Europe calling the Toon?

Posted on August 3rd, 2010 | 100 Comments |

Campbell is aiming for Europe... Hmmm...
Campbell is aiming for Europe... Hmmm...
It seems that the delusion at Newcastle isn’t just restricted to a certain amount of fans like the press would have us believe.

Now the players are getting in on the act aswell, especially after the latest claim from Sol Campbell that the club should be aiming for Europe this season.

The expectation of most fans is to survive this season. In fact I’m willing to bet that if 17th position was offered right now we would snap their hand off for it, agreed? That should be the minimum of what we are aiming for, right? Well it seems that our latest signing has his sights set higher than that, quite a bit higher in fact, and believes that the squad we have are capable of that.

“I always say ‘shoot for the stars’ and honestly I think we should be aiming for Europe. I’m in it to win it here – I haven’t joined a club that is making up the numbers. It’s a big club that should be going for that,” Campbell told The Journal today.

“I’ll try my and best to make sure Newcastle are going in the right direction. For me, I love getting into Europe and that’s my goal with this club. I don’t mind putting my head on the block and saying that’s what this squad is capable of.”

Europe? Haddaway man. There is nothing wrong with being optimistic, and to be fair he isn’t the only player who has said that we should be aiming for Europe as Kevin Nolan said much the same thing a while back. Could this be the first time in a long time where the expectations of the players are higher than the expectations of the fans at Newcastle?

I’ve said for quite a while now that we have a team who has enough Premier League experience to know all about what to do this season. There will be no uncharted territory for them as the vast majority have been there and done it before, as the near on 2,000 Premier League appearances spread throughout the squad can testify. Campbell seems to agree with that aswell:

“The good thing about Newcastle is we’ve got enough guys who have played at the very top. That will be invaluable this season for sure. It’ll calm us down when we’re winning games and we won’t be naive like other newly-promoted sides might be. Also, if we’re going through a bit of a sticky patch we’ll be able to stay calm and negotiate a way out of it.”

Good words from Campbell there, even if they are a little bit over ambitious. That’s just my opinion mind, but I honestly can’t see us making Europe this year, sorry Sol.

Another thing that Campbell will have to be careful of is saying to much to the press. I’m sure Kevin Nolan won’t be overly impressed that his role of club spokesman has been taken over. I wouldn’t want to see it come blows, and I doubt it would, but if it did then I imagine it would look something like this.

I’m joking with that one of course, but it is nice to see positive words coming from within the camp, from more than one person.

As for Europe, we’ll see on that one!

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

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100 Responses

  1. i cannot get away with everybody who says that theyll settle for 17th place. what a load of bollox – id rather be relegated again if it meant that we’d have another season like we had last year. the premier league isnt the be all andend all.
    i’m actually looking forward to the championship starting at the weekend – i’ll pay much more attention to this than i ever did before last year.
    i dont see that we have anything to fear from at least half a dozen clubs this year – so i’m looking for at least 12-14th – with at least some entertainment again.

    17th place indeed – you ought to be ashamed of yourself Toonsy

  2. Tattyheed – So you are telling me that if we got offered PL safety now, without even kicking a ball, you wouldn’t take it? I mean come on, let’s keep it in context rather than trying to blur the issue.

  3. “Aim for the moon, that way if you miss you’ll still be amongst the stars.”

    Nowt wrong with dreams and ambition lads.

  4. Yeah, I’d like a good swashbuckling season of the entertainers, complete with top six finish, but if you offer me 17th now, I’ll take it.

    Things move quickly in the EPL. One season out can suddenly feel like a lot longer when you step onto the pitch of an average Premier League team that has been improved upon three times since you last faced them.

    I’m cautiously optimistic myself, but the target for me has to be safety.

  5. If we aim for 17th place and just fail… we’re relegated. If we aim for a European spot and just fail, we’re still safe and in the Prem. Always aim high. There’s no harm in it!!

  6. there was some mention yesterday about getting into europe through the back door,the only way we’ll get into europe,is if it was a bribe for one of the squad to literally take one for the team,ie up the back door to get into europe,that’s the only way that’s going to happen.

  7. roy @ 8

    thats a bit harsh mate – all i said was that he should be ashamed of himself!!. – Anyway – i’m an overweight deluded never was!

  8. lads get a grip!we are better side then we were.fact we are unbeaten at home, so what people will teams have improved apart from spurs and city.the rest have gone backwards in this backwards league.some people are talking as this league is great it isnt.

  9. Tattyheed – Why should I be ashamed for having an opinion and suggesting that most fans would take 17th NOW, before a ball is kicked?

    I notice you missed out the nit where I said 17th is a MINIMUM.

    Fecks sake man :roll:

  10. i firmly believe that we will do better than certainly the pundits think. we’re a little bit guilty of setting our sights low – which in itself i suppose isnt a bad thing. My point to Toonsy was that for all the fact that the premier is where the money lies – i honestly can say that i enjoyed last season and personally i wouldnt see it as a tragedy if we played there every year. Some proper football teams and some great away trips with proper grounds etc.
    of course – thats too simplistic. Fat Mick would probably collapse us if we went down again and he had to put his hand in his grubby pocket.
    Still – we’re undoubtedly a better side than when we went down – who would argue?. I really dont think that a good few of the other clubs havent improved one little bit – but they are complacent. Can any one really see us going to say Wolves and actually being underdogs?? – its not gonna happen….

  11. That should say dont think they have – or do think they havent (or something like that – you get my drift)

  12. HA!
    The Nederlands & Spain fined by fifa for poor discipline in wc final………..
    …………..£9k & £6k respectively.
    That’s gotta hurt!

    fifa are f***ing pathetic, totally out of touch with reality.

  13. Tattyheed – I agree. I loved last season, the away days, the fans, the results, but if we went down again I don’t think it would be as easy to come back up.

    Those players who stayed last time wouldn’t next time so we would be a weaker proposition all round, in my opinion.

    To get anywhere in football we need to have a PL income. Maintaining that is of paramount importance. Of course it would be nice to finish higher etc, but even the club are saying that survival is the target, and I agree. Anything else is a bonus.

  14. By the way – i’m new to the site and i’m lovin it! – keep up the good work lads :)

  15. blackpool west brom bolton blackburn wolves we will finish ahead of after that will be were we finish amongst the rest.

  16. Anyhoo,
    this is just lifted from what Sol said when he signed for us.
    They always do this (the press), get a few quotes, then spread them out over a few weeks to make out that they are new quotes.
    Like the one on newsnow about Carroll not being for sale to chelsea or stoke, ancient history.

    But, course we should aim high, but we should keep it to ourselves, otherwise you just get the old ‘deluded Geordies’ jibe over & over.
    Personally, i couldn’t care less what others think, but it’s amazing how other fans think about what we think.
    Everyone just believes everything they read.

  17. A good season for me would be to avoid relegation and at the same time finish above the Mackems.
    They have had too much fun trying to say they are the top North East Club, time to prove they never have been and never will be!!

  18. It’s a poor translation but this is the gist of the Ben Arfa article:

    The keystone of the transfer window Olympique de Marseille, as is currently the player best able to get the money for buying a reinforcement, Hatem Ben Arfa does not seem to make its choice in precipitation. But according to Provence, the former Lyon seems to have decided to reject all proposals, except that one of Newcastle. Hoffenheim, who was close to an agreement with the OM, would have been flunked by Hatem Ben Arfa, like offerings from Italy. The player’s decision even provoked some controversy within his advisers are struggling to understand the position until the player endian OM for Magpies.

    “Newcastle is the worst solution for both Hatem, as for the OM. The English league is not the best place for him to fully express his talent and the club can not even submit bank guarantees for the purchase option! I do not understand where they want to make is RUBBISH! “Said a relative of Hatem Ben Arfa in the columns of the regional daily. In this situation, Olympique Marseille tries to find a solution with Newcastle, but this does not seem so simple and pending Hatem Ben Arfa is still under OM.

  19. Frank Danquah gone to Ferenkvaros.
    But interestingly, ssn put that out under there championship band.

  20. I’m guess this guy is a good player. Never seen him play at all, just heard/read what everybody says about him.

    I’m not saying we are going to get him, but from reading that last report, is it the pull of Newcastle rather than money that is making him want to play here? If so, that’s got to be good and a change for the better. Even if he doesn’t come, but thats the pull, lets hope it works with other players.

  21. Simon,
    anyone who says playing in the prem at a club with 50k+ regular attendances isn’t a draw, is a liar.

  22. Deepak – Nope, not a cat in hells chance.

    The French press are more reliable that the English press as everything has to be checked before release, but there are too many “he says she says” kind of things going on for me to believe it.

    I would like us to get him, but let’s get this in perspective, was there a massive clamour to sign him before he was linked with us? Were people saying that Ben Arfa would be the ideal solution to our problems? No, for either. I just think we are being used as a namedrop to be honest.

  23. Seemingly namedropping Newcastle is still seen as a worthy way to drum up business.

  24. simon this player will have u off your seats more then any winger around if he puts it in.he walks past players easily then any1 i have seen.becasue of the prem league he would get seen around the world then the that makes him on the rader of big newcastle i would say to u get him over here if u are intrested as the papers make out we are.lets put this thing to rest and stop people talking about we are not going to get any1 good becasue of ashley.

  25. CLiNT – Citing Newcastle as a good namedrop for a transfer when he hasn’t been sold yet :D

  26. i guess so toonsy,put don’t u think that this rumour has been going on for a bit too long and perhaps this article explians why-we haven’t coughed up the money yet and if he wants to come here,i guess it might still happen……

    and even CH has not denied it,the OM management have said we are interested and the agent has also talked abt our interest.i think that there is something in this after all………

    tats just my opinion,am an eternal optimist

  27. i think also we are waiting on cleverly more then him.i cant see cleverly and ben arfa both playing for us.if cleverly comes then ben arfa wont.but i would rather have him then cleverly only because of loan deal for him.but being greedy have both.that would send out a message to the rest their places would have to be earned.they are not going to be bench warmers for rout and jonas.

  28. toonsy,
    ok, i get ye.

    But i was meaning: teams think we’re a worthy namedrop, not me/us.
    If you get me drift?

  29. Well lets hope we can get him if he’s that good. Not going to do the call everybody at teh club and say no chance, as we just never know what might come out of the woodwork, stranger things have happened.

  30. @ 35 i haven’t seen him play either – sounds like he could be just what we’re looking for.

    think i’ll invest in a playstation sooner rather than later.

  31. if ben arfa is as good as people are saying,why are the big boys not in for him?not saying the lad is not a good player,but if he’s a touted superstar,why would he want to come to a club like newcastle,we’ve just been promoted from the second tier.this story doesn’t hold water for me,there’s more chance of elton john turning straight,than ben arfa signing for us,watch him sign now lol.

  32. europe!EUROPE, ill be more than happy with survival, which is more than possible with the poor quility of the teams that will finish around us. However a finish abouve scumberland and ill be over the moon :). But if im telling the truth i cant see that happening.

  33. what’s this other story on nufc mad about miroslav klose,where do they get them from.

  34. You never know about Europe, I still think the closest we will get is putting The Final Countdown CD on before we play, but it could be a possibility. Remember, doesn’t have to be finishing in the top 6, could do it via the Intertoto if we appaly for that or even fair play. To do it via fair play, think we might have to use Barton & Smith as little as possible and teach Pearch all about tackling. Could just happen though.

  35. again ch has left harris and ranger at home.dont like it.saying they can only use a limit on subs.forget they need to play in reserves to get match fitness bollocks.we need to see them play becasue we no what smith and the rest of the dead legs can do.unless he is going to get cleverly and ben arfa then it is no good leaving them behind.he must be playing most of his first team tonight who is going to play united or if he doesnt then why leave them at home.

  36. asim, the priority has to be getting the first teamers up to speed. We have 5 strikers ahead of Ranger who Hughton will want to see more of. For me (and the manager) its more important to see if Best and Xisco can step up given the money invested in them.

    I think Ranger and Vuckic will both go on loan for at least part of the season.

  37. i think 12th-15th is where we will finish if we get a couple more in.
    cardiff are dropping deeper into the mire,strike while the iron is hot,try whittingham

  38. they are not going to play in are first team as first choice strikers are they.xico comes back becasue nobody wonts him.even if he scores 3 he isnt going to start.we need hungary players who can make a difference not players of the same mould coming on to do the same job.but harris and ranger have got something different then the others.harris scores goals from midfield the rest dont from central.thats what we are missing then smith coming on to do what.slow us down and take his wages if anything he must go being a bit part player.

  39. With you on this one Asim
    Ranger and Vuckic deserve to be in top sixteen.
    Both are the sest thing to come out of newcastle for years. Far rather leave out Shoala and Lovenkrands on current form

  40. Rather have ben arfa than cleverley any day we don’t want a future manc winker. Get klose in and we r sorted and get kadar playing in the reserves as a left back to train him up

  41. If you look at the chances Ranger got last year I think his best hope this year will be a loan. If we can’t get rid of Best and Xisco I think Hughton is prepared to push Ranger down further to accomodate the bigger investments financially.

    It’s nice to see young players come through but realistically a) they are not what will keep us up and b) they will not get enough football to develop as they need to.

  42. are bench! r.talyor smith lovens ameobi xico best thats just some i havnt put in defenders or other players so if u look at this why lads.this players coming off the bench will not fill us with hope.i would have ranger or harris in their.not players like we all be thinking he isnt going to do people who say let these players go on loan.must be mad plus we cant have all of these on the bench will put his favorites on the bench thats my hole point. team selection comes first not plas act first thats why i dont see ch strong enough to do that.if he does i will be his biggest fan.dont get me wrong i didnt like him and i have changed my mind about him.but this is the next test for u ch to pass or we will be in trouble playing his pals be4 team.

  43. asim,
    CH has already said that Vuckic will play this season.
    Ranger will probably get loaned out, it’s not like we can’t recall him.
    You’re making decent points mate, but getting all hot & bothered will change nowt man.
    It’ll happen mate.

  44. clint agree mate! so why put him in reserves! for that reason.soon as these players do well in first team like harris and ranger we have hardly seen them.reseves what for.harris is showing up are central midfielders so he cant have that he then puts them in the reseves thats what i think ch is doing.sorry to be spitefull.

  45. All is possible asim.
    Maybe he wants certain players in the shop window & others definitely NOT.
    Haris being someone he doesn’t want anyone to notice yet.

    Don’t you just wish you could read minds sometimes?

  46. Toonsy i think 17th position is way to bad and risky. At least 15th to me as the minimum.

    If someone gives us the 17th Position,i would rather fight for life to survive.

  47. i think ranger has been in bother late night parties,nightclubbing,annoying his neighbours,handbrake turns in the middle of the night,that sort of crap.
    they reckon his attitude in training hasn’t been good either,that’s why he hasn’t been getting a game,i think by sending him out on loan was to give him the kick up the backside he needs.he must have bucked his ideas up if they are not sending him out.

  48. aod,even mike williamson said on sky if they were offered fourth bottom they would take it,the players know it’s going to be tough.

  49. Trojan –

    Williamson spent the first half of last season at Pompey, of course he would take 17th! He sat and watched them lose week after week.

    Sol Campbell is a winner, and Kevin Nolan has finished in the top half with less talented teams than this one. That’s where the Europe talk has been coming from.

  50. so ranger and harris left at home…shock horror :wink:
    we all know hughton will pick his favorites,makes me wonder who runs the team hughton or the senior players :wink:

  51. @toonsy: Total agreed. a player with no ambition is not worth to be a Newcastle player. :lol:

    Looks like this friendly match,i am gonna give it a miss. geez. it 3am in Singapore when the game starts. :(

  52. free scoring smudge,divvent shoot the messenger,i’m only telling you what he said.

  53. If we get into Europe this season I’ll run up and down Northumberland St with a Cumberland sausage up my arse shouting “I love Mike!” while being ridden bare back by Black Beauty!

  54. hitman,funny enough you always hear rumours like that flying around newcastle,about hughton not being in charge of jack s**t,and nolan and barton are actually running the team.

  55. stuart,there’s always that owld chessnut of showing ones arse in fenwicks window also.

  56. Trojan no maliciousness mate, just pointing out that while Williamson will be a key player for us, the leadership is going to come from Campbell, Nolan, and Colo.

  57. aye trojan heard it me self m8..
    from eds..

    Milzzy Rascal // Aug 3, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    I heard from a very good and reliable source this afternoon that Nedum Onohua has checked into a hotel in Jesmond today.

    However he also says that Steve Bruce tends to use the place frequently and as we’re away in Deportivo this evening I fear this may not be us.

  58. When Williamson says “we’d take 17th” though, of course his ambitions and drive isn’t limited to settling for that, he just simply means that regardless of our position next season – as long as we stay up he’d be happy.

    Secretly though, as Campbell appears to be, they might be a bit more geared up for challenging a something slightly better than mid-table mediocrity. Birmingham anyone?

  59. hitman if nedum onohua is in newcastle.then sunderland.or talyor is on his way so he comes in?ch said he isnt looking at defenders or it must be loan which would be good.

  60. Birmingham had a good amount of experienced players mixed in, along with some untested prem first timers.

    We’ve got a similar mix now. Funny how our supposed age limit has been exposed as a farce!

  61. did anyone see the story in the mail about hughton,had to more or less get down on his knees for jabba to sign campbell,the patter is ashley didn’t want him.

  62. hey fellas

    long time reader, first time poster.

    must say it would be a miracle if we should get into europe this year. i would prefer to be realistic and aim for a finish on or about 15th…

    on another note, hope we do get ben arfa in, whether on loan or otherwise. we do still need another small and pacey no 10 to play of wor carroll methinks. plus of cos cover for jose. it’s crazy that CH refuses to contemplate another loan for Van the man AND refuses to bring in someone as competition.

    we’ll be playing raylor or tamas or simpson out of position should injury hit…and that’s gonna cost you big time in the premier league…

  63. As much as i would love us to get into Europe it just aint gonna happen , that said who would have thought that Fulham would have got into europe then got to the final . I think maybe Sol thinks our squad is better than it is , love the confidence of the man though.

  64. If we get ben arfa in wud b great, n someone said if we get cleverly we won’t get ben arfa why not we need more wingers since we only hav 2 at the club am I the only one who can c guthrie,barton n rtaylor r crap on the wing bcoz there not WINGERS, n if we don’t sign a left bk I can ch usin kadar as bk up to jose which id b ok with think he can do a job there

  65. Houghton has said he wants his signings in b4 man u so we’ve only got less than 2weeks to find who exciting

  66. Europe? Bloody hell. Ridiculous, as long as we don’t get relegated im happy. Why aim for Europe, we might aswell aim to win the league, lol.

  67. Ross, maybe he’s aiming for Europe via the champions league ha ha!
    I’d be happy with 17th for this season, but let’s hope the team are just going to aim for as high as possible

  68. I agree with davy in that we need more wingers. Both ben arfa and cleverly would do nicely…but then both would need first team football…which in all honesty they might or might not get here at nufc…what with jonas n routledge in front of them, who don’t forget were the ones who got us up fr the ccc. Gosling n raylor, tho not natural wingers, have some of the attributes to play as wingers if needed. So I would be happy even if just one of ben arfa or cleverly comes in.

    A left back on the other hand is absolutely critical. Tamas is a centre back who has a tendency to drift to the centre and is less likely to get up and down the flanks. Full back is a specialist position…more so a natural left back. So this would have to be a priority!

  69. davy u are not the only 1! every 1 thinks the same.i have been going on about it 4 ever u must not come on or read the blogs mate.about putting midfelders on the wings.what i was saying b4 about 2 more players on the wings i mean we have got 2 meny bench warmers so that wouldnt fit in ch plans he will always go with his smiths of this world.

  70. stuart stick to englands great players beating the germans and winning the world cup clown.what did u say about the english beating the germans and going to enjoy your day out.good for u u did.always nit picking and being a loser.

  71. Asim – Chill man, don’t bite at everything. Just let it float over your head like I do :)

  72. Mebbe its just me – but is Chris Hughton building up Colo so he can make him Captain? – good shout i would say. He’s the only one who is deinitely nailed on for his place – I think it would help him blossom as a player

  73. Why shouldn’t we aim for Europe? Seriously, aiming for 17th place is pathetic, why go into a league just to survive, granted we need a few more places but soo far I’m happy with the signings we have made soo far this summer. You can’t expect new players to come to us by just saying we just want to survive. Whether we get to Europe this year is another thing but we should be aiming that high. And if the players are talking about Europe it gives me hope that maybe we are wanting to be ambitious and more decent signings on the way. I’m just praying it’s not false hope. Lol. HWTL.