Newcastle Have Done Surprisingly Well – So Far


If anybody had told us after the Manchester City game that after four game played we would be level on points with the two Manchester clubs and Chelsea, we would have asked them what they had been smoking.

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Newcastle United v Fulham - St James' Park

Vurnon Anita had another solid game yesterday

But that’s the current situation,  after Manchester City dropped two points at Stoke yesterday, and Chelsea suffered their first defeat at Everton.

And suddenly Newcastle are in the upper half of the table and we even looked a good attacking side yesterday, and were solid at the back, although Tim Krul is not at his best at the moment.

Here’s what Alan Pardew said in the local press today:

“The most important thing at our football club is the team. They carry the flag, they carry the banner. For the first time today since Demba Ba left, we carried an attacking threat a Newcastle team should have.”

“Loic Remy has boosted that. I think it puts the opposition on the back foot a bit, and that makes a big different to how you control the game.”  “We got more players into the box today.”

“Hatem got the simplest goal he will ever score because he got into the box and that’s something we’ve encouraged him to do.”  “I thought we controlled the first-half. “

“We came under pressure in the second, but we played really well.”  “Hatem Ben Arfa was   brilliant. I thought some of the reaction two weeks ago was over the top, but it can’t be over the top this week.”

“When you are a manager of Newcastle, and you talk about the Europa League and injuries, it sounds like rotten excuses, but we had our best players available today,  and anyone who was at the game would say when that happens we look a good team.”

“If we can keep them all fit then we can have a good season.”

Of course we cannot get carried away, but two successive league wins is always good, and it certainly  gives out players that extra confidence.

And it should be a good game on Saturday against newly promoted Hull City, and we hope we get a good turn our to cheer on our players.

Every league game is tough, whoever we are playing, and the last time we met Hull at St. James’ Park was the first game after Kevin Keegan had left the club in early September of 2008.

And we surprisingly lost that game 2-1, and Danny Guthrie was sent off in stoppage time as he kicked out at a Hull player in sheer frustration.

And our new signing at the time, Xisco, made his debut for the club and scored the Newcastle goal, and we all know what happened that season, which turned out to be an absolute disaster for the club.

But we are back with the big boys now, and there’s even some evidence we may be able to give the top sides a game this season.

Comments welcome.

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257 comments so far

  • lesh

    Sep 15, 2013 at 10:58 AM

    Comment #1

    This is a good expose of Arsenal’s approach to signing players:

    http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/sport/sport-headlines/arsenal-pays-5-5-million-for-parallel-universe-ronaldo-2013090279063

    Now that w’ve near exploited France to the point of exhaustion, Ashley could well seriously consider Arsenal’s strategy.

    Maybe Ashley could send Kinnear to explore that market and come back only when he’s got quality signings to the stage of their pre-signing medicals!

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  • Novocastrian66

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    Comment #2

    Very quiet on here today. If we got beat yesterday I would imagine the boycott brigade would be out in force.

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  • lesh

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #3

    Novocastrian66…. Of course it’s quiet today.

    Some fans’ll be savouring yesterdays performance and others’ll be scratching around trying to find something negative to post!

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  • Jamiemac

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:04 AM

    Comment #4

    Very pleasing start to the season. Perhaps the most pleasing aspect is the way we have played the ball on the ground every game.

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  • Spuggy

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:08 AM

    Comment #5

    JK gets a lot of abuse and deserves some of it for his ridiculous statement on radio and lack of transfer activity.

    However, he did bring in remy and I feel he’s gonna make a big difference to our attacking play.

    If we can get to Xmas and add a couple then it’s onward and upward. But nufc’s softly softly catchy monkey transfer policy is so frustrating at times, although no one could argue with the financial strength we are now in.

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  • Spuggy

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    Comment #6

    A player like errikson would be immense – another creative spark in addition to HBA and a decent powerful striker like Benteke and we’d be immense!

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  • Offkey

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #7

    We have played it on the ground for two games….not all season.

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  • low fell mag

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #8

    Ibizatoon, agree with you on most things ,but some I don’t.
    Im quite happy with Ashley,he has dropped some clangers though.
    But the main issue is ,you don’t bite the hand that feeds you .What I mean by that is ,Nobody and I mean nobody wants to buy our club,so until some Mega rich Arabian or Russian comes forward with loads of Wonga, why P@ss off the man who is keeping our club a float.
    It also amazes me how the likes of JFA complain that Ashley doesn’t slash the cash ,when he doesn’t put a penny into the club. He would probably need a Sat Nav to get to ST James Park

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  • mondziu

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #9

    JFK did bring in Remy, but we identified him as a target before. We did not bring him then, because the player changed his mind, not because we couldn’t find agreement. So I can’t give too much credit to Joe for this one.

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  • doonundertoon

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #10

    i wish, for once, in a single pardew press conference, he would just say “we played well/bad, now we are just focusing on the next game” thats it.. he doesnt need to go about spouting shit like he does in interviews as it gives the media fodder for when shit starts to go bad..

    all he ever seems to do is cover for his failings, even if we didnt fail in the match the conferance is for, you look at a jurgen klopp or guardiola interviews, they never ever make excuses or talk up there teams to the extent pardew does, pardew seem to always try to go into detail as to why we are winning, and why we werent winning before, when in reality all he has to say is “i think we played well today, now we are focussing on the next game”

    its like he craves the media spotlight or something and it shits me to tears, im happy with the win, and even more happy that he played 4-3-3, but having perdew as the face and head of this football club will always make my skin crawl, even when he is doing the right thing on the field.

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  • Spuggy

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #11

    I’m extremely worried about Cisse. He seems completely bereft of confidence and his touch and control has got worse not better.

    He desperately needs a goal. Big question is do you drop him and put remy up front with goofy and HBA either side. I’d play Cisse at home for hull. If he still doesn’t perform I’d drop him for a few games.

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  • juanpeterbeardsley

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #12

    Nice positive feel this morning AP finally played the team everyone wanted.Looks like the Morecambe game was a watershed for Debuchy looking way more assured now and Yanga did very well with Bentecke.Three clean sheets is no fluke even if Krul flapped a couple of times.
    I cant imagine we will hear anything from JFK appears to have been gagged.Hope it stays like that !

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  • JP...from The Rock

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #13

    Loved the match yesterday, still buzzing! 😀

    We have a good first 11 with one or 2 good subs. We need only a few more to become a top top team. We’re so close to getting there. Hopefully if we keep this up and sign in one or two in January come summer we will be back in the top 8 or perhaps top 6.

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  • Hatem's better than Messi

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #14

    I’d love to see a play-off system brought into the EPL.

    Top 8 play-off, it would be exciting and make the league competitive as most mid-table teams would fancy their chances of finishing 8th.

    Then one game play-offs with higher ranked team having home advantage.

    At the moment thinking of finishing mid-table forever is depressing.
    All American leagues use this and it is very exciting.

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  • JP...from The Rock

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:30 AM

    Comment #15

    Hatem’s better than Messi – That’s a good idea. Though I doubt we’ll be mid table forever.

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  • low fell mag

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:32 AM

    Comment #16

    What a joy, to come on the blog this morning..
    Nothjng negative ,
    All the dourmongers went back into the woodwork and crawled under their rocks in Pennywell !

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  • nico

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:32 AM

    Comment #17

    Hatem’s better than Messi

    NO

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  • Williamsonsuks

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Comment #18

    Anyone have a link for yesterdays game?

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  • nico

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Comment #19

    We played really well yesterday and looked dangerous throughout. Cisse needs to regain that goal form he had though as if he doesn’t score he brings little. Lakaku would have been a great player for us to play up top.

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  • Hatem's better than Messi

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    Comment #20

    Nico

    It’s not a fairly balanced league any more.
    It would be so much more exciting and for more fans and their teams.

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  • south coast toon

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #21

    what a difference a couple of games make, and what a change on the pitch,feel a bit embarresed at some of my rants about not signing anyone and offering no threat going forward wow we can get better as soon as cisse finds form and cabs and sissoko hit form too, we just need to carry on like that now and attack teams, same line up for hull get at em striaght away and score a few and then do everything we can to get cisse to score, our players played how they should be playin yesterday and most can still play better keeping toite and guti on the bench with taylor will be sure to get them all fired up the next time they can get on the pitch… never thought id be sayin this this season but we looked good… sorry i ever doubted them …we still need some more attack mined players in jan…lets hope

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  • Hatem's better than Messi

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:46 AM

    Comment #22

    We’re a couple of strikers light and desperately need a quality CB to challenge Colo & Mbiwa. Douglas would have been great cheers JFK.

    An injury to Remy and we’re screwed as we’re using Shola either as a starter or sub. Back to toothless 4231.

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  • theartfuldodger

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:46 AM

    Comment #23

    A lot many posters have said we have a good squad.

    Issues were
    1. Pardews selection and defensive mentality.
    2. Squad not good enough to cover injuries.

    Pardew has done much better now. He is good at managing and protecting players and team.

    Squad can handle only few injuries – We have just Marveaux,Gouff who can come in if one of the midfielders or strikers are injured. That is what people complain about – lack of cover.

    Other than that, we are not good at anything other than 4 3 3. So our gameplan and team is no secret and leaves Pardew with few options.

    Thats where progress is needed – More Quality in squad to cover and Wingers who give a different dimension. Plus another BenArfa esqe player.
    We lost the opportunity to do that 1-2 players at a time.

    Ofcourse Im happy with the performance and results. But if were 6th at some time and loose out for above reasons then it wont be good.

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  • bollance

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #24

    We play the ball on the ground when we play it forward. When it goes backward to Krul, that is when it is hoofed forwards. Maybe villa didn’t press us high enough up the pitch giving us more time to make forward passes. This could have been because of our attacking lineup.

    Confidence in the team means we can play more balls forward knowing it will stick. That is probably why we were interested in Gomis who is very good at playing with his back to goal and bringing others into the game. But gomis is not the prolific striker we need in the club. The problem is to buy a that type of player who can score will cost £20m plus.

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  • wolfshead@toon

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #25

    lesh

    i read your earlier post about jfk are you saying he didnt get any players in cos he was too busy mediating between john kerry and sergei lavrov? 🙂

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  • Hatem's better than Messi

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    Comment #26

    They had a learn from our mistakes meeting in May/June and agreeed the lack of summer signings was a huge mistake.
    Only to repeat the same mistake. What are we supposed to think of the club?

    Run by a bunch of idiots was my conclusion.

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  • NEWEXPATMAGPIE

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #27

    @10:

    I agree with you that Pardew is just full of Crap !

    He should just say something like :

    “We played well, and fought hard for the three ponits and now we must focus on the next game “!

    No-one was expecting us to be where we are, with such a good start to the season?

    Just imagine what we would have done if Cabaye had,nt come with all that shite for the first three games?

    Plus if we had signed the Striker and the strong Centre back we were all screaming for while the Window was still open?

    If we get too many Injuries ina few months we will be right in the shit again?

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  • Rainrix

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #28

    I’d hope that if we continued with 4 – 3 – 3 cisse would start to get a lot more goals. Yesterday was the 1st time really this season i remember cisse getting a couple of decent oppertunities. He’s obviously lacking confidence but if we persist with 433 as we know is a formation that suits cisse and he should start scoring again.

    Gouffran does make it difficult however. This season you’d have to say he deserves to start over cisse as he’s been excellent coming off the bench.

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  • bollance

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:55 AM

    Comment #29

    Plus as cabaye said we played a faster game with 2-3 touches. It makes a difference. This is the problem with tiote. He holds onto the ball too long and generally plays backward. I think his confidence is shot. In the past he played a quicker game. Lets hope he can return to his glory because he could be a big player for this season. £50k per week is a lot to sit on the bench too.

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  • wolfshead@toon

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:56 AM

    Comment #30

    south coast

    well at least your honest so fair play it would be nice if the haters came on and apologised for the bile that they have been spewing out for the past few months 🙂

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  • woolerbill

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #31

    Doom&gloom
    We are still here and will stay till Pardew and Co leave. We played football today not his usual long ball, defend one goal. We have been proved correct and he has changed, lets hope for good.

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  • bollance

    Sep 15, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    Comment #32

    Part of JK’s job is to bridge the game between development squad and 1st team. He needs to be busting his balls to get more development squad players out on loan. They are rotting in the u21’s. plus it means more u18 can move up a level into the u21 squad.

    This will set us up nicely for after Xmas when we have injuries plus next season. Dummet this year being the prime example of how a loan deal can get a player close to the 1st team pool

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  • Rainrix

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #33

    Also it looks like fayes work is paying off. Towards the end of the game we still looked fast and strong, especially sissoko what a tank that lad is. 🙂

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  • Rooster

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #34

    Pardew, we did not GO over the top, we were told bare faced lies this summer by yourself and JK FED DOWN FROM MA, THERE WAS NO REAL THOUGHT AT ALL ABOUT BRINGING ANYONE IN PERMENANTLY IN THAT WINDOW AND YOU KNOW IT, YOU MADE MONKEYS OUT OF ALL OF US, DO YOU UNDERSTAND THAT!?!?

    Sorry about the capitals.My emotions are still running high on the issue.

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  • Graeme

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:02 PM

    Comment #35

    Hey, it could be a hell of a lot worse – just look at the sad neighbours eh!!

    Rock bottom of the League, Manager sent off to the stands, team has zero confidence, playing shite football as well!!

    See, Sundays can look great!! lol

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  • derekm

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:03 PM

    Comment #36

    Villa simply could’nt match the quality and workrate of our midfield four – they spent long periods passing to each other simply because they could’nt find anyone free in our half. Sissoko is some player, Cabaye enjoyed a free role behind the front two and Anita covered enormous amounts of space. We have to play through midfield as Cisse simply can’t compete with aerial deliveries against even an average premier league centre half so it actually suits us to play on the deck.Really enjoyed it yesterday for the first time in ages!

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  • yo-yo

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:04 PM

    Comment #37

    south coast

    Don’t be fooled – a couple of good results don’t make a season.

    I’m disappointed with how easily the total lack of ambition shown by the club has been accepted by many fans. Pardew is forced to constantly apologise or make excuses because he is at the sharp end.

    HIs point about lack of attacking options for a 4-3-3 since Ba left should echo very loudly.

    I’m not a revolutionary like Beattie or complacent like Bills-son but Mashley has failed us as supporters though I’m sure he is doing very nicely thank you. What supporters want from any owner is commitment. We do not have that just because Benny is on good form right now and we have got a couple of wins.

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  • nico

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:05 PM

    Comment #38

    Hatem’s better than Messi

    That’s what the 2 Cups competitions are for.

    The league is the league. Its been that way for over 100 years. The league has always had better teams and worse teams. You surely can’t disagree that the league is now more interesting and competitive now than it has been in years. There are 6 teams competing for the top 3 or 4 places.

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  • SharpEnough23

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    Comment #39

    Great performance yesterday, I actually enjoyed the match for a change 🙂

    I still think we should utilize the loan market and get a forward in. zaha from united would be good until January

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  • bollance

    Sep 15, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    Comment #40

    It is great to see those down the road rock bottom. But they need to survive, only just again so we can beat them in the derby next season, right??

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