We need to keep our feet on the ground!

Posted on September 24th, 2010 | 73 Comments |

Abdoulaye Faye returns to his former club.
Abdoulaye Faye returns to his former club.
This past week has been pretty much fantastic from a footballing perspective.

Two good away wins at Everton and Chelsea have added to what was already a decent start to the season.

Newcastle now have the chance to complete the week (ok eight days, but you get the point) with a 100% win record in what I would say is a very winnable fixture at home to Stoke on Sunday. The problem for me is that the memory of the Blackpool game is lingering in my mind. The only way to get rid of that memory is by going into a winnable home game and actually winning. If we can manage that then it really has been a superb week.

I guess the mantra I am adopting is for us to not get carried away. Stoke present their own challenge but they are one of those clubs in bracket where we should be looking for three points from a home game against them. I mean that with no disrespect of course, I just think that we should be looking to take three points off of any team outside the top four, five or six at St James’ Park.

If we manage to win it will leave us on 10 points after 6 games played – a quarter of the way to the magical 40-point barrier that so many people claim will guarantee safety. That is not a bad start and is more than a lot of us expected.

Whenever Stoke play you know exactly what you are going to get from them. They will put in no less than 100% effort, and probably some tasty tackles as well. Condolances go to Tony Pulis after the passing away of his mother, and I expect that will be used as a motivational tool again to lift the players for the match. The players will want to do it for the manager more than ever at the moment.

I am warning against complacency against Stoke. Whether that is because of the Blackpool ‘experience’ or because I am genuinely worrie about Stoke I don’t know. Perhaps it’s a mixture of both? What I do know is that the game on Sunday will have to be fought and battled for. If we can win the battle then we should get the three points.

The fans in the ground can play their part on Sunday as well. I want them to shout themselves hoarse, really get behind the lads and really be the 12th man. I know they will anyway, but I would love to hear the volume as high as it was all those years back. It was loud against Villa, and more of the same will do nicely. Stoke use their crowd to their advantage, let’s return the favour.

Howay the lads!

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

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73 Responses

  1. I am warning against complacency against Stoke. Whether that is because of the Blackpool ‘experience’ or because I am genuinely worrie about Stoke I don’t know.
    I feel the same way- No matter hw good we look, we can;t take match for granted. It’s not just because of Blackpool but other results around the league. Anyone can really beat anyone this year, with ManU and Chelsea possibly exempted.

  2. toonsy yeah keep our feet on the ground ,but weve had 1 bad result in 6 games m8 and playing realy nice stuff 1 blip which we didnt play that bad so stop being down on us and make sure u predict a stoke win because your predictions are shite :)

  3. mds if iam truthful i dont think the team are taking any match for granted, there playing nice footy and we could of easely beat blackpool with the chances we had m8

  4. I think any team outside of the top four can be expected to be beat by any other team outside the top four.

  5. Is Perch available for this game? I think Taylor is a better choice at home anyway because of his crossing ability when we are on top of the opposition.

    I think this will be a real test for Krul, with Stoke looking to get it in the box any time they are in our half. Potentially his height is an advantage over Harper’s in dealing with the throw-ins, but organisation at the back may be compromised by his inexperience.

  6. WhoTheVuckicHaris says:
    September 24, 2010 at 2:18 pm
    Is Perch available for this game? I think Taylor is a better choice at home anyway because of his crossing ability when we are on top of the opposition”

    What about when we’re not and he has to defend? You know the right back position is in defence, right?

    This is the same sort of legitimacy that we used to love Martins for, he would pull something out of the bag, once in a while, what about the rest of the time? And now, we see him for what he was, an inconsistent playboy who jumped ship the first opportunity he could.

    Perch has done well and to break up a defence which is playing well together for the sake of someone has ‘crossing ability’ is just crazy.

  7. TGS jays been looking at my friends on facebook lived down there for years so got quite a few , i nearly hate stoke as much as the scum >>> north shiekds born and bred :)

  8. Batty @ 3. Agree with ya, just you know how sometimes teams can go into a shell and and simply play not to lose? You can dominate posession and still get nothing. I could see Stoke doing some of that this week, but we are playing beautiful football enough and have a enough quality (finally) to convert our chances. I like us 2-0 or 3-1 this week.

  9. icedog,
    according the Gray ‘the expert’ it’s the same team that took us down! theres only routledge, williamson, perch, campbell, gosling, tiote, ben arfa, simpson, best & you could argue enrique, coloccini & carroll a far better than when we went down. This guy knows nothing!

  10. I Love Mike.

    I wouldn’t necessarily break up the defence to bring Taylor in now but I think you’re wrong to think right back is all about defence. When you attack down their flank the full back is definitely another attacker. It’s important that they can offer something in the final third when you need to break down the opposition.

    When Chelsea are dominating teams at home to you think Ashley Cole is just a defender?

  11. I worry a bit about long throw-ins from that orang-utan of theirs, with Krul not the best at dealing with them. I also worry about the fact that we just seem to have trouble breaking this kind of ‘grunty’ team down.

    But I also think all that’ll count for nowt and we’ll take ’em apart and win 3-1 at least. HWTL!!

    (And what a great weekend for Sky to give free Sky Sports HD!!)

  12. mds but stoke never dominate posessin in any of there games m8 been speekin too a few of me stoke fiends they all expect stoke too win , they got worried wen i showed them benarfas goal because they reckon there defenders allways back off :) so now there saying draw

  13. Daan – I’ve been doing that since Monday :lol:

    Re: Ryan Taylor at right back. His crossing may be good, but he will get ripped by the pace of Etherington IMO.

  14. batty,who’s that prick with the baldy heed and the glasses , who’s the top boy of the naughty 40’s?looks like a right mug to me.

  15. nice one toonsy, i went on one called oatcake or something and they all seem to think we will win 3-1 and they will be lucky to sneak a draw!

  16. Feel for harps but I’ve been calling for krul to b no1 for a while now he has chance to make it permanent

  17. Perch at RB. We’re not short of attackers, but we need specialist defence.. which Raylor really isn’t.

    Perch – Colo – Williamson – Jose
    Routledge – Barton – Tiote – Benny

    I know it’s hardly original, but it’ll get the job done. If it doesn’t work, stick Jonas on RW, bring Benny into the middle, swap Lover for Nolan and go 4-4-2. And if that doesn’t work, bring Shola on for Carroll.

    I cannot see that Stoke have enough in their squad to defend against all those options. Although I can still see a goal from them, starting with a Delap throw…

  18. trojan mark chester .> jasper he is and ive give himm a few slaps in the past ,but my best friend from doon there ian dyer is a crackin lad m8 but hes also mates with chester

  19. tough on harper , but i’d rather see krul between the sticks.harper is now 35 so i see krul as the future,so i hope krul keeps him out even when harper is fit.
    tricky game tomorrow against the land that time forgot , they are a tough nut to crack.hopefully we’ll get an early goal , then they will have to come out , then we can pick them off.

  20. Agreed about Taylor. He has a good right foot on him, but he really is woeful defensively. Perch has a good cross on him, but he is a much more defensively minded player. We need that in order to balance the team and allow Enrique to get forward.

  21. WhoTheVuckicHaris says:
    September 24, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    “I wouldn’t necessarily break up the defence to bring Taylor in now but I think you’re wrong to think right back is all about defence.”

    all about defence? RIGHT BACK IS IN THE DEFENCE!

    I couldn’t give a toss if a right back couldn’t cross a ball or didn’t overlap that often, they are a defender first and foremost, that’s what they’re there to do! And if they can’t defend very well, they shouldn’t be in the team, like Ryan Taylor.

    Granted, a more modern full back’s game is alot more to do with how they play in the oppositions half too, but lets not take it for granted, Ashley Cole is a great defender first and foremost.

  22. D4T, Batty… any thoughts on how Gray’s arrived at the oonclusion that he’s “not going to second-guess what plans Mike Ashley has for the club; at the moment it doesn’t appear to be a viable proposition for potential buyers so that will be in the back of his mind and he’s unlikely to spend millions and millions on the club as a result.”

    Just what’s that got to do with the price of fish? Has he got superhuman powers that allow hin to know what’s in Ashley’s head? I’m sure there’ve been times when even Ashley’s not had a clue what he’s been thinking himself!

    I’ve never heard an unbiased word come out of Gray’s skate Scots gob!

  23. I don’t think Raylor is ‘woeful’ defensively; just not quite what we need against a decent left-winger.

    As for the goalie thing, I still prefer Harps and expect Krul to make mistakes. He’s just bound to at his age, even if his shot-stopping is absolutely excellent. But frankly – it’s a nice problem!

  24. aye batty , you generally find it’s always the same with them blokes , they are all mouth and no action.
    did you see that documentary about hooligans a few year back,some right dickheads on there.
    that fat coward from the subway army , hitting kids from behind , then pretending to be a west brom fan.
    that tramp charver kid from burnley’s suicide squad , who’s proud to announce he’s got his son in the firm.
    total knobheads most of them , but that little boxer who was in hibs firm can handle himself.

  25. trojan no m8 didnt see it but 1 thing i do know is that mark chester wrote a book and the front cover was loads of so called naughty forty of which only 4 were stoke fans :)

  26. Whumpie – Is it free Sky Sports HD or just free Sky Sports?

    Bit of a shitter if they are giving away HD for free as people need a new box to get that :lol:

    I think it’s free Sky Sports mate ;)

  27. That quote from Gray is classic. Basically “I won’t second guess… oh, damn – I just did.”

    It’s not the worst article; it makes some valid points along the same lines as this one – doing great, but don’t get carried away. If I was a neutral (or, as I suspect Andy is, a bit the other way) then I’d be refusing to up my expectations on the Toon until at least Christmas, regardless of results. I’m sure he doesn’t expect Blackpool to be in the top half come May either.

  28. lesh, he doesn’t have a clue man, why does he feel the need to bring up the point about Ashley selling us, is it to try and put a downer on our good start to the season, also when he says that we beat chelsea reserves, doesn’t mention we made more changes than them though!

  29. Toonsy – pretty sure it’s both. :) I’ll be on a train back from London Sunday afternoon, with wife and sprog expecting much attention on my return. So I’ll record it and watch it when they’ve both sparked out that evening.

    That’s if I’m not so utterly destroyed from the stag do that I can’t stay awake myself. I’m dead old, me.

  30. I don’t think there is much in it defensively between Taylor and Perch. His 5 straight yellows show a naivety which needs to be shaken quickly before he is getting us in trouble with freekicks and penalties.

  31. ‘It’s simple, Ben Arfa behaves himself, or he’s out.’

    What is Ed saying that for, that lad has done nowt wrong. Just a piece of sh!t stirring from the london media. Does Ed believe EVERYTHING he reads on newsnow. :)

  32. DJG – I thought that, but I’m not allowed to criticise or else this place will get invaded by the P.E.F.F or it will get copied and pasted on there in no time.

    “Ed, Ed, toonsy is saying bad things about one of your articles” :lol:


    *Waves at all the lurkers* Hi Kids ;)

  33. i wouldn’t say we were complacent against blackpool, more unlucky.

    we battered them when you look at the stats for the game, but the luck wasn’t on our side (bit like the 4-1 loss at home to Fulham a few years back)

    it was disappointing, yes – but it hasn’t got me that worried. I’d be bricking it if they’d played us off the park and we’d never mustered an effort, but thats not what happened :)

  34. I don’t want to sound disrespectful but I worry about the way Stoke will come at us in their efforts to support/put it in for their manager. Of course, not that a related bereavement should directly influence a football game – but the Blackpool result (yeah, good ‘keeper for them and not finishing the chances was more the case) can show what a team pulling together in spirit can translate to on the pitch.

    You do usually find that magic bit more from players from the ‘new manager’ effect or as I mentioned a combined team spirit – a motivation as a team.

    So you hit the nail on the head, complacency is very much the key issue here and I feel we may be pushed onto the back foot a bit from their physical in your face style. But, with the trickery and pace of Routledge and Arfa on the wings, I think a concentration on counter attacking football could be vital – as I can’t see dead balls and crosses doing much damage to a team packed with height and strength.

  35. Ed wasn’t the only Toon fan who was raging with Kevin “I love Geordies” Keegan for walking out on us…again!

    And divint bother mentioning Cockneys, Wise, Fat Ash or Nacho Gonzales. Heard it all before. He should have stayed and fought. End of.

    Glad he’s gone anyway – we’re better off with out him!

    Chrissy Hughton’s Black and White Army!! :)

  36. ah fairplay, for some reason I thought it was served as a league ban. To be honest I’d start with Perchio then; try and build up his confidence by giving him a long run in the 1st team

  37. Toon Chicken says:
    September 24, 2010 at 5:03 pm
    Batty, leave Uncle Ed alone. If it wasn’t for him none of us would be here……

    headless @ 57 – leave king kev alone if it wasn’t for him placka fans like you would’nt be here.

    FACT !

  38. It was a fooked up time and the lack of honest dialogue caused divides in opinion. Nee point giving each other a hard time about it though. The media destroyed us that season. It was a horrible time to be a Toon fan.

  39. Sorry to disappoint you, Roy, but Willie McFaul was my first manager at the Toon. And it was Peter Beardsley, who lived round the corner from me at the time, who inspired me the most.

    Now Fact Off will ya! :)

  40. Win (84%, 98 Votes)

    Eek..brings back the blackpool memories, we’ve got what it takes to beat them obviously, but they have the physicallity to lock up shop even with Carroll’s muscle..a win would be fantastic, a draw acceptable, a loss? Severely dissappointing..but certainly a possibility.

  41. IMO it matters less who the personnel are but how they line up. The key issue for CH to address is getting the best out of these players in the best formation.

    Unlike the Blackpool game (btw we werent complacent we were naive)where Carroll might as well have gone shopping for all the service he received, CH needs to utilise our strengths to overcome Stoke’s weaknesses.

    Stoke will probably play 4-4-2 as they did on opening day against Wolves as its almost the only system they know. So as long as we boss the midfield and restrict the supply to the front two, Jones and Fuller or maybe Gudjohnsen, we should win.

    In fact their main weakness is a lack of goals. Top scorer last season was Etherington with 5 but with a healthy 9 assists. In total they only scored 34 so stop Etherington from providing and to a certain extent the supply will dry up.

    I also believe that Stoke are in a dilemma now as their end of season form wasnt great and the start of this season has also been pretty poor with only one win against the rudderless Villa. I say this because Pulis believes they were beginning to get rumbled with their long throw, rough em up style of play and has tried, with the addition of several new signings, to move on both in terms of personnel and playing style.

    Having bought Kenwyne Jones in for £8m, plus Pennant and Gudjohnsen it shows TP is trying to add something, in terms of variety, to an attack which has laboured over the past two Prem seasons.

    The long throw is still a weapon but as more teams have equally tall players nowadays and most have learned not to cram the whole of the team into the penalty box to defend the ball then Pulis has to create a few more alternative gameplans. In addition to which he also has to play Delap in every game which eventually will become a problem for TP as the bloke, now 34, isnt getting any younger.

    So if we play to our strengths, keep AC in the game and Tiote and HBA continue their development then we’ll win by at least two clear goals.

    Failing that we could just pray for rain during the entire 90 minutes and not give Big Ears a towel:)