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Archive for category: Former players.

Who are the top 5 Newcastle United strikers of all time?

May 25th, 2020 | 3 Comments |

Toon flag.
Newcastle United: A long history of great centre forwards.
With the long pause in Premier League action, I thought it might be a good time to go down memory lane and look at some of our favourite players from times past, so I have decided to list five of the top strikers in Newcastle United’s history. All the players selected played at least 150 games for the Magpies at the highest level, which means that great, but more fleeting Newcastle centre forwards such as Albert Shepherd, Albert Stubbins, Andy Cole, Les Ferdinand etc have not been included. The players are listed in chronological order, starting with the most recent players and going backwards in time. (more…)


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…)


Are we in danger of shooting ourselves in the foot over Kinnear?

July 23rd, 2013 | 22 Comments |

Mick Harford.
Mick Harford – Warned off by Toon fans before he even started?
Whilst searching for inspiration yesterday, this piece by Jackie Smithfield in Newcastle United blog The Mag caught my eye. Entitled ‘Newcastle fans help Mick Harford to decide Millwall is better bet’, it bragged of fan power scaring away Harford from his former club before he’d even started, claiming:

‘With an overwhelmingly negative reaction, no doubt Mick Harford has also got on the ‘blower’ to friends and family in the North East to gauge which way the wind is blowing:

‘On this basis, it would be no surprise to see Harford saying thanks but no thanks. Shame his mentor JFK is slightly thicker skinned when it comes to the reaction he produced on his appointment.’

And to put it mildly, I just couldn’t see the wisdom of that. Joe Kinnear might well be thick skinned, but the writer of the above is just thick if he or she thinks a policy of fans attempting to force out anyone Joe Kinnear tries to appoint to enhance the Newcastle United’s scouting before they’ve even started won’t be damaging to the club. (more…)


Who have been Newcastle United’s most lethal Premiership strikers? Here’s the answer…

June 27th, 2013 | 51 Comments |

Demba Ba - Newcastle United.
Demba Ba: Newcastle United’s hottest hitman in recent times.
Below is a table comparing the main statistics of all of Newcastle United’s main strikers who have played in the Hughton / Pardew years. There are six, Shola Ameobi, Peter Lovenkrands, Andy Carroll, Leon Best, Demba Ba and most recently of course, Papiss Cisse.

Please note that this is for Premier League games only. Championship stats have been excluded as they would obviously give the players who played a full season in the lower division an unfair advantage. As well as that, cup games have also been escluded too to make as level a playing field as possible (if you’ll pardon the pun). I think you might find one or two surprises in there, which was partly the reason I did this post in the first place.

I suppose I could have included Kevin Nolan too, as his goalscoring and assist figures would also stand up with the names below after Chris Hughton moved him further forward into the “hole” as they say, however this one’s for strikers and Nolan has always been a midfielder, albeit a highly attacking one in recent seasons. (more…)


Mike Williamson the star of Newcastle United’s “team of the season”

June 1st, 2013 | 130 Comments |

Model Newcastle United players.
Who made it? And who didn’t?
Below you can see two Newcastle United “teams of the season,” which I have assembled based on player statistics from whoscored.com, OPTA and transfermarkt.co.uk.

The first (and most important) is based on performances in the Premier League, with the second based on performances in the Europa League. The figures below the player’s names are their ratings from whoscored.com, which are based on a range of performance metrics based on OPTA stats. To put these into some kind of perspective, whoscored’s most highly rated Premier League goalkeeper last season was Sunderland’s Simon Mignolet with an average of 7.0. In defence it was Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen with 7.6 and in midfield the honours were shared between Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla and Tottenham’s Gareth Bale, both with 7.9. Finally, up front, Liverpool’s Luis Suarez narrowly pipped Manchester United’s Robin van Persie (7.8) with his 7.9 rating.

Getting back to Newcastle United though, although the goalkeepers, defenders and strikers were pretty straightforward overall, things became more complicated when it came to midfielders who had been played in several different positions during the season, gaining different ratings in different positions. However, after some work, I have finally managed to sort it out. (more…)