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Newcastle Players Must Step Up To The Plate

One good thing that is happening at Newcastle, that may yet save us this season, is that we have some good players now returning from injury.


Danny Guthrie – fit again after hamstring strain

 Chris Hughton talked about this to the Newcastle Journal today:

“There’s been no additional injuries from the weekend, which is a plus,”   “The bonus going into the weekend game is Habib Beye will have had a week’s training. He and Danny Guthrie trained last Thursday.”

“And Kevin Nolan is back from suspension. It means we’ll have three big-name players back in key areas pretty soon. Kevin’s fine, no problem, he’s missed the last three games through suspension.”

“Habib Beye and Danny Guthrie are now free from injury but a decision will be taken on where they are fitness-wise after this week’s training. It’s great to have them back involved but we need to assess where they are.”

“At the moment we have a reasonable complement of players. Joey Barton and Mark Viduka are now the two big absentees left.”  

We assume that Ignacio Gonzalez is still on loan at the club and he is supposed to be fit in about 3 weeks, after being laid up with an Achilles injury since early September.

But it looks like Newcastle have written the Uruguayan off for the run-in to the season, given that we have Butt, Guthrie, Barton, Smith and Geremi fit right now, to fight it out for the central midfield positions. And we expect Joey Barton back in about 3 weeks, so Joey shouldn’t be missing for too long, which is good news.

The other good thing regarding Habib Beye and Danny Guthrie (and Joey too), is that even if they don’t play on Saturday, they’ll have another 2 weeks to get fit and do some training, before our next game at home to Chelsea.

This is the time in the season, the business end of the season, that we need some players to stand up and be counted. To use a well-worn baseball term – they need to step up to the plate.

We haven’t seen too many of them do that yet, but Steven Taylor showed the way on Saturday at Hull City, with a more than committed performance, and a great goal too, from the local lad.

Other players, as we said yesterday, would do well to follow Steven’s lead.

We need them all fighting for the Newcastle United cause, as if their lives depended on it.  

Howay The Lads!!

Comments welcome.

9 comments so far

  • Danish_Magpie

    Mar 18, 2009 at 10:54 AM

    Comment #1

    If we avoid relegation we ought to do the following in the summer:

    Smith: 3m
    Ameobi: 1.5m
    Duff: 2m
    Geremi: 1m
    Viduka: Free
    Owen: Free
    Butt: 0.5m
    Cacapa: Free
    Barton(like him as a player but bad image and big wages): 4.5m

    Total: 12.5m

    Extend contracts with: Løvenkrands, Edgar

    Appiah: Free (pay as you play deal)
    Pennant: Free
    Keith Commons: 3.5m
    Nick Shorey: 3.5m
    Huddlestone: 6m
    Wheater: 3.5m
    Bent: 9m

    Total: 25.5m

    Net spending: 13m (plus sign-on fees..)
    Reduction in wages: HUGE.


    GK: Harper, Krul, Foster

    LB: Shorey, Enrique
    RB: Beye, S. Taylor
    CB: Bassong, Coloccini, Wheater, Edgar

    LW: Jonas, Commons
    RW: Pennant, R. Taylor
    CM: Nolan, Huddlestone, Guthrie, Appiah, Lua-Lua

    ST: Oba Martins, D. Bent, Carroll, Løvenkrands, Xisco

    This squad would challenge for a top-8 or top-6, and is very well balanced, while also slashing wages and focusing on the future (ie no old deadwood).


    Starting line-up could then be:





    Subs: Krul, Enrique, S. Taylor, Guthrie, Commons, R. Taylor, Carroll

    with the likes of Wheater, Appiah, LuaLua, Løvenkrands and Xisco putting pressure on the team…

  • Weezertron

    Mar 18, 2009 at 11:01 AM

    Comment #2

    Sad thing is, no doubt Nacho is the only CM with any flair.

    If he came back fully fit and I was manager I’d take a chance and play him.

    433 with Nacho, McLoven and Martins up front, atleast until owen shows up.

  • Sav

    Mar 18, 2009 at 11:29 AM

    Comment #3

    Stepping up to the plate – isn’t that baseball, not football? Arm some of these jokers with baseball bats and they’d still have trouble fighting for the team.

  • Sav

    Mar 18, 2009 at 11:32 AM

    Comment #4

    Owen did canny at attacking midfield last year but Kinnear said ‘No’. That’s not the Wimbledon way.

  • Tom_Toon

    Mar 18, 2009 at 11:41 AM

    Comment #5

    Shorey – Shite.
    Bent – Cant do anything but finish.
    Huddlestone – Can pass but is scared of tackling.
    Wheater – Rubbish since his one good season.

    Danish he fact you want to sell Barton sums up that whole comment. Utter guff.

    Barton is by a mile, our best central midfielder.

    Nolan is 3rd best, at least IMO.

    Anyway, back to the article, good for see these players coming bck, not fussed about Nolan, but hes better than Butt.

    Beye adds stability to the team (he should be captain) and Guthrie composes people around him. He will calm it down and spread the play.

  • chuck

    Mar 18, 2009 at 1:42 PM

    Comment #6

    Not a bad selection DANISH_MAGPIE, especially Wheater and Bent.
    Pay no attention to TOM_TOON, what he knows about the game could be written on a postage stamp.
    Bent is a natural goalscorer, at present not the flavor of the month with Arry, therefore not getting games and possibly suffering from a lack of confidence.
    Sir Bobby thought highly of him and attempted to sign him , without success.
    As for Wheater a talented giant, who`s season has caught the eye of the top teams and will certainly leave Boro. this summer, fits the profile, age and talent wise, however may go to a top team pricewise as he wont come cheap.
    Appiah a proven talent , probably ask for high wages, but as a free agent would save on any transfer fee, good deal for a short contract.
    The rest are decent but not really players I would pick, but then thats what this blog is about.

  • shearerbliss

    Mar 18, 2009 at 3:16 PM

    Comment #7

    Good team Danish but I would be hesitant about huddlestone. Fantastic passer but like a plant he is easy to get around. To get the best out of him we must build ateam around him like Eng-U21 did in the last tornament. Therefore we would play him like a quarterback and protect him so he could be allowed to pass the ball.
    I must agree would love bent at the club just lacking in confidence.
    For my thfc mates appiah has been with spurs for the last 4 months as he is still there. Apparently arry says his fitness levels are woful (similar to ronaldo)
    Pennet is like replacing barton, I would give lua lua a chance!
    But with a good manager all those players mentioned could become a fantastic team. Over the next few years we will need a high turnover of players to get us back to the top of prem, with each purchase better than the next and the deadwood sold off imideatly being toldf you will not get a game.
    Why did we resign amiobi?

  • Tom_Toon

    Mar 18, 2009 at 3:49 PM

    Comment #8

    Chuck – You obviously dont have a clue. Bent is playing regularly at the moment. I know him personally but I would not want him at the Toon.

  • Tom_Toon

    Mar 18, 2009 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #9

    Again chuck, no clue. Wheater wont have caught anyone’s eye this season, he has one good season a season or 2 back.


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