Are we looking up or down this week?

Going up? Going down?
I don’t know about you, but I suspect that you will feel the same way when I say that I feel that the two most recent home games represented missed chances on a number of fronts.

For the optimists two positive results would have been viewed as a springboard to mount a late season challenge for that sixth place in the table and the very slim, outside chance of Europe that it may have brought. For the pessimists, two positive results would have left them with a bit more of a gap between ourselves and the relegation spaces. In fact four points from the two home games would have all but secured safety in my opinion.

Still, it wasn’t to be and it’s looks as though Newcastle are taking the traditionally tough route towards Premier League safety. We’ll still do it I think, but it will be a lot closer than it should have been. There have been chances to get points on the board, but we have blown them time and time again. Hopefully come the end of the season it won’t come back to haunt us.

So where do we go from here? Do we continue looking upwards towards the top six? After all, we’re only six points away from Liverpool. Or do we start looking over our shoulders? I mean after all, we are only six points ahead of Birmingham in 18th, and they have two games in hand on us!

The form table would suggest that we should be cautiously looking over our shoulders right about now. Currently we sit in 15th place in that particular table, which is slightly worrying me if I’m being honest.

I’ll reiterate that I don’t think that we will get involved in the relegation scrap as I think we have just about enough quality to steer us clear of any trouble. All of these missed chances are worrying though as sooner or later they will run out, and they are starting to do that now. The longer we leave it before safety is assured, the more worrying it is going to get.

I’m starting to look at the fixture list and have started targeting games where we should be aiming to pick up points. Ironically it’s the three home games – Wolverhampton, Birmingham, West Brom – that I have pinpointed as ‘must win’ games, although with our shoddy home form combined with the sheer unpredictability of the league season I certainly won’t be putting any money on us for those home games.

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. The way we have played at times the season has been exceptional and I would find it hard to say that we deserve to be in the relegation scrap. On the other hand, the league table doesn’t lie, and whilst it says that we are ninth at the minute, it’s the points difference that I am looking at.

I read some posters moaning last week about Birmingham winning the League Cup and how it left us with nothing to play for. Well I wish that was the case right now. I wish we had nothing to play for and I would take that all day long…

Because right now we have EVERYTHING to play for!

36 thoughts on “Are we looking up or down this week?

  1. We have three homes games against Wolves. WBA and Birmingham.

    Surely we can get 4 /5 points from these?

    I’m not too sure given our home form and these clubs seem capable of putting in a performance.

    From what I’ve seen of Wolves I don’t fancy us at all against them.


  2. Everyone talks about the magical 40 point barrier but I’m pretty sure that only once in the history of the Premier League have you needed 40+ to stay up.

    The average points total for the team that finished 18th is 36.

    I would imagine it may be a little higher this season, but not by much.

    We’ll be fine with a win and a couple of draws from our last 9 games, and given that we’ve already shown we can beat anyone on our day, I can’t see us having too much trouble getting them.


  3. We’ll be fine. I reckon we’ll finish with …

    stoke 1 pt (i would prefer a win cos I’ve got a ticket!)
    wolves 3pts
    villa 0 pt
    manure 0 pt
    bpool 1 pt
    lpool 0 pt
    brum 3 pt
    chelski 0pt
    west brom 3 pt

    9th or 10th with 47 pts and relegate west brom on the final day …


  4. Hope not Shrews. I really want West Brom to stop up as I doubt they will invest again in the summer. For years that has been the case with them.

    I’d rather West Ham went down, or Wolves 🙂


  5. I’ve been to wba a couple of times a season now for a few years as my mate’s a baggies fan (the Vine is the best pre match pub in the midlands 😛 )

    He and a few mates are coming up to SJP on the last day, and I have already told him that things may go pear shaped …

    I hope they don’t go down either … but I just have a feelling 🙄


  6. Ok, rant alert…

    Remember back in January when the rumours of loaning out Routledge first came up? Remember how some of us went on about losing our only ‘real’ right-winger and how he may not have been great, but he’s better than the six feet of air we have as a replacement?

    It’s annoying enough when we lose through poor performances, but when we do it due to exactly the problem so many people saw coming, it’s bloody infuriating.

    I’ve been impressed with some of AP’s work so far, but that transfer window was a disaster and could yet put us in a relly scrap. So far he’s sold our top scorer, loaned out our only RW cover and loaned in a crocked player who adds a SIXTH option for the most over-subscribed position in the squad.

    So yes, I’m now disappointed that the 6th place thing is pretty much dead, and I’m concerned that we could yet be in trouble. Most of all I’m annoyed because it was all so avoidable.


  7. Whumpie … Monday aside do you really think 6th was a possibility ??

    There’s many a fan who has been pushing europe on the back of a win and relegation on the back of a defeat … me … I’m middle of the road … mid table obscurity would be a great achievement this year.

    The summer spening spree (or not depending on your view) will be the interesting bit … this will then determine whether we push on next year for a european spot 😛 … or just wallow in the obscurity of mid table .. 🙁


  8. Aye I think 6th was always a bit of a stretch, but at least we had a chance, if only a slim one. It was nice while it lasted 🙂


  9. To be honest, it was the chase rather than the position that was fun. I have a feeling that a Euro spot would have been damaging anyway.

    What I’m annoyed about is that we unnecessarily weakened our squad to badly in January and now I’m no longer looking forward to fixtures so much. It seems weird, but I honestly think losing Routledge will prove more damaging for the remaining games than losing Carroll. What did AP think was going to happen? Barton never missing a game? Raylor filling the void? It seemed mad at the time and what we saw on Saturday was pretty much inevitable at some point.

    Here’s the worst bit (boy am I in a fun mood!): Strenghtening our strongest position and weakening our weakest isn’t exactly the work of intellectual giants. In the summer we’re handing to that same team who cocked up so badly an unprecedented amount of money for the summer. It doesn’t bode well!


  10. Whumpie I understand your frustration 🙁

    We can only hope there are more like tiote and HBA which comes through the scouting pipeline in the summer.

    It would be great to get a striker who could score 20 a season in amongst that bunch of new talent … this is what newcastle is famed for, its no9s … I just hope the next person to wear the shirt deserves it 👿


  11. Quite. Haven’t had a worthy wearer of that shirt since Shearer left.

    Maybe it’s just Monday Morning Syndrome, but I find the outcome of January’s window to be at such a stark contrast to the previous two – the Hughton two – that it’s hard not to correlate the plunge in performance with the change in personnel.


  12. By the way, Shrewsmag: Assuming you live in Shrewsbury or at least go there a fair bit, where to you go to watch the matches? When I was there there were some good Toon-friendly pubs around.


  13. Personally, I’ve always been an optimist. But they say, ‘an optimist is just pessimist with less time’!


  14. Whumpie

    remember AC wouldn’t have been playing the last few games anyway as he was injured (and I was upset seeing him walk off the field yesterday rather than being stretchered off … but that’s another story 👿 )

    Routledge is really the only loss in january who could have contributed to the twist in fate.

    My worry is now team spirit … is it just me or do these contract talks with Barton/Jose and others just seemed to have taken the gloss off what was a very happy dressing room … 🙄


  15. I nearly got into a scrap with a Liverpool fan yesterday because of Carroll. He took umbridge with me calling him a Judas **** 🙁


  16. whumpie – yup shrewsbury is where Ive lived for 12 years now (born and raised in ashingtoon).

    That’s what makes it easy to go to so many away games … middle of the country and not far from the motorways 😛

    sometimes go to the the royal oak at coton hill and the crown coleham is just around the corner.

    You used to live here ??


  17. Toonsy I am destined to call judas many things over the next few seasons … hopefully I will refer to him mostly as ‘badly injured’ and ‘waste of money’

    But given the option I would have still sold him for £35m 😛


  18. Shrews – funny you should mention the Royal Oak; that’s where I used to go. My family’s from there and most still live there; I’ve only lived there when ‘between homes’ in my less responsible years.. 😳

    Really like the place, though – most underrated county in Britain.


  19. Back on the January thing, though, and I think we’re all saying the same:

    AC impact is not so much on games; it’s on avoiding a mass exodus. I still maintain that it was a false economy, but time will tell. It certainly wasn’t worth the risk.

    Routledge’s exit, in my opinion, is why we’ve had only a point from two home games. We have no width or shape because we’re having to shuffle players out of position. As I’ve said: it’s hard to see what logic led to the management foreseeing any other outcome.

    Oh, and Toonsy: stick to yer guns with those bindippers! If you can’t use the name Judas in this case, when can you??


  20. Oops – just realised that my post @23 sounds like my family were all born in a dodgy pub on Coton hill. I meant they’re from Shrewsbury! 😳


  21. Whumpie – I watched the sunderland game in the oak with 3 geordies and 3 mackems 😆 good afternoon 😆

    I am lucky enough to live close to the river and the town centre (between coleham and kingsland) and i count myself very lucky … compared to my upbringing anyway !!

    toonsy – tell me where you are off too before the stoke game … may just stretch to a pint … (half pint each for you and marktoon) 😛


  22. Whumpie – I’m glad nowt come of it. He was a rather large chap in hindsight 😀

    Mind you, I still stuck to my guns. No surrender 😆


  23. Shrews – And a Fruit Shoot for Jay Jay 😉

    Pass. I know The Harvester by the ground gets proper rammed so I’ll probably avoid that. Coming by train so will probably have a beer in a pub near there


  24. Nice spot, Shrews! I hope you’re up the hill somewhere, or it could get damp…

    My mother lived in Coleham and my father still does. Brother over the Welsh bridge and Aunt by the English one. Me in Devon; what does that say? 😆


  25. 2 halves and a fuit shoot it is toonsy … 😛

    I’m up on the hill on Kingsland Road so I don’t need my wellies … yes it’s a small town and a small world !!


  26. Just shows what we are/league table is like, last week it was talk of Europe now its staying up.

    We need 4 points out of next two games, if we can’t beat Wolves at home it’s a disgrace – must win that one. I’ll take a point against Stoke but considering Fulham and Blackpool both have won there we could get 3 points.


  27. there you are richietoon…we were getting worried about you…Ice thought you’d sprained your wrist winding up your PC……

    I just want all the clubs below us to get beat…I’m so knacky about getting relegated…Ice touched on it yesterday…the spirit seems to have gone a bit to hell and just at the wrong time…


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