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News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Newcastle Will Get Better – We Are Improving

9:57 pm, Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 26 Comments

One of the most pleasing things about the clean sheet yesterday was that Newcastle were so organized in defense,  and in general way the players defended yesterday, and you could see how hard they had worked during the week in working on defense – cutting out crosses and blocking shots and good positional play.

The same thing may be necessary this week when we entertain Arsenal on Saturday, who another top team who start the game like a steam train, and again the first 20 minutes will be important as it’s been in our last couple of games.

fabricio coloccini man united GREAT

Fab Coloccini – tremendous display yesterday


The man who to us was the best player on the field yesterday was Fabricio Coloccini the captain, who has come in for a lot of criticism last season,  after our terrible collapse over the last 11 games of last season.

But the traveling fans yesterday were again simply magnificent,  and called out Coloccini’s name as he led the team by example, – Colo had a tremendous game for the Magpies.

And there were big celebrations at the end – and to think we could even have won it in stoppage time – but we at least came away with what was an unexpected point.

This is what Coloccini had to say on the Newcastle web-site about the game:

“It is a great point for us, especially after what happened at Swansea last week.” “We needed a clean sheet and have been working a lot in training to make that happen. To get it against Manchester United and at Old Trafford makes everybody every happy.”

“It is not just about the four defenders and the goalkeeper – defending is about the whole team and we did that well today. From the striker all the way back to Tim, we worked very hard for each other.”

“We didn’t have a lot of possession but at Old Trafford it is always difficult to do that. We always tried to play but sometimes lost the ball very quickly. We will get better though – we will improve.”

“Getting a clean sheet is very important and we will keep working in this way because it looks like we are going in the right direction.”

“To hear that again (the crowd calling his name) made me very happy,” “I always try to give everything for the fans and for the Club, and it is nice to make them happy.”

“They travel everywhere, all around the country, and never stop supporting us. They are fantastic.”

One reason fans are so pleased with the display yesterday, is it looked like we have improved week on week – and as Colo pointed out – you could appreciate all the work that had been done on the training field – it paid off yesterday.

The  promise is that once Steve McClaren and his team have more time working with the team, they will steadily improve as the season progresses.

One of the things to improve on is keeping the ball, and we were giving it away too much in the second half and it didn’t help us at all – especially in those final 20 minutes.

It swings both ways at Newcastle – when we have a bad day at the office they get severely criticized – maybe over the top – and when they are great like they were yesterday they get tremendous accolades – and yes – maybe over the top too.

My son Neil keeps pointing out that it was really the Daryl Janmaat sending off after 41 minutes that was the thing that completely sank us last weekend,  and if he had stayed on the filed we could even have made something of that game at the Liberty Stadium – even though we were 1-0 down at the time.

The first 45 minutes of the last two games were not too dissimilar – apart from the sending off.

But we now have to press on and build on yesterday’s fine backs-to-the-wall performance.

On NBC Sports Network after the performance yesterday, the analysts in the studio agreed this was a different (and better) Newcastle team than we had last season –  and we had some class in the side now.

We have Northampton Town on Tuesday night at home, in the League Cup,  and then the early kickoff game again next Saturday, when Newcastle will again be shown live around the world on TV.

We would have gained some new fans  after yesterday’s gutsy display – that’s for sure.

Comments welcome.



Tags: Coaching · Fabricio Coloccini · Newcastle News · Premier League




26 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Charlietoon // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:09 PM

    Aarons must play in the cup

  • 2 gonufc (Newcastle United Sports Direct Advertising Club) // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:09 PM

    At least we aren’t doing Pardew’s float it up for Willo.

    Every. Bloody. Time.

    For 4 years.

    They even floated it up for him when he wasn’t in the team!

  • 3 switch365 // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:15 PM

    We defended effectively for the majority of the match, but lets not go overboard and think it was fantastic.
    The plain and simple fact is that the best way to defend is to keep the opposition in their own half, something we failed to do for all but a few scant minutes of pressure.

  • 4 Tsunki // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:20 PM

    Ashley Out!

  • 5 jamesnufc86 // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:21 PM

    I wonder what will now happen regarding the Taylor situation, would be very harsh on the lad to be benched next game after that display. I’m Loving Chancel, I’d actually keep the same back four and hope it gives Janmaat the kick up the arse he needs so far this season.

  • 6 gaz 44 // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:23 PM

    If we did sign this aymen adenbouyer however you spell it, surely wgen the ACON comes around we would be in a mess

  • 7 gaz 44 // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:25 PM

    Pardews palace are scoring plenty from corners and free kicks etc. I think you can only work with what you’ve got at times and as much as I’m not a fan of AP (mainly because of his attitude) I actually think he did a tremendous job in the circumstances here.. That been said, glad he’s gone

  • 8 JamesToon // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:28 PM

    Gaz 44

    He’s still got Pulis’ former number 2 and they haven’t changed their set pieces since Pulis was there

  • 9 north east lincs toon // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:29 PM

    Should of kept ami for down the wing goof is crap thauvin will take 15 games to adapt hope we go in for jetro Willems from PSV hairy is off the pace to slow can’t wait for sissoko to come back.

  • 10 toon kk // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:32 PM

    Arsenal will be a tougher proportion than Man u, they’re a much quicker side and will pass us off the pitch. We’ll have to be well up for the game not to be ripped apart. It’s pacey sides that turn us into headless chickens and has for a long time. That’s what we need to work on, but you need pace to fight pace.

  • 11 Tsunki // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:33 PM

    Jeff – for you, another boulder rolling down the canyon towards you….


    105Jib // Aug 23, 2015 at 6:19 PM

    “Tsunki // Aug 21, 2015 at 6:37 PM
    If Thauvin does play tomorrow, and almost inevitably underwhelms in what is bound to be a tough game to make a mark,
    I wonder what the consensus will be tomorrow night about our new signing. Or signings.”

    And the winner of the whinging trophy this week is ?

    Oh jeff, jeff, jeff. Think about the context. As usual you misread to the point of being an idiot in order to score a stupid point. I was stating what actually happened – Thauvin was given a cameo. And was inevitably underwhelming. My point was that I hoped it would not be the start of unrealistic criticism to such players who can’t be expected to draw trees up from the ground from the first minute they play. Thankfully his introduction was completely lost in the fury of the game it turned out to be. And thankfully he can build on expectation rather than have it rest on his shoulders.

    I will have to hide my disappointment at not getting that award Jeff, but I am certainly proud to hand you the Sniping Moron Cup. Well deserved. Bravo.

  • 12 gaz 44 // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:34 PM

    Ah could by why then, I did see them try the one where we used to have colloquial running in from about 35yards to head from edge of the box other day.. Our big problem is other than saylor we have no one who attacks the ball.. Willo is 7ft tall till ball comes in then shrinks to 5ft I’ve no idea how he does it

  • 13 Belfast // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:42 PM

    Could really do with a Charlie Austin article to wake the blog up….

  • 14 toon kk // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:44 PM

    Gaz
    No manager could have taken us forward without new signings, pards had his hands tied at Newcastle, injuries, flops and no pace and MA selling all the best players.
    He’s getting a chance to manage a club his way now and there’s a big difference.

  • 15 Belfast // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:46 PM

    I thought that Terry red card was soft as ferk today.

  • 16 gonufc (Newcastle United Sports Direct Advertising Club) // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:54 PM

    @north east – surely not?! Sammeobi?!?

    Sometimes his control looks like that of the last pick for a team in a PE lesson!

    I’ve lost count of the amount of times he’s literally run the ball out of play.

    I don’t think he’s anywhere near deserving a premier league contract.

  • 17 Belfast // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:54 PM

    West Bromwich striker went from being 14 stone all game to 9 stone in that incident. 🙂

  • 18 jimmysmith // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:54 PM

    The side will get better, you’d wager, as it settle down. Anita and Collback seem to be very similar and you wonder if they will remain side by side in midfield. Obertan looks on shaky ground, and may look to go, and Cisse looks likely to be asked to play a role off the bench, and probably not like that either, and may go also. although you’d hope not. Taylor may have played himself in to the side, and barring injury could stay there, because he and Colo do play well together. Perez looks very good and Thauvin has been bought to play it would seem, and De Jong will be given a real chance to stake a real claim in the starting eleven. Good players will be on the pitch and good options on the bench, to a degree we haven’t seen under this owner. It looks promising.

  • 19 Belfast // Aug 23, 2015 at 10:55 PM

    Strong man to Strawman.

    Oops I’ll get me coat.

  • 20 Belfast // Aug 23, 2015 at 11:00 PM

    Jimmy the last time things looked promising they signed Xisco and Nacho Gonzalez shortly afterwards 🙂

    Thought I’d get that in before Jesper turns up.

  • 21 jimmysmith // Aug 23, 2015 at 11:10 PM

    Haidarra looked really good to me also. Very good going forward, and obviously played his part defensively, that was great to seet, and as heartening as the performances of Taylor, Collocini, Krul and Mbemba, who stuck to his task and got forward well also. We know we can knock it around and that we want to, but to defend with that discipline, shape and commitment was provide a real boost of self belief to the entire group and exactly what the fans needed to see..

  • 22 jimmysmith // Aug 23, 2015 at 11:18 PM

    Ha! Yeah, but even Jesper would surely acknowledge that the squad has a balance, and depth and a quality, and a commitment to better football that’s been lacking for a long time, assuming we don’t sell Sissoko.

  • 23 Novocastrian66 // Aug 23, 2015 at 11:18 PM

    Jimmy; I liked how the back four pushed up as soon as Man Utd layed the ball back. The change to the offside law mat give defenders more confidence to step up instead of sitting in.

  • 24 Sav // Aug 23, 2015 at 11:40 PM

    Coming after the Swansea hammering, most of us were happy enough to go to OT and park the bus. But we had 0 shots on target and rode our luck at times. And as fans we were cool with seeing every player in the ManU half. That has a lot to do with Colo and the good defensive display. Apart from a couple of counter attacks, it is all we did. So, yes, it is better but no, it wasn’t good. It is hardly good defending when that is all you are concentrating on.

  • 25 jimmysmith // Aug 24, 2015 at 12:06 AM

    That Swansea game can’t be ignored, but you also have to take into account it came too early for us and was away against a good settled side, and of course once we went down to ten men we were just basically working on match fitness and defensive shape. The Arsenal game at St James’ will tell us more again about where we are at. I expect us to play well, they are of course a superior side, but we are at home and that much closer to match fit and a settled side.

  • 26 OneAlanShearer // Aug 24, 2015 at 12:21 AM

    Toon kk. Exactly. It’s no coincidence that now Ashley has invested and freed up schteve to battle with a good starting hand that we see improvement.




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