Alan Shearer – Newcastle Still Only A Championship Team


Alan Shearer has talked today about the superb job Rafa Benitez has done at Newcastle especially since mid-December when we ended a streak of nine games with just a single point.

We are on a high at the moment of four wins in a row, and we hope more success tonight at Everton will keep us in the stratosphere.

We were third bottom of the league after losing 1-0 at Arsenal in December, but we have climbed up to 10th place and have a chance of reaching 8th place if our good results continue through the rest of the season.

Alan Shearer – Newcastle still only Championship team

Several pundits, including Alan himself, have talked about the team being a Championship team following owner Mike Ashley’s refusal to give Rafa sufficient transfer funds last summer to improve the side.

This is what Alan Shearer has told Coral today:

“It has been a very, very good season for Newcastle. In particular, it has been a very good three months – particularly from the turn of the year.”

“There has been some very exciting results, good performances and they have now guaranteed their Premier League status for next season, which is an incredible achievement.”

“The job that Rafa Benitez has done there this season has been remarkable.”

“I have said it many times that this season that I think the team he has is a Championship team.”

“But he has dragged them through and got some brilliant results out of them and it has been a very good season.”

It has been a very good season and it will get even better if we can make it five wins on the trot at Goodison Park tonight.

How Will Newcastle Fare At Everton?

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Comments welcome.


51 comments so far

  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:10 PM

    Comment #1

    Loch, from previous. How do they tell how much more miserable the most miserable people in the country get from a loss?
    They already have a massive head start on everybody else in the misery stakes, being that they live in that doss hole.
    They probably get even more miserable every time we win if the university bothered to test that.

    0
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:13 PM

    Comment #2

    Darren Gough. ‘Sunlun get 27k every single home game.’
    Yes Darren, like Arsenal get 60k and City get 55k…

    2
  • lukes26

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:20 PM

    Comment #3

    Alan shearer is a legend, but that’s a stupid comment. Which of our starter’s would be playing in the Championship if Newcastle suddenly didn’t exist?

    Maybe Diame or Gayle? Diame you’d think would be picked by someone in the bottom half of the table based on his form.

    Lascelles is wanted by chelsea, half of europe is sniffing out Kenedy, Shelvey is close to being called up for England.

    It’s not as though we’re huddersfield, who are packed with championship talent

    3
  • RobLeenio

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:26 PM

    Comment #4

    lukes26, when Shearer speaks, the media listen, so he’s getting the message out there that Rafa has done a great job with meagre resources. It may not quite be true (his statement), but the media will run with it and that makes it true in many peoples’ eyes. Those whose opinions don’t matter individually anyway.

    It’s all to give Rafa more bargaining power vs Ashley.

    9
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:32 PM

    Comment #5

    Luke, what he’s saying makes sense mate. This is basically a team that came up. We didn’t invest like we should’ve. So basically, we were a Championship team.
    That was then. What Rafa has done is taken Championship players and turned them into PL players in the space of less than a season.
    That is remarkable. Introducing one or two is hard enough, but he’s done it with the same lads who fought for promotion last season, as a group.
    They were a Championship team, but not anymore. That’s down to one man. Imagine what he could do with a bit of backing?
    Shearer isn’t insulting the players, he’s praising the job that Rafa has done

    3
  • Tsunki

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:44 PM

    Comment #6

    A bit ungracious of Al to not qualify his statement but then he rarely missed a dig at Ashley. Yes it is the championship squad and no it was never designed to eke out a premiership campaign. BUT the remarkable part is it HAS and due to the work and direction of all concerned it deserves to be called a premiership squad. It has earned that right.

    3
  • lukes26

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:47 PM

    Comment #7

    Bobby..just because someone plays in the Championship doesnt mean theyre that calibre. Mitrovic plays in the championship…he could play in first league… anywhere

    Youre not agreeing with Robleenio btw, he’s saying that Alan is being purposefully inaccurate.Which makes sense.

    Which player do you feel is (not was, shearer didnt say was) Championship level (meaning no EPL team would take him)…. besides Gayle?

    How could shearer not be insulting the players, he’s saying it’s a Championship level team

    2
  • DubaiMicky

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:52 PM

    Comment #8

    @ RobLeenio
    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:26 PM
    Comment #4

    Exactly.

    1
  • hibbit

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #9

    Rob @4
    nail on head spot on with that !!!!

    2
  • DubaiMicky

    Apr 23, 2018 at 5:59 PM

    Comment #10
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:05 PM

    Comment #11

    The four wins in a row have literally saved our season. Just think if they had been four losses and we were still sitting on 29 points stewing in our own juices and ranting about Rafa having lost it. The margins are very, very narrow for us. The three loanees were a huge help as well and all overseen by Rafa. Without him we would be toast. That is not a good place to be in. We need commitment from the Rotund One to a new contract and an acceptable transfer kitty going forward or things may still fall apart.

    2
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:07 PM

    Comment #12

    And I still say Ashley was hatched from an egg in Satan’s underpants!

    4
  • JackBall

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:07 PM

    Comment #13

    We have had this championship argument forever, but I think the misunderstanding is partially semantic. We were relegated, we lost three of our most marketable players (if you recall Shelvey was on the bench at the end, so who knows what is value was then) and we added Ritche, Diame, Clark, Hanley, Gamez and Lazar. Two are gone, one never played. This year we added Merino, Lejeune, Manquillo, and Murphy. Prior to January, we were again in a relegation fight. We added three loanees, who all look premiere quality and turned it around. So, call the team we started with top of the line Championship, or bottom EPL, but you could not call it safe. The argument is that we did not add enough quality following what we lost to be any better than a relegation fighter. With Rafa, he has improved what we had, added some quality, and greatly changed the character, and we are now fighting for top 10. So yes, we are no longer a championship squad, but we were in essence when we started this campaign.

    3
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:07 PM

    Comment #14

    You’re not getting it. The team that came up was put together for one reason. To get promoted from the Championship. Ergo, a championship team.
    That is what Rafa was given to start the PL season. Had he had money, that would not have been his choice.
    When we first came up, nobody in the PL wanted any of our players. That’s no longer the case. Now every one of them is considered – rightly so – PL quality. That’s down to one nan and his coaching ability.
    The players still in the squad that took us down were proven not to be PL quality. The rest moved on.
    A team that wins the Championship is considered a Championship team. Very rarely does that team go on to consolidate itself in the PL without decent investment. We had very little, so Rafa has turned them all from Championship players into PL players in less than a season.
    Could anybody else have done that? Not imo. He’s not insulting them, he’s highlighting their improvement. None of our first team would now be termed Championship players, maybe Gayle and Joselu apart, but that’s now. They’ve earned the right to be classed as PL players. A remarkable achievement.

    5
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:11 PM

    Comment #15

    Rob Leenio @4 Huzzah!!!

    0
  • JackBall

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:12 PM

    Comment #16

    Bobby,

    If we didn’t write so differently we may get caught up in the other never ending argument – multiples

    2
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:14 PM

    Comment #17

    How many goals do wor top goal scorers have? Perez has 7 in all competitions! Seven! That is a sign of a club which has Champo players who are playing above their actual level thanks to a manager who is a god! Yes a god! He is above Thor! He is superhuman! He will be transported to the Halls of Valhalla immediately following the season to make merry and quaff mighty flagons of ale! Huzzah!!!

    4
  • JackBall

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:16 PM

    Comment #18

    Really looking forward to this game. Can’t recall when last I was only thinking of the benefit of the win and not the harm the loss could cause. Also, am super positive about the result. I see goals coming our way. Where is our official countdown to game time guy?

    1
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:18 PM

    Comment #19

    Doesn’t anyone on hear read their Douglas Adams? The gods walk among us. Some of them are short and Spanish! We have one!

    2
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #20

    I’m not sure what we’ll do if Ashley refuses to cooperate with Rafa. That could lead to a crisis. It will be a very difficult meeting I would think and lies from Ashley won’t cut it. The problem is Ashley has no football ambition. He only has his own greed. How far will he push it? Stay tuned…

    0
  • JackBall

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:22 PM

    Comment #21

    Was going to make the joke that last time I read him was when we last won a trophy, but that happened too long ago.

    0
  • Tsunki

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:28 PM

    Comment #22

    Nice to look forward to a game without nail biting stress. And the rubber pants. But mostly the nail biting as the pants are another story. A contractual obligation with G2.

    2
  • DubaiMicky

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:28 PM

    Comment #23

    Apologies, try this one, I’ve changed the sharing options to everyone
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1oImROH4okQ22aHoH-CIMQqlEiH2ASGSADolM8gJoObg/edit?usp=sharing

    0
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:29 PM

    Comment #24

    Think aboot where we could be if Rafa hadn’t come along. We might be joining Sunderland in Division One next season. There hasn’t been a more critical decision in the last 12 years at the club than the one to go after Rafa. He has single handedly saved us from our own owner! It’s an amazing fact. What other club has been saved from its owner? Most disastrous owners destroy their clubs. But one decision by a pair of people (Ashley and Charnley) who normally act like idiots has save us. Let’s see if they can make one more good decision and cooperate with Rafa.

    5
  • Tsunki

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:29 PM

    Comment #25

    Will Ashley meet directly with Benitez though? As I understand it won’t it simply be a case of Charnley dispensing this terms remit?

    0
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:32 PM

    Comment #26

    I always wear my rubber pants regardless Tsunki. They suit me nicely. And when worn properly with rubber suspenders you can look very manly. Rubber is the material of the future!

    0
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:33 PM

    Comment #27

    Jack, Aye, I had a chuckle myself. There’s a misunderstanding about Championship team. It’s what we were, like it or not, but not anymore. Look at Dummett. From zero to hero. Lascelles, due a call up. Shelvey, ditto. Three examples of players Rafa has developed beyond belief. £7m for him and Darlow. He’s worth five times than amount alone now. He’s playing better now than he did in the Championship, that shows how he’s come on.
    It’s never been an insult, always a compliment. Every single player has said how much Rafa’s coaching has improved them.
    I fancied us to beat Arsenal last week. Even got the score right. They were there for the taking.
    Fancy another win tonight. Their crowd will turn in them if we score early. They’re not happy. They hate us. They hate Rafa. Ha ha ha ha!! Bothered? Face, bothered? Bring it on. HTL!!!!!

    1
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:35 PM

    Comment #28

    They are planning to meet at a secret rendezvous at an Indian takeaway Tsunki. There will be much shaking hands and back slapping. Then Ashley will hand over the 50quid transfer packet.

    0
  • chicousa

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:43 PM

    Comment #29

    Another agreement for what Rob said @4!

    In any case the distinction between “championship quality” and “EPL quality” is a bit blurred today, in a year when all 3 promoted teams from last year are likely to stay up and when perennially mid table EPL clubs are looking to be relegated!

    0
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:43 PM

    Comment #30

    What a stat!! 2-1 Gainsborough Trinity have just been relegated for the first time in their 140 year history. Unbelievable or what? It is off talksport though… but I think it’s real.

    0
  • Ketsbaia9

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:44 PM

    Comment #31

    Hello everyone. I’m afraid that I disagree with Alan. Most of the players were signed from the Premier League to play in the championship. Players like Ritchie, Diame, Atsu, Yedlin and Perez had mainly played in the Premier League and La Liga. The only championship players we have is probably Hayden, Josulu, Clark and Dummett. Dwight Gayle will go this season.

    Merino and Lejuene and former La Liga and Bundesliga players whom are top level standard. Lascelles has adapted into a premier league player.

    I would say that our squad is a top ten squad within this league.

    1
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:45 PM

    Comment #32

    2-1? Where did that appear from? Must be an omen. Slimani on the double.

    1
  • DubaiMicky

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:45 PM

    Comment #33

    Team out in 15 minutes and I’m sticking to my 7am (your time) prediction:-

    4,2,3,1

    Dubravka
    Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Dummett
    Shelvey, Diame
    Kenedy, Perez, Ritchie
    Slimani

    0
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:46 PM

    Comment #34

    1 Hour 13 Minutes to KO

    0
  • lukes26

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:49 PM

    Comment #35

    Bobby ..I think we actually agree then 🙂

    Looking forward to the game…hoping slimani gets the start

    0
  • chicousa

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:51 PM

    Comment #36

    Same team as last week. Would like to see Slim start but think Rafa will stick with Gayle.

    Prediction: 1-3 Toon! Kenedy, Gayle and Slimani (as sub). HWTL!!!

    0
  • Tsunki

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:52 PM

    Comment #37

    Unfortunately Paul Hic Burpson has us down for a win so but of a jinx to overcome there. Still think we can do it though. 0-1 Toon.

    0
  • Bobbybee

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:52 PM

    Comment #38

    Mickey, I reckon you nailed it, so no point me repeating it.

    0
  • Jail for Ashley

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:56 PM

    Comment #39

    I don’t know why I’ve got three in my head, probably because that’s what we’ve been getting jumped for under Mcardew, but 3-0 the toon tonight.

    0
  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 23, 2018 at 6:57 PM

    Comment #40

    How many clubs will actually finish with less than 40 points this season? Possibly 7 or 8??? That’s a testament to the disaster the Prem has become with the ridiculous spending at the top. The league has no balance at all anymore. And it’s only going to get worse with the amount of TV money available. Many sports leagues introduce a salary cap and often a spending cap and it does work. The NHL is a good example. There are still some very poor teams but there is much more balance and competitiveness. Possibly the FA don’t really want any balnce in the Prem?

    0

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