Are some of Newcastle United’s injury problems self inflicted?

Posted on March 11th, 2011 | 45 Comments |

Ireland: One of several players rushed back too soon?
Ireland: One of several players rushed back too soon?
Newcastle United are currently having injury problems, and the journey to the end of our return season in the Premier League may be longer and harder than expected with key players out. Of course, injuries happen in football, some are unavoidable, however some are the inevitable consequence of poor training methods, including pushing players too far too soon. Has this been the case with Newcastle players such as Dan Gosling and Stephen Ireland?

Ireland, who was carrying a knee injury when signed on loan from Aston Villa was all set for his debut against Everton last Saturday, however a thigh strain picked up in training has ruled him out for another stretch, with the midfielder looking certain to also miss Newcastle’s next match against Stoke. Obviously, a thigh strain isn’t the same as a knee injury, however after such a long time on the sidelines, it’s a possibilty that the thigh strain was a result of the player being pushed too quickly after a fairly long spell out.

Speaking in a recent interview on the Ireland injury, Newcastle United manager, Alan Pardew also conceeded that this was a possibilty, saying:

“We knew when we took him he was injured but this thigh strain, like anything when you’ve been out for a long time, you pick up these little injuries,”

“I don’t think he has played a game since December 9 or something.

“Maybe we forced him back too early because of Joey Barton’s situation. I think we’re at fault a little bit because he’s picked up a thigh strain.”

On the subject of Joey Barton, who I think most will agree has been a “key” player for the side this season, also picked up a knock in training before the same Everton game where Ireland was looking to make his Newcastle United debut. Despite the knock, he was selected however only to suffer from a recurrence of the injury in the warm up for that game. He is still a doubt for Newcastle’s next game, with Stoke City next Saturday.

Another player signed while injured is Dan Gosling, who also seemed all set for his first team debut after a long time out with a cruciate knee ligament injury. After resuming training, and a 70 minute spell in a reserves game, he too had to return to the sidelines with a swollen knee, which is thought to be a recerence of the old problem.

On that one, Pardew commented at the time:

“Anyway, we’ve brought him back and in all this time there was a slight swelling that wouldn’t go away…” adding later:

“If you’ve got swelling, it’s not right. Unfortunately for Dan, he’s going to have to be patient, and we are too because we all got excited when we thought he was ready to come back.”

In another interview, Pardew gave another quote which reveals that he may have been sailing close to the wind recently with regard to selecting players who are carrying knocks, and / or need to be rested. Speaking on our current injury situation, Pardew confessed:

“I am going to pick the team on Thursday. In recent weeks we have been trying to get players through Thursday and Friday to be able to play on Saturday, and it hasn’t worked for us.”

Now it may not be the case in all the cases I have cited, but it certainly seems a possibility that this excitement, an overzealousness to return players from injury may be playing a part in these relapses. If there is a case, and Pardew certinly seems to have conceeded that there may have been with Ireland at least, then the manager may have learned his lesson with another eagerly awaited player who is yet to return from injury. I am referring to Hatem Ben Arfa.

Pardew yesterday sought to dampen speculation that the French Tunisian wizard would be making a return to the side any time soon. In an interview with BBC Newcastle he said of Ben Arfa:

“He’s still some way off, the most important thing is Hatem is 100% when he plays,”

On the projected date of his return, the manager added:

“I think that’s going to be late April, early May, if then.”

Which could mean that Ben Arfa could be out for the rest of the season, which is disappointing news. However as Pardew suggests, the important thing in the long term would be that the player is “100%” not rushed back too soon, and suffers no relapses which could hinder his career for good.

I hope that the same is true for all the other injured players too, however important they are for the team.

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

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45 Responses

  1. I can see us paying Ireland’s wages for half a season and never seeing him play like. Great

  2. He’s a piss taker, plain and simple. Says all the right stuff but doesn’t put in the performances when he gets his chances. Sadly I think this will go on for the remainder of the season, and if he does manage get back you’ll get anonymous performances from him. I hope Newcastle are daft enough to buy him in the summer.

  3. I don’t want HBA played this season anyway… I just don’t want to risk it. We will be safe playing with who we have now. Forget this Europe rubbish. Play it safe. Let’s get to 43 points, then start giving the reserves their run. Howay the lads.

  4. Ryan(4)
    My sentiments exactly. What Benny needs is to get back 100% and have a cracking pre-season and then watch him go.

  5. Sounds daft but am glad H.B.A is out for the season, lets get him fresh for next term when we will need him most.

  6. CH’s training never threw up this many injuries. pards is pushing too hard for sure. this is a great aricle and highlights everything as the man admits himself that they have pushed every player too soon and too much. Ireland will be a top signing once his niggles are gone. It was foolish taking a player with a knee injury on loan on last day of transfer window though. Pathetic business. This all goes to highlight how paper thin our squad is and what happens when you have an owner who’s only motivation is everything to a minimal, cut it to the bone and hope for the best approach. What we gonna do if nolan takes a knock or jonas? We have barton, jose, ireland out .. and thats just a measly three players but it has instant impact on the entire ability of our team. we are sailing close to the wind and if we dont get a win soon we could get sucked back into the relegation dogfight very easily.

  7. i’m pretty sure Newcastle are not paying his wages until he starts playing, Villa are still footing the bill until he is fit or the end of the season which might be the case.
    After this they will be having him back.

  8. Joeys tache @ 6
    craig chisholm is right in his post above we have a very thin squad and if we get dragged into a religation fight and the dredded did happen ben arfa would be one of the first out of the door, he could be newcastles 1st permanant signing to never play.

  9. craig chisholm,
    i can’t remember, i ‘m sure i read it back in jan just after we signed him, perhaps it was wishful thinking ??
    could have sworn i read it somewhere though

  10. ”we are sailing close to the wind and if we dont get a win soon we could get sucked back into the relegation dogfight very easily.”

    there’s some pirate talk there ;)

  11. thanks to the cocksure deciple of lucifer another desperate days shopping with the missus beckons.

    but hang fire people of the org it doesn’t have to be a day taxi-ing & carrying bags for the miserable bitch as the – the heed – from that great town & soon to be great city of – gateshead – are travelling to darlington for the semi final 1st leg of the fa trophy.

    £15 nicker in – a few ales a footy bet & watch a decent game! – need i go on ?

    do you wanna be bossed around today ? man up – put your foot down & i’ll see you’s at the darlo arena.

    incidentally i’m travelling there on horseback – ye-ha!

  12. Every other club has injury problems aswell its not just us. Especially the ones that have to play more games than us. Man U are or were missing both their first choice CB’s.


  14. What we need is a manager like Sam Allerdyce who apparently uses a more scientific approach to training and injuries.

    Looks like we missed out on getting Dyer from WH on loan, pity as he looks like a good prospect.

    Gateshead were the first club I ever supported, getting kicked out of the old 4th Division was a real criminal act by the southern softy clubs, love to see them get to Wembly and back into the football league proper.

  15. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 12, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    “What we need is a manager like Sam Allerdyce”

    Errrrrrrm… I’m lost for words at that one, Grumpy!

  16. Yeah just being a bit silly Worky, it’s just that when he came to us he was supposed to be the answer to the perennial injury problem but nothing changed and doesn’t it would seem.

    I said at the time that loaning out Routledge would come back to bite him in the b*llocks and I think it has.

  17. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 12, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    “it’s just that when he came to us he was supposed to be the answer to the perennial injury problem”

    Grumpy, injuries happen, especially at Newcastle Unied, seemingly, but we were just starting to get a handle on it under Hughton. We were doing it through the judicious rotation of some players, a healthy complement of versatile “utility” players who could play in more than one position etc. We were often playing two games per week in the Championship too, on more uneven pitches etc. That all seems to be out of the window now, and the way Pardew shipped Routledge out the club, saying that he wasn’t good enough for Newcastle (thus creating a situation where he probably wouldn’t want to come back) was just rank bad management.

  18. WORKY the way he rubbished the lad was out of order in my book,has no class,strikes me of a,i love me who do you love type of joker

  19. Pardew blathers too much, shouldn’t have bad mouthed Routledge…bad style …

  20. icedog says:
    March 12, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    “WORKY the way he rubbished the lad was out of order in my book”

    Ice, Munich, Despite what some people think about Routledge’s game, I don’t even think that it was true either, especially as a “squad” player who can come in when Barton’s knacked. Is Ryan Taylor better?

  21. worky…my main beef is with Pardew slagging off Routledge, or any other player for that matter, in public, not questioning whether Routledge was good enough for the toon. But on that subject, we could do with him now imo, cos pace is a great thing to have, and gives us something different, even perhaps for the last 20 minutes when the opposition may be tiring…

  22. icedog…Ryan Taylor shouldn’t be anywhere near a toon strip mate, it gets my hackles up big time…

    Oh how the toon have fallen..

  23. Munich Mag says:
    March 12, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    “worky…where’s everybody at…?”

    As it’s Saturday, quite a few will be “oot on the lash”, Munich. There also hasn’t been a ‘blog on here today. I did one slightly earlier, but it took longer than I thought and by the time it was ready, I figured that everyone would be out anyway, so I’m gannin’ to schedule it for in the morning.

  24. worky…I hate these weekends when there’s no footy….boring like. Am on the lash too, but at home !..

  25. Munich Mag says:
    March 12, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    “worky…I hate these weekends when there’s no footy….boring like. Am on the lash too, but at home !..”

    I’m banned from drinking now, Munich, so that sort of thing’s a thing of the past for me!

  26. Perhaps a lot of people have had the “System Tools” virus same as I had, bugger*d up my my PC for about 2 weeks till I could get it fixed properly. :(

    Routledge is doing great for QPR, I’m hoping that AP developes a brain soon and brings him back. It’s going to be blo*dy annoying if he comes back next season with them and has a blinder against us. (assuming we are still in the EPL)

  27. It’s not a boring weekend and there is footy. Brisbane Roar are playing Central Coast Mariners in the grand final of the A-league, don’t you know. It might even be on Sky at about 2am.

    See the great Roarcelona become undisputed champions of Australia – already league winners by a mile and a half – and let’s see if they can make it 28 undefeated games in a row in front of 50,000 orange clad Queenslanders.

  28. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 12, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    “Routledge is doing great for QPR, I’m hoping that AP developes a brain soon and brings him back.”

    You think he’ll want to come back and play for Pardew after what he said about him, Grumpy?

  29. Another set of double standards, it`s fine for Ben Arfa and Gosling to take as much time as possible, but Ireland takes hits for not performing.

    LS says, “I can see US paying Irelands wages for half a seasonand not see him playing, great” !
    Well LS , nice to know you are helping Ashley out by paying part of his wages.
    By the way, you have a problem paying both Gosling and Ben Arfas wages for the entire season ?

    And VILLARICH sez, he`s a piss taker plain and simple and only expects anonymous performances, how he reaches that conclusion he does`nt say.

    Both commenters biased and not a lot of sense.

    As for injuries, every team has them, but others can cover by having, quality in depth and even have selection problems with competition for starting roles.
    Who do we have on the bench, kids, second tier players and Kuqi.
    How much does that Indian guy have again ? is he a billionaire ?

  30. worky@35….banned from the drink….my deepest condolensces mate…real bad news. Us toon fans need all the crutches we can get, drink included..