Nolan attacks the critics.

Posted on July 19th, 2010 | 28 Comments |

Kevin Nolan hits out.
Kevin Nolan hits out.
Kevin Nolan has launched a stinging attack aimed at the critics who are writing off Newcastle United’s survival chances already.

Nolan hit 18 goals and picked up the Player of the Season award last year as Newcastle waltzed the Championship, although I very much doubt that the same amount of goals will be scored by Nolan this time around.

The most scathing part of the criticism is aimed at some former Newcastle players, who have queued up and took it in turns to swipe at the team before even a ball is kicked. Former players like Malcolm Macdonald and Rob Lee have all been critical of the team and lack of investment, which is their opinion of course, but they seem to be forgetting anything positive that came from last season. The team was in a similar position this time last year with the critics rounding on them wanting failure to justify their newspaper columns and such, and look what happened!

“I’m sick of hearing ex-pros saying we’re not good enough,” Nolan told The Star. “They were a bunch of nobodies when they first went up and they made names for themselves.”

“We had to prove a lot of people wrong in the Championship and we will have to prove them wrong again in the Premier League.”

Nolan is right, to a point, but I can also understand the reason behind the rumblings of criticism. There is a long road ahead, with many twists and turns in it, but we aren’t at the end of it yet, in fact we haven’t even started the journey.

The squad we have has played over 1400 Premier League games between them, and most of them have spent their entire careers playing top flight football. They didn’t suddenly become bad overnight and there was more than just some poor performances on the pitch to ultimately blame for our relegation.

Do we need some more players in? Yes. Has Hughton said there will be more players coming in? Yes. So that angle should be covered and we should have enough players to deal with the Premier League season when the transfer window slams shut in early September.

If you think about it, who do we actually miss from the last time we were in the Premier League? Michael Owen? Damien Duff? Not likely. Some of our former players may well have moved on elsewhere and may well have played well for their new clubs, but they were awful whilst they were here and didn’t help the Newcastle cause out when we needed it most.

I know things will be tough in the Premier League, most people do, but staying up is not the unachievable objective that is being made out. I have concerns about the team, as most do, but I genuinely feel that they will either be addressed or will end up not being important.

Called it blind faith, optimism, delusion or whatever, but I honestly believe we have enough already to survive in the Premier League. That is the main objective this season, and it may not be ambitious. But what is the difference between 17th and 8th? Not a lot, a few extra quid maybe but that is it, no European football or anything as they are basically nothing positions.

Anywhere in between 17th and 8th will do for me anyway!

NUFCBlog Author: toonsy toonsy has written 643 articles on this blog.

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28 Responses

  1. Same Supermac who predicted a dire season in the championship last year, I believe. I think he also bought shares in Northern Rock?

  2. The doubters will always have their say, what we have to look at is when things get tough, heads go down and injuries kick in thats when the squad need to stand up and be counted to prove all of these doubters wrong. The premier league is nothing new to us we have played all these teams before so we should have nothing to worry about….in fact we should give them something to worry about!!!

  3. It’s the squad that bothers me. The under belly is very inexperienced and unproven. Their are also a lot of unproven PL players in key positions in the actual team. Carroll, Williamson, Routledge and Lovenkrands.

  4. I doubt we’re going to spend a lot of time (if any)in the top-half of the table but I still think we have enough to survive, the jury is still out on quite a few of our players but thats true of any promoted teams & we have all seen players from promoted teams come into the prem & make an impact. Many of the players being signed by our rivals are from all-over the world & don’t have any epl experience.

  5. Well said Nolan. All these Eyores out there who repeatedly predict disaster and rely on nobody pointing out the dozens of wrong calls for the one when they crow about being right.

    Nolan will bang in some great goals next season. Maybe not 18 (but I wouldn’t bet my house on it) but we have plenty of players capable of hitting double figures.

  6. we will struggle but i dont care that much as i dont miss any of the big names that deserted us, not a single one. we are a better team now than we were a year ago, simply for getting rid of the lazy cnuts with huge egos who have no interest in nufc but only the pay packet.
    Yes, we have all seen how good a team can be with great players but no team unity – ENGLAND.
    i think we wil lstay up… just.

    ps………i will be booing zogs, owen and duff every time they touch a ball at st james park for the rest of their careers.

  7. Whumpie – there’s no way we’ll get more than 2 or 3 players in double figures next season man. And I think I’m being optimistic with 2 or 3. If I’m wrong, I’ll buy the beers in Popolos.

    Super Mac meanders between being quite astute and a complete moron. His opinion is all that counts when he goes off on one. Not sure which comments Nolan is referring to but even Hughton said we needed strengthening and thus far we have Perch through the door and some lingering promises.

    I think it’s fair to say most of the ex-pros in question want us to do well and it’s a pretty cynical view that they would prefer their own predictions to be right, than the club to prove them wrong.

    We DO need reinforcements and time is ticking. If the clock runs out without any additions, it’ll be up to Hughton to build this current squad up for the task. Until then, talk of a big task ahead isn’t exactly wide of the mark, either by former or current staff.

  8. @whumpie
    Get real you gimp. It’s about being a realist instead of living in cloud cuckoo land like you.

  9. Your right BBM,

    Unfortunately history has told me that when deals are “wrapped up” like the Modric, Johnson, type deals, they generally linger until they fade and are only allowed to spread to keep fans hopeful and quiet until the transfer window shuts.

    I genuinely hope Gosling comes in. Although, with Smith wearing the captains armband, I get disappointed because he was a decent striker, he no longer is, and he certainly isn’t a top class midfielder.

    Gosling, Guthrie, Barton, Nolan I’d be happy with.

    Williamson, Colo, Taylor, Kadar, means we dont need Campbell.
    Perch signing means we will only be covering the right back position not strengthening it.
    Still no cover at left back for Enrique, still no cover with pace and creativity out wide for Jonas and Routledge.
    And still no real proven quality up front.

    Which means that despite positive rumours, we in effect havn’t strengthened at all yet. But I remain hopefull…

  10. Great article !!!

    We wiil do well in the top fight.


  11. “ps………i will be booing zogs, owen and duff every time they touch a ball at st james park for the rest of their careers.”

    Don’t worry Craig. Can’t see Michael Owen touching the ball too many times in his career again.
    Personally I hope he plays against us because he weakens any team he plays for these days.

  12. We’ll finish ahead on West Brom and Blackpool. And West Ham and Wolves IMO.

    So yes I think we’ll survive even with our current squad.
    15th/16th place I think.

    But with a few shrewd signings we could be challenging for a top 12 position.

  13. JJ – But what is the difference between 15th/16th and 12th? Pride? Wow.

    A few extra quid, that’s all. Anywhere from 17th to 8th (or the Euro places) is irrelevant, they are nothing places.

  14. Aye,
    we can’t afford to buy the prem title, so we might as well give up now & disband the club.
    No one’s saying ‘we’re great’ or owt, but the constant chiding from ex players & crappy pundits is dull as f***.
    Why don’t they actually try supporting the club or at least come out with something positive for a change?
    Well, i guess the rags have to fill their crappy back pages with some bollox for the off season. & it seems they’ll always plump for routing out someone to have a dig at the Toon.

  15. toons – I’ll put that down to you having an off day!!

    Howay kidda, can’t you really mean that? The difference between 16th and 12th could mean the difference between local pride. And surely the relevance is that 8th place rather than 17th means we’ve won a hell of a lot more games and enjoyed Saturday afternoons a lot more?

    If we’re not aiming for Europe, then survival is all that matters? I’d have to question why I would keep going back every week.

  16. Yes, I agree to a point Bowburn, but in the grand scheme of things, taking local pride out of the equation and looking back on it as the history books would look at it, what is the difference between 17th and 8th?

    Euro places? No, just another also ran. Survival? Yes, all the way from 8th to 17th, thats all it means.

    Are you really suggesting that we should be eyeing Europe this season? I mean is that realistic given the circumstances?

    In that case I know who will be happy with the shyte target of survival and who will be disappointed that we wont be in Europe the season after next.

    Unltimately, long term, the goal has to be Europe, but are we not trying to run before we can walk here a little by wanting it next season?

  17. BBM – have to agree mate – I’d be delighted with 9th – lots of wins and absolutely no worries at end of season. Delighted! My guess is around 10th – 14th.
    Class goal from young Haris!

  18. No, of course not man toonsy, I meant that was almost what you’re statement implied, i.e. if we’re not (realistically) gunning for top 6 then as long as we’re not in the bottom three then we don’t care where we finish.

    But we should surely be aiming as high as possible? For pride, money, attraction of players, confidence, momentum.

  19. Yes, to a point, but what does it actually offer that is extra?

    Europe? No.

    So say we finish 12th, is there really any pride in that? Will players look at that and think wow, just below Stoke etc. You know what I am saying? I guess the point is of we aren’t in the top 8 then then most important thing is being in the league as that is the only way we can progress long term. And for that, 17th would for me, for a season anyway ;)

  20. Every position is an improvement and I’d be more proud of 12th than 17th. But imagine we surpass all expectations and end up 9th? How proud could we be then? We get more money in the coffers for each position (potentially 3 or 4 million difference) and the means to the end will be that we win more than we lose. So while I get what you’re saying, I’ve got to agree to disagree. Buy me a pint next season and persuade me otherwise.

  21. I hope CH isn’t hoping for a 17/18 survival position only, thats a recipe for disaster. Top four might be a bit optimistic but why not a top ten finish we have to be as least good as Fulham were last season. I for one won’t be sitting wringing my hands and saying “I hope we can get a point from this game or that team doesn’t beat us by too many. I’d rather see us having another season in the Championship than have us going into games frightened.

  22. Yes, and do as CLiNT says, stop the delaying tactics.

    BW – that’s certainly what I’m hoping for.

  23. Doubt that CH is thinking ” survival” 16/17th.
    He’ll be aiming for as high as we can get.
    I’m sure he doesn’t like losing.