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Archive for category: Thoughts and reflections.

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…)


Are Newcastle Fans Right to be Disappointed by the Club’s Transfer Dealings this Summer?

September 12th, 2017 | No Comments |

Rafa Benitez & NUFC Fans.
IMAGE SOURCE: Twitter.com
Rafa Benitez wasn’t able to hide his frustration at the end of August as Newcastle failed to land a number of their primary targets in the transfer window this summer. The Magpies were one of a number of top-flight clubs who voted for the window to be closed prior to the start of the season from next year with the Spanish boss clearly exasperated by the club’s failure to close a number of potential deals.

New Additions to the Squad

The Toon did complete a number of transactions, with several new faces arriving at St. James’ Park, including Norwich winger Jacob Murphy for £13 million, Borussia Dortmund’s Mikel Merino, and former Stoke play-maker Joselu. Eibar defender Florian Lejeune was one of the more eye-catching additions to the side but there were doubts about whether the Paris-born 26-year-old would opt to move to the North East amid interest from other clubs. Javier Manquillo also joins for £6 million to bolster the Newcastle squad ahead of a tough season back in the top flight. (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…)


Why Newcastle United’s last two games will be important

April 27th, 2017 | 20 Comments |

Rafa Benitez.
Benitez: Still needs to restore a bit of pride?
Before last Monday evening, a run of one point from three games had seen Newcastle fall seven points behind Brighton. A convincing and confidence boosting 4-1 victory against Preston steadied nerves, assuring automatic promotion, but as a team feted as one of the best (or most expensive) ever to find themselves in the Championship, it is hard to escape the feeling that the Magpies still have something to prove before they take the step up to the Premier League once more. That’s without the possible ramifications of the looming tax scandal of course, but that’s a whole different story!

While Chris Hughton’s Seagulls wrapped up their promotion bid early, The Magpies seemed intent on putting their fans through as much anguish as possible (a familiar feeling some Geordies might say). However, Rafa Benitez’s men can be thankful for the equally dreadful form of Huddersfield making their automatic promotion bid much easier than it could have been. Of course, that poor run was stopped against Preston last Monday evening, and Newcastle now have a chance to continue making a statement of intent in their final two games. (more…)


Why Gayle can be more than just a Championship wonder

January 19th, 2017 | 39 Comments |

Dwight Gayle
Gayle: Can he be as prolific in the Premier League?
If you took a straw poll of Toon fans, I’m pretty sure that most would agree that Dwight Gayle has been Newcastle United’s player of the season so far, and by some distance for 20 obvious reasons. Signed for around £10 million from Crystal Palace, it might have seemed like quite alot for a player with a bit of an injury record who made alot of his appearences off the bench. To get to the point, I was inspired to bring it up after Crystal Palace and ex-Magpie manager Sam Allardyce was asked by the Croydon Advertiser if he would have got rid of the Championship’s top hitman had he been manager last summer. He replied:

“Goals in the Championship doesn’t relate to goals in the Premier League for some players. I saw Abel Hernandez score 20-odd goals to get Hull up last year and he’s struggled badly this term. (more…)