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Newcastle United now boast joint best defensive record in England.

Posted on February 24th, 2010 | 42 Comments |

Newcastle's defensive dream team at work.
Newcastle's defensive dream team at work.
Whod’ve thunk it after our defensive problems of the past? With a goal conceeded only every 131 minutes on average, Newcastle United can now boast not only the joint best defensive record in the in the Championship (along with Paulo Sousa’s Swansea), but also the joint best defensive record in the country.

With an ex full back as manager, and an ex central defender as his assistant, it hardly surprising that defence is an area which has been tightened up somewhat, however for the Toon to now boast the meanest defence in the whole country is still something of an achievement.

Self effacing manager, Chris Hughton, who found it hard to believe that the Toon fans would be singing his praises initially in our last game, tried to pass most of the credit on to the players as usual, saying:

“Our defence has been excellent all season; we’ve had a very settled back four for a large part of the season and that helped.

“Since the New Year we’ve had to bring some new faces in because of injuries and they have settled in fantastically well.

Extolling the virtues of a new team ethic within the squad, he went on to praise the midfield, who have been the subject of much criticism from some fans, despite providing vital protection for the back four while being the most free scoring Newcastle midfield for quite some time:

“Keeping clean sheets is of course, a team effort and mention must go to the midfield who work extremely hard in protecting the back four.

Going back to the defenders, he concluded:

“But our defenders and goalkeeper have also been excellent and our record shows that – long may it continue.”

Indeed.

NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1055 articles on this blog.

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42 Responses

  1. Ummmm Swansea boast joint best defensive record in England because they have only kept clean sheets against english teams :S. Ill educated armchair fan ^^

  2. Carl says:
    February 24, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    “We have the BEST defence in England bar none by these statistics. Swansea have the best in WALES”

    Carl, in terms of the amount of minutes it takes to conceed a goal they are exactly the same, though of course, Newcastle have lost fewer games than Swansea due to a superior goalscoring record at the other end. Swansea play in the English league, not the Welsh one.

  3. We may share this insignificant record with them, but what we don’t share is top spot. We have kept clean sheets whilst scoring goals, whilst Swansea have only been able to do the former. We are a far better team, whilst they are a better footballing team. None of it matters, only results and playing in the Premiership. Something only one team will be doing next season.

  4. What I want is to be reading the same headline this time next year.

    As a point of curiosity, did anyone else watch Countryfile this week. There was a Toon supporter making willow coffins.
    I was wondering if he was a blogger, say hello if you are. :)

  5. Dragonera says:
    February 24, 2010 at 2:58 pm
    one of the teams will be doing next season*
    ———————————————————
    Well if you consider we were a PL club last season & Swansea were a league 1 club last season, I wouldn’t go bragging about only 1 of us playing in the Prem next season, there’s still 14 games to go & the way the Swans are playing under Sousa, they may well be in that second spot but will defo be in the play offs, so could still join us in the Prem

  6. Chuck – I wouldn’t count on it, in the eyes of some fans these players could manage themselves in this league ;)

  7. toonsy says:
    February 24, 2010 at 4:17 pm

    “Chuck – I wouldn’t count on it, in the eyes of some fans these players could manage themselves in this league”

    In the eyes of some fans, the players actually are managing themselves.

  8. Chuck I suppose you will be wanting to give Uncle Mike some credit for running a more sensible fiscal policy next. where will it all end? :)

  9. Dragonera says:
    February 24, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    “Swansea weren’t a league 1 club last season. I think you have been misinformed.”

    Aye Dragonera, they were a much fancied Championship team with a pre Wigan Roberto Martinez.

  10. Big Willy says:
    February 24, 2010 at 4:38 pm (Edit)

    CLiNT, it was filmed in Somerset, isn’t that BBM’s neck of the woods. Was it he?

    =======

    No, that’s my neck of the woods but I don’t make coffins for a living as far as I know.

  11. Worky

    Exactly. I manager who is now under the kosh and could find himself in the unemployment line if things don’t pick up.

    My point is that whilst Swansea are a decent footballing side with a decent defence, the fact is that those types of teams generally don’t fair too well in the prem. The oppositions attack is bound to be far superior to anything they have ever faced before and their “meanest defence” will count for nothing. So what do they fall back on? Oh yeah, the buck load of goals they score…oh…oh no, wait.

    Also, they will not be able to dominate possession in the prem like they do in the fizzy so they are literally left with nothing. Whereas we have the grit and determination to grind out results despite not playing well. A far more valuable asset.

    We are a better team than Swansea for this reason and we SHOULD be DESERVEDLY playing Prem football next season, unlike them.

  12. We counld win the tittle during KK attempt was because we just couldnt defend like MU. In the end our attackers just counld not keep up with the goals that we have let in and we lost it.

    This time around we will start from the base.

  13. Dragonera says:
    February 24, 2010 at 4:51 pm (Edit)
    “Worky

    Exactly. I manager who is now under the kosh and could find himself in the unemployment line if things don’t pick up.

    My point is that whilst Swansea are a decent footballing side with a decent defence, the fact is that those types of teams generally don’t fair too well in the prem.”

    I suppose you could use a WBA / Stoke comparison from last season, Dragonera. Mowbray’s WBA actually stroked the ball around quite nicely considering, and aspired to playing a pretty passing game, whereas with Stoke, every opposition pass was / is like a “hospital ball” and every set piece was full of aggro and danger. Of course, we all know what happened with both respective teams.

  14. CLiNT, right, I suppose the clue is in the name, thats the trouble with being a bit senile, just don’t spot the obvious. “Still the answer is out there” to quote somebody.

  15. davis_toons says:
    February 24, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    “We counld win the tittle during KK attempt was because we just couldnt defend like MU.”

    It might seem that way, Davis, but I think that it was actually the opposite. Keegan funked it and started trying to make concessions to a more defensive style of play with his “missing piece of the jigsaw”, David Batty.

  16. toonsy says:
    February 24, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    “Bringing David Batty up reminds if two words………… Graham Fenton!”

    A lifelong Newcastle United supporter from Whitley Bay LOL. Isn’t he playing with Blyth or North Shields now? Or something like that? (Fenton, not Batty).

  17. Think Fenton is a coach at Blyth. I seem to remember him being on TV when Blackburn played Blyth. I also remember he couldn’t come back to the toon for a while after them goals and some of his family wouldn’t speak to him. Serves him right! :lol:

  18. toonsy says:
    February 24, 2010 at 5:43 pm

    “Think Fenton is a coach at Blyth. I seem to remember him being on TV when Blackburn played Blyth. I also remember he couldn’t come back to the toon for a while after them goals and some of his family wouldn’t speak to him. Serves him right!”

    I looked him up after my last comment, Toonsy. He’s still only 35 apparently, and was a player / assitant manager at the Spartans. He’s made a recent big money move to North Shields though.

  19. Credit where credit is due, along with our manager and his sidekick (who obviously was`nt just picking up a paycheck at Spurs for all those years as a defensive coach)
    Lets give a bit of credit for those who contribute to the blog, the Deb`s, Workeys, not to forget BBM and of course young Toonsy who is becoming quite the wordsmith.
    Without them whada ya got ?

  20. Hi Guys, Swans fan here.
    Can I point out just one thing, Coloccini cost you around £10 million.
    That figure wouldn’t be far off the value of our whole club. With the financial muscle your team has over ours I would expect you to be far superior to ourselves, But we’re not far off…

  21. We’re really strong defensively but there have been occasions this season when I’ve noticed the habit is to always go back. The way we were taught at the school of excellence was to play the way your facing if in doubt. But as we progressed the emphasis was on talking to each other and being the eyes for your team-mates when they had the ball or you gave them the ball.

    With that in mind, we need to improve the instance when the midfielders have the ball with their back to play. Someone should be telling them to turn instead of dropping it back off so much. Only Guthrie seems to have any real sense of awareness and turns into space when he sees or senses it.

  22. Wingattack – that’s a fair point but you probably won’t get anybody apologising for it ;)

    I think the fact we have a tight ship at the back means we wouldn’t care if they’d all cost us £10m because they did in the past and couldn’t defend for toffee.

    I’d still argue it’s partly about the quality of opposition that we’re appearing to be so good at the back but undoubtedly we look steadier than ever.

  23. Wingattack says:
    February 24, 2010 at 7:52 pm

    “Hi Guys, Swans fan here.
    Can I point out just one thing, Coloccini cost you around £10 million.
    That figure wouldn’t be far off the value of our whole club.”

    Wingattack, the value of the Swansea first team squad is around £20 million+ and Newcastle’s is worth around £60 million with our new signings. That isn’t quite as extreme as you suggested, but of course, it is still a huge difference. The three relegated clubs, Middlesborough, West Brom and ourselves are indeed quite a long way from the rest, led by Notts Forest.

    In terms of squad value, Swansea should be a mid table team, but they have done very well recently it has to be said.

  24. Wingattack,
    Guys, Swans fan here.
    Can I point out just one thing, Coloccini cost you around £10 million.
    That figure wouldn’t be far off the value of our whole club. With the financial muscle your team has over ours I would expect you to be far superior to ourselves, But we’re not far off…
    ru u stupi** firt colo cost 8 mill second ur dic**k team wont be joing the premier leauge for the next 10 years third why the fuc** ru posting on nufc blog ..it belongs for NEWCASTLE UNITED SUPPORTERS..

  25. Chuck – meant to say you didn’t include Stardust, MickyToon, our newest recruit AndyNUFC or indeed the man who singled-handledly kept us afloat with articles for a good while Mr Hugh de Payen.

    But to be fair, without you lot of moaning minnies blogging everyday, we wouldn’t be here either. So we all deserve a pat on the back.

    * starts patting backs *…

  26. Wordsmith? I think that is the nicest thing I have been called for a while :lol:

    Cheers Chuck :)

    I’m not that young anymore, 28 in August :(

  27. Hello to all the bloggers, as it’s a night for back-patting, just wanted to say a thank you to you all as I read the blogs regularly – especially when on nights – and quite often I leave either better informed or having had a chuckle or two! Keep posting!

  28. BBM
    “Angeldust” in the words of John McInroe, “you cant be serious”, kidding Stardy is allways good if only for the drama content.
    And yeah, have to agree with a lot Andy sez also Hugh,
    Mickey Toon? eah! kidding Mick.
    And Batty, guys whack! but craic.
    Who`s the guy does the “him and Ashley stories” in the venacular, funny !