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Newcastle United v Aston Villa match preview

February 22nd, 2014 | 719 Comments |

Paul Lambert & Alan Pardew
Who’ll win the tactical battle?
Date: Sunday 23rd February 2014.
Time: 13:30.
Venue: St James’ Park.
Referee: Martin Atkinson.
UK TV: Sky Sports 1.

It’s a mid-table battle at St James’ Park on Sunday as Newcastle play Aston Villa and I reckon both teams will think they can win it too.

Villa will fancy their chances against us given our recent atrocious run of form. But having the home advantage against mid-table opposition should give us some hope that we might be able to use this fixture to halt our recent decline, which would be a welcome relief.

The league form for both teams from the last eight games looks like this:

  P W D L F A Pts/Max Last 8
Newcastle 8 1 1 6 3 15 4/24 L|L|L|W|D|L|L|L
Aston Villa 8 2 3 3 10 12 9/24 D|W|L|D|W|L|L|D

As you can see, Villa’s form is better than ours to the tune of five points over the last eight games. Villa managed a draw away to Cardiff in the last game whereas our last point was at Norwich on the 28th January. We haven’t scored a goal since the match before that – away to West Ham on 18th January – and it’s probably no coincidence that we’ve been without Yohan Cabaye for all four of the intervening games and without Loic Remy for the last three of them. (more…)


H’Beye the lads!

March 4th, 2010 | 38 Comments |

He had fighting spirit...
He had fighting spirit...
Rumours will no doubt have reached most Newcastle supporters that Habib Beye is reportedly unhappy with his time in the Midlands. Part of the villainous collective that saw us relegated last season, Beye became an official Villain when Martin O’Neill took him to Aston Villa in the summer in a £2.5m deal.

Arguably one of our most consistent performers while at the club, it was inevitably a kick in the teeth when he jumped ship following our drop into the Championship. Some will argue that he was entitled to leave and play as high as he could, having almost always put in a decent shift for the Mags. Others will insist he should have stayed and fought to get us back up, some even cynically considering that a deal was brokered on the day of relegation at Villa Park.

The Senegalese international has only turned out five times so far for Villa and the Daily Mail suggest he will inevitably move on in the summer. Putting two and two together, you might think a versatile defender with a connection to the club, experience of the Premiership and who would be available for a relatively decent price would be an obvious option should we get promoted. But it’s never that easy, especially given the circumstances under which he left.

Assuming the rumours are true and he’s available in the summer, would you have him back? (more…)


Aston Villa offer Harewood back to Toon, as Leeds play hard to get over Beckford!

January 10th, 2010 | 103 Comments |

Back for good?
Back for good?
Interesting article from the News Of The World, which reports today that Aston Villa have offered striker Marlon Harewood to Newcastle in a permanent deal. In all honesty, we probably would have signed him by now had Aston Villa not wanted a £250,000 loan fee plus player wages of £28,000 per week paid by us!

The Midlanders have pitched their price at £1.5 million, presumably to try and tempt us away from their target, Leeds striker Jeramine Beckford and get us to plump for the experience of our former loanee instead. Marlon Harewood scored 5 goals in his loan spell earlier in the season but has yet to win all the fans over yet, his seemingly lazy and lethargic attitude being a contributor to that.

I’m not sure what to make of Harewood? Can he score goals at this level? Yes! But is also 31 years old now, so we would be signing a player with a limited amount of fuel in the tank. (more…)


Geremi NOT heading back to Turkey to join former Aston Villa and Man City star?

January 4th, 2010 | 37 Comments |

Inexplicable joy!
Inexplicable joy!
Late last evening I wrote the following –

“Mike Ashley will be a happy man after Newcastle managed to move on Geremi as early as the third day of January. High-earner Geremi has only made nine appearances for us this season and Turkish side, Ankaragücü have signed him on an 18-month deal, where he’ll join former Aston Villa and Manchester City forward Darius Vassell. Geremi played for another Turkish side, Gençlerbirliği in the late ’90s before he joined the Galaticos of Madrid.

Although there’s nothing on our official site, the Ankaragücü website announced earlier this (Sunday) evening that the signing is confirmed although it’s not yet clear whether they’ve paid anything for him. And Geremi will not be available for his new club, until after the African Nations Cup, in Angola this month.

Signed by Sam Allardyce in 2007 and even installed as captain, Geremi’s contract was due to run out in the summer and it will be a surprise if we have managed to persuade the Turkish side to part with any sort of substantial fee. Indeed the very fact that we have cleared down, in the region of £50-£60k-a-week wages will be a blessed relief to the board. And hopefully as a consequence that will kickstart activities, and money can be reinvested more effectively in this January transfer window. (more…)


Geremi heads back to Turkey to join former Villa and Man City star?

January 3rd, 2010 | 115 Comments |

Inexplicable joy!
Inexplicable joy!
Mike Ashley will be a happy man after Newcastle managed to move on Geremi as early as the third day of January. High-earner Geremi has only made nine appearances for us this season and Turkish side, Ankaragücü have signed him on an 18-month deal, where he’ll join former Aston Villa and Man City forward Darius Vassell. Geremi played for another Turkish side, Gençlerbirliği in the late ’90s before he joined the Galaticos of Madrid.

Although there’s nothing on our official site, the Ankaragücü website announced earlier this (Sunday) evening that the signing is confirmed although it’s not yet clear whether they’ve paid anything for him. And Geremi will not be available for his new club, until after the African Nations Cup, in Angola this month.

Signed by Sam Allardyce in 2007 and even installed as captain, Geremi’s contract was due to run out in the summer and it will be a surprise if we have managed to persuade the Turkish side to part with any sort of substantial fee. Indeed the very fact that we have cleared down, in the region of £50-£60k-a-week wages will be a blessed relief to the board. And hopefully as a consequence that will kickstart activities, and money can be reinvested more effectively in this January transfer window. (more…)