Shamone! Newcastle United v Fulham match preview

Posted on August 27th, 2011 | 34 Comments |

Newcastle v Fulham match preview.
Venue: St James Park, Newcastle
Date: Sunday, 28th August
Kick-off: 1:00PM
Referee: Kevin Friend

Just two days after Thursday nights action at Glanford Park, Sunday afternoon sees a return to Premier League action as Martin Jol’s Fulham visit St James’ Park.

There is no scheduled live broadcast of the match, so it’s back to scouring the net for links I’m afraid. Pop back over for our match banter on Sunday and I’m sure the you’ll be able to find a link. If indeed you find a decent link for the match yourself, feel free to share the knowledge. Sharing is caring after all…

Newcastle have began the season well after holding Arsenal to a draw at home in the first game of the season and defeating the enemy in their own backyard last week. United currently have 4 points from their first 2 matches and haven’t conceded a goal as yet. Fulham began the season with a 0-0 draw at home to Aston Villa, followed by a 2-0 defeat last week at Mick McCarthey’s ever improving Wolverhampton Wanderers. Like Newcastle, Fulham were in action on Thursday night as they were in the Ukraine for their 2nd leg match in the Europa League against Dinipro. Fulham were defeated 1-0 on the night but still progressed to the next round after winning 3-1 on aggregate.

Newcastle have failed to beat Fulham in their last 3 attempts, with the last visit of the Cottages to St James’ Park ending in a dull 0-0 draw. You may remember the fateful relegation season in 2009, when Fulham prospered 1-0 at Newcastle in what was our last home game of that season. The writing was on the wall after that defeat as United’s next game was at Villa Park where ex-Magpie, current Fulham winger and Barney Gumble lookalike Damien Duff deflected through his own net resulting in a 1-0 loss for the Magpies and relegation to the Championship.

I remember being over in Australia when I got the news that Newcastle had lost their last home game of that particular season. I was sure Newcastle would beat Fulham at home and survive the drop, but fate had other ideas and it wasn’t to be. That match also saw a perfectly good Mark Viduka goal chalked off and Sebastien Bassong receive his marching orders for a professional foul.

We have to go back to the 2007-2008 season for our last win against Fulham, when a Kevin Keegan inspired Newcastle triumphed 2-0 thanks to goals from Mark Viduka and Michael Owen (remember them?). This win was in fact Keegan’s first victory as Magpies boss since Mike Ashley appointed him manager, after sacking the worlds greatest tactician and gods gift to women, Sam Allardyce.


Newcastle United: (from) Krul, Sodeberg, Simpson, R. Taylor, Ferguson, Coloccini, S. Taylor, Tiote, Cabaye, Gutierrez, Marveaux, Obertan, Gosling, Smith, Abeid, Ba, Shola Ameobi, Lovenkrands, Best, Vuckic, Sammy Ameobi.

Fulham: (from) Schwarzer, Etheridge, Kelly, JA Riise, Hangeland, Baird, Senderos, Hughes, Halliche, Sidwell, Kasami, Murphy, Gecov, Duff, Etuhu, Dempsey, Johnson, Dembele, Zamora.

Team News

Mike Williamson joins Hatem Ben Arfa and Danny Guthrie on the injured list. James Tavernier, Michael Richardson, Xisco, Kazenga Lua Lua, Fraser Forster and Phil Airey are unavailable due to being away on loan. Expect Cheick Tiote and Jonas to be reinstated into the match day eleven with Yohan Cabaye keeping his place in the heart of the midfield. Shola Ameobi is rated doubtful as (shock horror) he is suffering from a hip problem and Steve Harper is unlikely to return to where he has spent the majority of his Newcastle career (the bench) as he is struggling with a ‘knee injury’.

Fulham’s John Arne Riise won’t feature after picking up a groin injury while in the Ukraine on Thursday Night. Simon Davies is on the long term injury list for the cottagers as he is suffering from a serious knee injury and Bobby Zamora is rated doubtful for the match.

Formation suggestions and tactical information

Formation v Fulham.
Possible formation
I think Pardew should keep faith with the 4-2-3-1 formation, which he has employed in our last two matches at Scunthorpe and the dark place. I do however think he will swap to a 4-4-2, mainly because we are at home and Pardew may try to mimic Fulham’s formation, which could be a 4-4-2. It wouldn’t surprise me though, if Fulham employed a 4-5-1 / 4-4-3 with Johnson as the lone man up top with Demble and Duff as his support. Johnson isn’t really a hold up player and this is where Fulham will struggle if Zamora is deemed unfit to play, so expect Fulham to keep the ball on the deck, though they will still provide a challenge from set-pieces as they do posses some big players who are able to cause trouble in the air.

As Shola is unfit and unlikely to start, I have gone for Leon Best up top as I don’t think all is well with Demba Ba at present. I was at the match in Scunthorpe on Thursday night and Ba didn’t look too clever, though it’s early days yet and I’m sure he’ll provide to be a nifty acquisition for the Magpies. Best holds the ball up top quite well, and I think he will be better suited to bring the midfielders into the game, such as Gosling, who I’d like to see as the advanced midfielder. Yohan Cabaye was given the advanced role in the match at Sunderland but failed to make an impression as he is best suited alongside Tiote, sitting slightly deeper and helping dictate the play like we saw in the 2nd half at Scunthorpe. Marveaux really impressed me, but I think Obertan should get the nod because he is well rested and Marveaux has only just returned to fitness.

I expect a better performance from Dan Gosling on Sunday and I’d like to see Vuckic given a run out at some point. Newcastle must be prepared for this game from the off. Regardless of our results this season thus far, our first half performances have been a shambles. They have got to stop this nonsense of punting the ball aimlessly up field and just take their time and pass the ball short and neat. As we lack any real goal threat from our strikers, we should utilise the midfielders we have. Failing all of the above, we could just keep relying on Ryan Taylor to score free-kicks, though that’s hardly ideal is it?

Key Man Newcastle

Yohan Cabaye

Hopefully Yohan can get settled quickly in the match and distribute sensible balls through to the attack. I’ve got a feeling he will play an important role on Sunday.

Key man Fulham

Danny Murphy

As you can see, I think this match will be decided between the two play makers and how they perform. Murphy is an excellent player and we must be aware of his vision and set piece abilities.

Match Thoughts and waffle

As rare as not finding a gherkin in your McDonalds Big Mac, Alan Pardew has conducted an interview in which he discusses our up and coming opponents Fulham, where he has had this to say:

Things were buoyant yesterday – we are looking forward to the game.

We will not be able to do much work – most of it will be looking at the opposition in the classroom – but we will be fine.

It is very important not to concede goals.

We will get more creative and flamboyant as we go on, but the first priority is to stop goals going in.

That is something I have always prided myself on, and I think we are doing that.

We were very resolute defensively in our first two league games, and hopefully we can continue that against Fulham.

Fulham have played a quite simplistic game in the past, but Martin Jol’s looking to change that, and full credit to him. He is a very good manager, as he showed at Tottenham.

There is a lot of experience there. They will play intelligent football.

In relation to to Mike Williamson’s injury, Pardew said:

It does not look good for Mike, maybe five or six weeks out.

James Perch will train on Monday, and he can play centre-half.

Lets hope for no further injuries come Sunday afternoon, especially in the defensive positions as the thought of James Perch playing at centre back is somewhat frightening…

Expect a tough game tomorrow and don’t expect buckets of goals. Unfortunately I can see Fulham scoring, though I expect that this one may end in a draw or possibly a narrow win, hopefully for the Magpies of course!

Howay The Lads.

NUFCBlog Author: Jimbob Backpacker extraordinaire and current resident of sunny Sheffield. Loves Marmite, hates peanut butter. Sleeps twice a day, wrestles Polar Bears because he can and regards himself as cool as a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce. Jimbob has written 40 articles on this blog.

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34 Responses

  1. I think it’s unlikely we’ll start Ba. It’s Ramadan and he certainly did nothing to impress against Scunny. Best, on the other hand, might nick a spot on the bench – Shola will inevitably start.

    Just saw this and couldn’t help but giggle. Supposedly we’re after Sulley Muntari – the Mackem reject himself!

  2. Neither do I Thump, ‘ve written Best will start, but I put Ba by mistake in the line-up. It’s amended now. :-)

  3. off topic – but Liverpool have dropped Carroll. Also, Henderson is having a really good game so far. Strange, everybody thought Liverpool were robbed for Henderson, but maybe his sale will hurt Sunderland, I hope so.

  4. Thump says:
    August 27, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    “I think it’s unlikely we’ll start Ba. It’s Ramadan and he certainly did nothing to impress against Scunny”

    Aye Thump, but as our Muslim friend from KSA correctly pointed out the other day, he doesn’t have to give up the scran during daylight hours if he’s employed in a physically demanding job such as playing football in the Premier League.

  5. Krul

    Simpson S.Taylor Collocini R.Taylor


    Jonas Obertan Cabaye Marveaux


  6. ———————Krul——————-

    Simpson—–S. Taylor—–Collocini—–R. Taylor




  7. i agree with the team shown although i would be tempted to play vukic or marveux (if hes fit enough) instead of gosling. he really struggled against scunthorpe and could do with some reserve matches under his belt. Sammyobi on the bench to come on and do some magic with his ridiculously long rubber legs in the last 20mins;) Howay the lads!

  8. raylor at rb? why not, it doesn’t sound as worrying as it once did & he’s earned it!


  9. Thump, Didn’t Charlie Adam have a dip in form for a few games towards the end of last season? His previously excellent deliveries started going all over the shop sometimes.

  10. Dunno mate, I didn’t watch much of Blackpool in the second half of last season. Either way, they couldn’t be anywhere near as bad as Barton’s set pieces.

  11. workyticket says: “Aye Thump, but as our Muslim friend from KSA correctly pointed out the other day, he doesn’t have to give up the scran during daylight hours if he’s employed in a physically demanding job such as playing football in the Premier League.”

    Can’t say I’ve seen Demba Ba do anything too physically demanding for us yet.

  12. Have to say, every time I watch Carroll play for Liverpool I commend Ashley on what a good bit of business it was – intentional or otherwise, the lad can’t do a thing with a ball at his feet.

  13. I remember a certain player who scored 25 championship goals in his first season and won promotion to the premiership. By January he had scored 15 league goals and won an England cap. Michael Ricketts at Bolton. Why wasn’t he worth £35 million?

    Carroll’s a good player though, just never worth the same as David Villa!

  14. Jimbob says:
    August 27, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    “Michael Ricketts at Bolton. Why wasn’t he worth £35 million?”

    I don’t think anyone was worth £35 million back then Jimbob. :-)

    Incidentally, I once remember some kind of software developer doing a program for football managers and such. Using his own software, he confidently predicted that Darren Huckerby would be the first £30 million footballer. Never heard much more about it for some reason.

  15. supermac says:
    August 27, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    “concerning ranger – shouldn’t that read assaulter arrested for strikeing?”

    supermac, my first impression was shock that he’d actually managed to hit the target, allegedly.

  16. That’s true Worky, the game has changed considerably in such a short space of time. But the point remains, Ricketts was young, English and scored more than Carroll.

    What you said about Huckerby reminds me of so many players who never achieved what was predicted of them.

    Like Jeffers, Cadamateri and that little American kid, can’t remember his name now, but they thought he was going to be the bollo***s at the time.

  17. Jimbob says:
    August 27, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    “Like Jeffers, Cadamateri and that little American kid, can’t remember his name now, but they thought he was going to be the bollo***s at the time.”

    Freddy Adu Jimbob?

  18. Using his own software, he confidently predicted that Darren Huckerby would be the first £30 million footballer. Never heard much more about it for some reason.

    Good job he wasn’t. The poor developer would have been done for twisting results at the bookies!

  19. we need a win tommorow to keep this going i fear the first loss will be the start of a bad run please please play best and not ba up front when is ben arfa back??? feels like forever since he has played in the premier league ooooo wait it has come on hatham we need you if he was playing tommorow it would be 3 points without a doubth

  20. Hoping Fulham let us pass it around as Cabaye will thrive from that. Still yet to see his best due to the fast nature of our games and pressing.

  21. Dont know what it is about fulham , but always seem to do well against us whether at home or away , would be interested to evaluate last ten seasons form ie out of 60 points or so , we dropped out for one season , what oor points tallies are ??

  22. nearly every article i have seen recently mentions somewhere in it ” which could save ashley a fortune!!!” im sorry but who gives a shit what he wants to save , he should start forking out the tight twat