The French contingent we signed last January should be a lot better next term , once they get a good pre-season behind them, and the pressure they were under last season, as we fought against relegation will only stand them in good stead.
A smiling Moussa Sissoko last week
Here’s what Alan Pardew had to say in the Journal today:
“It is very natural in the heat of game or in the heat of training to stick to your natural tongue but we’re trying to knock that out of them,”
“The Frenchmen can be understood, they can talk to you guys in the media, but on the pitch we’re trying to encourage a little bit more understanding so we all know what’s going on. That’s an issue we can all improve on.”
“I think it was a little bit unfair for us to be judged on last season in terms of the environment they came into.” “We didn’t have our best players available at times and we didn’t have momentum with us and they were trying to find their feet in a division that was completely different.
“Between Ligue 1 and the Premier League there’s a big difference. We’re very happy with the new signings and I think they’re going to show this year what good players they are.”
“I don’t think it is a bad thing sometimes to have a season where things don’t go well. You learn a lot,” “You learn more about the environment you are in. Now we are starting afresh and it is a different environment already.”
We felt just a bit for our new French arrivals when we were struggling in the league this year, and they will all have found out that playing for Newcastle United is not like playing for any other club.
There is significant pressure on players when things are not going well, which is why a lot of good players just didn’t make it at the club, they couldn’t handle that pressure from fans, who live and breathe football – as Arsenal supremo Arsene Wenger has pointed out a fewtimes.
But that experience will do the five new Frenchman a world of good, and we are expecting some of them to become big stars this season on Tyneside, and that’s what we’ll need if we are to challenge for a top six position, which has to be the goal.
That’s true whatever the official targets are for next season, because we did it two years ago and we probably have a better squad now.
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