The Newcastle United Blog

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

The Newcastle United Blog header image 2
Howay The Lads!!

Is This Newcastle’s Best Team For Sunderland?

3:23 pm, Saturday, March 19th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 154 Comments

It looks like Chancel Mbemba and Papiss Cisse are the players who are now fit to play for tomorrow’s game against the Black Cats with Fabricio Coloccini still doubtful, and we will assume Colo is not fit to play tomorrow.

But it will be very good to have Chancel back in a back four that had only one regular starter at Leicester City – right-back Daryl Janmaat.

Gabby Obertan has also been training but we’d be surprised if he figures tomorrow.

chancel mbemba

Chancel Mbemba – fit again

Steven Taylor is a slight doubt for tomorrow after he seems to have suffered a slight knock in training, but we will assume he is fit.

So here’s the side that Rafa Benitez could play tomorrow afternoon in his home debut as the Newcastle manager at St. James’ Park.

Janmaat Taylor Mbemba Colback
Anita Shelvey (c)
Sissoko Wijnaldum Townsend
Subs: Darlow Lascelles Saivet Perez de Jong Cisse Doumbia

That’s a strong bench.

At center-back we think Taylor will just edge out Lascelles, because of his extra experience, although we have been impressed with the look of Jamaal when he’s played in the first team.

Now that Andros Townsend is fully fit, we prefer him to Ayoze Perez, although Rafa may not.

And who partners Shelvey in central midfield is a good question – we will stick with Vurnon Anita, even though he only had an average game on his return to the side from injury on Monday night.

Henri Saivet could get his chance tomorrow….

What would be your Newcastle team for what seems to be the most important derby game since 1990 – 26 years ago?

Certainly our fans are confident of a win.

How Will Newcastle Fare Against Sunderland?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Tags: Coaching · Derby · Management · Newcastle News · Poll · Prayer · Prediction · Premier League

154 responses so far ↓

  • 1 CDEVINE69 // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:29 PM

    Perez has to start for me in place of sissoko. Tiote for anita lascelles for Taylor mbabu for Colback. Howay the lads

  • 2 AncientC // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:41 PM

    Janmaat Mbemba Lascelles Anita
    Wijnaldum De Jong Townsend

    How about a few articles on the new coaching staff? The amount of times I have seen the contours of Benitez face is starting to resemble a soviet propaganda effort.

  • 3 davis_toons // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:43 PM

    ..apart from teamwork, team spirit and some clever players they work their socks off for their mates.

    Get into position and keep their shape.
    Always run into space for each other
    -helping one another out for a pass.
    Front players fight so hard to win the ball back.

  • 4 toon22 // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:45 PM

    If Cisse is fit he has to play.
    There CBs wont mind Mitro but hate pace.
    If Tiote is fit he has to play,when he gets his usual card sub him move Colback to CM.

  • 5 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:48 PM

    Come on West Brom, do us a bloody favour, man.

  • 6 AncientC // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:50 PM

    Sunderland will know exactly what is coming… Sissoko trying to get into space and Shelvey spraying balls around. I would save both players as impact subs at half-time. Bring Cisse on later in the game as the final sub.

  • 7 browny1107 // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:56 PM

    i have to agree with cdevine69 @ 1, Perez has to start over Sissoko. Works harder and actually has an end product.
    I worry about the middle, Anita just doesn’t do it for me. Unsure of saivet, Rafa may be tempted to start Gini cm with De Jong infront. I would be quite happy with that.

    Janmaat Mbemba Tayls Colback
    Shelvey Gini
    Perez De Jong Townsend

    howay the toon!!

  • 8 davis_toons // Mar 19, 2016 at 3:59 PM

    For the goal..
    Vardy could have easily take a cheat shot at goal but he cut it back and Mahrez put it to the back of the net. Thats teamwork.

    Will Mitrovic (21) (the young and inexperience) do that for Perez (22) or Gini?

    I thought Mitrovic is kind of poor in awareness which i notice in his game. He doesn’t seen to look far out for his teammates apart from all his strength.

    Remember how Obertan put a cross for Gini to score a header? Where are those crosses now?

  • 9 Hail Wor Ashley // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:00 PM

    Just had a look at Thunlun’s run-in. Makes tomorrow even bigger for us, really is make or break because they have a more favourable run to the flag.

  • 10 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:08 PM

    Norwich 1 up.


  • 11 posada // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:09 PM

    This has all the makings of our worst nightmare.
    The smirking prat ex Boro manager taking us down.
    The Mackems staying up at our expense with Fat Sam in charge.
    But, we can stay up if we are good enough. We are very lucky to still have a chance of staying up. We could have already been down by now.

  • 12 corkypants // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:11 PM

    Get out West Brom losing!!!

  • 13 posada // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:11 PM

    McClown by the way wanted the sack in October.
    I’m certain he wanted the sack from the moment he walked in.

    But who at the club was willing to do anything about it. That is the main problem.

  • 14 Mr Random // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:13 PM


    That’s the problem this season. One lone striker has no one to play off and is always losing the ball. No wonder our top goal scorer this season is a midfielder, we have 5 of them in every match.

    Rafa – 4,4 effin 2

  • 15 lochinvar // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:46 PM

    So West Brom can’t be bothered – well that’s no surprise.
    However even at Xmas it was clear as always that the need is to have enough points in the bag to prevent the scenario we are now in – and Charnley and McClaren didn’t know what to do and didn’t do anything to change the situation. That’s a reminder of how useless they were and everyone knew it.

  • 16 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:55 PM

    WBA losing to Norwich has completely changed the look of tomorrows game. Now we need to win both of our next matches to even be in with a shout.

  • 17 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:58 PM

    I hate to spray water on the party but we have still left it far too late. Benitez is an 85th minute super sub in a losing game. He has it all to do and I don’t think this euphoria is warranted just yet. He is still no more than our best and brightest hope in a season already thrown into the swirling pot by the clueless chancers “in charge”.

    I’m not convinced we will win tomorrow at all. And if we do, there’s still the rest of our games to go. Meanwhile, our bedfellows in the championship playoffs could all have their own revival which could make anything we do academic.

    I’m hoping against sense that a majestic safety net awaits. But I’ll believe it when I see it. I just keep getting that familiar vision of those smug inbreds gloating over our latest self-planted banana skin

  • 18 Rotonda heights // Mar 19, 2016 at 4:59 PM

    sickening norwich result but our old friend is doing the business at CP, six straight defeats and no win on over 3 months, but as we all know ” he’s a winner”

  • 19 Munster Mag // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:00 PM

    Norwich result a disaster for us. That could be a defining negative moment for us this season. Do we have the mental strength to get out of this? I dont think so personally. A loss tomorrow will finish our season in one hit. Wish i could be there with you boys. Htl

  • 20 Rotonda heights // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:00 PM

    6 straight home defeats, more records broken. Good old AP.

  • 21 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:01 PM

    And I wonder if the boys in the office really do think that good old Rafa could, in a worst case scenario, be their human shield in a relegation PR fire fight with the fans? Well we will see won’t we?

  • 22 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:02 PM

    Looks like we are doomed laddie doomedddddd.

    Got to beat the Mackems and Norwich – cannot see it

    sadly Rafa could be away before the end of season the way results are going

    Rub salt in the wounds – Andy Carroll and Harris Vudic scored today.

    Haven’t got a bloody good team in the club 1st team under 21’s under 18’s


  • 23 Crawfordladd17 // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:02 PM

    I hope
    Janmaat Lascelles Mbemba Colback
    Shelvey Saviet
    Sissoko Gini Townsend

    Rafa will probably pick S.Taylor over Lascelles. I quite like Lascelles he has some pace for a centre back, he is young too, so he has a future unlike useless Taylor. He may pick Perez over Townsend, I don’t mind I think both are very good players.

  • 24 Rotonda heights // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:02 PM


    could only happen to us, finally, finally we get a real manager and it’s too late.

  • 25 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:05 PM

    Surely more than me noticed Norwich were setting themselves up for a mini revival? it’s not the most surprising result you consider West Broms recent shaky form.

  • 26 Rotonda heights // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:10 PM


    we get it, you didn’t want rafa…….. I mean we get world class managers all the time at NUFC!!!! Lets have our moment and please stop being so down on it just if Ed chooses to cover it.

  • 27 Munster Mag // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:17 PM

    Rotunda each time i checked, palace seemed to be pressurising leics big time? Still, good laugh. I see catchys hero losy again v arsenal

  • 28 Munster Mag // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:19 PM

    Rotunda we may need palace to get fully sucked into this for us to survive?

  • 29 rasul // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:23 PM

    Yes Norwich won, who gives a sh***. U dont look at the teams who won, its easy get to 40 points and ur safe! And right now i think we are 5 teams in that battle inc swansea and palace. We have 24 points wich means 5 wins and a cople of draws should seal it. We got this on our hand, scums tomorow than Norwich next game. God forbid should we loose thoose 2 games, its stil plenty of points to be gathered. Ive seen us all season we have been strugling all year, and that penalty just before half time against scums is still bothering me. Surley we cannot loose tomorow, the scums havent changed the manager like the last times. They play for counter attacks, but they might try to press us high tomorow to nick and early goal. First 15 minutes of the game will be crucial ! Im 100% that we will win, i just cant, ita impossibel to loose that game?! Isnt it ? Or am i dreaming…

  • 30 brklyngeordie // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:23 PM

    This is going to take a minor miracle to stay up this season after that Norwich win first they draw with City now go on road to beat WBA and starting to grow belief not good for us…

    Tomorrow we can not start Anita Gini must be i middle of park with Shelvey and need to put 2 up top Doumbia and Perez with Townsend and Sissoko wide and Mbemba and Lascelles in back with Janmmatt and Colback

  • 31 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:23 PM

    Nothing has changed. We must win the next two. Our season comes down to this.

  • 32 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:26 PM

    Regardless of today’s Norwich result we are still going to need at least 4 wins and a draw for 14 pts .That would give us 38 pts.
    Touch and go for sure, but the next two were always going to be 6 pointers anyway. 2 draws in these is the least worst failure and just about escapable.
    I suspect the unwashed will play for the draw tomorrow and celebrate like crazy if they escape with a point.
    I can’t see Palace getting another 5 points either this season, so they’re in the mix too.

  • 33 Jail for Ashley // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:26 PM

    It’s still in our hands, we have a game in hand over the other two and still have them both to play, it doesn’t matter that it’s M City it’s an extra game, you could look at as having to play M City anyway and Swansea at home be our game in hand. I’m not sure if we’ll stop up but we have to at least think we will.

  • 34 rasul // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:28 PM

    The team should be like we played in the sexond half against leicter with anita out and towsend in. Wich mean that gini will have to go back in midfield with shelvey. The back four shouldnt be changed regardles of colo and mbemba. They did a briliant job against leicter saylor and lacelles. Dont know why u want to change that, before a big game. Mbemba has been out to loong to to start a derby.

  • 35 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:28 PM

    We’ve got some players who will come through for us. Janmaat, Shelvey, Perez, Townsend, Colback, Elliot, Mbemba and Lascelles (if he plays). Not as sure about the rest.

  • 36 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:29 PM

    That’s only 13 points Schizoid mate. We need four wins and two draws for 38. I think 36 might do it actually but that’s splitting hairs I suppose.

  • 37 Munster Mag // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:34 PM

    Wiji in middle? Doubt it….get bullied by clatter?

  • 38 mindshaft // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:39 PM

    Lose tomorrow we’re down for sure
    Win tomorrow we’re down probably

  • 39 optimistic prime // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:43 PM

    Premier league survival is ours to throw away but I don’t think Rafas the type of bloke to let that happen.

  • 40 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:47 PM

    Can’t agree mindshaft. Win tomorrow and we’re right in the thick of it. Then beat Norwich and we’re on our way.

  • 41 WWSBRD // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:48 PM

    No team of ours that contains Anita can be the best available

    Wini beside Shelvey and de Jong behind Cisse for me, or Perez and Mitro if the former have fitness issues

  • 42 Ron Knee // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:50 PM


    And then you wake up!

  • 43 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:50 PM

    These last 9 matches will be the last chance for some of the players to make an impact. If we stay up Rafa will make big changes. We can’t go on like this. First thing I would ask for would be a clearout of Carr and Charnley and bring some winners in. We’ve had enough of losing.

  • 44 toonking // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:51 PM


    forget palace, how about leicester city.They now 8 points ahead of spurs and will stay 8points ahead if bournmouth defeat spurs. Ranieri’s past has got win records very simular to that of pardew’s but now he’s taken Leicester city towards a title.

    Pardew in line for the sack come the summer his only hope now lies in an FA cup win. Watford in the semi final should allow him to reach the final and a tie against everton could mean he wins it. Palace fans themselves are only keeping quiet because of that FA cup hope. The moment he’s knocked out fans will be at uproar.

    Norwich getting victory today can only mean the loser in the derby is even more certain of relegation. If it finished as a draw them we could both be joining villa.

  • 45 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:52 PM

    No, I’m staying positive Ron mate. We have to all stay positive now. This is doable. We’re not talking about beating Chelsea and Arsenal. We’re talking about beating the mackems and Norwich. Harrumph!

  • 46 Wayayman // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:54 PM

    Don’t stress lads n lasses, Norwich’s result means NOTHING to us at this point of the season with 9 games left. Don’t forget we have 2 games in hand over them plus we play them in two games time. Beat the mackems tomorrow and then take each game one at a time. Trying to work out who will take points off who, is *cough* pointless in this topsy-turvy season.
    All we need do is enjoy the game tomorrow as it’s highly likely to be the last derby game for us for a while as I don’t think both of us will be in the same division next season.
    That said, I’ve never been so nervous about a game. Not excited, just really really bricking it.

  • 47 Hail Wor Ashley // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:54 PM


    My choice, but I don’t think Rafa will drop Mitro given his comments about him, think SDJ might make way and Perez will play behind. CAn definitely see him starting Gini deeper, was impressive there for 30mins against Leicester and the alternatives aren’t up to scratch.

  • 48 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:56 PM

    We can beat Norwich. I watched them against West Brom. They are very poor in attack and get shaky at the back as well. With the pace of Townsend and the trickery of Perez we can beat them.

  • 49 ilovetoon8788 // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:56 PM

    With the Norwich result, Lose tomorrow and it’s lights out goodnight for us, rafa or not.

    3 points. Even 1 point is not enough.

  • 50 Ron Knee // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:57 PM


    I don’t think my negative thoughts will have any effect on the outcome tomorrow!

  • 51 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:58 PM

    We’re going to win both matches ilovetoon.

  • 52 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 5:59 PM

    Positive mental energy will interact with the incoming solar radiation and give us the will to win tomorrow Ron mate.

  • 53 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:00 PM

    That’s a well know fact! Our auras will be bright. We’ll be zippy and zesty. Sunderland will feel like they have cement in their boots.

  • 54 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:01 PM

    Not win and we are finished, not just because they are vital points, but because not winning will rubber stamp on the players that this was the point at which they definitively failed.

  • 55 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:01 PM

    Howay the lads!

  • 56 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:02 PM

    Warning, warning! Negative waves Tsunki. Do you want us to be bombarded with greasy solar atoms? No! We need positive energy!

  • 57 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:03 PM

    Aaaaooooggaahh! Aaaooooggaahh! This is not a drill. We are in a class one emergency. Everyone immediately put on their thongs of victory!

  • 58 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:05 PM

    Have you got your Thong of Victory on yet Tsunki?

  • 59 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:07 PM

    I agree about the end of season clear out by Ashley. it’s not the hiring of Rafa that signals intent – that was a desperate grip at the ledge – it’s the excision of two hopeless bumblers, a bargain hunter and a bean counter that were found to be way out of their depth playing at Directors. Two words – second being Pathetic.

  • 60 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:08 PM

    I’m feeling the Pompetous of Love for the club growing as we speak! Massive positive mental output. Tsunki chanting outside the ground.

  • 61 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:09 PM

    We will win!
    We will win!
    Well chanted Tsunki!!!

  • 62 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:09 PM

    The Thong of Victory is in a sealed vault filled with an inert gas to preserve it in case it can’t be used until the end of next season G2. 😐

  • 63 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:09 PM

    Palace are the only team in the top four divisions without a league win. We need them to keep that run going to be dragged down. They have more difficult games as well. Norwich result was awful for us today.

  • 64 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:10 PM

    Without a league win in 2016 that was meant to be.

  • 65 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:11 PM


    Oops typo !! Yes I think we can survive on 38pts but 5 wins 2 draws and 2 losses would be more of a banker for EPL next season.
    I can’t see Norwich keeping up current form, or Sunderland surviving their tougher games but if both us and Norwich beat Palace that could be bye bye Alan. Norwich vs Unwashed could yet save us too.

  • 66 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:11 PM

    Then on to bigger and better things with Rafa. A cup run. Decent incoming players. Some lovely post season executive sackings! Huzzah!!!!

  • 67 martoon // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:11 PM

    I’m quite optimistic for tomorrow’s derby. I think Rafa will have the team organised. It might not be a thriller but I think we can sneak it 1 – 0.

  • 68 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:13 PM

    Not negative waves G2 but possibly the inexorable wintry tide of reality. Beware The Mackems of March I say! 🙂

  • 69 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:13 PM

    That’s the spirit Schizoid mate! Attention Tsunki! Release your Thong of Victory on an unsuspecting public now! Put on your war paint and chant outside the ground until the match begins.

  • 70 Slank // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:15 PM

    Tsunki @ 54

    I totally agree with your analysis.

    If we lose tomorrow then it’s all over. The players will lose heart and Sunderland will be buoyed up and their confidence will mean that they will believe that they can escape relegation yet again.

    From what I have read the pundits are 50 % split on a Newcastle win.

  • 71 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:16 PM

    We win 2-1 tomorrow. I’ve been in touch with the oracle at Delphi. The Pythians have spoken! Victory is ours. Tsunki will unleash the Crack of Doom on the mackems when he bends over tomorrow!

  • 72 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:18 PM

    I suppose a crumb of comfort is that the chances of having a wind milling child molester from Weary side running the length of our pitch to celebrate in front of a gawping, drooling swathe of red-striped cro-magnons have been pared down considerably, if not totally ruled out.

  • 73 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:20 PM

    I detect positivity there Tsunki. You’re rallying. Worldwide Geordie chanting should now begin….

  • 74 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:21 PM

    Ommmmm! Ommmmmmm! Think positive aggression on the pitch. Think about the ball striking the back of the mackem net! Think victory and ascension to Valhalla! Beautiful….

  • 75 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:22 PM

    G2 the Cheese Cutter is no pretty sight. 🙂

    Slank – it’s too close to call to get cocky about. I shall be watching this the way I watched the Daleks when I was a kid. Probably wearing the same pyjamas.

  • 76 Back Door Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:22 PM

    Mitrovic hat trick but on another note …

    Mr Tuff’s assault on the peddlers of hate.

    The heckling by those in the cheap seats, those whose ill-formed and semi-literate opinions are nurtured from behind their spunk covered keyboards need to take care when being abusive to those challenging the racist bile being honked-out by a few on here. Racism, in all its forms, serves a critical and necessary function for those unable, or unwilling, to see what hurt and damage it can do to others. Even some of sub-prime or bargain basement Jeremy Clarksonesque rants appearing here occasionally clearly are aimed with purpose; the good people on here should always speak out against racism in what ever form, however seemingly diluted it appears. There is no difference between overt and covert racism! So good on you Mr Tuff for shining a light on this offensive twaddle a few threads ago and shame on those who slagged you off.

    I find it incredible that there are fools on here who support this racist malignancy by denying the root of much of this slime. It really isn’t good enough for them to deny the origins of the term ‘sand dancer’, or by claiming the phrase is acceptable because some corporate suit thought up the wheeze of naming a Shields boozer in the same. By carelessly expressing their views in language that has a melancholy hinterland all they are doing is giving succour to the merchants of hate. Those Shield’s folk proudly claiming the moniker ‘Sand Dancers’ just need to accept the origins of the phrase; its lineage stems from the often deceitful, often treacherous and often threatening relentless abrasive denigration of their own minority group … nothing more, nothing less! The fact that the phrase may have entered common usage, and perhaps be used in polite society, doesn’t mean we should forget its root.

    I’m sure there’ll still be those who don’t want to see the connection, who’ll continue to deny the offence, who’ll shout, “I ain’t no racist ‘cos some of my best friends are black”, who’ll deny the Grand Wizard of the Klan is a naughty boy and think it’s alright to crack Shoah jokes.

    Perhaps Mr Tuff’s favourite sport is to poke Jib with a blunt stick but I, and I hope many others here, wish it were a sharpened stick when Jib (and others) go too far. Keep up the good work Mr Tuff.

  • 77 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:24 PM

    I’m now praying and chanting in the back yard. It’s a bit chilly for a Thong of Victory but absolutely essential….

  • 78 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:29 PM

    Givemeawin, givemeawin, givemeawin……..

  • 79 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:30 PM

    Giveusawin, giveusawin, giveusawin……

  • 80 Moonraker15 // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:31 PM

    Merson covering the West Brom Norwich game after 5 mins ” there’s only one team gonna win this game – and it’s not Norwich”!
    The only consolation is he’s also predicting we’ll get relegated.

  • 81 GeordieTwo // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:31 PM

    Have at it with the cheese cutter Tsunki. Show them no mercy! Huzzah!!!!

  • 82 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:36 PM

    Back Door Man – well posted. I fear that the back lash against Mr T, as I said at the time, was precipitated by the wordplay of our practised insinuator and well-documented racial insensitive, the glorious Jeff.

  • 83 Blackley and Brownlie // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:37 PM

    I just came on to say that, even if we win tomorrow, I can’t see us staying up. It will be a false dawn just like the Boro game the last time we were relegated. I see you’ve more or less said @17 what I am thinking.

  • 84 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:39 PM

    I call a guy who has retired to Malta from South Shields a sand dancer , so that makes me a peddlar of hate ?

    Oh dear !

    Back door man get a grip for gawds sake, or is it a huge wind up and I’ve somehow missed the point ?

  • 85 toon kk // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:39 PM

    We’re playing with striker’s not capable of scoring, it’s going to be tuff.
    Another defeat on the way I’m afraid.

  • 86 YoungMagpieFromBurnley // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:41 PM


    Who actually cares? Its a blog, in the grand scheme of things what happens on this blog shouldn’t be taken personally. Do you really care? and no, i dont condone his actions, what he says is very vile and what you say could be infact correct… But surely ignoring him is for the best? Right now everyone gives him the time of day- which is surely what he wants?

  • 87 Bambams // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:50 PM

    Don’t chew me….

    Heard today that Janmaat is trying to complete a move to Juventus in the summer and that Sissoko ‘simply does not want to be here’

    We will know in the summer if it’s accurate re Janmaat. …
    As for Sissoko I am already convinced.

    Benitez has made a huge difference within the whole Newcastle United set up.

    Time will tell….

    Off out to watch the Rugby, enjoy your evening you lot

  • 88 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:55 PM

    Ymfb – no offence lad but he’s got a right to not ignore him as well.

  • 89 anthc // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:59 PM

    Both janmaat and sissoko are deluded if you ask me. Janmaat is far from good enough to play for June and sissoko nowhere near a champions league player certainly not for any pl teams. Plus he’s clearly shown his bad attitude too.
    Anyhow nervous for the morra really hope we win, I certainly couldn’t handle another defeat!

  • 90 YoungMagpieFromBurnley // Mar 19, 2016 at 6:59 PM


    Of course he does, but why? if he doesnt like what Jib puts then why get into conflict with him? Instead of creating pointless arguments surely ignorance would be better for the blog? Its not even debate, it looks to me like an agenda.

  • 91 Mag52 // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:01 PM


    The departure of Janmaat and Sissoko next season won’t be the worst thing in the world.
    The Frenchman’s heart hasn’t been in it for most of this season, and Janmaat’s awareness of where a defender should be is comical.
    If we survive the drop, Rafa will have a few names in his little black book considerably better than these two.

  • 92 lochinvar // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:04 PM

    We paid McClaren to get us into this mess and then paid him off because of the mess .
    We paid Charnley and still pay Charnley – let’s see if he’s earned his keep with Rafa and his team .
    Not long to go now.

  • 93 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:05 PM

    Very astute
    There certainly is an agenda

  • 94 Wayayman // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:14 PM

    G2, thanks for sending us the Victory Thong. I have it in as we speak. That’s not a typo, it’s a lot smaller than it looks.

  • 95 Sir Braveheart // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:18 PM

    Norwich result isn’t a killer unless we lose tomorrow. If we do were four points behind both Norwich and Sunderland. The game in hand against City is probably one we can’t get points from.

    Win tomorrow and we’re back in touching distance, albeit it then places massive significance on the Norwich game.

    Squeaky bum time.

  • 96 Mister Tuff // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:18 PM

    Back Door Man – thank you for your post of support. My record on here is that of having a go a racism if I see it and also those using gutter language. Also I have spoken out about words such a spackas and mongs. Try to keep a standard.

    as far as the latest “sand dancer” post is concerned I have no doubt that there will be many who are not aware of any debate about the subject.
    Certain big gobs -not just Jib – should know more about their home town – and what the possible origins of these phrases are. Research it and then make an informed decision about it.
    There is however no point in discussing matters if there is a total refusal to expand ones mind/knowledge further to the potential of alternative origins.
    It is not me who is inventing matters – there is plenty of material by folk cleverer that me who have highlighted this issue on the web over the years.

  • 97 Mister Tuff // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:21 PM

    Don’t shoot the messenger!

  • 98 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:27 PM

    Ymfb – there is a saying about the damage that can be caused by remaining silent when a voice is required.

  • 99 Tsunki // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:29 PM

    Jeff yes there is a agenda. Yours is an insidious and unpleasant one that encapsulates your character.

  • 100 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:32 PM

    Mr Tuff
    Are you a muslim ?

  • 101 Jail for Ashley // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:37 PM

    Well I know all about the Sand dancer nickname, from soldiers from modern day Iraq to the Yemini sailors and our miles of golden beach that you can dance on and not for one minute have I ever thought of it as racist, I’m proud to be called a sand dancer as it is hardly offensive bo matter what context used in.

  • 102 Dennis Twice // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:38 PM

    Attack Toon attack, attack!

  • 103 Back Door Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:38 PM

    ymfb – perhaps you should care:

    Can you recall what Pastor Martin Niemöller said?

    “First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.”

  • 104 Hail Wor Ashley // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:42 PM

    Thankfully Dennis Twice has punctuated BDMs pompous nonsense with some sense.

  • 105 Munster Mag // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:45 PM

    Watford season league wise isnt that hot now . I think they are down by palace so maybe their manager isnt as great as we thought. I think i read his career before going to watford is average. Re tomorrow i reckon 2-2. If that happens i think us and the wearsidecnuts will go down. I am worrried guys. Rafa will tighten us up but we lack balls. Carr should be strung up as i started saying a long time ago for saddling us with these players. And ashley for his stupid sell for profit foreign policy

  • 106 YoungMagpieFromBurnley // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:50 PM


    You’re having a laugh surely? This is a blog, why do you take it so seriously? Jib has been around for ages no matter how much speaking out you do it wont change that. The latest sand dancer comment to be ridiculed is absolutely absurd, jib has history with a similar subject when he used the term nig-nog, furthermore i understood the criticism there. But here? Sand dancer? Thats not offensive to south shields people and thats where it originates from. Jib has said some bad things which i dont agree with in the slightest but this agenda doesnt help the blog. It just clogs it up with dross that in the grand scheme of things doesnt affect anyones life at all. This is all tedious, pointless and damn right childish. Every time i read its Jib this and Jib that, just move on with your lives people. Let bygones be bygones, Ed will sort him out if Ed feels that this is the appropriate action. And look at whats happened, now im talking about Jib lol.

  • 107 Back Door Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:50 PM

    Yep, all we should be concerned with is footy but,
    oh no, he’s at it again. Muslim? Muslim? Hardly crafted, nuanced criticism but naked hate speech.

  • 108 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 7:52 PM

    I didn’t realise Mr Tuff was a member of the Munich White Rose movement.
    Tsunki is your surname von Stauffenberg.
    Pompous pr!cks alive and well and living in blogland.

  • 109 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:01 PM

    “Back Door Man -oh no, he’s at it again. Muslim? Muslim? Hardly crafted, nuanced criticism but naked hate speech.”

    You simpleton

    I asked him if he was a Muslim to try to get an understanding of why he’s so hung up on Yemeni’s in South Shields.
    All my life South Shields folk have been called sand dancers.
    Until Mr Tuff launched his tirade – racism in this context had never crossed my mind.
    So to ask him if there is a deeper reason for his nonsense is valid.

  • 110 benjohnsen // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:03 PM

    I do not believe it’s too late for Newcastle to make a great escape this year. The positive thing with stats is that Newcastle cannot do much worse and normally teams do not have whole seasons with consistent bad results. There are of course exceptions like Aston Villa, but even they will start to pick up points now in the end.

    You have team like Swansea and Crystal Palace which you cannot exclude from a relegation fight either. If they drop further it is easy to get nervous about it.

    If Newcastle can focus on their own games and start picking up points I am sure we will survive.

  • 111 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:06 PM

    Some posters prejudices are clear to everybody on here. Claiming innocent usage is not enough.

    YMFB .. Burnley has had a local tradition of active, even popular National Front groups and their ilk in recent years, so you’ll have surely encountered this already. BDM is right.

    We are living in a very fragile world order, with too many parallels with the mid 1930s and it only take one nutter in high places. As we all know there are already more fruit cakes in high places than on Bake Off and an extra one or two could easily tip the balance. Just look at Trump and the recent German elections. We have to be vigilant. Making jokes about words, phrases, and connotations that are mired in intolerance, persecution or hatred of any sort, even historically so, have to be resisted. Rant over.

    Jeff/JIB – you have claimed to be have been a lecturer in modern European History I believe, presumably retired, – so you’ll know exactly what I mean.

    Football has always been a recruiting ground for racism – viz the Chelski fans in Paris last year, so Toon fans, with our tradition of black and white, should show others the way.

  • 112 Mister Tuff // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:08 PM

    Jail – there’s another aspect of the debate. Could/should a phrase which has possible dubious origins -with the passage of time – be transformed into a phrase which is acceptible to ALL.
    I really do not know the answer to that.

    it exists in local knowledge that the term was used by folk in the surrounding towns/villages to Shields as a form of insult because of the large Yemeni population with the town.
    Now it is accepted by a lot in the town that they are proud to be known as sand-dancers.
    So can a phrase that was originally an insult transform into an acceptable phrase where no insult/offence is associated with it.
    I do not know.
    Away to watch the rugby.

  • 113 YoungMagpieFromBurnley // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:10 PM


    So you believe that Jib had intentions of using the term ‘Sand dancer’ in a discriminating way?

  • 114 AncientC // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:16 PM

    Rafa’s Conquistadors vs Big Sam’s Neanderthal Cave Entrace Parkers. Mitrovic in a human size catapult should do the job.

  • 115 bettyswallocks // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:25 PM

    I would like to speak up as an advocate of the first amendment which encourages free speech. Blatant racism is unacceptable in any walk of life or any forum. A bit of innuendo and banter is very healthy on a footy blog as it’s designed to air one’s views and let off steam without getting bogged down with political correctness .

  • 116 Back Door Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:26 PM

    ymfb – he’s got form for this stuff. Perhaps, he’ll be out burning crosses on his neighbours front lawns tonight.

    It’s a shame really, I like quite a bit of what he writes about when dealing with footy.

  • 117 bettyswallocks // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:36 PM

    Back door Merchant………….. Bernard Manning would turn in his grave listening to your boring self-righteous twaddle and Chubby Brown would have you for breakfast .

  • 118 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:36 PM

    Come on France, ffs.

  • 119 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:41 PM

    Last time we went down, everybody was slating Ashley for “forcing” Keegan to walk.

    This time we’re debating how racist other commenters are.

    This fscking blog, man.

  • 120 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:44 PM

    Welshie at the risk of being called racist – Les Rosbifs have Les Bleus en le merde – and I must say I enjoyed the Celts who hate us so much knocking lumps off of each other in an ill-tempered Ireland v Scotland game.

  • 121 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:46 PM

    Why can’t everyone on here be like me and be nice and polite to everyone.

  • 122 Blackley and Brownlie // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:46 PM

    Someone called “Back Door Man” taking offence at the name “sand dancer”. You couldn’t make it up.

  • 123 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:48 PM

    @Blackley: Maybe he’s an out of work joiner who specialises in back doors?

  • 124 Munster Mag // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:48 PM

    You’re right on that Jib.

  • 125 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:48 PM

    I think Townsend and his pace could play a good role for us tomorrow. He’s started off OK so far, and a nice goal against Chelsea, albeit a bad result.

  • 126 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:48 PM


    Just because i said come on France.

  • 127 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:51 PM

    @Laurent: I agree. Mackem defenders haven’t a clue about how to deal with pace, diagonal balls, or early crosses. Townsend could tear them apart, or at least pull his hamstring trying.

  • 128 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:54 PM

    Even at this late stage although we have won the 6 nations title we still have the “grand slam” to play for – unlike Wales v Italy ( 50 points on Italy woo hoo – whoopy doo) which was meaningless 😀

  • 129 Back Door Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:55 PM

    Betty, “…boring self-righteous twaddle…”, moi? Non!

    My only missions is wishing to stretch others by investing my writing with context, breadth, depth and vision, stripping it of its banality.  Rarely writing in straight and predictable lines but hinting at somewhere higher, a place of wit and understanding.

  • 130 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:56 PM

    What worries me about tommorows Derby is that who ever scores first then then the other team will crumble, we have got to score first, simple as that.

  • 131 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:58 PM


  • 132 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 8:59 PM


    Do you think we will beat the makems.

  • 133 martoon // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:02 PM

    Tuff – the other night you used a joke about Ian Toon that was simply unacceptable. Why don’t you just man up and apologise and admit it was in bad taste and move on. Instead you are pathetically trying to accuse Jib of using a racist term sand dancer. It is no more a racist term than Geordie, Makem or even Scouser & Cockney.

  • 134 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:02 PM

    Thump, let’s hope there’s no hamstring tearing. It will be interesting to see if he tries Anita again or goes with Gini further back and plays Siem number 10. Rafa commented post-match that the subs did OK when they came on, which I thought they did as well – We looked a bit more threatening.

  • 135 Thump // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:02 PM

    @welsh: Even if we score first, I reckon Sunderland have more about them going forward than we do, but there again it wouldn’t surprise me if we somehow managed to find some style and tear into them (wishful thinking, I know).

  • 136 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:05 PM

    We will hump the mackems

  • 137 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:11 PM

    I think the atmosphere tomorrow should be tremendously upbeat and full of belief and support, albeit a bit anxious as well but I guess that comes with every derby. I cannot wait.

    If we’re ahead during the game, the longer I goes on, the atmosphere will become exceptional. Partly due to the 3 points, partly due to being ahead against Sunderland, and partly because it signifies hope for the remaining games.

    I kind of want to set off for the ground right now.

  • 138 Blofal // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:25 PM

    Rafa has been quite clear he won’t rush players back from injury. He will stick with taylor and Lascelles I think.

    Janmaat – Taylor – Lascelles – Colback
    ———–Shelvey – Saivet
    Sissoko——-De Jong——Wijnaldum

    Subs: Darlow, Perez, Townsend, Anita, Mbemba, Aarons. Doumbia

  • 139 bettyswallocks // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:26 PM

    Rear gunner………… Feel free to indulge yourself in comments from your higher intellectual level, but also allow others their freedom of speech without splitting hairs in your (up your own arse) condescending manner.

  • 140 Novocastrian66 // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:34 PM

    Cannot see us winning tomorrow I’m sorry to say.

  • 141 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:44 PM


    Remember the English haven’t completed a grand slam for over ten years. They’ve only won their final grand slam game once in five attempts in the last 15 years. Let them have their brief moment of glory.

  • 142 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:45 PM


    Are you in a bad mood again.

  • 143 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:47 PM

    10 minutes to go in the rugby, close call this one.

  • 144 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:47 PM


    I would not place a bet either way.

  • 145 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:49 PM

    In rugby you can hear the referee telling the players off, so why don’t they do that in football, would be great TV.

  • 146 toon kk // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:51 PM

    We’ll be very lucky to win another game before the end of the season,
    Our striker’s can’t even score goals.

  • 147 cyprus // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:52 PM

    Ed my man
    I’m beginning to suspect you like this Rafa guy, am I right?
    I’m reserving judgement till he wins s Derby, keeps me up. If that’s OK 🙂

  • 148 bettyswallocks // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:56 PM

    Welshie……… No I’m not in a bad mood. Very uptight about tomorrow though. I just can’t stand people trying to get others thrown off the blog even though some comments might be a bit too insensitive for them.

    Like I said I would never condone downright racism but the world is becoming too quick to take offence and I come on here for a bit of respite from the over correctness in society.

  • 149 Jib // Mar 19, 2016 at 9:57 PM

    All together now Welshie

    “Swing loooowwwwww

  • 150 Jail for Ashley // Mar 19, 2016 at 10:03 PM

    Did you have a go at Ian Toon when he accused Mister Tuff of torturing his neighbours cats and being prosecuted for it or like Martinez did you not see that post from where you were sitting. Ian Toon is an insidious chap and I thought AncientC’s retort about Ian being the one getting mounted in a threesome, hilarious!!!

  • 151 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 19, 2016 at 10:06 PM

    Why are you singing a slave song ?

  • 152 welshgeordie9 // Mar 19, 2016 at 10:08 PM


    I will let you carry on singing, besides best team of the tournament, you won all the matches so you deserve the Grand Slam, unfortunately.

    Ha ha ha

  • 153 Belfast // Mar 19, 2016 at 10:32 PM

    Ian Toon is a legend.
    Rugby is shite.

  • 154 Belfast // Mar 19, 2016 at 10:39 PM

    Oh and Jails a wet lettuce

previous post: Relaxed Rafa Benitez Wants All 3 Points Tomorrow

next post: It Doesn’t Look Good For Newcastle