It Was The Best Day’s Training I’ve Ever Had At Newcastle


It’s not often that a Premier League club wins three games in a row this season in the league, and also has a completely free bill of health, with not one player injured, but that’s the situation at Newcastle at the moment, before we face a tough West Brom side at St. James’ Park tomorrow.

alan pardew lasy night leeds

Alan Pardew – upbeat at press conference

And with all the players fit and in training this week, Alan Pardew had this to say in his press conference yesterday:

“On Tuesday we probably had the best day’s training that I’ve ever had here, if I’m honest,  in terms of quality and numbers, and I could pick two teams at the minute .”

“And as you say last year it was very very difficult to select a side that I felt was strong enough to represent the team.” “But as we set off in December we’re in great shape, and I cannot thank the players enough for their application and getting themselves into top shape.”

Alan Pardew was down to earth throughout his press conference yesterday, and he mentioned that he had calls about the Champions League this week, but he said that was just nonsense, because we are nowhere near qualifying, with only 12 games played.

But if he got calls say in April about that same topic (because Newcastle were still in contention), he would be pleased to answer them.

The manager is obviously trying to keep the players’ feet firmly on the ground, after three wins in a row, and he admits tomorrow’s game will be a tough one, as they usually are against West Brom, and he seems to greatly respect the West Brom squad.

But another win tomorrow, and Newcastle fans will be flying even higher. 😀

Howay The Lads!!

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75 comments so far

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    Comment #1

    Jesper,
    Getting our moneys worth? In what sense??

    For the fans who pay to watch? Our most expensive normal seat season ticket is less than the cheapest equivalent at Spurs, I can tell you which set of fans has had more entertainment per pound spent at home in the league this season. Comfortably us.

    In terms of playing staff? We are more than comfortable getting it when taking into account wages cost and abilities.

    In terms of Pardew, one of, if not the lowest paid Prem manager, and we are currently 8th, I’d say that is value for money.

    Again, he isn’t my ideal choice, but now we have kept him give him the style of player he wants rather than more technique based which he struggles to maximise.

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  • Himanshu Dhingra

    Nov 29, 2013 at 10:51 AM

    Comment #2

    Still bleating on about last season.

    Give it a rest. it was your fault.

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  • Our Toon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    Comment #3

    Lilongwe

    Come on mate, we bang on about ambition on daily basis…maybe pards is better off at a lower level as a manager, if you can’t get the best out of the best players at the club then surely you are not fit to manage these talented individuals. We are on a good run but I’m not going to get carried away because performances haven’t improved (the results/luck has) Look at the players he wanted in the summer, Darren Bent and James Tomkins, come on were these players really going to improve us?

    He has been asked questions in the past and sidesteps the issue, journos will write whatever they want to write and he’s been in the game long enough to know that. Quite happy to ignore the questions on banned journos but loves a good old “hope we don’t receive a big bid for any of our players”

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  • Himanshu Dhingra

    Nov 29, 2013 at 10:54 AM

    Comment #4

    Promise less deliver More.

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  • Himanshu Dhingra

    Nov 29, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #5

    So gary medel and Wayne rooney have both gotten away with red Cards.

    Poor steven Taylor.

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #6

    Our Toon,
    Nonsense, sometimes the best players just don’t suit the managers style, and therefore aren’t best for the team. Ferguson couldn’t get the best out of Veron, numerous Chelsea managers with Crespo and Shevchenko, You regularly see good players flourish under one system and not under another.

    Would Tomkins have improved us, probably. Is he better than Taylor, yes, Willo, yes. He can also play Left Back, Right back, and holding midfielder. He is like an upgrade on James Perch, so yes he would strengthen the squad.

    Bent, Pardew never made a statement saying he wanted Bent, he said he wanted more British players. Bent was available at a discounted price. Pardew had said he wanted a big strong centre forward, Bent doesn’t fit that bill so why do we think he was a Pardew target, and not a value for money target?

    On the questions from Journos, there is a large difference between not being able to answer as your employers restrict it, and not answering cause you don’t want to.

    On recent results and performances, they have improved, albeit marginally. Chelsea was a very good set up from Pardew. The problems occur when we take an early lead, as that is when Pardew’s natural tendencies come to the fore – Spurs, Norwich.

    Jesper,
    HBA was at the club before Pardew, so I hardly think your argument can be made by saying Pards wanted HBA…

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  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #7

    Lilongwe
    Agree stotally ‘sometimes the best players just don’t suit the managers style’

    I can remember 1966 World Cup when many wanted Greaves and Hunt in Sir Alf’s Team but he stuck by Peters and Hurst and looked what happened.

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  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #8

    Lilongwe…Pardew bought Benny! He was on loan from OM,

    Benny singed on a season long loan deal On August 27 2010 and was signed permanently by Pardew on January 5 2011!

    …again this is not about Benny! I really feel like I am not getting a cross here – I know English is not my native tongue, but this is getting a bit annoying 🙁

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    Comment #9

    Our Toon

    I don’t know much about you as a person but I do know that you’re looking at this far too simplistically.

    People crow on about Allardyce (even!) and Jol being better managers than Pardew, and the former plays Tomkins and the latter signed Bent.

    If we had Tomkins and Bent as extra bodies, then sure it would have improved the squad. Do I think they would have been value for money at large transfer fees and wages? No. But Pardew shouldn’t care about that, that’s JFK’s job.

    You’re criticising Pardew for dodging certain questions and you criticise him for giving an honest answer to others. Then you criticise him for not answering questions from banned newspapers…that’s an instruction from his boss, nothing he can do about it now if he wants to keep his job.

    You’re obviously anti-Pardew but it isn’t fair to nitpick every little issue.

    I wonder how many good managers of our club you can recall in your time supporting the club?

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  • martoon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #10

    Our Toon – Whether you like Pardew or not I think it was Ciaron who said he is the best manager we can get under this owner. I think that is spot on so I can’t see the point of constantly whinging about his short comings. He is the manager and if he were to be sacked we are not going to get some fantastic european manager more likely a JFK clone.

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  • Our Toon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #11

    Lilongwe

    As for Spurs fans not getting their money’s worth, it’s a marathon not a sprint. I think they’ll beat Man Utd this weekend (that’s a side issue though). Being in the capital, fans wages are higher than people living anywhere in the UK, hence they charge more, they’ve spent big…there players will gel, only a matter of time, AVB and Laudrup have both rubbished the excuses of EL being an issue AVB even said “we all know why Alan feels the way he does about EL but I think it’s an excuse” (after pards tired using it as an excuse for Spurs when we beat them) AVB “if EL was that much of an issue we wouldn’t have dominated the 2nd half” Funnily enough that same day Swansea came back from 2-0 down at HT to take a 3-2 lead only for the ref to make a howler. Spurs fans bought season tickets not quarterly tickets, if we finish above them this season then by all means you can talk about entertainment, achievements etc. (It was entertaining to watch them get hammered last week though ?)

    Veron, Forlan, Shevchencko, Crespo. These players all joined bigger clubs and were big players within their own rights, they couldn’t adapt to English football though. Forlan only ever played well in Spain, flopped in Italy and UK, Shevchenko spent numerous years at Milan and just couldn’t adapt to another league, especially at the age he was at, same with Crespo who spent the bulk of his career in Italy joined Chelsea toward the end of his career but couldn’t adapt to the pace and physicalness of the league (as did Veron) Foreign players you have mentioned all failed to adapt to the style of the league, bit like Kaka and Madrid, fast forward to today and Kaka is playing well for Milan in a different system to the one he left but the same league, does that clarify something

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  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #12

    TDS…try and move back a few steps and just reflect for a moment…then try to to set you self aside for a moment and think is it possible that things can be different from what you believe?

    …I don’t think Our Toon is anti-Pardew he is just a man with his own conviction. Our maybe you are making Out Toon and the likes looking simplistic?

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  • yo-yo

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Comment #13

    Our Toon

    I think you have got the wrong interpretation of Pardew’s remarks.
    He is also reminding his bosses publicly to be prepared for the inevitable bids as it is very clear he does not have confidence in their abilities to replace players who do leave in short order. And he is very right to be cautious of spaces left by an outgoing players.
    You are also missing out our beloved DOF from the equation. His abilities in concluding a deal are there for all to see. The preference for English players came from one of Joke’s well considered comments I believe. There are always a few on here who go for the ‘cheese eating surrender monkeys’ view of the French especially if we have got beat – and there were a lot of people calling for us to sign no more “foreigners” but go for the overblown, overpaid, relatively unskilled UK born donkeys who parade the lower divisions. Personally, I think we have a good transfer model. It isn’t perfect and we seem to be unable to conclude deals – probably because of the bargain basement approach of the owner who would rather wait for six months or more than fill a gap in the side. And as for building the side ready for new challenges ? Forget it. The club does not fully back Pardew’s ambitions that much is obvious. All football managers spout s**te amnd Pardew is no exception

    Jesper

    If Pardew’s Groundhog Day means waking up to find we have won yet another game then I’ll live with it.

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  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #14

    Yo-yo…yeah that was what I meant!

    …lets just say that! (speaking about the wrong interpretation of one’s remark)

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  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #15

    The rod of last night is back on the blog so I guess that’s my cue!

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  • Shabilla1984

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #16

    ive started my own little blog – would appreciate if people checked it out – All NUFC related http://newcastlefanblog.wordpress.com/

    let me know, and please leave any comments 🙂

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  • Our Toon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #17

    Martoon

    I also said he is the best we can hope for under this regime, but I don’t like how he openly touts players, tells the world that our players are for sale by worrying they will leave. All I asked for was for him as a manager to side step the question by not giving it a response, especially when it’s a press conference about the game coming up, not about Cabaye and his future.

    Look not every player is going to fit into a system, everyone understands that, Bent and Tomkins would have been squad players but wouldn’t have improved the first 11 and that is my main gripe. Long is another one that won’t Improve the first 11, these are just facts, I’d prefer to sign players that are going to challenge the current crop for a first team place. Allardyce was a shocking manager and is proving just as unpopular at West Ham, I was more disillusioned watching his brand of football than any other managers in my time supporting us.

    TDS – I’m 31 yrs old, had a season ticket for 15 years and this is the first season I never renewed my ticket because I’m anti Ashley and his regime

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #18

    jesper

    I know things can be different from what I believe. Because I am the kind of person who questions my own beliefs constantly. I don’t believe in absolutes and I’m always open to new arguments to challenge my own.

    That is precisely why I feel I can argue my point with some strength – I know most of the arguments against Pardew, I’ve considered them, and I don’t thing they change the fact that outside of the top 6, he is one of the most experienced and able managers in the PL. Sure, you could point at Laudrup, Pochettino and Martinez but the first 2 are novices in this league and Martinez has never managed a club anywhere near as big as Newcastle or Everton before.

    Steve Clarke is probably the one I’d be most interested in but he’s a managerial novice too. Plenty have started well and then tailed off and we know Ashley wouldn’t take a big risk like that.

    You see…reasoned and considered argument…

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:37 AM

    Comment #19

    Our Toon

    Great. So you remember the Kevin Keegan from when you were a kid and you remember SBR. Apart from that, have we had any other managers who you rate? I don’t. I’m grateful for Houghton getting us promoted at the first attempt but that was in the championship with a fantastic squad, and I remember Roeder having a good season. But Gullitt, Souness, Dalglish and Allardyce were not good for us at all.

    Go back before 1992 and you’ll find that our history is somewhat different from the modern club.

    2 top managers in the last 50 years. One of which a maverick brought to the club by SJH’s vision and one a truly world class manager who also happened to be a fan. If SBR was not a Geordie there’s no way he would have been our manager.

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    Comment #20

    Our Toon,
    So when someone you consider a good manager can’t get them to play it is the leagues fault?? Another thing to consider re Pards and Tevez is that as is well documented by many that players generally take 6 months to a year to settle in, maybe after they had been with Pards for half the season, and once Jan came around they were more settled.

    I’m giving up on this topic as Pardews West Ham side is irrelevant when talking about Newcastle. You obviously don’t like him, and nothing he does will be good in your view, whereas I equally don’t think he is good enough for this job, but am not really interested in picking apart his history and will give him credit where it is due.

    Jesper,
    HBA was on loan, so when Pardew came he was already at the club…. As for him stating he was happy with the squad, yes that is frustrating and spineless of him, but that always comes once the window is closed, while it is open, or just before he always says he wants 1 or 2 players in. What good would it be if he turned round after the window and said, these players are dross, not what I wanted, we are really going to struggle this year?

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:48 AM

    Comment #21

    Does anyone know if Faye Downey’s role is ongoing or was she just here for pre-season?

    Lilo

    I think Pardew should continue to adapt his style to the technical players we have.

    What would we ever achieve with the likes of Harewood, Mullins, Reo-Coker, Tomkins and others in his own image, ie workaday journeymen types, honest graft but very little end product and class who will only ever achieve mid-lower table positions.

    Stick with the likes of Cabaye etc who want CL and may be, just may be Pards might buy in to it.

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  • Our Toon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    Comment #22

    Yo-Yo

    The manager has a relationship with the owner and DOF he can tell them privately that players need to be replaced quickly and be prepared for bids, he shouldn’t be using media outlets to remind people internally, hence why I believe he is using media outlets to tout players.

    TDS – I wanted Poyet as manager because of how he had performed at Leeds and Brighton. We’ve had good times and certainly bad times, certainly some shocking managers that just haven’t worked here. Guillt felt as though Shearer just didn’t fit into his system, I was outraged, were you? And if you were which I suspect was the case, why were you outraged? After all the best players don’t always mean it’s best for the team!! Just food for thought.

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #23

    Rotonda,
    I wholeheartedly agree that he should continue to adapt. But part of that process will need to see him blending the 2 styles. I think that is what we are seeing at the moment with the resurgence of Shola and Willo. Goofy fits into both for him.

    He isn’t going to be able to instantly change his style, one he has had for 10-15years in the space of a summer, so flooding him with technique based players isn’t the answer.

    Imagine how much better we would look if we had upgraded those 2 and the board had backed Pards with a top commanding centre back and a powerful hold up player who can chip in with goals in the summer.

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #24

    Oh, and I think Faye is a permanent member of thee staff, employed as a consultant.

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  • Our Toon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:56 AM

    Comment #25

    Lilongwe

    The player himself said he was played on the LW and constantly asked to play out of position, how can you get the best out of someone by asking them to do something that’s alien to them? Curbs played him upfront and reaped the rewards, Mascherano and Tevez became the backbone of the team not Reo Coker and Carlton Cole.

    Lets not drag the West Ham thing out, I just pointed to similarities from his time there to how things are now or should I say facts!! I’m not against Pards but think he is limited, although results have improved the performances haven’t.

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  • VanToonMan

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #26

    Anyone else think we should bring Demba Ba back in from the cold – can you imagine him and Loic Remy up top?

    Or better still…..Remy – Ba – Ben Arfa ….as a front 3

    Delightful!

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  • Our Toon

    Nov 29, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    Comment #27

    Vantoon

    I think we need a beast up top we have Remy for the season and he is quite similar to Demba. A quick, strong 6ft+ strong CF who can score should be main priority as well as cabs and colo replacements to bed them in

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:05 PM

    Comment #28

    Our Toon

    I was outraged with Gullit because he was using his huge ego to try to stamp his authority on the club. I knew that wouldn’t work and it was bad for the team. Shearer also had a huge ego and was a great player so any NUFC manager would need to understand that and the team needed to be built around him.

    Fair enough, you wanted Poyet. He’s got experience of playing in the PL and did ok in the lower leagues but what convinces you that he will be a success in the PL? Some people said we should have got Di Canio and look what happened to him. Others said we should have gone for Jol in the summer, look where he is now.

    The simple fact is that Pardew was retained over the summer and given a target of top 10 as a minimum. Why can’t people just accept that and if he achieves it he’s done well. If he doesn’t, then he should go. For me it really does boil down to something that simple.

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    Comment #29

    Lilo

    That’s good to know about Faye and the lack of injuries can’t just be a coincidence so we appear to getting something majorly right. Good on her.

    Our Toon,

    I am basically in the same camp as you and still harbour a lot of reservations about Pardew which he will probably compound by dropping MYM for Colo this weekend.

    I would love to have seen Poyet come in. Beating us and city in good style is quite an entrance after being cut totally adrift at the bottom as they were.

    However, 3 wins is 3 wins and whichever way it was achieved it has propelled us up the league and brought about a feel good factor.

    I think what has ultimately held Pardew back his whole career is the fear of losing, rather than going out to win and which sees us biting our finger nails for the last 20 mins in games we had previously been dominating in.

    If Pardew lost that fear and could build on the glimpses we see, ie re -Chelsea last 20 mins etc, who knows what he could achieve.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Comment #30

    Rotonda

    No team can play with a high level of intensity for every minute of every match.

    The trick is to get the points and retain the fitness of the players for the next match. Pushing them to win 4 or 5-0 is just more likely to make them pick up silly knocks or worse.

    It’s a results business and that’s what Pardew is getting right now.

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Comment #31

    Our Toon,
    I agree on your assessment of what we need as priorities. I think a powerful striker who can score and play with his back to goal is a must, as is a commanding centre half. Interestingly they are the 2 types of players Pardew came out and said he felt we needed at the club… 😉

    On Shearer being dropped, I wasn’t too bothered, but to leave him and Ferguson out was ridiculous. One or the other should have partnered Robinson that Sunderland game. I wouldn’t have minded which. Shearer’s ego also held us back as he couldn’t face the fact toe rags like Bellamy were essential to his game in the latter years.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    Comment #32

    Lilongwe

    Very rare to see someone being honest about Shearer on here! But yeah, that’s the truth. But there was no chance at all that ego wasn’t going to be pandered to, so any manager needed to accept that. SBR was the only manager with the status to match Shearer’s as a player so that Shearer would actually listen to him. Any other manager dropping Shearer would just have been fighting a losing battle.

    Besides, it was obvious that Gullit wasn’t doing it for this specific game, he was doing it to make a point. And he failed…

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  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    Comment #33

    TDS,
    For me the issue with Pardew isn’t that we let other teams into the game, it is where we let them into the game. Numerous times last season it was shown on TV that Pardew was telling players to drop deeper. The other team can come into the game and have a spell of dominance but if you make your team press higher up the pitch then they are less likely to get a shot on goal.

    Rotonda/Our Toon,
    I agree Pards is limited, and I hold massive reservations about the bloke. I would have liked him replaced, although Poyet would have been nowhere near my list of potentials.

    He is here though, and I can see him trying to do things differently which has to be viewed positively. How long we can afford him while he tries to change his style is debatable, if we keep getting the rub of the green, or a match winning individual performance, then he will get plenty of time. If he doesn’t, then your guess is as good as mine as to how long Ashley will give him.

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    Comment #34

    lilo

    I don’t want to see a back to goal striker. That’s dark age long ball stuff.
    SBR was constantly telling Shearer to get on the half turn

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:26 PM

    Comment #35

    lilo

    Another 7 years !!

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    Comment #36

    Lilongwe

    Depends who we play against. I have to say that I’m no expert in football tactics, but if we press high up the pitch, doesn’t that leave us open to a ball over the top and quick players breaking the offside trap. It’s not as if our defenders (especially central) are exactly lightning fast.

    I’ve heard plenty of experts talk about the line being too far forward for that exact reason.

    Less likely to have a shot on goal maybe, but surely more likely to have a one-on-one?

    It’s got to be different for every opposition. I find it completely illogical to suggest that Pardew doesn’t grasp that most basic of defensive tactics.

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:31 PM

    Comment #37

    TDS

    The phrase no one man is bigger than the club was allowed to be the exception to the rule in Shearer’s case as Shepherd basically gave him carte blanche in appeasing him for his earlier unfortunate ”Mary Poppins ” remarks. SBR knew Shearer couldn’t do 90 mins any more but was over ruled by Shepherd and not long after was removed altogether.

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  • JackButler

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #38

    Dear Alan Pardew,

    Please, please, please don’t screw it up against WBA by dropping an in form player to accommodate Fabricio Coloccini, the man no longer wants to be here and was the obvious link against Norwich. Mike Williamson and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa have shown that they are obviously capable of doing a great job alongside each other and if it’s consistency you are looking for then you need to stick with what is working.

    Thanks JB

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  • toonarmydownsouth

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #39

    Lilo @23
    Think that’s spot on tbh
    The most infuriating thing last season was the persistence of a formation that wasn’t working, imo he stuck with it because the fans didn’t want to see 442 (not blaming the fans btw!)

    Same at the start of this season and it still just didn’t work, so for me he’s done what most people would, gone back to basics and implemented what he knows, and is now trying to combine two styles, which is working imo
    The speed that he has counter attacking is great atm and the long ball theory is dead and buried

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  • Rotonda heights

    Nov 29, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #40

    I would rather play a sweeper then try and play offside

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