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Archive for category: Alan Shearer.

Newcastle United Art Forum – The Shearer Statue

September 14th, 2016 | 150 Comments |

Alan Shearer statue
Looks like something out of a cereal packet
It isn’t very often that I venture off the highway of football to enter the arena of art criticism here on NUFC Blog, but this is one of those occaisions and I am actually more qualified. Having been a figurative artist, a designer and also an art dealer in a very modest sense, I hope I can give a reasonably informed opinion without getting too carried away.

As you might have guessed from the photo accompanying thus piece, my current musing has been inspired by the recent unveiling of the Alan Shearer sculpture. Named ‘Local Hero,’ it is the second by local self-taught sculptor, Tom Maley for Newcastle United. It follows Maley’s Bobby Robson tribute of 2012, though it was actually commissioned by former NUFC Chairman, Freddie Shepherd before that in 2007 at an alleged cost of around £250,000. There is almost certainly some kind of club politics behind the nine year delay in its unveiling but that is not what this story is about. (more…)


Which Newcastle United manager had the longest balls?

February 21st, 2013 | 7 Comments |

Newcastle United - A long ball dinosaur?
Newcastle United – A long ball dinosaur?
Since I wrote a few pieces on how Alan Pardew’s Newcastle United had become the biggest “long ball” side in the Premiership this season some time ago, It piqued my curiosity to look beyond and see how the “route one” style favoured by Pardew this term compared with that of his predecessors, and possibly, what we might be able to learn from what comes out in the wash so to speak.

The stats contained in the table below go back to the start of the 2008-9 relegation season. Hence, the managers I have included are Kevin Keegan, Joe Kinnear, Alan Shearer, Chris Hughton (x3) and Alan Pardew.

Admittedly, some of the managerial spells are ridiculously short, and one would prefer at least a whole season for each manager, where every other team in the division was played with their varying tactics pitted against Newcastle United’s would have been the ideal. However, in the crazy world of Newcastle United since the blundering Mike Ashley took over, the longest continuous run of Premiership matches for any manager apart from the current one has been Joe Kinnear’s nineteen. Although Chris Hughton at least had a full season in the Championship, his spells as caretaker apart, he only had sixteen games in the Premiership before being sacked. Anyway, the point of this is more to take a look at Newcastle United’s long ball style as a whole in recent years, rather than just focusing on one particular manager. This brings me to my final point in this section, why I haven’t included that Championship season. This was for two reasons: Firstly, because I do not have the same stats for that season (I only have Premiership stats from “OPTA”). Secondly, it is also (literally) a different league, a different paradigm where different standards apply. (more…)


Joe Kinnear – Underrated at Newcastle?

February 16th, 2013 | 37 Comments |

Joe Kinnear at St James' Park.
Uncle Joe.
In Joe Kinnear’s “Talk Sport” interview just over a week ago with Richard Keys and Andy Gray, besides being touched as Kinnear recalled the awful series of events which befell him after his reign at Newcastle, not just the heart episode which forced him into retirement but also the loss of his only son Elliott to multiple myeloma (cancer of the bone marrow), and then Kinnear himself contracting Septicaemia (blood poisoning), it also reminded me of the complete and utter of contempt shown to Kinnear by the media and many of Newcastle United’s fans when he was manager, a contempt which still remains seemingly after seeing some of the responses to it. So in this piece, I thought I would examine his record at the club, and attempt to explore some aspects of why this might be.

Getting to the interview itself, which is still available in full on the Talk Sport website, Keys remarked at the beginning of the interview on Kinnear’s time at St James’ Park:

“You slipped away so quietly after that time at Newcastle as a result of illness. we never really got the opportunity, I’m sure all Geordie fans would like to say ‘well done.’ You didn’t get quite the credit you deserve for laying the foundation stones to sorting that mess out. It was quite a period, wasn’t it?”

To which Kinnear responded: (more…)


Why Shearer is right, and wrong about Ashley’s lack of investment

December 18th, 2012 | 42 Comments |

Alan Shearer.
"Spend, spend spend" says Shearer.
Writing in his column for the Sun, Alan Shearer has laid the blame squarely at the door of Mike Ashley for the Newcastle United’s current lack of form.

“Newcastle missed a huge opportunity in the summer” he began, continuing:

“Having punched above their weight last season and almost made it into the top four [sic], this was the time to spend. The club was up and running again after so many years mired in uncertainty. There was once again a feel-good factor and even Mike Ashley was enjoying it. But he needed to put his hand in his pocket and strengthen with two or three quality players. The best time to buy is when you are in a position of strength.”

Which is fair enough, especially the last sentence which is very true. “Momentum” is vital in football, something which the ex Toon hitman acknowledged himself when he continued later in the piece:

“Sadly the momentum built up by Alan Pardew last season has been lost and Saturday (Newcastle’s 1-3 defeat to Man City) was a stark example of that.” (more…)


What must Debuchy and Cabaye think about this Anita deal?

August 16th, 2012 | 129 Comments |

Vurnon Anita.
It's that man again, but what about Debuchy (and Cabaye)?
So it has come from the horse’s mouth, well, Vurnon Anita’s mouth anyway, that Ajax and Newcastle United have agreed a fee of around €8.5 million, or around £6.7 million plus bonuses for Vurnon Anita.

A medical supposedly happened yesterday, though there doesn’t seem to be any definitive news as I write this on personal terms being thrashed out, or the Silver Supremo summit meeting requested by Anita, where he was looking for reassurances from Pardew about the nature of his role within the squad.

But what is going so right here that didn’t go so right with the Debuchy affair? And what must Debuchy himself, not to mention Yohan Cabaye, and even Danny Simpson think about it?

I must admit that I have written my fair share of criticism about the way Mike Ashley and Derek Llambias have gone about their business in some negotiations, and I still stand by it. However, credit where credit is due, it must be said that £6.7 million plus bonuses seems to be a fair and equitable fee for both sides in this case and they seem to have got their man. However, this isn’t to say that all being well, it shouldn’t be an excellent investment for Newcastle in the long term for a highly talented young player who’s value should appreciate further over time. (more…)