Look of the Irish?

Kevin Doyle: Worth a punt?
As this season draws to a close we’ve had to sit through yet another performance that highlights the need for at least two centre forwards.

We’ve had plenty of names linked with us over the past few months, and I’m sure there will be many more in the summer, but the most recent reports have been linking us with a bid for Reading forward Shane Long. I feel he may not be the only Irish striker that we will be interested in come the summer.

Earlier on this year, when talking to Newcastle’s local radio station, Alan Pardew said we’d had our scouts watching a couple of international games. One of the international games at the time was Ireland’s home friendly win against Macedonia. This was a game which Pardew had sent assistant manager John Carver to watch.

I thought little of it at the time but with Newcastle being constantly linked with Shane Long there might be something in it. This game saw time on the pitch for Shane Long and Kevin Doyle, Doyle being somebody else we have been linked with.

In my opinion Shane Long is more likely to sign for us than Kevin Doyle, but if Wolves were to be relegated I would hope that we were looking at signing Doyle. He is a real worker and he would try very hard for the team, which is something that I really like about him. Some people may complain about his lack of goals, but he hardly has great service playing for Wolves. He cost Wolves £6.5 million pounds so we would be looking at having to pay the same sort of fee to prise the 27-year-old away from the West Midlands.

But most recently in the press we’ve been linked with a £5 million move for Reading’s 24-year-old striker Shane Long. This season Long has been at his most prolific, albeit being in the Npower Championship scoring 21 league goals. The worrying thing about that is it is the only season which he has hit double figures in his career, but we’ve got to remember that he is still improving due to his age.

The most impressive thing about Long’s career to date are his performances for the Republic of Ireland. Even though he is not a permanent starter for he has scored 6 goals in his 19 appearances for the national team, which isn’t a record to be sniffed at. In 2007 he was nominated ROI’s Young Player of the Year. Also seen as we have another Ireland international already in our squad a couple of good words for our own Leon Best may tempt them to sign for Newcastle.

Shane Long and Kevin Doyle have played for the same club twice previously in their career for Cork City and Reading. They didn’t often play together at Reading which was due to Long spending most of his time being back-up to Doyle, but they’ve played up-front together for Ireland and I feel that they would complement each other.

I’m not saying that we will get them both, or even one of them, but I believe that they’ll be two of many strikers that we’re looking at in the summer, and actually I would be quite happy if we could get either of them, because I feel that they’re the kind of players which would be able to finish the chances that Hatem Ben Arfa and the rest of our midfield can create.

Would you have either of these? Both? None?

47 thoughts on “Look of the Irish?

  1. For me we need someone who is guaranteed to score goals in the premier.
    I’m not sure either fall into that category.

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  2. I’m with bobby on this one, in fact Doyle is almost certain not to bring us the goals we need. His strike rate is very similar to Shola’s and which ever system we play next season a worse than 1 goal every 4 games isn’t going to take us forward. If people are happy for us to tread water then Doyle’s our man. As cover fine, owt else then not for me I’m afraid, that’s not even mentioning that he seems to pick up a fair few injuries. As for Long, I don’t really know that much about him but I suspect ditto(goals record), although he’s a little younger so may improve.

    RIP Henry Cooper 🙁

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  3. Our Enry morally beat Ali.
    If it wasn’t for Ali’s cornermen slashing his gloves to give him extra recovery time he was out.
    British Boxing legend. RIP. 😥

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  4. If it’s £800k per premier placing, it looks like we can knock nigh on £5m off his price by the end of the season.
    £30m for Carroll?

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  5. I see Watford want £2.5m for Danny Graham worth a punt IMHO

    With Gervinho, Kranjcar and Lens please… 😉

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  6. I wouldn’t want either at the prices quoted tbh. Doyle has his injury problems and doesn’t score enough for me. I’d take a punt on Long as a backup, but not at £5 million.

    Another Irishman, Robbie Keane, can also suck balls. He’s hardly set the world alight at West Ham despite his huge wages. Strange considering big wages should mean big success according to some of our own fans 🙄

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  7. Still maintain that Robbie Keane would have been great with you know who at the start of the season when we tried for him.

    Long – not see enough to judge him

    Doyle – Like him as a player but not as our main striker, His scoring record is no better than Ameobi and Lovenkrands…

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  8. See Izaguirre has been named Sottish PFA player if the year.

    He is my no.1 hope to replace Jose.

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  9. @toonsy
    The difference is that all players who play for the top teams and play European football will be on high wages. They deserve it.
    It’s about selecting the right players and paying them appropriately. The best managers identify them.
    None of us want crap players on high wages as you seem to be suggesting.

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  10. @toonsy
    So you would take a punt at Long as back up?
    So explain what you would do with Lover, Shola, Best and ranger who I would consider are back up type of players?

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  11. Bobby – And all I’m saying is that just by paying someone a fortune it doesn’t guarantee the player will fit. We should know that better than anyone!

    Off topic temporarily, but the saddest thing about this bin liner death is that there will be people born and raised in this country that are upset and angry about it.

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  12. toonsy
    Posted May 2, 2011 at 10:11 AM
    Who would you like Stu?

    Don’t know as it’s not my job to find players but we need at the very least:

    2 strikers
    Right Winger
    Left Back
    Right Back
    Centre Back
    Centre Mid

    If you assume the likes of Smith, Perch, Campbell, Xisco, R. Taylor, Enrique and Routledge will all leave too it still doesn’t give us a bigger squad.

    I am still 100% convinced Tiote will be sold too. Only my opinion though, I just think this guy has form to do stupid things and he will have something up his sleeve this summer too.

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  13. toonsy
    Posted May 2, 2011 at 10:20 AM
    Bobby – I think long would be better than the backup we have currently.

    Douglas Barder would be better than what we have at the moment.

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  14. If Tiote goes it will be because he wants to at the end of the day, and it will only be to a top club playing in Europe. We can’t compete with that unfortunately.

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  15. As someone else previously said, I wouldn’t want either at those prices!

    Doyle, although a real workhorse, doesn’t score enough for me.

    Long, i haven’t seen a great deal of so can’t really say if I think he’ll make it in the PL.

    Having said that, I’d have either over Yakubu, who we were linked with yesterday!

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  16. Yakubu at £2 million? Hmmm……

    I’ve always rated him but he seems to have lost his way a bit (a lot?)

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  17. toonsy
    Posted May 2, 2011 at 10:25 AM

    I’m sorry, toonsy but I am not accepting that argument. If we keep selling our best players ‘because they want to leave’ we will never improve and when we never improve our better players will always want to go.

    It’ll be a never ending cycle for us. The club has to make a stand if we are to improve.

    Do you see this argument?

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  18. @21 @22. that wasn’t a link 😛
    I just saw he was available for 2 million and wondered if people would want him 😆 😆

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  19. Stuart – Of course I do, bit the club can only do so much. At the end of the day if a player wants to go then nine times out of ten he will go.

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  20. anyway, keep a lid on that debate as I have an article about it coming up this afternoon 😉

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  21. I know we are desperate for strikers, but we are also desperate for players who can supply quality service to the strikers, especially from the wings as JB is cack on the right and Jonas on the left constantly underwhelms me.
    I know we have HBA to come back but he will be pushing nolan and barton in the centre imo.
    Also we need to improve our basic ball control, passing ability and keeping possession of the ball.
    Apart from that we are class :mrgreen:

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  22. @ toonsy
    I accept he will be better than our current strikers and yes he would be worth a punt but it would mean buying another two quality strikers . The only striker I would persevere with is Best as he has shown an eye for goal and hasn’t been given his chance to fully prove himself.

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  23. toonsy – That is lame imo. How do we improve then? If the club are just going to be walked all over we might as well just not bother.

    Players will want to leave if they don’t see the club improving, if they don’t think there’s any point in being at the club, Barton has said as much. He’s been one of our better players this season and he’s said he won’t sign a new contract until he see’s what the ambition of the club is. He’s absolutely right too. If he see’s the likes of Tiote being sold just because he wants to go he will then want to leave too. So from selling one player we lose a host of others too.

    It really is a case of the club showing some balls and saying NO! We want to bulid something and we can only build something with you here.

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  24. bobby – it depends on what formation we play next year doesn’t it? I mean we can only work off what we know at the minute, and that is that Ben arfa will be the second striker so we need one starter if that is the case.

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  25. @Stu79
    My sentiments exactly and what I’ve bleated on about all season.

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  26. Long’s the type of striker who can make a chance for himself because he’s quick and strong.

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  27. I don’t think we can afford to gamble on ‘potential’ with a centre forward. We need a dead cert first, before we can afford ourselves the luxury of gambling on a ‘could be’.

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  28. Jobey…..then does he sky the chance, cos his strike rate isn’e great……at a lower level 😉

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  29. @34, He’s not really had a run in the team until this season, he was always behind Doyle and Kitson, but now he’s got a run in the team and got 21 goals this year, more than any of our strikers in the championship who were playing in a better team

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  30. cant understand going on about strike rates of strikers you have to look at what type of club they play for and the type of game they have to play in that team,christ you could make a case for shola ect if you wish,how many clubs are looking for players with a strike rate of 1 in2 there are not a lot and your looking at real big cash for the odd one,when we had carroll you had to play a certain way to get the best out of him,do we want to go that way again,i would prefer a more team way of playing not just going with a plan “A” and nowt else,2/3 diff type of strikers would be better imo

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  31. i am cutting down my time on blog as ime getting a lot of stinking headaches lately and till i get it sorted i will be off the blog a bit 😥

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  32. 21’s not bad……..he also made more appearances than any of our strikers, does he take pens? though and last year I’d guess our goals were shared amongst more players than Reading do(may be wrong tho)……..like I said don’t know much about him.

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  33. Ice….that’s because strikers are judged on goals ultimately, stats are more important for them than any other position, You don’t have to have a 1 in 2(tho that would be nice) but I reckon if you can get a 1 in 3 with a couple more players who’ll get into double figures then you’re heading in the right direction….hopefully, providing your defence are doing their jobs at the other end that is! 😉

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  34. Ice…get well soon mate…..maybe cutting down on the JD will reduce the bad heed? 😉

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  35. Toonsy 😉 thats the thing with stats, they can paint different pictures, depending on how you use or interpret them.
    Andy Cole 41 goals(?)no penalties but how many would he have got without Beardsley alongside him?………….he went to a better team 👿 and got less goals…..different style of play and no Beardsley 😉

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