In Europe You Play Two Games A Week – No Complaints

It’s not the first time that Alan Pardew has questioned the value of the Europa League for Premier league sides, but if Newcastle want to become a top team again we’ll need to get used – and get good at – playing two games a week when we qualify for European competition.

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Alan Pardew – Europa League is a massive problem

Alan Pardew has explained that Newcastle do indeed want to get back into Europe:

“We want to be back in Europe.” “But I do think clubs are thinking twice about Europe. If you ask the Swansea Chairman or the Spurs Chairman about whether it’s something that’s worked for them, I don’t know what their answer would be but I’ve got a good idea.”

“The Europa League is a massive problem to Premier League teams, Swansea and Tottenham are both feeling that like we did last season. I don’t think the Premier League and UEFA should get together and look at it because the demands on our teams are greater than in other countries.”

“It’s something we’re wary of, we’ll say that now, but we’re chasing a Europe spot and that’s what we want to get.” “The evidence is there that the Thursday to Sunday is not fair. I think it’s different for us than the other European nations.”

If Newcastle are not good enough to get back into the Champions League, then we’ll have to make the best of it in the Europa League, and do very well in it.

And at the same time we need to keep up our challenge to finish high up in the Premier League.

That’s what the big clubs have to do, and the sooner we get used to it – and accept it – the better it will be for Newcastle.

And UEFA will certainly not give the Premier League clubs any special treatment because our schedule is the hardest of the European leagues – why should they?

And if they did five special treatment then the other leagues would just appeal that.

We’ve done very well with Faye Downey overseeing the training,  and if do make Europe for next year, then Faye will again become a key cog in the wheel for Newcastle, and to think for the last few weeks we haven’t had one injury in the squad.

That’s a huge improvement from last season.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Note – One of our readers Shaun is a season ticket holder, but is not in Newcastle for the holidays – he has a spare ticket for the Stoke game and can be contacted at and on twitter at sean4eva09.

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43 comments so far

  • IITianToon

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:13 PM

    Comment #1

    It will be fun to have Tiote get a crunching tackle on Ozil in the first 30 seconds, thus nullifying the German’s threat. You can see that he does NOT like the physicality of this league!

  • IITianToon

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:14 PM

    Comment #2

    In fantasy world: Willo, Mbiwa and Tiote to put Giroud, Walcott and Ozil in their back pockets. GAME on!

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:16 PM

    Comment #3

    Tottenham aren’t doing that bad. They’re only 6 points off the top and they’re bedding in a whole new team. They could easy gel and put a run together and still win league. Also Swansea are doing only a little bit worse than last season and that is due to Michu’s predictable loss of form/ injuries.

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:17 PM

    Comment #4

    Aren’t Liverpool in Europa too? That must be why they’re doing crap in the league.

  • manxpie

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    Comment #5

    the next willo! no liverpool aren’t in the europa so next time ya try and be sarcastic ya might wan’t to look things up?
    plus spurs have spent 100 mil and are doing worse than last season plus they’ve sacked there manager!
    they could get a run going together but they’ve made it mightely hard for themselves
    and swansea are doin much worse than last season actually

  • Rooster

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    Comment #6

    I was reading Shearer saying how smoothly things seem to be going at the Toon at the moment, he was wondering if MA was ready to unleash one of his bombing attacks to rock the boat a bit, i hope not we have a decent squad in my view, but a couple in the window in January would be just the job, i have to say i cant see were one of these bombs would come from, but we all know Mike dont we? (red n blue sports direct colours) ha ha, only kidding???? A special mention has to go to our foreign contingent who have all now seemed to settle after a shaky start, Debuchy coming in to his own and Sissoko putting himself a bit more and not hiding, Anita looks like a bently in midfield, and Cabaye the class player he is, Santon is my slight worry as he isnt the best defender is he, but for effort i cannot fault him, i dont know how long before Jonas creeps bck in to the squad? thats a worry as our game now looks more fluent without his stop start fall over technique, yet again we are getting some great comments from observers and pundits and none of the top teams are looking at us like pushovers and know they have a game on their hands, nice to be positive again, We still have to build though Mike, steadily to go to the next level, lets keep the ship on calm and steady waters, you`ve delivered me a couple of heavy right handers in the last two summer windows, checked my faith in you a hell of a lot, keep building and earn that respect from the supporters.

  • AmericanMagpie

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:39 PM

    Comment #7

    Just found out my Grandmother was from South Shields. Thats Geordie territory, right? I knew she was from England and had an accent but wasn’t sure where exactly. I’ve been following Newcastle for 5 years now and picked them for other reasons. What are the chances I choose to follow the hometown team of my grandmother. I’ve got Geordie blood in me!!

  • Rooster

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:47 PM

    Comment #8

    American, its half n half owa in South Sheilds, but whatever it is you still have the chosen blood to a degree!!! congratulations.

  • scout

    Dec 23, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Comment #9

    If you like a takeaway shields is the place to be, there’s plenty

  • Big Pappa Cissé

    Dec 24, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    Comment #10

    If we manage to get into Europe again and Ashley doesn’t invest then I would just make it a competition for our youngsters and fringe players.

    Is being in the Europa league worth nearly getting relegated ? . I don’t think so, no matter how good midweek Euro games are under the lights of SJP.

    I still think Pardew used the tiredness excuse was used far too much by Pardew after defeats mind you. In our position with Ashley at the helm the loan market would be perfect for increasing numbers if we made Europe again.

  • AmericanMagpie

    Dec 24, 2013 at 12:12 AM

    Comment #11

    50-50? Then I wonder who she supported. Trying to figure out if there is a way of finding out lol. It might kill me to find out she supported the Scum. I know she left for the States around 1950.

  • Ashton

    Dec 24, 2013 at 12:14 AM

    Comment #12

    “In Europe You Play Two Games A Week”

    Wiser words have never been written.

  • manxpie

    Dec 24, 2013 at 12:15 AM

    Comment #13

    bpc you could argue though that tiredness does come from traveling 1000 mile round trip and then prepare for a prem game not just the physical tiredness involved?
    plus champions league play the top teams of each league so only very few get through to the group stages where as the europa gets the best of a bad bunch from all the european leagues
    so alot of them get through so we could be playing in eastern russia against a team we’ve never heard off on a thur then in london on a sunday, thats the big problem for me and we had a few of them last season!?

  • Rooster

    Dec 24, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    Comment #14

    Big Papa as Everton have showed with Lukaku and Defelou and us with Remy there are decent kids out there to get on loan, the outof contract market is also quite lucrative as well, and it looks to be serving us well, Debuchy, Sissoko now starting to show what they are made of.

    I dont mind if we are getting quality internationals this way, even if some do take time to settle, and even though we havnt got many English in the team there still is not one who has scored in the prem for 12 months.

    Shola has been holding the ball up well of late but he has to start hitting the goal trail, he is paid as a striker isnt he, i still like Gomis who is a step up from Shola in my opinion, even so CISSE is pants and a decent offer and i would sell, ok he might come and score a few before the season is out but he is truly awful to watch. get rid and that will pay a nice chunk of Gomis`s fee and wages, im sure MA has looked at that.

  • manxpie

    Dec 24, 2013 at 12:24 AM

    Comment #15

    and on your loan thing i read the other day in the midst of an argument that loans don’t help long term!
    well if everton or us get top four with loan signings i’d beg to differ lol
    can’t remember who it was but thought it was a stupid comment!

  • veto

    Dec 24, 2013 at 1:06 AM

    Comment #16

    another jan window like last year and who knows…
    seems like we have had the oppertunity to build and push on a few times now tho and never taken it . not sure on mike’s real ambition .


    Dec 24, 2013 at 2:30 AM

    Comment #17


    its in between Newcastle and sunderland, but since most of the are toon supporters I think we can claim that to be Newcastle territory ha! 🙂

  • Jail for Ashley

    Dec 24, 2013 at 2:44 AM

    Comment #18

    Rest assured your Nanna was a Geordie, we may have 44% of misguided souls living in the town but even they say Hula Hoops and not the cringeworthy ‘ular ‘ooops.
    Jet lag has had me carrying on with the midnight posts.

  • toonincheek

    Dec 24, 2013 at 2:58 AM

    Comment #19

    S Shields is Tyneside, not Wearside.

    A’am nee ganna argue !

  • toonincheek

    Dec 24, 2013 at 3:12 AM

    Comment #20

    Rooster –

    Don’t forget it was Ameobi’s trickery, in his brief cameo, that led to the penalty.
    OK, so the third goal was not critical, just the icing on the cake, but in anothyer game, it could just have easily have been the difference between 1 or 3 points (or 0/1)

  • Newcastleforlife

    Dec 24, 2013 at 4:32 AM

    Comment #21

    impact of europa league:
    freiburg and real betis in relegation zone


    Dec 24, 2013 at 5:05 AM

    Comment #22

    1000% Toon fans in the real shields NORTH SHIELDS areet man mate! Propa fu**ing geordies hahaha!


    Dec 24, 2013 at 5:10 AM

    Comment #23

    If we can beat stoke followed by arsenholes then imagine this if you’s can we could win the big one this season other teams results permitting neva say neva!


    Dec 24, 2013 at 5:16 AM

    Comment #24

    In jan we need 1 A Class striker/hold up man and a quick skillful winger. That should do us until the summer.

  • lesh

    Dec 24, 2013 at 5:21 AM

    Comment #25

    Is our Faye Dowey the same one that was in Bonnie and Clyde and Chinatown?

  • toonincheek

    Dec 24, 2013 at 5:27 AM

    Comment #26

    LEROI –

    Are you saying true Geordies must come from north of the Tyne?
    And the Jarra Lads?

  • Jail for Ashley

    Dec 24, 2013 at 6:40 AM

    Comment #27

    The fatman will not be spending in January, this seasons goals are almost accomplished, he will want the 12, 19, or 30M he spent last January back, the 12, 19 or 30M he wasn’t supposed to spend to keep us in mid table.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Dec 24, 2013 at 6:54 AM

    Comment #28

    There should only be two teams from each league in the EL, the fifth place team and the winner of a play off between FA and league cup, the winner of the competition should gain an automatic CL spot with the beaten finalists given a cjance through the qualifers, losers in the CL should not enter the competition and the games should be played on Tuesday and Wednesday in alternate weeks to the CL.

  • Spoof

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:05 AM

    Comment #29

    If the Europa league games were played the week after the CL games then the Europa league games could be played on a Tuesday and Wednesday as the CL games are, there is no need to have them on the Thursday of the same week, this would give EL teams the same recovery time as the CL teams, which is what Pardew’s complaint is.

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:09 AM

    Comment #30

    Agree its not the playing of two games a week the problem – its the bloody scheduling of the games to suit the TV companies.
    Remember last year – TOON had to play Atromitos of Greece on a Thursday night then fly into London to play Chelsea at 5.30 on the Saturday for TV.
    Why could they not play the game Sunday teatime or on the Monday.

    Something has GOT to sorted out out on the scheduling

  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:27 AM

    Comment #31

    …and we could argue that CL should consist of Champions 😉 not seconds and thirds!

  • Spoof

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:30 AM

    Comment #32

    what is annoying is that the EL games could be split between a Tuesday and a Wednesday which would allow the tv companies to have live EL games on 2 days rather than just the one as they do now and they would have live midweek games virually every week rather than every other, everyone would benefit, the tv companies and the clubs

  • Spoof

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:38 AM

    Comment #33

    that is a different argument to the poor scheduling which is in place now, but you are right, the EUFA Cup was highly valued when the European Cup only had the current holders and the league Champions only in it, now it is so diluted that it has lost a lot of it’s appeal, mind I would still like too see us win it, even if they would only allow two from one country rather than four it would be a great help, that would then see Arsenal and Chelsea being in this years EL, with better Spanish, German and Italian teams also being in the EL then it would win back some of its lost appeal.

  • bobby mango

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:40 AM

    Comment #34

    Spoof that would make the games clash with CL. Not going to happen.
    Best solution is moving the prem games to Sunday following a EL game.

    Think we’re much better suited to Europe now. Have pretty much two players for every position. Think we’d also get a couple more in for the campaign, learning for last season.

    Would give us the chance to play fringe players like Guti, Bigi, Dummet, Ober etc.

  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:45 AM

    Comment #35

    Spoof…it has all been so money orientated that every clubhead has been turned 😉

    …the money in the CL are too big and the EL is less interesting than the FA Cup! It was much more fun in the old days and I am not even old lol

  • Jail for Ashley

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:53 AM

    Comment #36

    Bobby Mango,
    Myself and Spoof both suggested playing EL games on alternate weeks to CL, how would this clash, reducing the amount of teams would also raise the prize money, I would like to considef myself fairly knowledgeable on football trivia but there are increasingly more teams I’ve never even heard of in the EL.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:55 AM

    Comment #37

    UEFA caved in to demands by Europe’s elite and sh@t themselves in case there was a break away league.

  • John Tudor

    Dec 24, 2013 at 7:56 AM

    Comment #38

    @american that makes you a bit of a sand dancer

  • Thump

    Dec 24, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    Comment #39

    @jesper: Did you ever get that phone sorted, mate?

  • Thump

    Dec 24, 2013 at 8:07 AM

    Comment #40

    …at least I think it was you who dropped it in water… hm.


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