Archive for category: International call ups.

Newcastle United Fans and England – Mixed Feelings?

May 26th, 2012 | 58 Comments |

Newcastle United St George's flag.
The England football team play a friendly this evening, so I thought I might raise an issue which I have wondered about for some time – how many Newcastle United fans are also England supporters?

I realise to some of you, that might seem like a daft question, but I don’t think it is. I know the simple assumption, particularly in the media, is that because United are an english club, all of it’s fans must be England supporters. However I know this is not true!

I remember during the pre-match entertainment for Alan Shearer’s Testimonial there was some sort of competition, might have been a penalty shoot-out or something, and the guy on the mike was saying “Newcastle fans cheer for the english lad and Celtic fans cheer for the scottish lad” – and I remember thinking “it’s not that simple mate!”

For a start, there are a lot of fans come down to the match from Scotland. I remember having a drink with some Hibs casuals when I was working in Edinburgh and they explained that there were a lot of Newcastle fans in the Edinburgh area – who started supporting the Toon as their “English Club” because it was the first stop down the east coast line! And it’s not just from Edinburgh either, there are United fans all over Scotland, even if it’s their “second team”. (more…)

Newcastle United “Player of the Season” Vote: 1) Defenders / Utility Players

May 15th, 2012 | 24 Comments |

NUFC defenders and utility players.
Fortiter defendit triumphans?
As we have reached the season’s end, I’m going to jump in and do a little assessment of the players, culminating in a vote for your Newcastle United “Player of the season”.

There have been quite a few stand out performers and stand out performances this term. Some were almost anticipated, others almost definitely weren’t. A few players have come in when the chips were down and done an excellent job. Others either came back from injury or suffered injury and made way for squad players to shine. Then there was the little matter of the African Cup of Nations riving a few players away to play for the respective countries, whilst depriving us of their services. It all adds up to most players getting games to show their worth and to be fair, I can’t think of anyone that has let either themselves, nor Newcastle down. In fact, this season has showed one of the most ‘United’ fronts we’ve had the pleasure to witness, even after the amazing efforts put in through very recent seasons to get us back into the position we find ourselves. Whilst the team effort has been monumental and it’s an ethic that has permeated throughout this campaign, deserving of all the credit in the world, I’m still going ask you: Who is Newcastle’s individual ‘Player of the Season’?

Here’s a little resume to help you along, starting with case for the defence: (more…)

Taking the Papiss? Cissé called back to Africa this month.

February 16th, 2012 | 72 Comments |

Papiss Cisse and Demba Ba.
One's gannin', one's stayin'.
Just as the last of our African players (Cheick Tiote) was returning from the recent Africa Cup of Nations finals, there was news that Papiss Cissé will have to pack his bags for Africa once more.

Cissé, though not his fellow “Lion of Teranga,” Demba Ba, has been selected for to play for Senegal in a friendly against South Africa at Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium on Wednesday, February 29th. This will come in the middle of Newcastle United’s next game, with Wolves on the 25th February, and the Sunday Mackem battle on the 4th of March in what could be an exhausting week for the Senegalese hitman. South Africa will also be the venue for the next Africa Cup of Nations, which will be held next year too as in future, the competition will be held in odd years rather than even ones.

As mentioned above, Demba Ba has not been selected, and has faced some criticism for tweeting about missing club football at Newcastle United as he trained with Senegal. The offending tweets being: (more…)

Tottenham Hotspur vs Newcastle United match preview

February 11th, 2012 | 24 Comments |

Harry Redknapp.
Triffic 'Arry!
Venue: White Hart Lane, Tottenham.
Date: Saturday 11th Feb, 2012.
Kick-off: 5.30pm.
Referee: Andre Marriner.

It would be tempting to think that Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp had been distracted by one or two other things this week whilst preparing his ‘Spurs squad for this weeks game, but that would probably be folly. With the weather and his other “distractions”, ‘Arry couldn’t even make it to Tottenham’s last game against Liverpool away, and they still drew 0-0 against the mighty Reds.

One could also say that the ‘Spurs supremo is having something of a “lucky” week too, up before the beak as a suspected tax evader one minute, and hot favourite as England manager the next. Though some might even think that the could be more damaging in the long run, a perfect way to ruin a glittering career if some of the previous incumbents are anything to go by. Even our own Silver Supremo, Alan Pardew, felt the need to rule himself out for some reason, though one or two of the media have been quick to link him not with the England job, but with a certain managerial position in North London which may or may not be coming up in the near future. But enough of such silliness, let’s get on with the game!

Stats, previous matches etc…


Howay the (African) Lads!

January 19th, 2012 | 46 Comments |

Africa Cup of Nations
Africa Cup of Nations
The recent signing of Senegal striker Papiss Cisse by United added to the fact that Demba Ba is also a Senegal star potentially means that Geordie fans will take more of an interest in the African Cup Of Nations (ACON) which kicks off this weekend. And of course we also have our very own (at least at the time of writing!) Cheick Tiote involved as part of the Ivory Coast team.

Obviously, we hope the lads do well – but not too well considering the legions of scouts who will be out there – and that they return to Tyneside fit and injury-free. Here’s a look at the two teams that our African players will be representing.

Senegal – The Lions Of Teranga

The Senegal national football team are nicknamed “The Lions Of Teranga”. They first appeared in the World Cup in 2002 and made an immediate name for themselves by beating France 1-0 in the opening game of the tournament. They made it to the quarter finals that year eventually going out to Turkey. Subsequently, they failed to qualify in 2006 and 2010.

The team have featured more regularly in the ACoN since 1965, their most successful year being 2002 when they were runners-up. Senegal qualified for the finals of the ACON as top of their group, winning 5 of their 6 games between September 2010 and October 2011. This included a 9-0 aggregate demolition of Mauritius and notably beating Cameroon 1-0 at home and drawing 0-0 away. (more…)