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Magpies on song – Cisse & Benny goals secure 3 points

Posted on March 25th, 2012 | 89 Comments |

Cisse scores twice as Newcastle beat West Brom
Twice on target
Two more goals from number 9 Papiss Cisse and one from Ben Arfa prove too much for West Brom as Newcastle United return from the Hawthorns 3-1 victors.

Within the first 5 minutes of kick-off I was wondering where our players had gone and who the imposters in orange were. We looked skillful, confident and fluent in possession, in complete contrast to the team I’ve been watching for that last 4 or 5 weeks. And it paid off too.

Within 2 minutes Jonas placed a pinpoint perfect pass at Perch’s feet in a great position in the box to the left of goal – unfortunately Perch just couldn’t control it. A few minutes later Cisse’s run down the left set up a shot from Demba Ba who forced a save by Ben Foster.

Strike 1 came on 6 minutes. Cabaye took a short corner, passed it to Benny who put in a cross, only for it to be cleared as far as Jonas. Jonas passed it through the defence and to the left for Benny who passed across the goal mouth; Ba stretched for it but couldn’t reach so it was left for Cisse to tap it in. 0-1

A couple of minutes later Benny worked himself into the centre from the right and had a crack at goal from about 5 yards outside the area but it sailed harmlessly high.

Strike 2 came just 6 minutes after the first. Colo had run the ball out for a West Brom throw-in out to our left and inside the area. Andrews crossed the ball in for West Brom and Colo cleared the ball out of defence to Benny who flicked it quickly to Cabaye and started the charge forwards. Benny got the ball back from Cabaye and continued forwards, passed it to Cisse who passed it back to Benny who wrong-footed a defender with a little jink and found the bottom left corner of the net. 0-2 and it was as good a goal as I’ve seen from us this season.

West Brom tried to get a foothold in the game and at times they looked fairly fluent and assured in possession themselves, although they lacked for any sort of quality finishing. They had a spell of more even possession resulting in a series of corners that were difficult for Krul with the sun in his eyes but the best they could manage was a header over the bar from Ridgewell and slamming shot from Morrison that went wide.

Cabaye got on the end of a goal kick from Krul – nodded down by either Ba or the WBA defender, I couldn’t tell which – but thumped it out wide from a long way out. Fortune had a chance at the other end when a cross found his head but he put it over the bar.

West Brom had the ball in the net on 32 minutes after Fortune’s cross was turned in by a West Brom player I couldn’t make out but it was offside anyway.

Strike 3 came on 34 minutes after Danny Simpson’s throw-in in our own half was, after some fumbling around, won by Ben Arfa. He passed it to Demba Ba in the centre who passed it back to Benny, who had carried on running. Benny passed it back to Ba who was now in the box to the left. Ba back-heeled it to Benny who had looped around behind him, Benny pulled it back from the goal line towards Ba. Ba went to ground but Cisse was on hand once again to put it in the bottom corner of the net. 0-3

Shortly after the goal there was a bit of a worry as Colo seemed to be suffering from a hamstring problem. There seemed to be some communication with the bench and Santon was warming up at one point, although he sat back down again and Colo gingerly played out the first half. Anyway, that was pretty much all the points of interest in the first 45.

Half Time

Colo was in fact substituted for Santon at the start of the second half and West Brom made two tactical substitutions themselves, replacing Andrews with Long and Thomas with Brunt and West Brom came out of the traps for the second half like a bat out of hell which would be gone when the morning comes and they had us taking rearguard action for most of the first 10 minutes. A shot from Morrison went wide and a shot from Mulumbu was deflected by Williamson out of its path towards goal.

On 49 minutes, though, Cisse was played in by Cabaye and only had Foster to beat to get his hat-trick. However, he hit the shot low and Foster’s prone defence was enough to keep it out. Personally, I think Cisse is far better on the end of shots where he has no time to think about things and instead lives on his reactions.

On about 52 minutes we let West Brom claw one back thanks to a major defensive cock-up. A long ball from the West Brom half saw Odemwingie and Williamson shoulder to shoulder chasing a ball into our area. Krul came forward to take the ball but Williamson inexplicably headed it out of Krul’s reach straight into the path of Shane Long who simply had to side foot it into an open net. 1-3.

West Brom kept applying pressure with headers going wide, Krul having to save a shot and Odemwingie plaguing Williamson (although to be fair to Willo he was taking no chances now and solidly clearing to the by-line when he could).

Finally, getting a breather, Ben Arfa made another great run at West Brom, taking the ball from deep inside our own half to just inside their area but his shot was saved by Foster. A few minutes later Ba found himself with a chance to break his dry spell but his attempt to curl it to the left of Foster was soft and easily saved.

We were nowhere near as dominant this half and without Colo we looked a bit more disorganised in defence. West Brom tried to take advantage of this but couldn’t.

On 68 minutes Williamson picked up a yellow card for elbowing Shane Long in the back of the head and this seemed to spark a spate of injuries that slowed the game right down. First of all Mulumbu pulled up with some sort of leg problem – hamstring maybe – and was substituted for Paul Scharner. Then Cisse was stretchered off with what the commentator thought was cramp in both calves and replaced by young Shane Ferguson. Then Morrison came off second best in a challenge with Demba Ba, so he limped off down the tunnel to be replaced by nobody as West Brom had used up all their substitutions. Just for good measure, Shola smacked Ridgewell in the heed, although Ridgewell was okay to continue after a few minutes. Somewhere in the middle of all that Yohan Cabaye took a free kick from 5 or 6 yards outside the box but put it well over and Ben Arfa was replaced by Shola Ameobi, although not because he was injured.

All these stoppages seemed to put a stop to West Brom’s efforts to get back at us, although they continued to try. It was to no avail though as after 7 minutes of injury time the ref signalled the end of the game at 1-3 to us.

It seems that so many times this season we’ve played in so-called “games of two halves” and this was a bit like that too, although perhaps not quite as bad as some have been. Our original front 3 were excellent today though and I reckon they’d be a handful for any team. Benny just seems to be getting better all the time; clearly he’s an attacker first and defender second but he’s certainly not afraid to put in the tackles too when it’s necessary.

Roll on Liverpool!

Match Details

Goals: Papiss Cissé (6, 34), Ben Arfa (12) Shane Long (52).
Yellow cards: Mike Williamson (65).
Red cards: None.
Possession: West Brom 50.6%, Newcastle United 49.4%.
Shots on Target: West Brom 2, Newcastle United 7.
Shots off Target: West Brom 9, Newcastle United 3.

Teams

West Bromwich Albion (4-5-1): Ben Foster (G), Billy Jones, Gareth McAuley, Jonas Olsson, Liam Ridgewell; Peter Odemwingie, Youssouf Mulumbu (Paul Scharner 69), James Morrison, Keith Andrews (Shane Long HT), Jerome Thomas (Chris Brunt HT), Marc-Antoine Fortune.

Substitutes: Luke Daniels, Nicky Shorey, Craig Dawson, Paul Scharner, Chris Brunt, Simon Cox, Shane Long.

Newcastle United (4-3-3): Tim Krul (G), Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini (C, Davide Santon 62), James Perch, Hatem Ben Arfa (Shola Ameobi 71), Yohan Cabaye, Danny Guthrie, Jonas Gutierrez, Demba Ba, Papiss Cisse (Shane Ferguson 74).

Subs: Rob Elliot, Shane Ferguson, Davide Santon, Mehdi Abeid, Dan Gosling, Haris Vuckic, Shola Ameobi.

WBA v Newcastle United Match highlights.

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NUFCBlog Author: Hugh de Payen I'm a baby-boomer of the punk rock persuasion, currently exiled in Somerset for crimes committed in a previous life where locals keep trying to poison me with something called 'scrumpy'. Hates sprouts, coat-hangers, Cilla Black, ornaments, Steven Seagull movies and 50 Cent (he's not worth 10). Hugh de Payen has written 634 articles on this blog.

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89 Responses

  1. “Within the first 5 minutes of kick-off I was wondering where our players had gone and who the imposters in orange were. We looked skillful, confident and fluent in possession, in complete contrast to the team I’ve been watching for that last 4 or 5 weeks. And it paid off too.”

    I was thinking it was the Netherlands with a couple of strips of black insulating tape stuck on top of their shirts Hugh, though not the Kung Fu thugs that were in the World Cup. It did seem to be a much better approach from the Silver Supremo than our usual away strategies though it was still six and two threes. West Brom absolutely hummed in the first half and did make it very easy for us. Second half was different.

  2. Definitely Workey fully agree. First half was the type of football you know we are capable of. Hopefully one game we will be able to play like that for the full match and hammer a team. Great win today against a team that we normally struggle against. A win against Liverpool will make things very interesting but I think it will be a very hard game.

  3. lualua17 says:
    March 25, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    “Definitely Workey fully agree. First half was the type of football you know we are capable of. Hopefully one game we will be able to play like that for the full match and hammer a team.”

    To be fair though lualua, West Brom were far better in the second half then they were in the first, and gave us much more of a game.

  4. Yeah I agree Workey but I think that was partially because we let them back into the game with the sloppy goal we conceded after that we looked quite nervous and West Brom were coming into the game more and more.

  5. We won – got three points away with a good display against a team we haven’t done so well against recently and still some people have to moan…

    Level with Chelsea and way ahead of Liverpool with not so many games to go and our form is picking up – if anyone had offered me that at the start of the season I’d have ripped their bloody arms off!

    Here’s to a European place for a season that’s already better than the last one :-)

  6. David says:
    March 25, 2012 at 9:30 pm

    “We won – got three points away with a good display against a team we haven’t done so well against recently and still some people have to moan…”

    Who’s moaning, David, apart from you?

  7. I’m not moaning Dave I am over the moon with how we have done this season I am just making an observation is that ok with you?

  8. HBA is now well & truly back to mental, physical & match fitness.

    It’s taken a while but he has been managed back in well & the lads attitude has been magnifique, biding his time, learning patience & grabbing his opportunity.
    He’s grown up since he joined us!

    What a player!

    Papiss Cisse,

    5/6, what a strike rate!
    Get in bonny lad!

    Perch has played brilliantly after an inauspicious start to his Newcastle career.
    The lad has a fat pair, well done James!

  9. Yeah Clint Flick HBA was outstanding today cut West Brom to bits with his running and some of his passes when available were sublime. Just watched Match of the Day and his run for the Goal was supposed to be over 80 yards and another run after that was 72 yards. He was doing that all day if that is not working hard I don’t know what is lol. I liked the interview after the Match as well he seemed genuinely happy hopefully he starts more games now.

    And Cisse if this is him not fully settled in yet then hopefully he will be frightening when he learns the language and gets fully settled in the league. Agree about Perch too when he first started at the club I wasn’t particularly impressed especially with all the red cards he was getting but credit where it is due he has massively improved and is showing what a great squad player he can be for us versatile and hard working. Put in some great tackles today as well.

  10. It was great to see a 433 today too.
    It’s been coming, there have been little nods to that building in recent weeks, especially since we passed the 40 point mark.

  11. lualua7,

    it’s starting to take some shape, isn’t it?
    Papiss & Ba with HBA interacting with them will scare any team.
    It probably helps that they all speak the same lingo like.

    Particularly love the way HBA has took on board the turning defence into attack thing. That’s what turns defenders & rips teams apart.

  12. Clint Flick,

    Yeah definitely we look like we have the makings of the Sir Bobby team at the minute with a few astute signings in the summer. That was a team that was brilliant on the break very fast and one of the fittest teams in the league which is why we scored so many late goals. What is your opinion on summer signings who would you realistically like to see us sign?

  13. CLiNT FLiCK says:
    March 25, 2012 at 11:07 pm

    “HBA is now well & truly back to mental, physical & match fitness.”

    Clint, for once, we played something more like a 4-3-3 today and the team played in a way that Ben Arfa is more familiar with. I don’t think that Cisse has had many problems settling in on the pitch, he’s not quite as “complete” a forward as Ba is perhaps, but he is a great assassin, especially so with players such as Ben Arfa and Ba at his side. That’s why I wanted him signed in the Summer.

    For the last time, Williamson had a decent game today and was actually one of our better players. He was good both in the air and in the tackle. He made a mistake, all defenders do at some time but being Newcastle United, we always have to have some kind of scapegoat, even when we win!

  14. A couple of defenders mate.
    A CB & a LB probably. We have some decent utility players now in Perch, Raylor, Santon & even Jonas. Plus we have a few bairns starting to get close to being played. I don’t think we need too much tbf & i wouldn’t want to see a whole bunch coming & going. I want players that want to play for Newcastle United first & foremost, ‘cos that’s what gets results.
    So if we can get a couple in & not lose anyone, solidify the core, we’re hard to beat.

  15. worky,

    totally agree mate, on all counts.
    Cisse looks like a kind of RVN but with a bit more skill.
    He could work on his ‘lobbing the ‘keeper’ a tad mind.
    ;)
    Especially with regard to Williamson.

  16. TBF,
    we shell-shocked them too.
    It’s not that often that you’re under that amount of pressure from the off at home, is it?

  17. CLiNT FLiCK says:
    March 26, 2012 at 12:08 am

    “we shell-shocked them too.
    It’s not that often that you’re under that amount of pressure from the off at home, is it?”

    In West Brom’s case, yes. With the exceptions of Chelsea and Blunderland victories recently, West Brom’s home form has been pretty dire and a big problem for them.

  18. Yeah defence is definitely the most important area to shore up. Would be great to have competition for all positions as we develop. Also hopefully some of the young lads will continue improving and will challenge for first team places in the future. Think that Ferguson looks like he could be a great player for us fingers crossed.

  19. hear colo could miss up to 4 matches with his hamstring :( and cisse just had cramp so he is fine. make or break time within touching distance of Europe we are looking good for the run in but will injuries cost us in the end?.

  20. Thanks for the report Hugh – 4-3-3 away from home & 0-3 up playing good football, things are looking good ! I don’t think there was a weak link anywhere.

    Hope Colo is OK, can’t aford to loose another defender – still, we knew that in the transfer window and took a risk, let’s hope it wasn’t a bad mistake !

    Liverpool next week – have they given up to concentrate on a cup double ? Bet they don’t fancy their chances at SJP

    HWTL

  21. From my files when Hughton took Ben Arfa on loan back in 2010. A Marseilles fan’s appraisal of Benny:

    “This guy has a bad temper, is a bit too inconsistent, not a good or efficient defender, but he is one of the most talented player I’ve ever seen.

    “He suffers too much from of form a media/fan hate towards dribblers. Fans, or media, are pretty harsh against players who takes too many risks, and then lose too many balls, when the team is not doing well. But the thing is that with players like Ben Arfa, he can lose 3 balls, but on the fourth one, he’ll be creating a goal all by himself (which he did a lot of times).

    “Way too many people can’t take a step back, and look at the big picture : they’ll prefer a safe player, who loses very few balls but doesn’t create much, rather than a Ben Arfa, who might lose a lot of balls, but will create some very dangerous situations. ‘He’ll usually get booed the 3rd or 4th time he’ll lose possession). In a game that is being most of the time won by one goal, having a player able to change the side of the game in one moment is invaluable.

    “Marseille had some good dribblers recently (Nasri, Ribery, Niang, Valbuena), but none of them come close to Ben Arfa : he can effortlessly go past 2/3 players, like very few players in football. Newcastle fans, I don’t guarantee a good financial investment, but you’ll see the of the mos beautiful technical moves and fluent football you’ve ever seen.”

  22. I see nufc337 says colo could miss up to 4 matches with his hamstring – damn! Why didn’t we sign cover for Saylor?

  23. CLINT
    Don’t know about his head or whether he was outta shape or not, but a lack of playing time couldda been the problem.
    He was certainly fit to day, covered a lotta ground, both in attack and as a defender ,making long mazey runs with the ball, almost the length of the pitch on more than one occassion
    His passing was sublime and if given half a chance has no problem burying the ball.
    Why this guy has been sitting on the bench, replaced by a hack like Raylor just amazes me.
    But he held his toungue and put his head down and it all came to gether for him to-day,a great perfomance that will hopefully convince our genius manager it would be foolish to sit someone so talented.

    WORKEY
    For the last time, Williamson is crap, allways been crap.
    And no he did’nt have a good game, he was responsible for a horrendous decision,that caused their goal and would have been responsible for what was a dissalowed goal also.
    And i dont know why you defend him, Titus Bramble was/is twice the player this guy is, yet was hounded out of town, for what some described as a lack of concentration.
    And this guy gets a free ride ?
    Whats that aboot ?

  24. Wow worked that Marseilles fan certainly summed up Ben Arfa didn’t he. To be fair as well I don’t think he loses the ball that much in dangerous areas for us. Hopefully his attitude has also improved since he has moved to NUFC he has seemed patient so far when he had a lack of first team games so fingers crossed he has grown up since those days like he said in a previous interview.

  25. nufc337 I will be gutted if Colo is out for that long he has been a rock for us this season. If that is the case who will be the cover on the bench Kadar who could be released at the end of the season?

  26. SUPERMAC
    Though not privy to whats going on on the transfer front.
    I find it hard to understand the clubs decission to not strengthen the defence other than make a late deal for Santon, that smacked of desperation.
    But preferred to splash out on an expensive striker.
    Unless they Ashley and co. were sensative to not spending any of the Carroll money to replace him.
    Cisse looks like a decent buy, but for tat kinda bread we couldda had Sow and for half the amount could have signed Long, who had a good game to-day.
    Anyway did they think that the club could go without any injuries across the back line.
    If i ruled the world, wouldda strengthened the back four and let Ba and Shola or HBA take care of getting the goals.

  27. lualua17 says:
    March 26, 2012 at 12:42 am

    “Wow worked that Marseilles fan certainly summed up Ben Arfa didn’t he.”

    He summed up some fans rather well too, lualua.

  28. workyticket says:
    March 26, 2012 at 12:56 am

    ‘He summed up some fans rather well too, lualua.’

    Yeah I agree. I hope that wasn’t aimed at me because I have been a big supporter of HBA since he has been at the club but I understand he is not everyones cup of tea. The way I look at it is he has the quality to rip any team apart with the runs he makes and the quality of his passing a lot like Robert and Ginola when they were at the Toon. We need to build the team around that sort of talent and ideally whoever is playing right back Simpson at this moment in time needs to understand that Ben Arfa isn’t going to be a lot of use when it comes to defending. I think Ben Arfa will try to get back but I don’t think he is really effective in defence. I think Beresford summed up the type of player Ben Arfa is when he made a quote about Ginola but unfortunately I can’t find it. It was something about Worker Bees and Butterflies but ah well lol.

  29. im sure perch will be more than capable to fill in at cb showed a very good performance but with the next couple of matches cant help but feeling our center backs will be targeted. the only player who could cover for cb on the bench would be raylor or a academy player

  30. come to think of it the adrian mariappa deal back in the transfer window would of been great for us right about now!

  31. nufc337 says:
    March 26, 2012 at 1:22 am
    im sure perch will be more than capable to fill in at cb showed a very good performance but with the next couple of matches cant help but feeling our center backs will be targeted. the only player who could cover for cb on the bench would be raylor or a academy player

    Yeah true problem is I don’t know who from the academy Pardew will choose to make the step up should anything happen to Williamson or Perch. He doesn’t seem to rate Kadar, Streete is injured not sure what the other youngsters are like.

  32. there are some names that could at least make the bench Jeff Henderson who is a center back, but really scrapping the bottom of the barrel now!. Do remember we played simpson as center back against Norwich but didn’t really work out as he and perch couldn’t handle the height and physical presence of the opposition. with pardew playing Albert Einstein with his current experimentation’s with team formations anything is possible :)

  33. We could try Santon there should the worse happen however he might not be able to handle the physicality of CB. He is taller than Simpson though.

  34. Since coming to Newcastle I think Ben Arfa has matured as a person and as a player. I also think he is now full of confidence following his recent appearances but not the type of over confidence that will turn him back to being a sulky prima donna. I think good coaching and tough love from the coaching staff have done that.

    I have been really impressed with the recent performances of the much maligned James Perch. In his last two games he has played as a defensive midfielder, a left back and a centre back. And has done well in all three. I’m assuming his vast improvement is down to good coaching, particularly from Pardew who concentrates on the defence side of the team. I can’t see Perch being sold now. We need a few versatile players. He and Raylor are essential to the team.

    I often think that the team is more suited to away performances than playing at home. Perhaps there is just too much expectation at home and also away teams at SJP defend deep and with the exception of Ben Arfa we don’t have too many options at breaking down a stubborn defence.

    It will be a tough game against Liverpool. I don’t see them going belly-up. They will be up for it. Looks like a draw.

  35. Gotto say mightily impressed by the toon,s result against baggies ,

    what is amazing was we got beat 3=2 by brom at SJP , and yet can beat them so easily today ,

    I looked at the results at WBA only one other team has scored 3 at Baggies , and that was spurs , not even Manu scored 3 ( 2 only !) , so it is very impressive , Keep it up boys KTF ….SJP Forever !!

  36. Oh forgot to say …..

    ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,
    ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,
    ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,
    ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!,ST JAMES’ PARK FOREVER !!, Fech ashley

  37. We signed Papiss from Germany Cisse! Cisse!
    He chose the toon instead of scum Cisse! Cisse!
    He scores the goals hes a superstar
    he plays up front with Demba Ba!

    Papiss Cisse Newcastle’s Number 9!!!!

    great win lads. bring on Livercastle…i mean Liverpool

  38. chuck,

    HBA’s really just come back from his horrendous injury, both mentally & physically.
    He’s proper match fit now. He was sat on the bench for the perfectly understandable reason of not being quite ready.
    He is now sooo ready, brimming with confidence & leaving it on the pitch.
    He’s been fed back in properly, for me like. I’m glad he wasn’t rushed back, he’s like a coiled spring now.

    Williamson made one mistake yesterday, aye, it lead to a goal, shit happens man.
    You can apportion blame to any goal scored, was it good attack, was it bad defence?
    Don’t hear anyone saying he’s a world beater like, but we’ve had worse, much worse, leave it rover, leeeeeave iiiiiit!
    :)

  39. not so funny when cisse went off but had a chuckle when the fans chanted cisse scores when he is off :)

  40. Clint,

    Having looked at their goal again, the ball just didn’t stand up right for Williamson to hoof it away. It’s arguable whether Krul should have been quicker off his line but it’s all water under the bridge now. Excellent three points.

  41. Kamar,

    aye mate, good point!

    There’ll always be a player or 2 that people will have it in for, at every club.
    I don’t see the point.
    It’s not like it’s gonna help the situation.

  42. i think credit where credit is due. i think pardew got his tactics spot on.

    as for williamson.

    i was there and most of the fans thought krul was at fault. with williamson being closed down krul should have given williamson an option. what krul was doing coming so far out i dont know. it would have been better if he could have defended his 6 yard box instead of rushing to cover the whole box.

    if krul had have stayed within his 6 yard box this would have given Williamson an option to head the ball to him instead of leaving a gap for long to walk through.

    great day, great atmosphere and a great unexpected result.

    im not sure if things will be so easy against liverpool but this might be the right time to play them, their heads are down.

    i can see suerez making a fool out of perch, but lets hope he can keep strong and continue his great improvements.

  43. lualua17 says:
    March 26, 2012 at 1:14 am

    “Yeah I agree. I hope that wasn’t aimed at me because I have been a big supporter of HBA since he has been at the club but I understand he is not everyones cup of tea.”

    No, it wasn’t aimed at you at all, lualua.

  44. Great 1st half and a gritty 2nd.
    Hope we get int Europe and see Big Mick bank roll another batch of quality new players.
    Ben Arfa is really starting to look the part and Cisse looks awesome.

    Not getting carried away but I hope we totally batter Liverpool next week…..hope Carroll and Enrique get the reception they deserve JUDAS’s.

    Bet they are both looking forward to this fixture :lol:

  45. KAMAR
    Everything you said in rgard to HBA was pure supposition on your part, everything is prefaced by ” I think” then you continues as if it were fact.
    You can always use “IMO”.

    James Perch
    A pacey little guy who has planty of self confidence and good ball skills, gives 100%, but lets not kid ourselves, he’s no Bobby Moore.
    And a lack of size is a detriment to playing as a CD.

    CLINT
    In regard to HBA, also supposition, he’s been on the bench for months, training regularly, but our genius manager has like Santon, refused to give him time.
    Players need to play in order to achieve match fitness, but Pardew prefers to play wingers in a defensive role, substituting, hacks like Raylor for HBA.
    It was’nt untill, following his recent performances, he was more or less obliged to start him.
    Yesterdays game was the result.
    He was involved in all three goals, played good defence, passed sublimely, fetched and carried, in fact did it all.
    I’m curious as to what his instructions were, as he certainly linked well with the front two.
    Have to say as i prefer an attacking game where players are given leave to take on defenders, with the ball on the ground.
    It’s much more entertaining and as seen by yesterdays game, more successful, especially when you have players with the ability to bury the ball.
    I just hope Pardew got it, cause he will undoubtedly take credit for it , deserved or not .

  46. One more time, to those who believe that Williamson is a decent player, perhaps it’s time for you to pay a visit to “Spec’s Savers”, he makes Titus Bramble look like like a football genius.
    Take a closer look at his positioning, how many times he’s responsible for defensive errors, how often he is on the ground and for such a tall guy, not that great in the air,(How often has he scored from set pieces?)
    I’m sure Simpson gets slagged any number of times because he has to cover for him, and cant wait for Saylor to return.
    Face it he’s just not what we want or need at this club.

  47. Lets get one thing straight before next weekend….

    No way is Andy Carroll a “Judas” – he didn’t want to go, he was cashed in because of the size of the offer…..

    En-ricky on the other hand deserves everything he gets from the SJP crowd…..

  48. Chuck – I agree. Williamson is a bit of a liability sometimes, but right now he’s all we’ve got! Bet Cashley is chewing about not signing another centre-half when he had the chance last summer or in January……hopefully, having tasted the wine that is the top 4-5-6 of the EPL, he won’t make the same mistake again.

    Ashley likes to win.

  49. UTD111 says:
    March 26, 2012 at 7:23 pm

    “Ashley likes to win.”

    Ashley likes to win what UTD111? Sometimes in order to win some things things, you have to lose others.

  50. workyticket says:
    March 26, 2012 at 7:52 pm
    UTD111 says:
    March 26, 2012 at 7:23 pm

    “Ashley likes to win.”

    Ashley likes to win what UTD111? Sometimes in order to win some things things, you have to lose others.
    _____________________________________________

    He’s hated in the so-called “City Of London” as he cocks a snoop at their processes and does it his way. They are left grinding their snotty teeth when he is invariably successful in his business ventures.

    I don’t think it’s in his nature to see United fdail as it will reflect on him. He’s doing that his own ay too and it’s proving successful – no-one can deny that.

    Personally, I’ll still never forgive him for his treatment of Sir Kevin.

  51. “Within the first 5 minutes of kick-off I was wondering where our players had gone and who the imposters in orange were. We looked skillful, confident and fluent in possession, in complete contrast to the team I’ve been watching for that last 4 or 5 weeks.”

    Just goes to show what playing to our strengths does for the team and for our performance. tunyc has often said that Pardwho doesnt seem to know what his best team is and, more importantly, how to get the best out of them when he finds it.

    Yesterdays performance was almost all down to the formation – 4-3-3.

    It allowed HBA to run at defenders with more than one option to pass.

    It gave West Brom defenders more than one outlet to deal with. Three quality forward players will almost always terrorise a mid table PL defence and yesterday was no exception

    It allowed midfielders more time to join in play because we werent losing the ball within five seconds of first touching it.

    I found myself almost unable to comprehend that this was a Pardwho team at half time and I have to say that maybe, at long last, he’s beginning to see the light !!!!!!!!!

  52. Ashley wants it to be a success for sure. Mostly so he can have the last laugh at Hall, Shepherd etc who most likely laughed their bollocks off when he bought the club not realising the debt etc. He wants to show it can be profitable running a football club.

  53. Chuck says:
    March 26, 2012 at 8:09 pm
    UTD111
    Get over KK, he is’nt exactly been ascertained as ready for beatification, just yet !
    ___________________________

    Hear what you’re saying Chuck, but the FCBs treatment of a United legend was enough for me.

    I was a season ticket holder, double bond holder etc etc – but it wasn’t just the treatment of Sir Kevin – it was the lying (which they admitted), the way they treat the fans like dumb cattle, the drunken outbursts of (classless) Owl Heed etc etc

    These people are not my people – but they unfortunately own and run my beloved club.

    Keegan or Ashley?
    Keegan or Owl Heed?

    No contest mate

  54. “I was a season ticket holder………. the way they treat the fans like dumb cattle, the drunken outbursts of (classless) Owl Heed etc etc ……….these people are not my people – but they unfortunately own and run my beloved club”

    Spot on UTD, wonder how many others are in a similar situation ?

  55. ANDYMAC
    True, found it hard to believe myself, which led me to pose the question, what instructions were given to HBA?
    Was this an intended 4-3-3 or did it just appear to be?
    I’m afraid this puts Pardew in somewhat of a quandry, being his penchant for using defensive wingers and the fact his former choice up front was Raylor , now fit ?
    Does he drop HBA and re-insert Raylor, would he risk the wrath of the fans ?
    Or has he reached the conclusion, that being he has players with the skills to play a 4-3-3 lineup, with the front three capeable of both scoring and in general terrorising defenders and a second three with Tiote, Cabaye and Jonas, who are all ball winners and can hopefully supply the front three.
    Which leaves our back four, still weak, to where attack becomes the best form of defense.
    If we must we can insert Raylor as a CD, if he cant handle it sub him with Perch, but play Santon as a LB.
    If you dont like that then play Santon as RB, Perch @ LB with erm, Williamson and Simpson as CD’s.

  56. Chuck says:
    March 26, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    “WORKEY
    That a quote from Sun Tzu ?”

    No Chuck, it’s a quote from me. For instance Jimbob says that Ashley wants Newcastle United to be a “success,” which is hard to argue with for obvious reasons. But what kind of success does he want most of all? Success on the pitch? Success on the balance sheet? Success in the short term, or in the long term. What if these things are mutaually exclusive?

    Does he want success for Sports Direct more? Of course he does, that is still his primary business interest. But what if success for Sports Direct compromises the success of NUFC, for instance with the rebranding of the club as Sports Direct United? This may enhance Sports Direct International PLC, but it devalues the brand of Newcastle United with no financial return for the club. And so on…

    Some people don’t think things through.

  57. UTD111
    You are preaching to the choir mate, but is what it is.
    Yeah they definately lack class, but IMO Ashley is whats known these days as a micro- manager, (polite term for control freak)and only deals with agreeable sorts like Derick and Pardner.
    Anyone with innovative ideas i believe, in top management would find short shrift at this club.
    Would’nt it be interesting to be a fly on the wall, so to speak, at a board meeting.
    Probably hear more “yowsas” than you would care to.

  58. chuck,

    HBA’s been coming back to ‘full match fitness’ for some time, after a horrendous injury. Which in turn means he still hasn’t played 20 games for us. He is still learning about prem league football. Same goes for Santon.
    They are being eased into playing high octane football that they are just getting used to.
    Anyone can see that mate.
    Plus,
    now that we are well & truly safe this season the shackles are starting to come off. As illustrated by a 433 form, that has been edged towards for a couple of games now.
    HBA has started to do his defensive work too & it’s paying off too.
    There’s ever so slightly more to managing a team than just hoying 11 players onto the field man.

    As UTD said: Williamson is what we have right now, unless you’re suggesting we play another player out of position, that you say you don’t like/want?
    Or i guess we could just play 10 men & leave a gap for the injured Saylor?
    There’s ALWAYS gonna be the odd player that doesn’t have the guile to set a team alight, but that’s no reason to keep chipping away at them, as it won’t make it better.

  59. AndyMac says:
    March 26, 2012 at 8:04 pm

    “Within the first 5 minutes of kick-off I was wondering where our players had gone and who the imposters in orange were. We looked skillful, confident and fluent in possession, in complete contrast to the team I’ve been watching for that last 4 or 5 weeks.”

    All true, AndyMac. It is also true that we were playing against a team of nine men in the first half, with Andrews and Mulumbu absent, although technically, they were on the pitch (wandering around aimlessly). We were having it off with them until they were pulled off by the old silver fox. The second half was a different story however. The Silver Supremo was going in the right direction though and we deserved the win.

  60. WORKEY
    You are also “preaching to the choir”so to speak.
    I have raised the same issue on this blog, from a slightly differing viewpoint.
    Asking whether Ashleys priority is to first recover his investment, by being a selling club, buying cheap and selling at a big profit.
    And having recently read LLambias’s statement in regard to selling off one or two star players, i’m concerned.
    Appears to me that the Carroll sale was an eye opener to Ashley.
    Something that could be repeated and in fact be a club policy.
    It’ not as if it has’nt accured previously, just look at some of the stars who started out at West Ham and other clubs.
    Clubs that had to rely on being selling clubs, never being quite top sides but competing at mid table.
    The retailers mantra has been echoed at NUFC, it’s buy younger, better and cheaper.
    The club is an adjunct to “Sports Direct” if you dont believe it look at the number of tacky signs everywher within TV range at “St. James’ Park”
    Then to be the devils advocate, perhaps Ashleys ego may push him for some success with the club.
    There’s nowt like quite like it, ye knaa.

  61. Met Police have assured residents in North London that a loud explosion wasn’t a terrorist attack, just Spurs’ bubble bursting.

  62. chuck
    that’s a truck load of supposition man, when you consider that you’re talking about a guy that has said virtually nothing since day one, ain’t it?
    We can extrapolate what we like but it won’t gain us points nor prizes.

    It will get to the point where we’re moaning for the sake of it, which in it’s self is ok, if you like that sort of thing.

  63. Williamson isn’t the best defender for sure, and I’ve been critical of him, but I thought on Sunday he was good. Two decent blocks, and I think it was just a lack of communication from Krul and himself, which I’ve seen thousands of times between a goalkeeper and defender. Even the best ones in the world make them mistakes at times.

    Perch had a cracking game and should be proud of himself too.

  64. Personally, I think Ashley wants the club to be successful on the pitch and in the balance sheets and I think he thinks his transfer policy can achieve that, keeping some players and selling others at a profit to fund the purchase of a new generation of players and thus keep the cycle going.

    However, the club must be self-funding as far as Ashley is concerned and our achievements on the pitch might be limited by that, by which I mean he’s not going to do an Abramovich or Sheikh Mansour and build a team to make a direct assault on the title regardless of the cost. Thus balancing the books is his first concern; success on the pitch his second.

    As to Sports Direct, well we’ve seen that he’s quite happy to use NUFC to promote that brand and there’s no denying that Sports Direct is his number 1 concern. I have no idea how that will pan out in terms of future ‘conficts of interest’ between the two entities, if there are any.

  65. AndyMac says:

    “Within the first 5 minutes of kick-off I was wondering where our players had gone and who the imposters in orange were. We looked skillful, confident and fluent in possession, in complete contrast to the team I’ve been watching for that last 4 or 5 weeks.”

    WT says:

    “All true, AndyMac”

    Yus you’re right and I dont think I disagreed with Hugh’s original comments.

    We looked good because we played to our strengths. Tis all !

    PS despite what CF believes, HBA hasnt featured for Pardwho all that often because Pardwho hasnt been able to fit him into his beloved 4-4-2 without him “tracking back” all the time.

    PPS You’re running the risk of too many silver synonyms and I’m not quite sure what “We were having it off with them until they were pulled off” means ? :lol:

  66. Andy,

    we weren’t ‘safe’ back then, that defo has something to do with it. HBA is turning into something more than just a luxury player now & amazingly, that has something to do with how he’s been coached.
    Mad i know!

    Jimbob,
    well said mate.

    UTD,
    speak for yourself mate.
    :lol:

  67. CLiNT FLiCK says:

    “Andy,

    “we weren’t ‘safe’ back then, that defo has something to do with it. HBA is turning into something more than just a luxury player now & amazingly, that has something to do with how he’s been coached.”

    So are you saying Pardwho played cautiously because he wanted to get us to 40 points ? Now that we’re there he’s gonna go hell for leather with creative, attacking flair ?

    Mad i know!

  68. Andy,

    something like that mate.
    I’m not sure that ‘hell for leather’ is the correct term, but i detect a bit of loosening of the bit, don’t you mate?
    Hatem was giving the ball away a bit too often & when you’re on 40 & below points, for a defensive minded coach, that’s hard to take.
    He even mentioned in his interview that he wanted HBA to find a new balance between defence/attack as he thought he defended a bit too much v norwich.
    It’s noticeable that HBA has scored/assisted by turning defence into attack in recent games. Running from his own box/half to create.
    He looks so much tougher mentally(& physically) to me like.

  69. AP did say in a recent interview that we would be ‘opening up’ once we got to a safe points total too.

    Maybe he meant it?

  70. Clint – 42 goals in 30 games, I reckon we’ve “opened up” enough already this season!!

    Our defence was doing so well until Stevie Taylor got injured – makes me wonder where we might have been now if we’d has Stevie instead of Williamson?

  71. UTD,
    i think you know what i meant mate?

    Saylor is missed, he was doing well, but thems the breaks, hey?

  72. The phrase “Luxury player” always reminds of old Mike Bassett type managers. I’m thinking of banning the phrase on this blog, along with “but he has no end product.”

    Of course, no one in French football, or anywhere else had the slightest inkling that Ben Arfa could actually play before he came to Newcastle, or that he might be quite effective playing in a revolutionary new system which utilised three forward players. It took the vision of Carver and Pardew to see a half decent player in there somewhere, coach him in the right way, and play him in their revolutionary new system.

    Incidentally, Ben Arfa never had a great problem with his workrate before he joined the club, though his tackling does leave something to be desired.

    And aye, our defence completely collapsed the moment Steven Taylor got injured, if we don’t get into Europe, it will all be the fault of Mike Williamson, as it was the fault of James Perch before he became an overnight genius, or Danny Simpson, or whoever the scapegoat of the moment is.

  73. Hugh de Payen says:
    March 26, 2012 at 9:41 pm

    “As to Sports Direct, well we’ve seen that he’s quite happy to use NUFC to promote that brand and there’s no denying that Sports Direct is his number 1 concern. I have no idea how that will pan out in terms of future ‘conficts of interest’ between the two entities, if there are any.”

    Hugh, there is a conflict. Sports Direct is like a prostitute, it’s something most people slip into furtively and with shame. Like a prostitute, it may make shedloads of money but you wouldn’t want to be seen going into one in public, would you? It’s brand stands for big sheds full of shit, tatty tarpulins with “everything must go!!!!” scrawled on them and misleading offers.

    On the other hand, the brand of NUFC is over a hundred years of passion and drama, it’s St James’ Park, it’s Alan Shearer and many other things too, and in the world of modern marketing, that’s worth something very substantial indeed. If you were an executive with another brand such as Nike, or O2, or Apple or whatever, which “brand” would you rather be associated with? So, whatever the club has gained from the ownership of Mike Ashley, the club has lost millions through it’s association with his company and it’s rebranding of the club. That’s a conflict of interest.

  74. “….it’s something most people slip into furtively and with shame. Like a prostitute, it may make shedloads of money but you wouldn’t want to be seen going into one in public, would you?…..”

    Sounds like that MFI Flatpack Stadium on Queerside to me!!

  75. I dunno – I can’t be arsed with slating FCB’s anymore, looking at other chairmen in the league they don’t look as bad – if Fat Ash didn’t have such a chav brand stuck all over the place I’d almost forgive him but jeez I won’t accept a carrier bag in that shop ( tho never having visited a prostitute I can’t really agree with that analogy worky :)

    Think someones already mentioned that Pards said a few weeks ago that he would go for it in last 8-9 games if we were still in a position to do so and that HBA would be very important in the run in…. well we are and he is …….. COME ON BINDIPPERS – LETS HAVE IT !!

  76. WORKEY
    Yeah we get it!
    The HBA bit was amusing.
    But there’s some truth to the fact, our small defensive unit lacks quality and yes in fact Saylors absence is obviously a major factor.
    As for Perch, I will repeat my take on him once more.
    A pacey, confident, with good ball skills, player.
    But lets not suggest for a moment he’s Bobby Moore.
    The other guy i wont even mention.

  77. AndyMac says:
    March 27, 2012 at 8:11 pm

    “For those who believe that HBA has only now come alive under the expert guidance and tutelage of Pardwho and Carver, I’ll just say one word – Everton.”

    Andy, when it became apparent that Hughton was bringing him in on loan, I did alot of research on him and was subsequently pretty much laughed at when I wrote that he could become one of the truly great world players. However, it’s only what quite a few people in French football have been saying it since he was an infant.

    Even before he kicked a ball for Newcastle, he was in a completely different league. Some people still don’t quite realise quite what the club has in it’s hands yet.

    Benny the bairn:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHvu7ZGy_WQ

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3XxhgTnF3I

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oyITa2aZ_Ss

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