Well, 1732 of you voted at the time of writing, and for the second time in a row NUFC Blog’s player of the season is (drumroll):
He beat off Tim Krul into second for the second time in a row too, with Davide Santon replacing Yohan Cabaye on the bottom siep of the podium. However, a poor season for the team seemed to make it much harder for all of you who voted to pick a decisive winner. Last year Captain Colo recieved received a mighty 34% of the entire vote, or 525 votes out if 1522. This year however it was only 17%, or 287 votes out of the aforementioned 1732.
You can see the full results in the poll at the bottom of this piece.
Though not a perfect defender, many are better in the air including central defensive teammates such as Mike Williamson and Steven Taylor, his abilty with the ball on the floor and the way he can build play from the back have marked him out in Newcastle United’s heart of defence. Unfortunately though, this quality has hardly been a feature of Newcastle United’s play in general under the old fashioned “kick and rush” style of Alan Pardew. (more…)
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…)
All you Magpies fans out there out there may have noticed that their has been a distinct upswing in Newcastle United’s form since the end of January, with the club rising from 16th to 13th in the Premiership table.
Our last six Premiership games since that time, starting with a 2-1 victory over Aston Villa at St James’ Park on 29th January has seen a return of 12 points from four victories and two defeats. As you can see from the images above and below, this now places Newcastle United at fourth in the Premier League’s club form table, measured on Premier League clubs’ performances over their last six games.
To put this into context, the side’s previous six games before that resulted in only one single victory with a draw and four defeats, bringing in a total of only four points. Hence, we have been exactly three times as good in our last six Premiership games as we were in the six games before that! (more…)
It seems a lifetime since signings like Michael Owen and Mark Viduka wore the black and white. Declining, injury prone and nearly always overpriced; these marquee players from the Shepherd era were one of the main reasons we were relegated at the beginning of Ashley’s reign.
On massive wages and having already achieved something notable in their careers, they didn’t seem like they were hungry enough to care about the current club’s situation enough to save us from the drop. Going down to the championship a few years ago turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to the club in years as we found out who was there for the team and who was just there for the money and prestige.
The new policy of signing hungry players with lower reputations and wage demands started with the signings of players such as Fabricio Coloccini and Jonas Gutierrez, who were the first of many similar players to come through the door with similar ambitions and experience. These were followed in subsequent seasons by the likes of Cheick Tiote, Hatem Ben Arfa and Yohan Cabaye, plus the five recent additions to the squad last month, making this transfer policy clearly the most important reason for our fledgling success in the last three / four seasons. (more…)
In an interview with Fox Sports conducted in Spanish when he was on duty with the Argentinian national side in Sweden, Newcastle United captain Fabricio Coloccini gave more insight into his plan to escape from Newcastle United and return to his home country.
Carefully selected excerpts of his thoughts have been translated and published on English sites here and there. However, as there didn’t seem to be a transcript of the whole part relating to his current Toon – San Lorenzo imbroglio, I thought I’d have a bash myself, and the results are below. I also translated his previous Coloccini’s open letter to San Lorenzo on the same issue some time ago.
Interviewer: “What happened? Why didn’t you play in San Lorenzo and why did you stay in Newcastle?”
Coloccini:“Let me be clear that there are many versions, some of which were lies and some which were right to some extent. At the moment you know that I had spoken with people from Newcastle to go back to Argentina for personal motives, all San Lorenzo did was open their doors and give me all the support I could get, beyond playing or not playing for San Lorenzo. Of course I said that if I could dissociate myself from Newcastle they wanted me to play there, and the illusion was mine too because I’m a fan. But hey, I was not going to untie myself from Newcastle because I wanted to go to San Lorenzo. There was nothing I could do … The issue was that I wanted to return to Argentina for “x” reasons and well, after San Lorenzo emerged it became part of the story of San Lorenzo.”(more…)