Magpies v Bluebirds match preview. Who will snatch the worm?

Posted on September 12th, 2009 | 10 Comments |

High flying Bluebirds. A tough test?
High flying Bluebirds. A tough test?
Kick-off: Sunday 13th September, 2.05PM, Cardiff City Stadium.

Referee: Andrew Hall (West Midlands).

Sunday’s away trip to the new Cardiff City Stadium sees Newcastle United missing Championship player of the month, Shola Ameobi, along with Andy Carroll and Jonas Guitierrez. However, despite the lack of senior strikers, young Nile Ranger has started to come to the fore with an excellent performance in our last game, and another one with the England under 19s during the week, where he scored and had another effort disallowed. He is widely expected to start as a ‘Lone Ranger’ (sorry) at the front, probably with Kevin Nolan dropping in behind in a supporting link role.

Holding midfielder, Nicky Butt, should finally be returning to the squad after his thumb problems, though it is doubtful whether the returning Peter Lovenkrands will be ‘match fit’ enough to start, though he may be on the bench, possibly getting a stint later on to bring him up to speed.

So apart from Nolan, the rest of the midfield will almost certainly be four of the following: Alan Smith, Nicky Butt, Danny Guthrie, Ryan Taylor and Joey Barton. At the back, Steven Taylor, Fabricio Coloccini and Jose Enrique seem to be pretty definite. Manchester United loanee, Danny Simpson also seems to be a probable pick, though manager, Chris Hughton could always plump for versatile Ryan Taylor at right back, leaving room for another misfielder. However, the absence of key winger, Gutierrez, would suggest that Taylor is needed on the right wing.

Cardiff form.

Cardiff are currently third in the Championships with ten points, and along with Newcastle, West Brom and the Smoggies, are seen as promotion favourites. Their previous results in the Championship are:

Cardiff 4 – 0 Scunthorpe United,
Cardiff 1 – 1 Blackpool,
Cardiff 3 – 1 Plymouth Argyle,
Cardiff 3 – 0 Bristol City
Cardiff 3 – 1 Bristol Rovers
Cardiff 0 – 2 Doncaster Rovers

So, a good start in general for the ‘Bluebirds’, but a disappointing capitulation against Doncaster Rovers in their last game gives Newcastle great hope against the previously undefeated Cardiff squad. Cardiff’s man to look out for will undoubtedly be old friend, Michael Chopra, who of course is a Tynesider who played for we for several years, largely as an understudy to bigger beasts such as Alan Shearer, before defecting to the more primitive side of the North East. Since moving again to the Bluebirds, his form has been excellent, with eight goals this season so far.

Newcastle United’s Championship Manager of the Month, Chris Hughton sees the Cardiff crunch as Toon’s toughest test yet. In an interview with Tyneside’s ‘The Chronic‘ he said:

“I’m expecting a really tough game, probably our toughest.

“That’s no disrespect to anybody else we’ve played, but you always focus on the next task in hand, which for us is Cardiff City.

“I know they have been very good at their new stadium and that their fans will demand a performance from their players.

“That is another factor, but for our players it’s a chance to play in a great atmosphere.

“Our approach will be to continue what we’ve already demonstrated in previous games.”

Meanwhile, Cardiff City’s manager, Davy Jones said this of the upcoming clash:

“I feel this is probably the biggest league game this club has had for many, many years.

“Newcastle are a massive club. Everybody talks about us becoming a big club, but they had 44,000 fans in the Championship, that is unbelievable.

“We are playing for me a Premiership football club still.

“I would put Newcastle probably as one of the top four or five teams in this division.

“They are top right now and they are there to be shot at. We don’t want a gap to develop. we want to close the gap.

“The only people talking about problems off the pitch for Newcastle have been the media. People in the game did not think they would have a bad start.

“When you get relegated you have to try to get back as quick as you can and their fans were never going to let them go out on a football pitch and lay down and die.

“When you look at the squad they have and the players they have kept, it is too big a club and their players have too much pride.”

Toon! Toon!

NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1086 articles on this blog.

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10 Responses

  1. Louise Taylor has forgot to check her facts again.

    In her recent story on Chris Hughton, she made up a quote, allegedly from “someone who knows Hughton well”. It read:

    “He’s a very good coach who never did that brilliantly during his previous caretaker spells at Spurs and Newcastle but, this time, he’s had a whole pre-season to establish himself and his tactics. Unlike most managers he’s not really a political animal but he is an extremely charming man who can use that charm to get people onside and doing what he wants.”

    Before making this up, she didn’t even bother to check that Hughton’s caretaker manager spell at ‘Spurs actually went rather well, with 6 games, 3 wins, two draws and only one loss.

    What a silly woman. If she’s going to fantasise like this, she really should spend few minutes trying to cover her arse before she publishes such drivel.

  2. Defo a tough game, but I honestly dont think our players have got anything to be frightened about. These are the games that we want to be playing and winning. A win and 3 points will send out a massive message to the rest of the league.
    Haven’t heard anything about colo and argentina, did he play? has anyone heard any reports? Was wondering if he might be rested this game and kept for blackpool game. not sure he would be happy with that though. lol
    Still think we can win this game, my prediction 0-1.

  3. Beardsleys Boots says:
    September 12, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    “Haven’t heard anything about colo and argentina, did he play?”

    If you mean against Brazil, I don’t think he did, Pedro. Guti seems to be a bit of a golden boy with Maradona though. He recently said something about him being “third on the team sheet” (after Messi and Mascherano). That ain’t too bad for a Championship player! Then again, Maradona is insane :-)

    As for the game, I have faith in the team too, but it is away and I remember that the old Ninian Park was a used to be a bit of a cauldron for visitors with all the charming locals they have there. As they’re also one of our toughest competitors, I wouldn’t be ashamed with a draw either. Of course, I’m hoping for a win though.

  4. …..Then again, Maradona is insane :-)

    lmao. classic

    Aye worky I agree, I’d be happy with a draw too, so long as its 0-0. If we are not scoring goals, then a clean sheet is a must. I see the bookies have us as slight favourites, but not much in it. Will be a good atmosphere tomorrow, but that wont intimidate our players, but there will be a bigger burden of expectation for cardiff.

  5. Beardo,

    I’m veering away from the topic again, but did you ever read about how Maradona lost a load of his money investing in bingo halls in Paraguay? :-)

  6. Alreet, haven’t got time to chat I’m afraid. I’m on dog-walking and tea-making duty.

    1-1 the morra I reckon.

  7. This is a top of the division six pointer. If I was Chris Hughton, I’d be rubbing it in about their last game, the disaster in Doncaster. That’s what a bastard like Fergie or Mourinho would do as well.

  8. I’m nervous about our lack of striking options tomorrow. Taking that into account I’d have to agree with BBM and go for a 1-1.

    If we had Jonas and Ameobi fit, I’d have tipped us to win.