Are you ready to take the plunge?

St. James' Theme Park

It’s been a slow ascent up the steep wooden rickety track. The emotions that have gripped us have ranged from excitement and eager anticipation to apprehension and outright fear. Another pre-season draws to a close and we all prepare to plummet into the unknown of another topsy-turvy Premier League campaign.

At the start of this pre-season, it’s fair to say that the vast majority of NUFC fans were over the moon with the club moving early in the transfer window and securing the signatures of the highly rated Yohan Cabaye, Demba Ba and Sylvain Marveaux.

I thought this was an excellent move to gazump any potential suitors to the excellent Cabaye and impressive free agent Demba Ba by getting them signed up quick sharp. I felt really enthused that the scouting trips over the course of the last year had been acted upon early. Marveaux came out of left field and we were looking stronger than we have in years.

Most of us believed this was a sign of things to come and a statement of intent. After all, a few quality signings in the right places to add to what we already had and we were on course for a European challenge! We also had £35 million burning a hole in our pockets just waiting to be spunked all over top talent.

It was going to be a good season at SJP.

As this rollercoaster ride has taught us many times in the past, the gut-wrenching thrill is usually short lived and is replaced by bumps and bruises.

Instead of adding to the strength and heart we showed last season, we sold our Captain Kevin Nolan and put our vice captain Barton up for sale – available free of charge. Same old Newcastle some said. Once again we were making the headlines for all the wrong reasons.

Trouble marred a friendly at Darlo. Players refused entry to the USA due to Visa issues. The team hasn’t played together properly going into the season. A loss at Elland Road.

In between, the excellent acquisitions of Gabby Obertan and Mehdi Abeid. The promising performances of Dan Gosling and Haris Vuckic.

Recently, Jose Enrique has left to join our local ex-number 9 in Scouseland and just a day before the start of the season with no replacement in place.

As I said, a whole host of emotions brought on by a huge amount of drama. Did Alan Pardew ever think this was going to be easy?

I am going to St. James’ Park on Saturday and won’t remember any of this. There will be only one thing that matters on the day and that is watching the boys give 100% and going for the win.

This season, our midfield is going to play an absolutely integral part. Cabaye and Tiote in the middle with players like Gosling and Guthrie pushing for a place. Marveaux and Jonas on the wings being pushed by Obertan and Abeid. The return to fitness of Hatem Ben Arfa and the option of Haris Vuckic.

We really do have a hell of a lot to smile about in that department.

My concern is up front and at the back. Our full backs are our weakest part of the squad and we don’t have adequate cover for Colo and Taylor. If teams play the long ball and bypass our midfield, we may struggle. My concern about attack may be misplaced as Leon Best may just continue his rich vein of goalscoring form and Demba Ba may just pick up where he left off at West Ham.

It’s all good Pardew adopting a pacy, creative force in the middle of the park but when you are going away to Stoke and Blackburn and are desperate for 3 points you may need a different gameplan. Will we have one? Will we have that Joey Barton grit roaring box to box?

All in all, it’s tough to predict where we will be come the final curtain but I think it’s fair to assume it’ll be mid table. Bring in a good striker to compliment Demba with Best and Shola as backup and a strong left back…..By Christ……we may even be more comfortable than last year.

Another roller coaster ride – all aboard!

About Moreno

Raised in Tyneside and now spreading the Gospel of Shola down in shandyland! Follow @MorenoToon on Twitter !

249 thoughts on “Are you ready to take the plunge?

  1. Someone on another blog posted this link:

    I have absolutely no idea about the source or the veracity of the website.
    I don’t speak Spanish but I ran the main paragraph through Google Translate and got this:

    “Press Sport ITAS confirmed that Valencia has reached an agreement with the Argentine central Fabricio Coloccini.

    The surprise for the day of presentation of the team has been the arrival of an international center known as the Spanish League has played since elAlavés, Atletico Madrid, Villarreal and Deportivo La Coruna.

    The amount of the transaction is around 5 million euros. The footballer, English from Newcastle will join this week training with the team Valencin.

    With the arrival of this player closes his staff Unai Emery definitely ahead of the 2011-2012 season.”

    Lets hope this isn’t true, but are there any Spanish speakers could use this to track down a source maybe?


  2. Started about comment 100 I think, they’re an Italian sports agency….I live in Spain and can find feck all and Valencia are totally skint so unless Colo is gonna half his wages I can’t see it………though stranger things have happened and nearly all of them have been at NUFC 😉


  3. I typed Sport Press ITAS into Google and it sent me here. . .

    Which is clearly an Italian site.

    The most recent article I could find on Colocinni was . . .

    Which translated as . . .
    “Premier League

    Valencia, agreement reached with the former Milan player Coloccini
    08/12/2011 11:00 Antonino Bulla Article read 1062 times

    The Argentine defender Fabrizio Coloccini, former AC Milan and now at Newcastle, will play next season with Valencia. The strong defender who has played with the British over 100 games, has reached an agreement with the Spanish club. The 29 year-old who is currently linked to Newcastle until 2013 was also followed by Seville. ”

    Dunno if this helps or not.
    And many apologies if someone has already done this (there were too many previous comments for me to go back and read them all at this time of night!! 😆 )


  4. Richy I actually read another article (can’t find it now though, its disappeared into Google’s anus 🙄 ), which claimed Coloccini was going to accept an offer to play for Valencia for around £40k a week.

    I’m not joking – I did see it, I just cant remember where. I’m too tired. 😆


  5. just looked at that now and was about to paste it, strange nowt here or in Spain tho, can’t see it mesel but that might just be wishful thinking on my part.


  6. I think that’ll be the final straw if he goes, especially for 5m euros, whey I’m off to me pit 2am here and I’m fecked…..I’m hoping tomorrow brings absolutely no news whatsoever laters.


  7. The initial source of him wanting a 3 year deal for £40k at Valencia appears to have been The Sun a few days ago.
    Hopefully this is a rumour that has got out of hand. 🙄


  8. Half past 10 am here Saturday. I’m going to be up all night. Newcastle kick off at 2.30 am tomorrow but I’ll watch the Liverpool v 5under1and game as well.

    Got a bottle of whisky in. Wearing my Toon shirt all day. Let’s hope there’s no server breakdown. If not, I’ll see you all on here later.


    Allez les garcons


  9. Well it’s 01:30 here in sunny Newcastle. Well I say sunny – OK its pitch black but out of the window St James’ looks all pretty against the night sky there.
    Well I say pretty – its actually another dark, cloudy and rainy night out there.


  10. I must admit I can’t (won’t?) allow myself to believe even Ashley at his most stupid, would consider selling our captain and only really established defender this close to the season when we are already short of probably 2 quality defenders, 1 proven winger and 1 proven striker.

    Actually I can believe he’s stupid enough.

    I feel like he’s trying to inflict ‘death by a thousand cuts’ on us.
    I sincerely hope this rumour isn’t true.


  11. Maybe I should keep looking out the window to check that the stadium is still there?

    In case he gets the idea to flog it to some wealthy American to take back home, when he thinks no one is looking.


  12. Twitter just goes crazy tonight. Rumor mill supreme: colo gone
    Jonas gone
    Pieters in
    Cissokho in
    Podolski in
    Ranger on loan somewhere

    Ridiculous stuff. Only believe the Pieters one cuz it has new quotes and it’s been discussed already


  13. Morning Batty

    Thanks for your attendance at bobbys funeral last night.
    Dear old Mrs Shinton was asking who the ghostly figure was as Bobby was crackling on the bonfire.
    I thought she was on about Bobbys spirit rising from the Ashes but she was pointing at you holding your bedsheet around you to keep warm.

    Ps you spelt boycott incorrectly.

    Jokin Batts, have you found out else on theColo rumour?


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