Newcastle’s Top Youngsters Can Fire England To Glory


The European U17 Championships will begin in Malta this week and two of our top youngsters – goalkeeper Freddie Woodman and local lad Adam Armstrong – are likely to be starters for the England side.

adam armstrong england armenia

Adam Armstrong – in England’s colors

The other countries in England’s group are hosts Malta, Turkey and Holland, and we begin against Malta on Friday – then play Turkey on Monday, and finish off the group round by playing Holland the following Thursday.

In fact England won the European Championship for the only time back in 2010, when Sunderland’s Connor Wickham played so well and was voted the best player in the tournament, when we beat Spain 2-1 in the final.

Three three years ago Holland won it by beating Germany 5-2 and then won it the next year by beating Germany again, this time  5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in normal time.

Last year Russia won it when they beat Italy 5-4 on penalties after a 0-0 scoreline in regular play.

This is what Adam Armstrong has said today on the Newcastle web-site:

“I can’t wait for the games to begin,”  “It’s a great tournament and I’m really looking forward to it.” “Hopefully we can win the tournament. We’re going there to win it so we need to do the business.¨

“Anything can happen but we’re just going to go into it thinking we can win, and hopefully we will.¨ “It’s a massive competition and you’ve seen loads of top players who’ve played in it, so I want to be the next big name.”

“Hopefully I can push on and be top goalscorer at the finals.””It means everything when you’ve got that England badge on, knowing that you’re playing for your country. I don’t think there’s anything better than that.”

“That gives me a lot of confidence to take into the tournament. Obviously some of the lads at England haven’t done it so for me to do that is amazing.” “I’m really good mates with Freddie so me and him will have a bit of banter over here and hopefully we can win the tournament.”

Armstrong scored seven goals in qualifying competition, but we had some big wins like 4-0 against Armenia and 8-0 against Gibraltar, and goalkeeper Freddie Woodman was also one of England’s star performers in the Elite qualifying rounds a month or so ago.

Just think if England win and Adam Armstrong and Freddie are star men and Adam wins the Golden Player Award.

The Golden Player Award was won in 2002 by a certain Wayne Rooney, by Spain’s Cesc Fabregas in 2004, by Toni Kroos of Germany in 2006, by Connor Whickham of England in 2010, and by England’s Adam Armstrong in 2014.

There’s a (potential) mistake in that last sentence – or is it a prediction – just checking that you are awake. 😀

Comments welcome.

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179 comments so far

  • stuart no9

    May 7, 2014 at 3:42 PM

    Comment #1

    any chance of sticking a black and white shirt on and firing us to glory first ??????

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 3:47 PM

    Comment #2

    Mister Tuff

    8th or 9th isn’t defeatism mate! And if some fans are going to be unrealistic then they will almost certainly be mostly miserable. The top 5 places should be virtually unreachable bar an amazing season and 1 or 2 of those clubs having poor seasons. Sure, transitions like at Man Utd can cause problems but to think we could be a regular CL team again will take either MASSIVE investment or meticulous planning and execution over a long period of time.

    You’re dead right that the ‘concept’ of professional sport is to win and entertain, but professional football has gone away from that model in many ways and now it’s about business and money. Sad but true. That’s not Ashley’s fault, that’s a shared responsibility of Sky, The Premier League and of every fan who would rather pay more money while relinquishing the soul of football in order to see more worldwide stars playing in our league.

    But if you don’t think ok is good enough sometimes, how many fans in the PL are going to be genuinely happy? Southampton for sure, Everton I reckon too, Liverpool for getting into the CL again and Palace too for their wonderful recovery. That’s 4 teams that have done better than they would have expected to. 4! So the other 16 have done as well or worse.

    Whatever that average point is, we can’t complain when we don’t exceed it.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 3:48 PM

    Comment #3

    Munster Mag

    My point was that we only rested very few players for the cups and if you look at other PL teams, they all did the same or worse. It’s not unique to NUFC.

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  • oldbobaycliffe

    May 7, 2014 at 3:49 PM

    Comment #4

    the last 2 strikers to come through the academy campbell and armstrong are both on the short side but if you look at other young strikers 6ft and quick other clubs seem to develop i know we have sammy but he is just tall and useless

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  • TurkishFan101

    May 7, 2014 at 3:49 PM

    Comment #5

    The previous post with the poll…

    Was a big confusion either that are or there are many many trolls and mackems lying about on this blog.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #6

    theartfuldodger

    “Lucky” if you want it to suit an agenda. It could also be argued that we were unlucky when we finished 16th.

    I said at the beginning of the season that we should have finished 8th in the league, possibly pushing Everton for 7th. So I think we’ve slightly underperformed but if we had carried on from January, we might have been exactly where I thought we would be.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 3:51 PM

    Comment #7

    Graeme

    Shola is our Heskey only not quite as good.

    He does a job for us at least and from what I hear, he’s a great person to have in the dressing room.

    Ok, he’s no Shearer…but I think he deserves respect for doing a job for us and not causing problems, in a similar way to Harper. I don’t really get why Harper gets so much credit and not Shola.

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  • guvnor

    May 7, 2014 at 3:55 PM

    Comment #8

    Is Pardew still here?

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 3:56 PM

    Comment #9

    Spoof

    You misunderstand me though. I’d like to see a new manager this summer and hope Pardew’s position is reviewed after the season and he is sacked. However…I fear he’s met his top 10 target and that could mean he stays.

    As for Ashley, I’d like to see a more fan friendly owner who wants to run us as a football club AND a business, but I don’t agree with methods trying to force Ashley to sell.

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  • stuart no9

    May 7, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    Comment #10

    TDS- if the first 5 places are unreachable – what about 6th ????

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    Comment #11

    NUFC is like occupied France in World War 2. The protestors are the ones who try to take the Nazis head on but just end up being shot down while the evil overlords turn the screw on the innocents who don’t want to get involved.

    I prefer the French Resistance model…play it smart, stay hidden, try to improve things for the average citizen and when the time is right, reclaim what is rightfully yours!

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  • Williamson is Bramble in disguise

    May 7, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    Comment #12

    TDS – because harper was a quality keeper with no need to stay here, who very likely missed out on international football at the expense of being givens understudy here. If you remember, sir bobby dropped given on several occasions for harper, roeder aswell I think, only for given to throw his toys out of the pram and ask to leave. Shola is well, shola, and it’s a miracle just how he’s remained a premier league footballer for all those years.

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  • toon kk

    May 7, 2014 at 4:04 PM

    Comment #13

    MA doesn’t realise how lucky we are to be still in the premier league, we way over preformed in the first half of the season, like we did when we finished 5th, then we leveled off to what we are, a below average squad. Im not been negative im been realistic.
    Perhaps with a different manager and our squad fitness levels up we could preform better.
    I’m not sure what goes on in training either.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:06 PM

    Comment #14

    stuart no9

    Not quite unreachable but incredibly difficult as they are streets ahead of us in almost every way. Same goes for Everton and Spurs too and they have been working to catching these teams for years.

    6th is achievable but we’re battling against 2 very good teams in Spurs and Everton who have been stable in the top 10 for several years and have the players and sponsors to match that.

    I think we should be 8th with Villa 9th if you look at size and wealth of club. But Villa are even worse than us! And of course, if we’re 8th, then there are still 12 clubs below us who could have an exceptional season and displace us if we have an average or poor one.

    I just think we should get satisfaction from smaller things sometimes and I think we’ve done that really well for many years. Sadly this season had very very few reasons to be satisfied.

    Ok league finish, no cup runs, no derby wins, no outstanding players (losing Remy and lost Cabaye), no exceptional youngsters, no manager or chairman to be proud of…etc.

    So I get why the fans are unhappy, I just think it’s for the wrong reasons sometimes.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:09 PM

    Comment #15

    Williamson is Bramble in disguise

    And Shola gave up on earlier caps for Nigeria to help out his hometown club. Doesn’t he deserve credit for that?? How about when Sir Bobby asked him to hold back on a knee operation because he was needed to lead the line and he risked his career by doing so?

    I like Harper and it was great having a reliable keeper who bleeds black and white but I think Shola deserves credit too.

    Don’t forget, Shola has often played when we were struggling, come on as a sub or asked to hold the ball up for others.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:15 PM

    Comment #16

    In the Championship, “Of all players to take at least 20 shots, Shola Ameobi had the best goals-to-shots ratio, scoring with 10 of his 25 efforts on goal (40%).”

    At the end of Jan, Shola had a higher % of shots on target than Remy or Cisse and has created almost as many chances as Goofy and Remy despite fewer minutes on the pitch.

    I can’t find more stats unfortunately but I’d wager that Shola doesn’t have many shots on goal and his job is to hold the ball up more and bring others into it.

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  • pedro

    May 7, 2014 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #17

    That seems like a very odd statement TDS

    “I get why the fans are unhappy, I just think it’s for the wrong reasons sometimes.”

    What are the wrong reasons? The reasons you listed are pretty accurate and are certainly all the right reasons

    “Ok league finish, no cup runs, no derby wins, no outstanding players (losing Remy and lost Cabaye), no exceptional youngsters, no manager or chairman to be proud of…etc.”

    for ok league finish, see absolute minimum expected finish whilst playing dreadful football and with no real excuses.

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  • stuart no9

    May 7, 2014 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #18

    TDS———I think we should be 8th with Villa 9th if you look at size and wealth of club. But Villa are even worse than us! And of course, if we’re 8th, then there are still 12 clubs below us who could have an exceptional season and displace us if we have an average or poor one…………….8th or 9th you say , – on current form , we dont dererve to be in this league at all , however ‘as a club ‘ whith the size of the crowds , with our financial power , dont forget we were the 20th richest club in the world, with the great players and managers , supporters , our stadium , our owner ( a billionaire) i could go on and on and on do you not think 10th -9th -8th , is a pretty pathetic showing for a club of our size and wealth ??????

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:19 PM

    Comment #19

    pedro

    Ok…I should have worded that better. I think we have every right to be unhappy at such a dull season…but I don’t think that’s a good enough reason to be angry and protesting at the games. I think there are other reasons to be angry, such as the club not being run by someone who understands football.

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  • toon kk

    May 7, 2014 at 4:22 PM

    Comment #20

    TDS
    I agree with you, Shola maybe passed his best now but he’s stuck with us and he genuinely loves the club.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:23 PM

    Comment #21

    stuart no9

    In a word…No.

    Since January, we’ve been in relegation form, no denying that. And that is why I’d like to see Pardew moved on. But the season isn’t from January, it’s the whole season and we’re in 9th.

    I’ve addressed this before, but the size of our crowds is virtually irrelevant these days in comparison to money from other areas, 20th richest in the world doesn’t mean anything when we have to pay more for everything either. When we were 20th richest in the world, we were still only the 7th or 8th richest in the Premier League and that’s what counts.

    The owner also doesn’t make any difference unless he wants to invest his own money…and he doesn’t.

    So we are where we are. You want to provide an argument for why you feel we should finish above any of the other 7 clubs that I mentioned?

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  • Spoof

    May 7, 2014 at 4:24 PM

    Comment #22

    catchy, before I reply to your post I must tell you that I also voted to sack him as I feel that he has lost the dressing room, all I have done is too say that I do not believe that he is as poor as many believe him to be, in fairness to him you cannot get to 5th on pure luck, did we over achieve, yes we probably did, so granted we may not have been 5th best so why then do people now castigate him for where we now are which is probably a more realistic position to the standard of squad which we have, there is too many contradictions, on one hand 5th was a fluke followed by he took the 5th best squad to the brink of relegation and now we are struggling in mid table, you may not have said those words yourself but that is the general basis for all this Pardew bashing, so which is it, do we have a top side which he is under-achieving with or did we over-achieve with what should have been a mid table side, you can’t have it both ways, I’m sure you can understand my annoyance when it comes to this topic. Over a 5 year period we have sold roughly £45m more than what we have spent, yes Andy Carroll may make that figure look a bit worse than what it actually is, but even so the trend since Pardew took over is too sell more than what you buy, I accept that spending does not assure you of success but not spending does assure you that you will not succeed, you have to spend money to have any chance at all, now I’m pretty sure that you would agree with me on that point, so bearing in mind the way Ashley runs the club just what can we expect the manager to do , he is not a miracle worker yet even though we are slightly better than what we were before he came he still gets lambasted, I just don’t think that people are being fair to the man, if I was a multi billionaire who owned us and I was wanting trophies in the cabinet would he be my choice for a manager, no he wouldn’t, but trophies will not happen under Ashley so we have to look at a manager who can operate under the restrictions imposed by the owner and I happen to believe that under those restrictions Pardew has done as well as we could expect. Would you not agree that that if fair comment ?

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:26 PM

    Comment #23

    toon kk

    I’m glad. And I hope the lad has a great testimonial.

    I think we demand too much of our strikers sometimes. Not everyone can be a star number 9 and the pressure must be enormous.

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  • Graeme

    May 7, 2014 at 4:27 PM

    Comment #24

    TDS @ 7 – To be honest, I dont care if he is a nice bloke or not – he isn’t there for sainthood, to be a Geordie Mother Teresa.

    He is employed as an out-and-out STRIKER. Somebody who scores goals, regularly, throughout a season. By any description or yardstick you care to use – Shola is absolutely useless in the role he is paid to perform and has been for 14 years.

    Nolan, a mid-fielder, has scored more goals this season than Shola has in 3 years and I’m sure you would find it difficult to find a Striker with a worse performance than Shola. He’s a nice bloke though.

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  • pedro

    May 7, 2014 at 4:28 PM

    Comment #25

    Ok, but you must see that the protests are a culmination of months, even years of Ashley mismanagement. It is not one petty, insignificant thing.

    Regarding Shola, I do have respect for him and have no doubt that he brings something to the dressing room. After all several managers seem to have held in some regard. I also have no doubt that he really cares about the club.
    However, I do think at this stage of his career he offers little on the pitch and I would not say his performances warrant a new deal.
    The difference between Steve Harper and Shola is quite obvious. Harper spent most of his career on the bench as a very able understudy, when called on he performed admirably and could have moved on. Shola got regular playing time ahead of others and so comes in for more criticism.

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  • Mister Tuff

    May 7, 2014 at 4:29 PM

    Comment #26

    tds – earlier you posted :-
    ToonDarnSarf // May 7, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    NUFC is like occupied France in World War 2. The protestors are the ones who try to take the Nazis head on but just end up being shot down while the evil overlords turn the screw on the innocents who don’t want to get involved.
    I prefer the French Resistance model…play it smart, stay hidden, try to improve things for the average citizen and when the time is right, reclaim what is rightfully yours!

    I really do not like your analogy – quite inappropriate -you probably should have thought of another one.
    There are plenty of French Resistance personnel who were murdered by the Germans.
    Three years ago me and the missus went to Oradour -sur -Glanen near Limoges. This was the small village that was encircled by the Germans -for no apparent reason -and they burnt the place down and machine gunned the entire village -men women and children – a total of 642 people were murdered and the village has been kept in the same state of destruction as it was in 1944. It was an eerie place to visit.
    Your analogy was not appropriate.

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  • Spoof

    May 7, 2014 at 4:29 PM

    Comment #27

    TDS, so how would you like to see the fans react, in fairness to the fans if they sit back and do nothing then the chances are nothing will happen, whatever happened to the five year plan, we get fed all this rubbish and again in fairness to the fans they have been pretty patient but there patience is understandably thinning, so what else can they do ?

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  • Mister Tuff

    May 7, 2014 at 4:30 PM

    Comment #28

    error Oradour-sur-Glane is correct.

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  • DokToon

    May 7, 2014 at 4:37 PM

    Comment #29

    i guess the new slogan, – NUFC… ‘pies for all, we’re financially solvent” would be a double entendre…

    no need for cup runs, or hoping to break into europe, weve got pies!

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  • stuart no9

    May 7, 2014 at 4:37 PM

    Comment #30

    sothampton finish above us , and a win for stoke this weekend will see them go above us as we will get ziltch at liverpool , pardew says ‘ we cant compete with the likes of southampton or stoke or fulham , and that is why they are above us in the league , you obviously agree with whatever pardew tells you teamd that only get 20 odd thousand every week we cant compete against ????? then why are southampton and stoke better than us ??

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  • toonking

    May 7, 2014 at 4:37 PM

    Comment #31

    ED
    if you are going to do any poll it should be a poll that asks the fans this

    WHO IS THE ONE THAT SHOULD BE BLAMED FOR THE STATE OF NEWCASTLE.
    pardew
    or
    ashley

    polls like that are useless because everyone would like him out but the truth is some like myself don’t see any point because i know we will still see a squad getting it’s best players sold and having NO SIGNINGs in 1 if not BOTH transfer windows.

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  • the truth will out

    May 7, 2014 at 4:42 PM

    Comment #32

    polly wanna cracker stfu

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:42 PM

    Comment #33

    Graeme

    But as I have already pointed out, Shola doesn’t have that many shots on goal because one of his major roles is to hold the ball up and bring others into the game. Nolan would have loads of shot as his job has always been to arrive on the edge of the box and pick things off or drive into the box from attacking midfield. I don’t think Nolan has ever offered much more to the team than being a goal threat that pops up in places.

    I’m not saying that Shola is an amazing striker, I’m saying I think he deserves respect and credit as a Newcastle United player who has put back his international ambitions with Nigeria and who risked his health to play for us when called for. Many strikers with greater ability have not done either for us and I prefer to give credit for the hard work and commitment that a player has shown rather than his natural ability.

    We like our flair players at Newcastle but surely there’s a place in your heart for Warren Barton or Batty too?

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:44 PM

    Comment #34

    pedro

    Shola has never had regular playing time and when he has played, it’s because we needed someone to hold the ball up or because nobody else has been available. Most of his appearances have been from the bench. Of course I’d like to see 4 better strikers at the club though! But right now he’s out 4th choice and 2 ahead of him are on loan…

    I also get the problems, as I’ve said, I just think the fans can do more positive things to change them.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:47 PM

    Comment #35

    Mister Tuff

    You know, I sometimes will apologise for certain analogies but I simply won’t for this one. I suppose you think Allo Allo was inappropriate too because it made light of the resistance?

    I’m well aware of the history of World War 2 but I think you’re being over-sensitive.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:50 PM

    Comment #36

    Spoof

    I’d like to see them pull together for starters. The very fact that some fans walked out on 60mins and others at 69mins while the majority stayed behind is ridiculous and doesn’t show us in a good light in my opinion.

    I’d like to see the fans get behind the team but demand specific changes. Absolutely top of my list would be to appoint a DoF/chairman/MD who is experienced in running a top football club and capable of engaging with the fans on NUFC matters (leave matchday and team matters to the manager). Second on my list would be to demand a commitment to playing attractive football.

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  • Spoof

    May 7, 2014 at 4:50 PM

    Comment #37

    stuart no9, it is the truth in a way as we aren’t competing with them, but what Pardew should be saying is that we aren’t competing with these clubs because Mike Ashley feels that we already have enough to avoid relegation so Ashley cannot see the need to spend as he would view it as being wasteful, obviously saying that would cost him his job so it won’t happen, but Pardew could make a start by not constantly backing him, even just saying that he hoped for more players but for whatever reason he was not given them would be better than the constant backing which he gives, at least then he would be telling the fans that he has been let down again.

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  • toonking

    May 7, 2014 at 4:52 PM

    Comment #38

    the reason i view that as a poll is because basically their is far too many posts which are contradicting things.

    ashley has either made a great team that has been damaged by a manager
    or
    a manager has not had the chance to build a team because of that owner.

    great and decent players don’t come to clubs just to entertain fans they come to clubs for ambition, money and trophies.

    the players who will do all they can to provide entertainment are those who are average or below average, basically ones who play in relegation struggling teams every season or middle of the table.

    the only decent ones who will join a club for entertainment purposes are locals like shearer.

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  • stuart no9

    May 7, 2014 at 4:53 PM

    Comment #39

    TDS sorry my last comment didnt make sense reading it back . You are saying , we are where we should be in the league . With this owner and manager you are correct, however , NUFC should and deserve to have a better manager and owner to take this club forward. that is why Pardew must go – he is not qualifed to manage a big club like ours , and ashley shouldnt even be running a pub club. we are a top 6 club ( not team) untill they leave we will always be behind smaller clubs like southampton – stoke . We need ambition from the powers that be . untill then we will get nowhere .

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    May 7, 2014 at 4:59 PM

    Comment #40

    stuart no9

    As I’ve said before, I’d like to see Pardew moved on and get a more progressive manager who can play more attractive football, conduct himself with more respect and handle the loss of a key player.

    But we are not a top 6 club. Please tell me which of the 7 clubs that are above us (other than Southampton) that you think we should be finishing above…there aren’t good arguments for any of them. The top 5 (City, Man Utd, Liverpool, Chelski, Arsenal) are much bigger clubs and the next 2 (Everton, Spurs) have earned their place by consistent top 10 finishes over years. That gives them better players and better sponsors. We need to earn that place if we want to join them. We have no divine right.

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