In my opinion a large part of our success this season is going to hinge on just how well our French quartet do at Newcastle.
I’m not including Mehdi Abeid in that as he is apparently one for the future, but for the rest I think it’s fair to say that Hatem Ben Arfa, Yohan Cabaye, Sylvain Marveaux and Demba Ba (alright he isn’t French really, but he is French speaking) will be starting most of the games this season, if they remain fit of course.
That’s a large chunk of our first team if truth be told, so the pressure is on to get them firing on all cylinders as soon as possible and to make sure they are all settled and integrated with the current players.
Which is why it’s good news that John Carver has been overseeing the integration of the new lads into the squad. He believes that there will be no cliques at St James’ Park like there has been in the past and believes that the new lads are settling in just fine.
“The new guys have integrated remarkably well this week and quickly settled in,” Carver told The Chronicle. “There will be no cliques here this season.”
“Alan Pardew has given me the responsibility to make sure they all settle in well, and this is something we have done before at the club. The French guys have already begun to mix and that is a good sign.”
“We split the lads up into three different groups and already the new boys have been spending time with players who have been at the club a while. This means they get to know people – but more importantly get to know the club quicker and what things are all about.”
It’s been a concern with some fans wondering just how unsettled the team will be after a summer shake up, but it actually looks as though the club are getting a handle on things and making sure that what is hopefully going to be a transition in style and success can go ahead as smoothly as possible.
If it does then it will mean our French quartet can just concentrate on their on game, and in the case of Sylvain Marveaux it appears that a big part of his game is going to be thrilling the fans. Marveaux, again speaking to The Chronicle, had this to say.
“I have spoken with the manager a lot. From what he says about the way the team will play I think I can ignite the supporters.”
“The club wants to do very big things and achieve success, which is why I came here. I came here with the idea of playing in Europe. That’s certainly what the long-term vision is.”
“We know there is a lot of work to do before we think about Europe, but we are keen to get something started this season and the French players are all determined to be involved in that.”
Of course at the moment these are just words, albeit very promising words. The real test will be when we see the boys trying to link together during pre-season and then again throughout the season.
There seems to be a common theme about ambition at the moment. Some fans seem to think that the club lacks it, but the message coming from the players is that it is there within the camp. Hopefully they can get somewhere near their ambition this season so they don’t start thinking about looking elsewhere next season.
Roll on the football season! I can’t wait for it now.