Can This Player Be Newcastle’s Savior?

Newcastle fans were delighted in the summer when we signed Aleksandar Mitrovic from Anderlecht, and we were surprised the Magpies were able to get the top young striker to the club.

He was scoring lots of goals in Belgium over the last two seasons and he looked like a top young striker on his way to making a name for himself in football.

aleksandar mitrovic

A happy Aleksandar Mitrovic after the draw at Old Trafford

But since then he’s been seen to be good but very raw and the big problem we’ve seen is his innate ability to pick up cautions.

In his first four games for the club he picked up two yellows and a red card against Arsenal – all for poor tackles.

The League Cup game on Wednesday is the third and final game that Aleksandar will be out for, and he will be available for selection against Chelsea at home on Saturday.

But we doubt whether Steve McClaren will start him in that game, simply because the last thing we want is for him to be sent off again.

That cost us in the Arsenal game and even with Mitrovic sent off after 16 minutes we still held the Gunners to only 1-0.

We’ll never know how well we could have done in the game if we could have kept 11 men on the pitch.

Since the Arsenal game we have been unable to show that same resilience in defense.

Mitrovic has the ability to score goals and that’s what we’ve been missing and Papiss Cisse is out of form.

It even looked like Papiss was not too interested in the first half against Watford.

It will take some time for Mitrovic to settle down in the Premier League, but this should be a lesson learned by the Newcastle Board of Directors.

Players from the continent are a risk and can take some time to settle in and some just don’t make it.

Players with Premier League experience are not such a big risk and take much less time to settle in.

We’ve got to think we would be in a much better predicament now if he had brought Charlie Austin in over the summer.

But don’t expect  anybody on the Newcastle Board to ever admit that – money was again more important than the squad in the case of Newcastle refusing to sign the QPR striker.

That’s something former Newcastle midfield star Rob Lee keeps writing about – that we should have even paid the £15M for Charlie.

On the evidence of the first six league games played, Rob looks to be right on that.

Comments welcome.

16 comments so far

  • gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola)

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:31 AM

    Comment #1

    Crucial information

    “West Ham only won 3 of their last 21 games last season, so they were a team that was also in complete disarray when Bilic took over.”

    And there you go. Bilic also slaughtered england at the hands of McLaren old school, stubborn managing style of football.

    Next 4 games will see us with no wins and possibly a draw. Then you will see a mass exodus in Jan.

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:32 AM

    Comment #2

    I don’t think it really matters who made the decision. I’ve said for a long time the mistakes aren’t just one persons. There are very few that could escape blame, from the players through to Ashley. However Ashley is the one who implemented a ‘football board’ where none of the members are dwell qualified or suitable for that role – Charnley the closest to a possible exception.

    If Ashley is no longer in charge (cough bull£@*! cough) then McClaren is part of the football board which discuss all football decisions. So McClaren would have been fully aware. He said for a long time he was happy with what he had, if he wasn’t then before the window closes was the time to speak.

  • beermonkey

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #3


    you do a bit of coaching been around football a while

    why over in Europe does the dof work and over here it just doesn’t seem to work
    look at spurs levy just seem to buy players on a whim and not what the manager wants

    we have carr who is our chief scout but acts like a bit of a dof
    surely we need another set of eyes on the players not just carrs opinion

  • Jib

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #4

    I think if McClaren has put all his eggs in the Mitro basket and they are still training with him it could explain the teams lack of cohesion on match days .
    Some footballers are notoriously inflexible in their thinking.

  • croftus5678

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #5

    mitrovic is no flop and will score goals i’d bet my payer beads on it 😉

    our attacking line looks loads better when he plays he’s just unfortunate he got a very soft red card.

    but….do we have anyone who can shoot from 30yards out apart from janmaat ?

  • cyprus

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:50 AM

    Comment #6

    your coughing fit reveals you know something about that. Still, when I’ve heard with my own ears past coaches actually talk of MA, they mention no interference; in fact, there seem to be the usual middlemen, you know the names. They seem to have wanted him to be more cough 🙂 in charge.

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:51 AM

    Comment #7

    Carr isn’t a DoF. He should be a scout, and nothing more. Like a lot of scouts he will have dossiers on hundreds of players, of varying levels and varying potential. He should be left to scout, nothing more. The only reason Moncur, Carr, McClaren and Charnley are on the football board is because none of them (McClaren may yet prove otherwise) will rock the boat. They are all happy to go along with the directives as set by Ashley.

    Getting in a competent board who are well qualified would potentially cause Ashley a headache as they deans increased funds, demand we sign players without resale value, pay slightly over the odds for the occasional player and pay higher wages to attract top quality.

    The DoF system would work in England, but those employed to work in that system rarely understand it. British managers, or managers working in the British system for a long time don’t get it. They want involvement in everything as that has always been how it works here. Those appointed to DoF roles don’t know the role, they are often ex managers, who then believe they should have control and it causes clashes with the current ‘Head Coach’/Manager.

    To go down the DoF route a club would need to look to foreigners in the two roles, or someone who has a greater background in football development and analytics. Someone who can see problems that others miss.

    Levy is the Chairman, not DoF and he is a businessman, not a sports man or a proper DoF. He had little involvement within football before this, and now believes he is more important to on the pitch aspects then he should.

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Sep 21, 2015 at 9:56 AM

    Comment #8

    Ashley may not have day to day involvement, but appointing a manager, making signings is not day to day involvement. The claim that he stepped back from the board and left all footballing matters to Charnley is what I am coughing about. Ashley was only on the board for around 16 months.

    People are now pointing the finger directly at Charnley and Carr but they just dance to the bosses tune and work to the directives as set by him. If he is to not be involved in the running of the football side of the club then he needs to place competent people in charge, he hasn’t so I have no doubt that all the major decisions go through him.

  • cyprus

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:01 AM

    Comment #9

    Maybe, I’m just not so sure, having heard of your Shearers, Keegan, Carves etc.

    In fact, I’d like to hear him say: that’s it you useless gxxs I’m taking charge here. You’re fired you middlemen you. Sorry Graham. Ye, ye, you too Steve… the kid can stay, for now. So…. etc. 🙂

  • beermonkey

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:03 AM

    Comment #10


    not a fan of our committee or board

    clubs policies are hampering the club more than the board at this moment

    given the turnover of players in the youth ranks we are not bringing in enough perez was the last player for the development squad he ended up in the first team so I cant remember the last players bought in for the development squad if we don’t bring them in we cant develop them

  • toon-to-win

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:03 AM

    Comment #11

    If hes fit and not banned then he must start! Cisse is useless and if we start one up top then mitrovic has the hold up ability that perez lacks due to his size. One things thats getting to me though is newcastle have scouted the french market for years now, wasted £8m-12m on cabella, splashed more than that on thauvin and let cabella go on loan. Why didnt we sign payet? Or atleast be linked with him? Another thing, we signed alot of french players when the france national team was poor and now we are signing more and more dutch players and surprise surprise, the dutch squad is doing really poor at the moment. The club should have signed puncheon when we were heavily linked with him and other lads like moses and zaha who we were linked with. Players which quality wise are never going to be world beaters but they cause defenders grief, with their pace and the fact you cant predict what they will do next

  • dufuss

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:04 AM

    Comment #12

    get heardman on and lump it up to him
    mr expendable

  • Bambams

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:04 AM

    Comment #13

    I had reason to meet a former member of staff of Newcastle training academy. They reckon Aarons will only get bit parts on the pitch until he signs his contract. Powers that be are too afraid for him to showcase how good he is in case top five teams take him for a lot less than they would if he had a long contract. Makes some sense…..

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:12 AM

    Comment #14

    The main problem seems to be Coloccini . He’s too slow which leaves us vulnerable to counter attacking teams. He’s not good in the air or strong. And he’s often caught chasing the ball. There are a few options McClaren has with him in the team. 1) defend really deep & play on the break 2) move him into defensive midfield. it’s not like we have star players there. 3) play 3-5-2 which will suit our full backs who are already playing as wing backs

    If we move Colo into midfield we can play Lascelles or Taylor which will give us a more solid defence and Colo can drop back to cover for Haidara & Janmaat who both get forward and leave gaps. It’s almost a 3-5-2 with the way Haidara and Janmaat play instead of the 2-7-1 we seem to be playing at times now.

    Janmaat Mbemba Tayl/ Lasc Haid/ Colback
    Thauv/Siss De Jong Perez

  • Sav

    Sep 21, 2015 at 10:39 AM

    Comment #15

    If Mitro is the answer, what is the question? Cisse has been dumped in favour of the untried new boy. Its no seceret the club is happy to sell him although his goals saved our skin playing with a dodgy knee last year. Cisse is a goalscorer but deserves to feel appreciated and his confidence supported while Mitro beds in gradually. Criticising him for looking uninterested is a bit rich.

  • c-dog

    Sep 21, 2015 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #16

    “Mitrovich has the ability to score goals”. Here’s a more accurate comment – Mitrovich has the ability to score goals in Belgium. I hope he comes good. But this thug is far from a proven goalscorer at the highest level. None of us can say the four summer signings will be a success. Early days, yes. But from an initial view, the only justified judgement that can possibly be made is that our summer transfer dealings were awful, yet again.


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