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Archive for category: NUFC gossip and speculation.

Can Jamaal Lascelles Break into the England Squad?

October 19th, 2017 | No Comments |

Lascelles: His stock is rising rapidly
Lascelles: His stock is rising rapidly
The latest England squad has been announced for the upcoming qualifiers at the beginning of October, with the usual array of names featuring. Gareth Southgate has been labelled as fairly predictable and safe with his selections in recent months, and the announcements regularly divide Premier League fans. Newcastle supporters have been impressed by captain Jamaal Lascelles so far this season, and many feel as though he deserves a call-up to the national side.

The England squad included defenders John Stones, Aaron Cresswell, Gary Cahill and Michael Keane, but there was no place for the Newcastle centre-back who has impressed so far this season. Lascelles is not only commanding at the back but has proved to be the Magpies’ match-winner on two occasions this season, including netting the winner against Stoke in the middle of September. (more…)


Can Newcastle United Make a Genuine Push for Europe?

September 27th, 2017 | One Comment |

European football trophies
Out of reach?
The start of the campaign was hardly the most inspiring for Newcastle United, following defeats against Tottenham, Huddersfield, and then perhaps most alarmingly, home elimination from the EFL Cup by Nottingham Forest. However, since then form improved until a narrow defeat to Brighton, and it seems the side managed by Rafa Benitez has found a level cohesion, stability and belief in itself.

A positive display and comfortable 3-0 victory against West Ham seemed to light the fuse. Narrow and hard-fought wins against Swansea City and Stoke City followed. All of a sudden Newcastle were parked in the top four with three straight league wins by mid-September, the new signings slotting in nicely, planting the seeds of hope that the 2017/18 campaign may be one to enjoy, rather than suffer. (more…)


How will Newcastle fare next season in the Premier League?

July 9th, 2017 | No Comments |

Rafa Benitez with Championship trophy.
Benitez: Knows where he needs to strengthen.
It is often said that no club is too big to go down and fallen giants such as Aston Villa and Leeds United are testament to that, but Newcastle’s relegation to the Championship in the 2015-16 season was unexpected, and a body blow for the Magpies’ faithful.

However, with a passionate and talented manager in charge, they bounced at the first attempt and the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United will once again be seen at St James’ Park next season.

But will Rafa Benitez be able to keep the club in the Promised Land?

It has been obvious there have been problems between the owner and the managers in recent years which have led to dissention in the stands and ultimately, relegation. (more…)


Will McLaren be sacked after Chelsea game?

February 11th, 2016 | 77 Comments |

Is McLaren's Newcastle future doomed?
Is McLaren’s Newcastle future doomed?
Could it be that Steve McLaren’s future depends on what happens on Saturday? After we play Chelsea we have 17 days without a game and that might be the ideal time to change managers.

Of all the things Ashley’s bad at when it comes to running a football club – and there are many – one of his worst is his management of managers. His reluctance to change managers at the drop of a hat is not a bad thing in itself, but only if you have the right manager in the first place and, with the possible exception of Chris Hughton, I’d argue he hasn’t picked the right manager for Newcastle United since he bought the club.

Evidence?

Well, in the seven seasons we’ve been in the Premier League since Ashley bought the club, our average finishing position has been 12.57 (I’ve not counted the season in the Championship) and in the seven seasons prior to Ashley buying the club our average finishing position was 8.14. That might not sound like a huge difference but before Ashley we were, on average, a mid-table team who sometimes flirted with Europe whereas now we are, on average, a mid-table team who sometimes flirts with relegation. And of course in 2008-2009 we did more than merely flirt with relegation – we kissed it, fondled it and knocked it up behind the bike sheds. (more…)


The truth of the Patrick Vieira and Steve McClaren to Newcastle stories

June 5th, 2015 | 23 Comments |

Steve McClaren and John Carver
NUFC: Still no decision on a head coach.
I couldn’t help feeling there was something odd about the story of Patrick Vieira coming to Newcastle, as there is about most unsubstantiated football stories.

Some fans seemed to believe it though, even embroidering it further to their own tastes as it gathered a momentum of its own in a few short days. My curiosity piqued, I looked but I couldn’t find any real evidence that Newcastle United made an approach for Patrick Viera to be the next ‘head coach’ at St James’ Park. Even the guff I’ve read about Steve McClaren coming to Newcastle (and I’ve read alot) seems to be based on the same kind of unsubstantiated “it is understood / sources say” style drivel we see so much of nowadays in the media. Concentrating on the Vieira story first though, I traced the threads of it back to the beginning as I usually do, and in this case it was ‘broken’ by North East Sky Sports reporter, Keith Downie with two tweets below on 30th May, though it seems like longer: (more…)