In this edition of ‘View from the away end’ I speak to Stoke City fan Stuart. I went to school with Stuart and have recently got back in touch with him through Facebook.
He’s another good lad with decent football knowledge and has interesting views on both his club and ours.
Stoke are a club that have seemingly gone from strength to strength. They have established themselves as a force in the top division and are well and truly a difficult side to beat, especially at the Britannia Stadium. Stoke were in fact one of only two teams to do the double over Newcastle last season taking six points off us in the league.
Stoke supporters pride themselves on supporting their club well and no one can deny the impact they have on the team. Stoke are some of the loudest fans you’ll ever come across and like our fans they are top class when it comes to getting behind their team. Say what you will about their brand of football, but it’s certainly effective and Tony Pulis has done a great job there. Here’s what Stuart had to say:
How do you rate our fans?
Newcastle fans are great to be fair. They always give good banter and have amazing passion and loyalty for the club. Always in good voice and applaud good play can’t ask for more.
If you could have any Newcastle player at Stoke who would it be and why?
If I could choose one Newcastle player to have at Stoke it would have to be Jonas Gutierrez as he is fantastic on either wing and would provide great cover for Matt Etherington and Jermaine Pennant. Also he never gives up which is what Stoke are all about.
Who is your favourite Newcastle player of all time and why?
Has to be Alan Shearer. In my eyes the best English striker we have had and he is from our generation growing up. He could change the game in a split second and had tremendous skill and vision. He had heart and passion for Newcastle which made him even more of a great player.
What do you think of St James’ Park?
St James Park is a great stadium. Always has a fantastic atmosphere and is nearly as loud as the Britannia!
What do you make of our business so far in transfer window. What do you make of the sales of Jose Enrique and Nolan?
I think that Alan Pardew has almost been on a panic buy recently. Anyone willing to sign he has rather than biding his time and picking the right players for the squad. Also he is to open about the transfers and other teams know the targets and could snatch a vital player. As for Jose Enrique and Nolan, big mistake on both as they were the back bone of the team and could both turn the tide of a game in a heartbeat, there is obviously something behind the scenes that they didn’t like.
Tony Pulis has done a smashing job with you boys, but what do you think of our manager Alan Pardew?
Alan Pardew is a good manager but I prefer Chris Hughton as he did nothing wrong and got you promoted he kept morale high and got you playing as a team. Pardew seems to be trying to change the whole dynamics of the team, which could work or go horribly wrong lol.
You have been heavily linked with Joey Barton. What do you think? Would you welcome him to your club?
Joey Barton is true to the saying its a game of two halves. You have the fantastic play maker who can put incredible passes to the feet of any player anywhere on the pitch. Then you have the angry confrontational bloke who likes to start a ruck. Overall a good player just needs to be pulled into line by the manager. I would like him at the Britannia but he would have to be told if you cross the line on the pitch or off it then your contract is terminated. No player can jeopardise the integrity of the club. Also the Twitter business should be stopped as it isn’t fair on the club.
What do you think of our owner Mike Ashley?
Mike Ashley is a tough one. He is a very successful businessman but that is his downfall. It’s all about £ signs to him and any player is for sale for the right price. He needs to learn that the club is more than an earner – it is the heart of Newcastle as a city and he needs to respect that. He could do with showing more support to the fans and to the manager to allow him to bring in higher class players as he can afford it owning Sports Direct!
Stoke were one of only two teams to do the double over Newcastle last season (along with Man City), but what will scores be this season between us two?
I think this season it could go either way cheeky 1-0’s (both games) as Stoke’s squad is dangerously fragile at the moment and we need to strengthen within this next week. Especially as we are in Europe. If we strengthen then it will be a closer contest.
Who will finish higher?
I think again the two clubs are in similar positions neither can match high wage demands that the current market brings so it all depends which has the most stamina and heart to battle on. I’m biased as I would love to see Stoke higher but I think it will be another close season.
Which Stoke player should we fear most ahead of our fixtures with you?
I think the player you should fear most is probably Jonathon Walters. He is playing really well and is growing stronger each week. It’s only a matter of time before he starts scoring regularly. I should say Kenwyne Jones because of his Sunderland links lol.
I like to finish these articles by talking about a player who has represented both clubs. Randomly, Jonathan Woodgate is my favourite Newcastle player in recent years. Injury prone but class and has bags of ability. You boys have just signed him on a free, discuss?
I think Woodgate is a great signing for us. Consistent, strong, and always gives 100%. If we can keep him fit our back four will be really strong. Huth at right-back is doing really well and having Shawcross and Woodgate in the middle an Wilson on the left with Danny Higgingbotham getting back to fitness our defence will be solid. Woodgate is a cracking deal we have made on a free and also on a pay as you play deal, so win-win for us.
Many thanks to Stuart for his time. I think his views are sensible and he’s given us another good interview. These interviews are always good because it’s good to know how were seen from a neutral fan’s point of view. Thus far, bar Liverpool, I think we have had some pretty decent and positive feedback.
What do you think, agree with Stu?