for god’s sake!

  • 28 ~ Phoenix Warrior Perch~ // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:11 AM

    Team for Anzhi



    I’d be absolutely livid if Tiote started.

  • 29 dmac // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:24 AM

    We have to play Cisse. Non of this Shola to start malarky. We need to go at Anzhi straight away. I would field as many of the big guns as poss.

  • 30 jimmysmith // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:27 AM

    Yes and not overly keen on starting Simmo and Perch under the circumstances either.

  • 31 ~ Phoenix Warrior Perch~ // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:31 AM

    Our back four did well in Russia. Why change it?.

    I’d rather it be santon at RB, But I don’t see pardew doing that any time soon. So I left him out.

  • 32 Dubaigeordie // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:39 AM

    my team for thursday night would be

    I know Tiote was reckless against stoke and nearly cost us the game but his strength would be vital and im sure pardrew will be having a word with him telling him to calm down and watch the challenges
    also would much prefer marv over guiterrez for me guit has lost it.

  • 33 jimmysmith // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:43 AM

    Yeah, they did well in Russia, and are generally solid and in Perch’s case often very good but I haven’t forgotten some disastrous defensive displays that the pair of them have been a party to in the past and still shudder a little at the thought of the pair of them in a back four. I seem to recall they formed a central defensive partnership in one match with predictably underwhelming result.

  • 34 dmac // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:46 AM

    Yea but in Perch’s defence he was paired with a Rb that is like 5″3 haha. And against Grant Holt that was never going to end kindly.

  • 35 cyprus // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:50 AM

    Saw game again… Tiote really played well, was all over the park, cutting them out and pestering, good going forward, shame THAT moment stays in our minds…
    Sissoko is a bundle of energy, is those legs and that link between lines we were missing.
    Tactically, crossing the ball against Stoke is crazy.

  • 36 jimmysmith // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:52 AM


    Although Santon without Guti to drop back in cover would be quite a concern. Can Haidara play right back or HBA on the left. Perhaps not?

  • 37 cyprus // Mar 12, 2013 at 7:56 AM

    Is HBA ready? Is he really a bit overweight?

  • 38 Levi // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:17 AM


    i agree with that apart from the midfield. if you have anita on the right then he can help santon out as he is a top class right back anyway.

  • 39 Troy Stavers // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    Michael Owen on twitter;

    “Just signed autographs for about 40 Newcastle fans outside our hotel. Not one single bad word spoken towards me. I reckon them exact same people will be booing the life out of me should I appear on the pitch today!!!”

    What a twat he is! The people getting the autographs are no doubt kids in the majority or autograph hunting geeks who have no intention of booing him.

    I can’t wait til the next time he turns up at the Toon. I will ensure I turn up just to slate him in front of his face and give him a Troy Stavers autograph. 😀

  • 40 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:39 AM

    Morning gents.

    All heating up over here! It’s only early march and NUFC and our ‘targets’ are the talk of the toon in France! :-)

  • 41 Rotonda heights // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:43 AM


    You can’t leave it like that. tell us more.

  • 42 BigKirky // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:48 AM

    Torq, please initiate our transfer dreaming process with some names!

  • 43 Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:50 AM

    “Tell me more, tell me more, like does he have a car?”

    Sorry, forgot where I was for a second there.

    Torq…Keep them updates coming.

    Troy…I like the idea, but the next time he’s at the toon? Really? Maybe for horse racing, but not as a footballer surely :)

  • 44 Owldman // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:51 AM

    If they are still in it after Thursday I think I would prefer Bordeux , think we could work them over.

  • 45 Spoof // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    Tiote does frustrate with his recklessness, against Stoke he was superb for the entire game, Stoke could not find a way past him, and then the reckless challenge for the penalty, if he could cut out these rash challenges he would be one of the best in the world in his position, but we must continue with him as we are a better team with him in it, team for Anzhi

    Simpson Taylor Mbiwa Haidara
    Cabaye Tiote
    Ben Arfa Sissoko Gutierez

    Anzhi are a good counter-attacking side, so we need a defence which will not give them space to counter, playing Santon would be playing into their hands, Haidara is better at defending and not likely to get caught out of position, which is why I feel he will get the nod over Santon

  • 46 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:53 AM

    Morning Rotonda

    Read about a move for a PSG player who is very much out of favour this season, competition from a couple other clubs, BUT I think there could be some weight in this.

    English press reporting that we are looking to offload Gabby in the summer and progress with moving santon further up the park and Mass Haidara to be groomed as our starting LB.

    Probably the biggest news is we had several representatives at SJP watching our win over stoke. The players they are representing are ‘what one might class as’ marquee signings.

    I heard that these reps were at the Chelsea home game also, but didn’t mention it as could’ve been to view Chelsea rather than us.

    Could be a busy summer lads…incoming and outgoing.

  • 47 toonarmydownsouth // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:55 AM

    Pls tell me there’s heavy heavy interest in a striker!!!
    Also can you start really talking up obertan to the clubs you visit?

  • 48 Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:57 AM

    So that’s Ibrahimovich in the bag then…good work Torq 😉

  • 49 toonarmydownsouth // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:57 AM

    Guessing the PSG player is menez?

  • 50 Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand // Mar 12, 2013 at 8:59 AM

    Gameiro is my guess, but I wont let you know my sources *coughskycough* *coughsportscough*

  • 51 Beardosfacedouble // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:01 AM

    jimmysmith @27.

    spot on, and well funny! showing your age through…

  • 52 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:04 AM

    TADS – I will do my best mate! However I’m limited with ‘evidence’ to back up how amazing gabby is! :-)

    I don’t dislike the lad, and he has an excellent attitude and effort, however I’m not sure the quality is there, now we have made a step up in squad ability.

    As for a striker, one name keeps coming up and with seriously reliable information, despite this player being linked with ‘supposed’ bigger clubs.

    My big shout for our summer transfer is YASSINE BENZIA. 18yr old striker currently plying trade and Lyon. Represented France at all youth levels and is one to watch.

    We HAVE shown interest in this lad with GC paying a visit to watch him personally. Cheap and raw, but is going to be a star imo.

  • 53 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:07 AM

    Ibiza – The keyring works wonders! Ibra is currently at the Jesmond – you heard it here first.

    I’ve only read English press about Gamiero, but not heard anything about it over here. Only that he has expressed his frustration at lack of playing time. I don’t think we are in for him, I believe the club feel we would be second best after he went to PSG over us. Plus we are looking at younger, more suitable strikers for the football we currently play.

  • 54 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:09 AM

    Agree I thought Tiote had a good game. I didn’t think the tackle was clumsy as people make out.
    I’ll give Walters some credit he turned Tiote inside out – did him like a kipper.
    If being critical where was Debuchy

  • 55 Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:17 AM

    Torq….Interesting, I am a little shocked as my ITK skills are legendary :)

    Younger and better sounds good to me!

  • 56 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:17 AM

    Charlie – I would agree as well. Whilst tiote was rash, it was a proper ‘tiote-esq’ challenge. Walters did well to turn inside how he did. I’d like to think if Debuchy was back there, he had stood him up better and not dive in, but in fairness it was sloppy passing whilst we were in the attack, that led to a quick counter attack.

    Still…we live and learn.

  • 57 toonarmydownsouth // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:18 AM

    Be more than happy if we “upgraded” gabby with that thuavin lad were linked with from basista(?)
    Heard lots of good things about that lad from Lyon still gutted we never got niang!

  • 58 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:18 AM

    Ibiza – You sir, will live in ITK infamy! Don’t let one set back get ya down! 😉

  • 59 Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:20 AM

    Torq…Too late, I already turned the pitchfork on myself. But thank you, those words from an ITK God like yourself mean a lot to me :)

  • 60 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:21 AM

    Tads – Same mate. Niang is one of the best prospects around at the minute.

    In Thauvin – Id love him at the club. However it was his personal preference to stay in France. Not really sure why but with him not being willing to leave his homeland just yet, we will have to look elsewhere. Shame though, he have fitted in well with us.

  • 61 TorqToon // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    Ibiza – Your a gent, sir! Maybe I should retire now and end on a high?! Haha

  • 62 woolerbill // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:26 AM

    We have a good chance on Thursday, if we play without the fear of loosing and Tiote in on the bench. We need ten players for 90minutes.

  • 63 Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    Torq…Sorry, retirement is not an option. If you abandon us now after finally winning over the masses your head will be had.

    Dangerous stuff being an ITK, you take your life in your own hands 😉

  • 64 woolerbill // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:30 AM

    Plus the coalkeeper

  • 65 likeajediknight // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:41 AM

    santon – mbiwa – saylor – haidara
    cabaye – anita
    ben arfa – sissoko – marveaux

  • 66 likeajediknight // Mar 12, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    anyone know whats happened to amalfitano btw?

  • 67 LeToonARMY // Mar 12, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    What a waste of money he was

  • 68 NUFC4life // Mar 12, 2013 at 3:53 PM

    eyyy lads, at work- anyone up for some nufc talk?

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