This Is Newcastle’s Best Squad In Ten Years

The Newcastle squad at the moment is the best we’ve had in over ten years, since Sir Bobby Robson was managing the club with assistant manager John Carver, and it’s even better than the squad we had two years ago,  when we finished 5th in the Premier League.

sir bobby robson john carver

John Carver and Bobby Robson – circa 2003

In the last two years we’ve signed Vurnon Anita, Mathieu Debuchy, Mapou Yanga Mbiwa, Moussa Sissoko,Yoan Gouffran, Massadio Haidara and Loic Remy on loan, and all those players are good, and four of them are regular starters this season.

We don’t expect Alan Pardew to make too many changes from the side that famously beat Manchester United 1-0 last weekend, but he has lots of options available to him at the moment, with every player fit, except Ryan Taylor:

“Southampton will be trying to second-guess what I’ll do,” “Whether they get it right, we’ll have to see.” “But certainly, the option I do have is to change it, if it’s not going well to a different way.”

“That’s always nice for a club to have.” “Some teams are very one-dimensional, so if it doesn’t work, there is nowhere to go.”

“But I think we’ve got at least two or three ways of going about a victory.” “I can change it quite quickly.”

One question is whether Alan will give a start to Ben Arfa, but we don’t think that will happen, but after the Frenchman’s fine energetic performance in the final 30 minutes at Old Trafford, we do expect the home supporters to get a glimpse of  the mercurial one, at some point in the second half tomorrow afternoon.

What do you think?

Comments welcome, but please be civil to other readers.

Note: South Shields local artist Robert Olley has a new painting out called “Derby Day Home” and it can be personalized so that any surname can be put on the striker’s shirt – the one scoring the goal – take a look.

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12 comments so far

  • lesh

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:37 AM

    Comment #1

    A belated comment from three threads before this and with regard to the legal opinions from some of our learned friends:

    Jail for Ashley @218…. if Pardew was considering.taking you to court on a libel matter, could it possibly end with jail for Jail for Ashley? Now that would be an irony!

    Ps. Legal opinion not required!

  • lesh

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #2

    Maybe Bob Olley could knock out a Cole carving too?

    Cole, coal….. Credit!

  • lesh

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #3

    Whoops……• Cole, coal….. Credit! = Geddit!

    Must be the lasting effects of last night’s coke!!! (Coke, coal, Cole….. ok that’s enough of the attempts at humour)

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Comment #4

    Given the high opinion of Laudrup and the fact people have him down as a positive and progressive manager, whereas Pardew is negative and tries to hang onto results – what are peoples opinions on the fact he tried (and failed) to ‘hang on’ to a 0-0 draw last night with half an hour to go?

  • Himanshu Dhingra

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:52 AM

    Comment #5


    In 2012, Fergie went for a 0-0 against City. Lost 1-0 and the title.

    Pardew has many flaws.

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:53 AM

    Comment #6

    So does Laudrup, 8 wins in last 25 Prem games…. But he is still lauded on here.

  • Himanshu Dhingra

    Dec 13, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    Comment #7

    Pardew: “I am sure that come January a lot of teams will look at our situation. But they’d have to spend a lot of money to get him (Cisse)

    Yeah he is only 3rd choice behind a loan signing with a rape case hanging and;

    a striker who has 41 PL goals to his credit in 12 years.


  • 70TWO

    Dec 13, 2013 at 10:04 AM

    Comment #8

    The first team squad is continuing to get better, however I wonder what is going on beneath. There seems to be discrepancy with Academy/Reserve players being promoted and is their inability to slot in to the senior team a concern to Coaching staff?

    I would presume it is a concern to Ashley as he has invested in the youth system and it has yet to bear fruit under his tenure. Whilst every player may not have a high enough level of skill and the physical attributes for the Premier League, there also does not seem to be any meaningful sales to lower league sides.

    Does the over reliance on ex-players, with no experience of the modern European competition, through out the Coaching staff give the best possible environment for our youngsters to develop their technique and team play? The example of Faye Downey could be an example to look beyond the ‘old boys’ network.

  • martoon

    Dec 13, 2013 at 10:05 AM

    Comment #9

    I don’t know why people are getting so hung up on legal stuff. As I remember somebody gave a friendly suggestion that if you write unproved allegations or rumours then protect yourself by prefixing it with ‘allegedly’ – seemed reasonable to me then all hell broke loose.

  • 70TWO

    Dec 13, 2013 at 10:39 AM

    Comment #10

    There are three factors that make a successful football club, the players, the manager and the owner; obviously these three must be perfectly meshed together or any weakness and eventually the wheels will come off. Look at the last three years at NUFC, 1) the owner was perceived to be under question, the team / manager got to 5th to counteract this weakness; 2) the team was perceived to be under strength, the owner brought in players (belatedly); 3) the manager was perceived to be under question; the owners and players have shown their confidence in him.

    My point is that when looking at a Manager from another club there are two other factors that create good/bad results and it does not necessarily mean that a successful Manager will automatically continue to be successful if the they do not mesh well with the players and owner. For example the change in staff at MU and the weakness in the playing squad are weighing down on Moyes. Whereas Martinez is able to continue being successful because of the strong bond between the squad and club.

    There are still plenty of questions about NUFC, Ashley, the Joeker, Pardew, Coaches and depth of squad. When things go wrong it is apparent that it gets pulled back together, until the next time. This may be because the finances are kept tightly controlled, as the saying goes ‘pay peanuts, you get monkeys’ and the reflection that has on the owner. However, there is hope that the club as a business is becoming stronger and will be able to match passion of the fans in the not to distant future. So as long as those three cogs keep meshing together there will be success at NUFC.

  • lesh

    Dec 13, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    Comment #11

    Lilongwe Geordie …. Now come on, reasonable. How can you expect Pardew’s critics to compare him with Laudrup.

    Everybody knows that Laudrup’s defence of 0-0 was tactical whereas when Pardew goes the same way it’s down to a lack of ambition, tactical nous and imagination.

    Pardew could win the World Club Championship and his critics’d still want him out.

    They will not give him credit when it’s due and that’s shameful.

  • NOVA2967

    Dec 13, 2013 at 3:36 PM

    Comment #12

    Squad might be a little bigger but we are not at the same level as two years ago… benny was untouchable, guthrie was fire although I’m a big fan of anita and remy was quite as good as ba or cisse


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