Newcastle United v Arsenal match preview

Posted on February 4th, 2011 | 41 Comments |

St James' Park, Newcastle United
Newcastle entertain the Arse on Saturday
Newcastle United take on Arsenal in our first home game since the Andy Carroll departure and it’s up to Alan Pardew to come up with a solution to our striking problems.

Newcastle are in fact the highest scoring team outside the top 4 – although Carroll accounted for 11 of our 36 goals – and we’re going to need to rediscover our scoring form if we intend to finish the season with a flourish. Arsenal are going to provide tough opposition and we really can’t allow them to settle and gain control of the game.

Chiek Tiote will be available for selection after serving a three match ban but we have Ameobi, Ben Arfa, Gosling, Ireland, Smith, Raylor and Saylor on the injury list. I suspect Tiote will come straight in for Guthrie and I would guess we’ll start with Best and either Ranger or Lovenkrands up front.

Arsenal also have a player back from suspension with Sebastien Squillaci but Alex Song joins Denilson, Nasri, Fabianski, Frimpong and Vermaelen in the treatment room.

Of Tiote’s return, Pardew said:

Other than perhaps a sloppy goal at Fulham we’ve been very sound.

We’ve gained a good collection of points over the last few weeks and obviously have Cheick back tomorrow.

If I’m slightly smiling it’s because he’s such an important player to us and I’m so pleased to have him back.

He hasn’t been a big loss because in the three games he’s missed we’ve been terrific in that area.

But there’s no doubt that he comes back into the team. That’s the quality he has and that he brings to the side.

Unfortunately someone’s going to miss out tomorrow who probably doesn’t deserve to, but he has to come back in. He’s very, very important.

On Shola’s injury and the possibility of getting in some short-term relacement, Pardew said:

Shola is going to have a procedure on Tuesday and we will then know a little bit more from that.

There is a fracture there and we will have to find out what the time-length is.

There’s one or two players we are looking at. I don’t think we are going to get anybody who can impact on the first team.

But on the bench I need to turn around and see players who can impact the game, so we will perhaps look into that market for one, and maybe two, if necessary.

It’s good to know Shola’s having a ‘procedure’ as they’re extremely useful.

Newcastle (from): Harper, Simpson, Williamson, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Barton, Nolan, Guthrie, Gutierrez, Tiote, Best, Lovenkrands, Ranger, Krul, Campbell, Perch, Ferguson, Richardson.

Arsenal (from): Szczesny, Sagna, Djourou, Koscielny, Clichy, Squillaci, Diaby, Wilshere, Bendtner, Walcott, Fabregas, Rosicky, Arshavin, van Persie, Almunia, Eboue, Gibbs, Chamakh.

Kick off is at 15:00 on Saturday and Stuart Attwell officiates.


NUFCBlog Author: Hugh de Payen I'm a baby-boomer of the punk rock persuasion, currently exiled in Somerset for crimes committed in a previous life where locals keep trying to poison me with something called 'scrumpy'. Hates sprouts, coat-hangers, Cilla Black, ornaments, Steven Seagull movies and 50 Cent (he's not worth 10). Hugh de Payen has written 634 articles on this blog.

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41 Responses

  1. Nolan could play up top, with Ranger playing off him, hope Nile grabs a goal in the next couple of games and starts to fill his boots.

    Stick Barton back in the middle, he’ll be less effective on the right without Carroll,… Alongside tiote.
    Jonas on the right,. And let’s have a look at ferguson on the left?

    Can’t help myself looking at the team really,.. But am still fully depressed with the owner, the manager and the team.
    For the first time in my life I predict we will get a mauling off Arsenal tomro., and will fully struggle the remaider if the season.
    Such a shame, and so demorilising… Can’t seem to stop sulking

  2. Looking at the team sheet when we played them at the Emirates, added to our record against them in the premiership, you would have banked on a home victory.The advantage we had that day was a strong collective resolve and a good shape – with Carroll and Shola both able to give us a solid outlet.

    All of that is/could be gone now, and I fear a lambs to the slaughter scenario tomorrow.
    we have to play 1 up (Best), pack midfield in front of Tiote, Loven on the left wing, guti on the right.

    It’s survival mentality now until we hit 42 points, starting tomorrow.

  3. As said on – we should just get stuck in as we have nothing to lose, have a go and see what happens, we are probably going to lose against Arsenal but if you kick them a bit, and just attack them they wont like it. May aswell.

    Ranger the playboy and Lovenkrands up top tomorrow. Best looks tired or maybe carrying a knock.

  4. Oh aye, and at least we don’t have to have crowd noise pumped into our stadium, unlike at the Emirates. Was at Fulham and to be honest it was gutting to see the loudest, most passionate, dedicated fans in the country so behind the our team, after yet another week of being undermined by our sadistic owner from hell.

    And to think what we would be like if we had a club as well run as Arsenal to get behind…

  5. While NUFC is likely to lose tomorrow, the squad is solid on the defense, so will not be out of contention by being blown out in most of the remaining games. AP somehow needs to have someone step up, striker or winger, squad or reserves and things will be Okay.


    I’ve followed many such deals in USA sports, the biggest being the rights to Eric Lindros, who was to be the next Gretsky. NUFC had decided that AC’s injury, a thigh muscle TEAR, may never heal right, or permanently reduce his performance levels. So he was on sale. Harry wanted him, but did not quite meet MA’s notion. Along came Liverpool, in trouble on & off the pitch. MA asks for the moon, and bargains back down. MA looking for a package of $ and a striker. Liverpool finally puts their foot down & says, “Here is the money, but no striker.” Time has run out, so MA takes the money & runs. AC knows he is dinged, and could have been told he would not heal right, so to help the club, he goes along with the sale, getting a big payday in return. Nolan goes to Liverpool to offer AC moral support, and takes heat from the fans.
    Liverpool has taken a big risk, and managed to create one for NUFC. In NUFC can squeak through the season, AP will have proven himself as manager. The scouts will be in a position to pick and choose this summer as other squad will be selling to meet the new financial and nationality rules.

    Well, I had to do something to keep the faith!

  6. Hello folks – haven’t been on here for a while….thought I’d pop in and say hellooooooo

    Tiote coming back is a big plus….

    Nolan? Not sure I’ve got much time for him to be honest, I’m a proud geordie – he’s a gobshite….

    Carroll? was 3 months for a pay rise too long to wait? took the scouse 30 pieces of silver and ran….Andy who?? Enjoy nicking the wheels off cars…..

    Ashley? It’s all been said about Jabba the Fat Cockney orphan before – no need to repeat it….wonder how much of the £36M has already been put on black 17…..

  7. Beeguy – Interesting point, its one that crossed my mind regarding the tear in is muscle, and his lax attitude (drinking most of the time) meant he obviously doesnt take much care of himself, used to live near me in West Allotment in a new estate called Heathfield, his trolley in Sainsburys was packed with Chicago Towns. Not the diet of a pro footballer. Most ignorant and egotistical young player of the year award goes to..

  8. I have been reading most of the fan’s responses on today’s blogs. I’m glad that the folk posting on these blogs don’t actually play for the club because we’d really be screwed. The moaning, whinging, feeling sorry for our selves, defeatist – LOSER mentality is not the way of Newcastle United, certainly not since that famous pre-season defeat at Orient before our championship season. The players since that day have played with a determination and pride led by Nolan, Barton, Enrique, Collocini, Harper, Williamson, and fully supported by the others and guess what? Those players – players that many clubs would love to have – are still at St James’ Park with the addition of Tiote and Ben Arfa. The supporters who Tiote has been hailing – or a large number of them – have frankly been a disgrace and are showing the kind of mentality that would result in certain relegation if it were transferred to the team.
    One of the reasons these players want to be at Newcastle is because of the fans. We must never allow that to change so please get behind them and stop the whining for goodness sake.

  9. Also just a thought, we have 42 points to play for, we could get around 15-20 looking at the run of games, so we should finish around mid-table. Who would you sign and sell? Id clear out around 4-6 deadwood i.e Perch, Shola, Guthrie, Smith.

  10. Bee Guy,

    Whatever the gossip and speculation, informed or otherwide, whatever things were said or written in public that were not necessarily true and whtever the situation with Carroll’s injury, there’s only one thing that we can be absolutely sure about: £35 million for a relatively inexperienced striker who wasn’t lauded as one the great world players of the future a year ago, someone who has only scored 14 or 15 goals in the Premiership so far was simply too much for Mike Ashley to turn down.

    However, he didn’t want to let the fans know that he always wanted to cash in for PR reasons, so both he, Llambias and Pardew shovelled up a steaming pile of BS about the whole thing.

  11. Worky its amazing isnt it, 8th most expensive player in the world, didnt even top the Championship goals tally last season, this season alot of his goals are from Bartons great crossing. Arsenal, Blackburn, West Ham spring to mind.

    Makes you wonder because Nolan matched his goal tally in the league last season and isnt far behind this season, if Nolan was 6 years younger with an England cap to his name we might have £70m! Crazy crazy world.

  12. Mark says:
    February 4, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    “Worky its amazing isnt it, 8th most expensive player in the world”

    He may be a great player for Liverpool, he may have made huge strides in the last few months, but when you think of where he was at not so long ago, it certainly is, Mark.

  13. I usually believe that we can win but for the first time tomorrow I have fear we could get a real shagging.

    I am trying not to pick on individuals but our strikers are below standard and just cannot see where we are going to get goals from. We will need goals for Arsenal will definitely score.
    Best up front on his own. I don’t see where Lovenkrands can fit in tomorrow. Doesn’t do enough in midfield when the opposition have the ball and not clever enough as a striker.

  14. “Arsenal will definitely score” – very possibly, but everyone assumed that Arsenal would score against us at home but our defence were magnificent that day and guess what happened. HWTL!

  15. I just want to chip in that I’m behind the team going forward. NUFC have a fine defense and midfield. There will be goals, and there will be wins, as the fine formation will demoralize other teams that do not have the ideas and skill to crack the Newcaslte goal line. Eventually players will come healthy and will help push the team to safety. Next year, the team should be even better than they have been to date this season.

  16. Worky says:

    “However, he didn’t want to let the fans know that he always wanted to cash in for PR reasons, so both he, Llambias and Pardew shovelled up a steaming pile of BS about the whole thing”

    I’ve already posed this question elsewhere but for the sake of equanimity let me ask you as well Worky.

    “Who stood to gain most from not spending any of the £35m on a replacement striker ?”

  17. filled with dread.thankfully for us,nasri and song are out so arsenal should technically be that little bit weaker in midfield.however they still have a whole bunch of top the outlook is bleak.
    hoping ranger undergoes some miraculous transformation into another great geordie striker.problem is,come summer once again the big dawgs’ll come sniffing for him.
    we really need to score consistently and now of all times our defence must remain rock solid.our midfield can only be boosted by the eventual return of all our injured stalwarts.
    problem is if no solution to our strike problem shows up we might need to field six midfielders..

  18. Sorry mark, i know it’s not the time for infighting on here but I had to rub my eyes mate at this comment:

    “Who would you sign and sell? Id clear out around 4-6 deadwood i.e Perch, Shola, Guthrie, Smith.”

    Are we seriously compiling lists of players who we want OUT in the summer? It’s so not the time to nitpick at the players who are left to do the job.

  19. Arka – It would be a miraculous transformation indeed, being that Ranger is a cockney.

    We have a decent defence and with Tiote back, Arsenal wont score as freely as some on here would have you believe.

  20. Pardews words today suggest Best is a starter, so i agree with Boater – have Lovenkrands help choke midfield, try stop the arse passing us to death, play on break, get round the back of them…. Except we’ve no pace so we’re knackered

  21. Boater – Its a hypothetical scenario where I am attempting to take the topic off the doom and gloom, get fans optism back. Im not nitpicking as such, just highlighting who I feel isnt up to the job in this league.

  22. formation:4-1-4-1
    defence:enrique,colo,williamson and simpson.although someone should drill it into simpson’s mind not to back off against players who are clearly a lot faster than him.
    midfield:tiote sitting deep in front of out defence.barton and nolan in front of him with guthrie as well.if guthrie can play like fletcher at manutd and just keep snapping at the heels of the opposition all day whilst running his socks off it would do a world of good.nolan will most probably be going forward and we need him now more than ever to score for us.gutierrez on the left with enrique.keep our attacking left intact.both will have to stay wary of walcott’s pace and fabregas’s runs forward,most of which he tends to make coming from the right slightly.i guess barton would have to drift out wide to put the ball in the box,unless we put guthrie there and go for a defensive right flank.this would mean all our attacking play would come down the middle.i don’t see barton having a’s just that whatever chance we do get will be limited.
    strike:up front i guess we have to play ranger by himself.he has shown flashes of ability but he still makes rookie mistakes.frankly from what i’ve seen of lovenkrands is that he is therefore remains our only other option.
    till that time here’s to hoping we can at least keep a clean sheet.going for the double on the gunners would be wistful thinking..

  23. that article on the site earlier on our projected points total at the end of the season looks so promising yet so difficult right now,damn it..

  24. play ranger and nolan up top
    gutierrez right barton,tiote middle young fergy left simple

  25. Deadwood – err think they’re called squad players normally
    Ranger has a terrible attitude, he had 80 mins on weds and did jack all but moan and lose the ball, was at game and fans were great but if we’re relying on ranger for goals we’re fooked, don’t let the highlights fool ya, his decision making is really poor

  26. just read an article in the papers.shearer’s transfer to blackburn(under dalglish) is equivalent to 20million quid today and his transfer to nufc was a further 40million in today’s money.makes you realise how at the end of it all it’s still relative..
    maybe uefa’s financial fair play rules will help us out.i know chelsea and man city would be the first clubs to get screwed over by the rules.
    i was thinkng,i know barton is the playmaker in our team but would charlie adam have been a good addition?

  27. Charlie Adam would have been decent but when Ben Arfa comes back where would Adam fit in? Ben Arfa will be with Tiote and Barton, probably Nolan or Gutierrez depending on formation, with Gosling, Ireland and then the slowest man on the planet Guthrie.

  28. Stop all this crud about NUFC not being a big club. Look at the USA Super Bowl. Green Bay & Pittsburgh are two of the smallest franchises, but are in it for the trophy. In fact Pittsburgh has won more than any. And this is not the first time for Green Bay. Here in North Carolina, tiny Charlotte’s Carolina Panthers have been to the Super Bowl and even smaller Raleigh’s Carolina Hurricanes have won hockeys Stanly Cup.

    Buck up me lads, good times are on the horizon. When I see MA celebrate a NUFC goal, I know that despite all his shortcomings, he is really trying to figure a way to get silver.

  29. check on how well Routledge is with QPR this is proof that Pardew can not any a shit,, .. how the hell can you loan out our only player who can run with some speed you’re just Ashley’s asslicker your friend here in Sweden talked to AC and he told him that Pardew was the worst ever coach ever ..he ever worked with..

  30. Rodzilla you can not something people like you who do not have anything Class We all know that Pardew is not a good coach and you are in the same class, unfortunately