Newcastle Can Be Successful This Season – Players Anxious To Prove Themselves

One 0f the reasons we still think Newcastle will have a decent season and finish in the top ten is for a number of reasons.

Our squad is probably better than we think it is and that’s been shown over the last two games when new players like Mikel Merino, Javier Manquillo and Joselu have all looked good.

And there is real competition for most positions in the side, and even Jonjo Shelvey will have a challenge on his hands to get his place in the side with young Mikel Merino looking so good.

Rafa could also play Jonjo in the number 10 position so both midfield players along with Isaac Hayden – all excellent players technically – could be in the starting line-up.

Maybe the biggest reason for success is what we saw Rafa do when he came into the club a year last March, and after four games he had us playing like a top six side with 12 points from our last six games.

Rafa Benitez – Newcastle manager

We have a stronger squad than last season and hopefully owner Mike Ashley will allow Rafa to bring in maybe three new players in January.

Another reason for potential success is that our players from last year, who have now been with Rafa for over a year and know what he expects,  are determined to prove they are good enough to play in the Premier League.

Ayoze Perez has talked about this today as reported in the Northern Echo:

“People haven’t really been talking about the players that were here last season, but that is normal when the window is open,” 

“There are always a lot of rumours about what is or isn’t going to happen, and you have to deal with that.”

“There was talk about what players might come in, but we know the team we have and we know how strong we can be.”

“We still have to do a lot of work, and we can improve a lot, but we know how good we are. This dressing room has a lot of ambition, and we all have the desire to win games.”

“That is going to be important right the way through the season.”

“We have players here who went through relegation, and we want to put that right and show what we can do in the Premier League.” “We had to go into the Championship and had a tough year.”

“Nobody feels good when you get relegated, but we worked very hard to get back into this league. Now we are here, we want to show everyone that we deserve to be here.”

“We have to keep that mentality because it is going to be a long, tough season. We have to keep going in the same way we have been in the last two games.”

“We have two wins a row, but the most important thing is that we are still working on what we have to do,” “We know the mentality we have to have, and that is important.”

“The results are going to give us some confidence, and now we are playing at home in front of our fans, which is always great. “

“We will see what happens then.”

So Rafa has assembled a squad that is hungry to do well this season, coupled with competition in almost every position in the side and that augers well for Newcastle.

If we keep playing like we have over the last two games, we will win more games than we will lose this season.

We’ll all know better by the end of the year, but whatever league position we are in on January 1st, we hope Rafa is allowed to strengthen the squad in the next transfer window.

If he isn’t then the manager could still walk this summer, and that would be a real tragedy for both the Newcastle United Football Club and for our faithful fans around the world.

We hope that doesn’t happen and it’s one reason we expect to do a lot better than most pundits think we’ll do this season.

Hope so!

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

162 comments so far

  • Belfast

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:16 PM

    Comment #81

    Well Jail if you’re starting a petition to get rid of the hearts and the stupid page numbers, I’ll sign it.

    But I think a new phone for Jesper is more of a priority at the moment.

  • Belfast

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:18 PM

    Comment #82

    Crowd funding Page for Jesper’s phone.

  • lochinvar

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:19 PM

    Comment #83

    Poor poor Littlepool and Kloppity in a huff as Mane’s red ban wasn’t reduced from 3 to 2 or 1 or none. So it was a frivolous claim so why wasn’t an extra one or two match ban applied as for other players and clubs.
    The FA are incredibly useless at what they do.

  • Belfast

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:21 PM

    Comment #84


    You’re getting a new one again, and not from Allied Express this time.

  • Clematis

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:21 PM

    Comment #85

    Our 4231 formation is our official play but heatmaps usually show we don’t stick to this. We have been 4231, 451, 4411, 433, etc. during games. Rafa has the team drilled for any number of scenerios. Cis Rafa is great.

    I do wish we would play Ritchie as a 10, mind. Not only is he our greatest attacking threat he defends from the front. This would enable us to play Shelvey with Merino in the middle.

    Imagine this line up on Saturday:


    Yed/Manq – Lasc – Clark – Mbem/Gamez

    Shelvey – Merino

    Atsu – Ritchie – Murphy



    3-0 to tha toon.

  • optimistic prime

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:23 PM

    Comment #86

    It’s the same old story with Perez, easily pushed off the ball, poor shooting, poor decision making, he does show flashes and works hard.

    Same story as last 3 seasons and he hasn’t improved enough to notice.

    He’s no better than Gouffran who a lot hated and wanted rid of.

    If he was injured or suspended he wouldn’t be missed!

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:28 PM

    Comment #87

    Belfast…I am sorry but your joke is lost on me

  • Belfast

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:32 PM

    Comment #88

    Wouldn’t be the first time Jesper.

    How’s tricks these days anyway ?

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:34 PM

    Comment #89

    Was that the point Belfast?

    Things are fine thank you for asking. How’s things at your end?

  • Belfast

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:36 PM

    Comment #90

    Optimistic Prime

    You could go and scout the Spanish second division and pick up a stack of players the exact same. He looked a good prospect for six months and has been mediocre ever since then.

  • Belfast

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:38 PM

    Comment #91

    I’m good Jesper. I just remember you always having trouble with the auto correct on your phone and it hasn’t really improved. 🙂

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:44 PM

    Comment #92

    Well Belfast just come out and say that 😉

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:45 PM

    Comment #93

    Yes I do have trouble with the damn auto-correct on this IPhone…

    …might have to download a new keypad

  • optimistic prime

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:51 PM

    Comment #94


    He shouldn’t be starting, crap sums him up nicely.

    Anyone can work hard and chase down the ball, you should see my dog do it!

  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 12, 2017 at 7:59 PM

    Comment #95

    Just made me think: Colback, what a great name for a dog.

  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 12, 2017 at 8:03 PM

    Comment #96

    Got a new phone mate? Is your number still 4411433?

  • ronaldo aarons

    Sep 12, 2017 at 8:13 PM

    Comment #97

    Lol, don’t get the hate for Perez at all. We’ve had two ‘team’ performances in a row. If we were carrying anyone as some posters suggest then we wouldn’t have won these games. Seems as if we always have to have someone to moan about. Seeing as there is no dummett, mitro or colback and lascelles scored and saved a goal it is Perez unfortunately.

  • Munster Mag

    Sep 12, 2017 at 8:27 PM

    Comment #98

    I think merino might be a better 10 than shelvey. I don’t think rafa sees shelvey in that spot, rightly so in my books. Perez got no praise on here for his two lovely passes to mitro. Shud have been 2 goals not one. Perez will stay at 10 unless his form dips. I’m OK with that for now.

  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 12, 2017 at 8:31 PM

    Comment #99

    made me chuckle:

    NUFCThreatLevel? @NUFCThreatLevel 19m19 minutes ago

    Sunderland fans apparently voting with their feet? After peeling bananas with them, I ask when will their talents end? Fair play to them.

  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 12, 2017 at 8:41 PM

    Comment #100

    Agree Munster, but he’s so well suited to the role he plays now. We need two of him. So much better than Shelvey, and I don’t think shelvey could play Hayden’s role. Maybe a similar thing happened at Swansea, so he got tried at no.10. Just guessing there, could see something similar happening here; he gets tried at no.10 to keep him happy, doesn’t work out, sulks on the bench. Welshie, what happened to him at Swansea, where did they play him mostly?

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2017 at 8:46 PM

    Comment #101

    Chancel…I love how jokes flys over my head tonight

  • Tsunki

    Sep 12, 2017 at 9:00 PM

    Comment #102

    I’m sorry but it betrays a lack of any knowledge of the game if you cannot see how well-engineered and containing an away performance that was against Swansea then there’s little hope. I’m sure that while achieving results that amount to more than the sum of this squads parts some will continue to bemoan a lack of “exciting” football. Some will even say we get results by being continually lucky, and even by saying every team we defeat were a bad side anyway. Pathetic.

  • Tsunki

    Sep 12, 2017 at 9:03 PM

    Comment #103

    Ronaldo i think Perez gets no more stick than he did while the other whipping boys were in the team 🙂 he does work hard, darts about the pitch and links up well from the front of midfield. It’s just his bottling the last third with poor decisions, making poor tackles and being lighter than a balloon that lets him down. Apart from that he’s top.

  • MikeAshleysWallet

    Sep 12, 2017 at 9:29 PM

    Comment #104

    lol Daryl Murphy knocks one in 4 mins from time get in son

  • firebug666

    Sep 12, 2017 at 9:36 PM

    Comment #105

    Hang down your head you Makems
    Hang down your head and cry
    Hang down your head you Makems
    League One is standing by.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:00 PM

    Comment #106

    I bet that ”carlsberg” night when they beat Everton and sent us down seems like a long long distant memory now ha ha. They literally can’t afford to sack Grayson, no one will want to join them if they do manage to scrape together the payoff money either, though it could be worse they could have the Venky’s or Oystons as the owners.

  • Hail Wor Ashley

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:04 PM

    Comment #107

    Wahey! Just seen that Daryl Murphy put another nail in Sunderland’s coffin.

  • lochinvar

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:07 PM

    Comment #108

    SAM the Sports Analytical Machine had the Mackems at 48% likelihood of winning tonight.
    Looks like someone threw a spanner in the works.
    The only Sam Sunderland can rely on left the building a long time ago.
    Oh well there’s always Alan who’s not really up to it as a TV pundit.
    Sweet dreams

  • manxpie

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:08 PM

    Comment #109

    perez is getting stick as there wasn’t a geordie in the team!
    there always has to be one
    hayden had a worse game and unfortunatley for him shelvey is available and could easily take his place
    merino seems to have worried both him and shelvey by the looks of it
    i see jesper still gets in a few arguments and i ain’t been on strange that like!?

  • Hail Wor Ashley

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:11 PM

    Comment #110

    On a disappointing note, I think it’s already safe to say Arsmtrong’s loan isn’t working out. He was supposed to kick-on this season and get 15+ goals in that league if he wants a chance here. Currently not happening and looks like we sent him to one of the worst sides in the Champ.

  • RUNAWAY777

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:15 PM

    Comment #111

    Great result sunday lads hope you enjoyed that toonfaff2 hibbit shirebrook and jail was away with the wife to pargue for a few days as i have leave her again for work mind you its good partying in prague.

  • Novocastrian66

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:16 PM

    Comment #112

    Hail; We haven’t loaned him to Sunderland, have we?

  • manxpie

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:20 PM

    Comment #113

    see doumbia scored a couple tonight still don’t see how he wasn’t given more games in that season, scored 20 in 25 last season at basel aswell i know it’s a shitter league but by god we needed something different that season

  • tommotoon

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:23 PM

    Comment #114

    well lads i think we will beat stoke quite easily on saturday (they are in my 3 for the drop) Mark Hughes is a miserable sod i would go as far as to say another 3-0 at home if we can keep on showing the commitment we have in the last 2 games ,the players feel they have a point to prove after all the negativity from the media since we came back up. there is no way on this earth we will be relegated while Rafa is at our club !

  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:32 PM

    Comment #115

    wow, Newcastle have taken the sam number of points in our last 2 games as Sunderland have taken at home for the whole of 2017!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • JackBall

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:34 PM

    Comment #116

    Has anyone looked at the Championship table. I know it is early and that teams buy and sell players when they change leagues, but other than Burnley and us who escaped, the last 7 teams to go down are not doing so well. It might be fair to say that the parody we say exists for the bottom 12 teams in the EPL may extend to the top six of the EFL. More reason for hope this season?

  • tommotoon

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:38 PM

    Comment #117

    I would love it if Pardew ended up at blunderland after the stick i got of mackems when he came to Newcastle…Pardew who is he? …scraping the bottom of the broon ale barrel arnt yas? yous are getting desperate…only one that will come and all that sh*te…

  • BenArfa the magician

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:41 PM

    Comment #118


    Waaaay too optimistic there no game is easy in the Prem they had a great result themselves the weekend. They have a good defence and with Jese,Shaquiri,Choupo Moting up top they can hurt teams too. They’ve beat Arsenal and have only lost once to Everton they’ve had a much harder run in than us.

  • tommotoon

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:42 PM

    Comment #119

    26,000 at stadium of sh*te…they should hang there heads in shame …ha ha ha i love it they are in very deep pooh

  • tommotoon

    Sep 12, 2017 at 10:44 PM

    Comment #120

    benarfa..i do get a bit excited when we are doin well lol but i do think we will beat them on saturday the lads have there tails up


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