Kevin Nolan – A great loss to Newcastle United?

Kevin Nolan - Chicken dance.

Nolan: Still Chicken dancing on a regular basis.

Of course, Newcastle United’s game against West Ham on Sunday will see the return to St James’ Park of two ex Magpies, Kevin Nolan and Andy Carroll, and also an ex manager, Sam Allardyce.

In this piece I intend to concentrate on one of those, Kevin Nolan, who has received much undeserved flak from the less “gifted” sections of Newcastle United’s fanbase since his departure. Though Carroll has almost certainly received even more, that is undoubtedly a whole story on it’s own and as a Newcastle United blogger, I am still suffering from Carroll fatigue, and possibly you are too?

Getting back to Nolan though, below is one example of the kind of thing I’m writing about from so called “fans”. It is from the commments section below a story on the midfielder in local rag, the Chronic.

“Yes kevin Nolan, one word springs to mind that actually rhyms with “Fishbowl” when talking about the south….”**ithole” Thank you for your service, but sorry, you wouldn’t get into this squad ahead of Ben Arfa or Cabaye, get your head out of the smogg air son, big clubs have demanding, passionate fans, that’s why so many can’t handle the pressure up here and depart for debt laden clubs willing to overpay on salaries, smaller crowds, less expectation, and poorer playing standards installed by useless fat Sam!”

Sadly, it is but one of many since the player left the club for West Ham in June, 2011. Another one was “What a piece of business replacing this fatty with Cabaye.” However, it may have escaped the attention of those writers that Nolan has scored as many goals, and as many assists as both Hatem Ben Arfa and Yohan Cabaye put together this season. Lets take a look.

Nolan vs Ben Arfa and Cabaye (All competitions)
Apps Goals Assts Shots S.o.G. MinsPl M.P.G.
Kevin Nolan 11 4 3 34 11 965 241
Hatem Ben Arfa 10 2 2 20 5 886 443
Yohan cabaye 12 2 1 23 5 841 421

Assts – Assists, S.o.G. – Shots on Goal, MinsPl – Minutes Played, M.P.G. – Minutes per Goal.

Dear reader, please don’t get me wrong. I am not trying to use this as a stick to beat both Ben Arfa and Cabaye, who are seen as replacements for Nolan and Joey Barton as top midfielders in the side. They are indeed great players and great signings who are undoubted assets to the Newcastle United team. There is also the consideration that they all diferent kinds of player, though both Nolan and Cabaye could be described as “box to box” midfielders, they both live up to this description in different ways. However, without going into too much analysis of these statistics it does give the lie to some of the “slower” fans’ assertions that Nolan is some kind of fat old has been that we are well rid of. Of course though, this season alone is great for looking at the players’ current form, but ten or eleven games isn’t that much to go on, so lets look at their all time Newcastle United records. I have not included any of Nolan’s games in the Championship, as that would be an unfair comparison. Here goes!

All time Newcastle United record (excluding Championship)
Apps Goals Assts Shots S.o.G. MinsPl M.P.G.
Kevin Nolan 47 13 5 74 29 3831 295
Hatem Ben Arfa 44 9 8 41 14 2934 326
Yohan cabaye 50 7 7 85 30 4052 579

Assts – Assists, S.o.G. – Shots on Goal, MinsPl – Minutes Played, M.P.G. – Minutes per Goal. (Stats from ESPN and Transfermarkt)

So there you have it. All have now had a roughly similar amount of time bearing in mind that we are not counting Nolan’s season of Championship games. Nolan was more prolific in terms of goals, with the team scoring noticeably fewer goals from midfield since he left. This is especially so since Nolan’s attacking game was transformed by Chris Hughton after he took over from Iain Dowie and Alan Shearer as manager.

Though undoubtedly less of a “playmaker” than either Ben Arfa or Cabaye, Nolan’s record for assists doesn’t look too bad. One thing Cabaye has undoubtedly brought to the team though is his defensive qualities. The Frenchman has made far more tackles in the Premiership than any other player this season with 117. To put this in perspective, Fabricio Coloccini, Mike Williamson and Steven Taylor have only made 111 collectively and Check Tiote has only made 67. But I won’t get bogged down in stats again. In Nolan’s favour of course, there was also his excellent leadership qualities as Captain. In the run up to our game with West Ham, his current manager, the abovementioned Sam Allardyce had this to say on Nolan’s leadership qualities:

“As far as Kevin is concerned, the most tricky decision was to make him Bolton captain at the age of 23. It was a massive risk, asking him to handle much older and more experienced players. Once or twice in those early years, I thought his game was being affected and wondered whether to take the captaincy off him but I’m glad to say that, since then, he has developed into the captain I thought he’d become.

“Kevin enjoys his responsibilities on and off the pitch. If the lads want something he will go out of his way to help them. He sees me when he needs to but he never comes telling tales. I was the same. I was a captain as a player but when a manager asked me to tell tales, I told him: “You don’t want a captain, you want a snitch. There are fewer Kevin Nolans about these days, I’m sad to say.”

Which is a far cry from the smear stories spread by Mike Ashley and Derek Llambias to discredit both Nolan and Chris Hughton in the wake of Hughton’s controversial sacking due to not being “horrible” enough for Derek Llambias’ tastes. The story went that it was actually Kevin Nolan and a core of older players such as Joey Barton and Alan Smith were actually running team affairs more than Hughton. Perhaps this is part of the reason for the resentment felt towards our ex-Captain by the more basic section of the fanbase, or perhaps it was further tales of Nolan’s “greed” for turning down a two year contract which, allegedly, would only be activated IF the club achieved a top seven finish in the club’s second season in the Premiership. This when Allardyce was wanting to take his old captain back to West Ham with a four year contract offer for around £55,000 per week.

One thing which is certain is that Nolan has not deserved the censure, or the derision at his considerable abilities from alleged Newcastle United fans who seemingly know less than nothing about football if they think that Nolan was no great loss to the side. I sincerely hope they keep their traps shut tomorrow and give Nolan the welcome he deserves rather than fall once again for the culture of dishonesty in the Newcastle United boardroom.

Now I’ve got that off my chest, I will finish with a comment from yesterday by site user “toontony.” It was about Nolan in response to a comment I made when I was thinking of writing this piece, and I thought summed things up rather well.

“He was a great player and captain for us in some very difficult times, and he still is a great player. Can’t blame him for wanting a better contract after what Ashley wanted to give him.”

But what do you think? Please let us know your thoughts in our comment section and Nolan poll below.

Finally, I have also included a video tribute from YouTube by Toon fan ““Welzyyy,” made when Nolan left the club.

“Kevin Nolan – Goodbye”

Poll

avatar NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1036 articles on this blog.

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36 Responses to “Kevin Nolan – A great loss to Newcastle United?”

  1. 1
    avatar sirjasontoon says:

    Pardew is a Tool.

  2. 2
    avatar cloggybob says:

    Nolan’s a true warrior who never shirks his duty and leads from the front.

  3. 3
    avatar tha boy says:

    Kevin Nolan was a good player for us, but his over payed salary was not justified. Lived off Andy Carroll and long ball games. In todays game in a team that moves the ball along the ground he would be left chasing shadows of our own players. He manages to play well thanks to the his football brain an get in the right areas for tap ins. And for a final view he left a strong club to play in a lower league for more money, good riddance cabaye any day for me.

  4. 4
    avatar arfachance says:

    Would be interesting to see his stats after he convinced big andy to turn his back on us so couldnt feed of him anymore as I dont think he pulled up many trees up after andy left

  5. 5
    avatar jack72 says:

    cant understand people giving Nolan a hard time.i thought he was great for us.great leader on the pitch,chipped in with plenty ov goals.no Toon supporter can justify slating wor former captain.

    heres a question for those who that slate him……
    would we ov getting out the championship without Nolan?

  6. 6
    avatar TROJAN RECORDS 73 says:

    anyone who gives nolan stick, is a f**kin’ ingrate.
    no one should ever forget the job he done for us, we’ve struggled to get goals from midfield, since he’s left.
    i think people should put into context, about his fish bowl comments, because newcastle can be full on, for footballers, due to the fanatasism, shown by some sections of the fanbase.
    you can get lost in london, and sometimes people need to get away from the madness.
    personally, i wish old captain tugboat, was still at the club, he would have been worth his WEIGHT in gold, in europe.
    anyone saying he couldn’t get into our side, is talking through their a**e, he’s probably got more pace, than yohan cabaye.
    lets be honest, there’s times where cabaye has dragged his backside, since he’s arrived.
    nolan could still be worth 10-15 goals a season, and no one arrives, late in the box, like he does.
    never seen a player score goals from that sort of position, since paul warhurst.

  7. 7
    avatar toontony says:

    Fame at last!

    Seriously though worky, a really well written story. As for my thoughts on Nolan, you can see those at the top!

  8. 8
    avatar toontony says:

    tha boy says:

    Lived off Andy Carroll and long ball games. In todays game in a team that moves the ball along the ground he would be left chasing shadows of our own players.

    tha boy do you actually watch the games? if you did, you might notice that we’re one of the biggest long ball teams there is now. Then again, maybe not.

  9. 9
    avatar tha boy says:

    I think everybody respects what job he has done at Newcastle, Bolton and now West Ham. But you cant ignore the style of play that was used at those clubs during his time. He benefited well from loose balls in the box and was great at that. How many assists did he make? 1 in his last season for Newcastle. Does he get picked for his national side? Cabaye does. I respect Nolan for what he has done but he is not a top 10 side player. And in todays Newcastle side I dont see how he would get a look in over tiote, cabaye or ben arfa.

  10. 10
    avatar toontony says:

    chuck says:

    Toon tony @6#
    If you think Williamson was taken of for no reason, look at the highlights of both Brugge goals and tell me he was’nt completely out of position.

    Chuck it looked more like it was colo who was done for that first goal and i don’t see what Williamson was doing that wrong for the second. Give the lad a break! :-)

  11. 11
    avatar toontony says:

    Oops I made that last comment in the wrong blog! sorry about that

  12. 12
    avatar Chuck says:

    When we bought Nolan for somewhere in the region of four million, i knew from his days with BSA he was a cleanup scorer, got onto those loose balls in the penalty area,
    and thought ok?
    My opinion changed over time, sure he was’nt the fastest guy in the side, but he brought a certain leadership and confidence to a side who following relegation needed it.
    He established himself as a regular scorer and further developed that role.
    No doubt he was influential in the dressing room as was Joey, but not as far as anyone knows in a negative manner.
    Hughton was smart enough to use that influence in a positive way, therefore the rumors of the two scousers running the dressing room.
    But IMO Pardew saw them as rivals who could rock his boat and also IMO, got rid of them as soon as possible.
    And his praise of Nolan is just another example of his hypocracy.

  13. 13
    avatar arfachance says:

    Trojan records so anyone that doesn’t agree with your views on nolan not deserving stick is a f@cking ingrate ? Well thats very kind of you how old are you, you really need to get a grip and realize that some of us have a different opinion from yours and are just as entitiled to their own opinion without you starting your childish name calling.

  14. 14
    avatar Chuck says:

    Toon Tony
    Tony, now go back and really look at both Brugge goals and tell me he was,nt way out of position.
    Look anyone who believes this guy is a good, even mediocre player, is either kidding himself or does’nt understand the game.
    To suggest he was replaced by Taylor, in order to save him for to-morrows game, is one commenter did, is nonsense.

  15. 15
    avatar TROJAN RECORDS 73 says:

    you should change your name to arfaheed, your calling me, for taking a stand, against people, who are giving a bloke stick, who represented this club, and pulled them out of the s**t, on many ocassions.
    i’m in my 30′s, you prick, it says more about your own questionable mentality, than mine.
    it is you who needs to get a grip my friend, by all means give him a bit of stick, banter wise, and give him an ovation, before and after, the game.
    if people want to indulge in blind hatred, then that is something completely different.
    if hatred is what they are going to subject him to, then yes, i will come on here, and call some ignorant f**k, an ingrate!!!

  16. 16
    avatar Chuck says:

    tha boy
    Yeah there are certain truth in what you say concerning Nolan.
    But how many midfielders will get you a goal every 2.55 games, which he did for NUFC and like the man said it’s goals that count.

  17. 17
    avatar arfachance says:

    Trojan records well done you really are a big clever boy im sure your parents are so proud of you

  18. 18
    avatar workyticket says:

    tha boy says:
    November 10, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    “Kevin Nolan was a good player for us, but his over payed salary was not justified. Lived off Andy Carroll and long ball games. In todays game in a team that moves the ball along the ground he would be left chasing shadows of our own players…”

    tha boy says:
    November 10, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    “I think everybody respects what job he has done at Newcastle, Bolton and now West Ham. But you cant ignore the style of play that was used at those clubs during his time. He benefited well from loose balls in the box and was great at that. How many assists did he make? 1 in his last season for Newcastle. Does he get picked for his national side? Cabaye does. I respect Nolan for what he has done but he is not a top 10 side player. And in todays Newcastle side I dont see how he would get a look in over tiote, cabaye or ben arfa.”

    What style of play of play would that be tha boy? Toontony has a point. When Nolan and Hughton were here, we were middle of the “long ball” table according to MotD, and Stoke and Wolves were first and second. Since Pardew took over, we are now up there with the Stokes of this world. Around 17-18% of all passes are over 25 yards, which is higher than anyone else.

  19. 19
    avatar workyticket says:

    toontony says:
    November 10, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    “Oops I made that last comment in the wrong blog! sorry about that”

    Nee botha Tony.

    Chuck says:
    November 10, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    “Toon Tony
    Tony, now go back and really look at both Brugge goals and tell me he was,nt way out of position.
    Look anyone who believes this guy is a good, even mediocre player, is either kidding himself or does’nt understand the game.
    To suggest he was replaced by Taylor, in order to save him for to-morrows game, is one commenter did, is nonsense.”

    I think that was me, Chuck.

    From goal.com.

    Fabricio Coloccini (4/10)

    “Improved as the game went on, but suffered from a shaky start – a possible hangover from his sending off against Liverpool on Sunday. The Argentine was easily brushed aside by Trickovski to open the scoring, once again failing to deal with a long ball over the top.”

    Mike Williamson (6/10)

    “Faultless for either goal and dealt well with the early pressure, while also providing a threat in the box.”

  20. 20
    avatar GS says:

    Worky @19: has Willamson ever scored for us? I think he provides a presence in the box but hardly a threat.

    He always looks like he is going to get in there and get us a goal and somehow contrives to miss and doesn’t even provide an assist.

    On the plus side, he seems to make very few mistakes nowadays (please don’t let this jinx him for tomorrow). I am not sure about his positioning, I will leave that to you and Chuck to argue about.

  21. 21
    avatar Sunny says:

    Hey guys, I do not normally post on here, but this is a topic which particularly interests me. I believe it’s hard for me to dislike any ex-Newcastle player who gave their best while with us. Now, Michael Owen does not fall under that bracket( I dun believe he gave his best for us).

    But most recent ex-players like, Nolan, Enrique and even the hated trio of smith,Carroll and Barton did do their best for us and I find it difficult to even dislike or “boo” them. It’s just hypocrisy to me, i celebrated with then, because of them when they were around, if they gave me such good moments, how can I hate them or even dislike them.

    With the exception of Enrique, none of the other lads asked for transfers. And if the board accepted their transfer offers, it’s telling the player, “we are happy to part with you for that offer”. I do not fault them for leaving.

    To believe the claims by the board members regarding the transfer dealings and reasons for players leaving would be wrong as its one-sided to make them look right for letting our players leave, so as not to face the fans backlash.

    The only players I have really wanted rid off in the past was shola and perch. And I have really grown fond of shola these days while perch has made me eat my words and has really changed my opinion of him with his recent displays… Obertan is currently the only one of our players I’m really annoyed with and feel bad about it but every time he does something stupid it annoys me cause he makes such stupid decisions so often… Oh well hope he makes me eat my words soon I guess…. :)

  22. 22
    avatar workyticket says:

    GS says:
    November 10, 2012 at 9:34 pm (Edit)

    “Worky @19: has Willamson ever scored for us? I think he provides a presence in the box but hardly a threat.”

    Quite a bit of it has just been bringing another (very) big lad up for the set pieces, but everyone has been shite at those this season anyway.

    In the air, Williamson comes into his own with headed duels and clearences, he leaves Colo for dead in this department, just as Colo leaves Williamson for dead with the ball at his feet. He can win balls in the air for the hitmen like Ba and the rest.

  23. 23
    avatar chuck says:

    Workey sez,

    Mike Williamson (6-10)

    Faultless for either goal and dealt well with early pressure,whilst also providing a threat in the box.

    Workey you hit the nail on the head, he was faultless because he was so far from the action, he was’nt involved.
    Plus he was a definate threat in the box, our box that is.

  24. 24
    avatar workyticket says:

    Sunny says:
    November 10, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    “To believe the claims by the board members regarding the transfer dealings and reasons for players leaving would be wrong as its one-sided to make them look right for letting our players leave, so as not to face the fans backlash.”

    Ashley and Llambias are compulsive liars Sunny, and the the club’s PR gurus have got local media such as Lee Ryder, Mark Douglas and Luke Edwards in their pockets now so they spread alot of disinformation. There are too many examples to list now but one of the more recent ones was that the club actually agreed a deal for Debuchy, but that the nasty Frenchmen at Lille reneged on it. It was cobblers, yet Lee Ryder just kept repeating it over and over in the Chronicle until fans believed it. Players can’t say anything much as their contracts have clauses all over them regarding revealing anything “negative” about the club.

    Nice comment BTW, written like a proper fan (for a change).

  25. 25
    avatar workyticket says:

    chuck says:
    November 10, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    “Workey you hit the nail on the head”

    It wasn’t me Chuck, it was goal.com.

  26. 26
    avatar chuck says:

    Sunny
    Yes of course you are right, it’s unfortunate that a good number of fans consider it some sort of betrayal when players move on and voice their opinions on their arrival back with their new sides.
    A bit childish, but what can you do?

  27. 27
    avatar chuck says:

    GS
    The great Iron Mike williamson has played over eighty games for the side and has put the ball in the net more often for the opposition than us, having yet to score for NUFC.
    Though some claim he is athreat in the box, i will let you figure out which box ?

  28. 28
    avatar chuck says:

    Worky
    Oh! sorry thought you were making that accesment, do they (goal.com) get paid for this kinda thing ?

  29. 29
    avatar Mr Roy Cropper says:

    arfa @17

    is there any chance you can give me your opinion on these little crackers.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/JohnLewisRetail?v=0N8axp9nHNU

    http://www.youtube.com/user/DebenhamsRetail?v=ugBCrkRvTwA

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QiTuiYtaMV4

    i’m deffo siding with johnny lewis at the mo – but then again – by the time i’ve polished off me selection box…..

    who knows??

    all the very best anyways.

  30. 30
  31. 31
    avatar workyticket says:

    TROJAN RECORDS 73 says:
    November 10, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    “i wish old captain tugboat, was still at the club, he would have been worth his WEIGHT in gold, in europe.”

    Trojan I’ve just figured this out because there’s something wrong with me.

    Nolan’s (considerable) weight in 24K gold bullion would be worth just over £3 million, but according to “Transfermarkt”, his value as a footballer is around £5.3 million.

    http://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/en/nolan/profil/spieler_3950.html

  32. 32
    avatar workyticket says:

    Mr Roy Cropper says:
    November 11, 2012 at 12:53 am

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1urq4Vb0XM

    neet lads.”

    That was the good one Roy! :-)

  33. 33
    avatar workyticket says:

    In the wake of all this Jimmy Savile hysteria, I wonder if another Paediatrician will get their house burned down this time?

  34. 34
    avatar chuck says:

    Hell they probably realised their mistake with the pediatricians and realise its the pedantic’s they shouldda gone for.
    They got some legitimate targets right here on this blog.

  35. 35
    avatar sandybaz says:

    Nailed on Nolan scores today 2-2

  36. 36
    avatar workyticket says:

    sandybaz says:
    November 11, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    “Nailed on Nolan scores today 2-2″

    sandybaz, I always seem to going with either 1-1 or 2-2 when I’m trying to predict the result of Toon games nowadays.

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