How will we do in the next three games?

Last time out against Tottenham
After hanging on by the skin of our teeth to win at Molineux on Saturday, I thought it would be fitting to do a quick preview of our next three fixtures and see what we can realistically hope to achieve from them.

Newcastle’s incredible, and admittedly unexpected start to the season has taken many of us by surprise. As Toonsy wrote, Alan Pardew was unfortunate to miss out on the Manager of the Month award, and the first of our next three games sees us facing the man who pipped him to the post. We welcome Tottenham Hotspur to St James’ Park in the first of a two game stint at home, followed by Wigan, before we head off on the road again to Blackburn in our, seemingly, never-ending quest for Silverware.

Here’s the look ahead:

Sunday 16th October – Tottenham (h)

Spurs have had a difficult start to the season in terms of fixtures, but they came up with a big result against Liverpool two weeks ago and with an even bigger one yesterday when they beat Arsenal after they had previously been thumped by Manchester United and Manchester City. The North-Londoners proved midweek that they can’t be underestimated, coming back from a goal down against Shamrock Rovers to win 3-1. It will be a tough game, even though we’re at home, but Hatem Ben Arfa should return to the starting XI and maybe Davide Santon will be handed his debut.


Saturday 22nd October – Wigan (h)

Another game at home, and a great opportunity for three points. Wigan have been nothing short of terrible this season and have suffered five consecutive defeats. They have only amassed 5 points so far and sit 18th in the League. They also have the fourth worst goal difference in the Premier League and if we keep our players fit and in form, they’re ours for the taking.


Wednesday 26th October – Blackburn (a) Carling Cup

We were, admittedly, very lucky to win in extra time against Nottingham Forest last month. However, our victory against a very poor Blackburn side the weekend before last should be enough to dispel any doubt that we won’t win this fixture. They have conceded 12 goals in their last four matches, but managed to win two of those games – the Carling Cup fixture against Leyton Orient and the controversial victory against Arsenal, but their poor form sees them in the relegation zone occupying 19th place in the table. I can safely see us progressing to the 5th Round, only to inevitably meet one of the bigger teams as luck normally has it.


In summary, I can see us taking 4 points from our League games and our name in the hat for the 5th Round of the Carling Cup. We’ll find out in four weeks, and then I’ll look ahead to our next three games against Stoke, Everton and Manchester City.

Anyone else as optimistic as I am?

About tomcarlisleuk

21. MA Sports Journalism Student at Sunderland University. Newcastle United Fan. Hull FC Fan. Follow me on twitter: @tomcarlisleuk

56 thoughts on “How will we do in the next three games?

  1. I think 4 points from the two league games, but I’m not so confident about going away to Blackburn in truth. Mind you, they are in disarray at the moment so it depends on what happens there. It might get even worse for them yet 😕


  2. We do need to keep the points ticking over against stoke and everton as well because the following games are a tad tricky


  3. As well as we’ve done, I just can’t see us beating the Spuds. Draw at best. For me, they are a top four team and that gulf is still too large.
    Wigan on the other hand should be a victory, and Blackburn should be a win too.

    So I’m going for three points and the next round of the Carling Cup, which I’ll be happy with.


  4. Wigan are there for the taking, without Rodaellga
    Tottenham get Vertigo in here

    i see change in Mgmt at Black and Burnt rovers and i feekl they will put the B side out.

    This is a Fan’s Opinion not an expert like yourself Toonsy, who are objective.


  5. 4 points for me and we should beat Blackburn.

    Spurs are good going forward. Having watched the game yesterday, if Spurs play 2 up again and VDV in midfield I can definately see a good argument for us playing 4-5-1 and Arfa starting. I know the lads up top have done very well but Arsenal, despite having no cutting edge, bossed the midfield for most of the game until Sandro came on, VDV just doesnt have any discipline and cant had effectively a mid three, 5 in there for us would mean we could keep the ball and control the game

    Itll be a good test


  6. I Believe if pardew plays a decent side against spurs i.e. with arfa, santon and marveux we will beat them easily not like on saturday,

    I hate tottenham, just how they got 10 million for crouch i will never know.

    @toon Tom @9, Cheik tiote burried Parker 2wice last lear i see him and cabaye dominating him and modric again.


  7. “but Hatem Ben Arfa should return to the starting XI and maybe Davide Santon will be handed his debut.”

    If you think Ben Arfa and Santon are going to start against Spurs you don’t know Pardew too well. Unless this injury to Ba is true, Pardew is going to pick the same side we played against Wolves.

    @11 We had terrible records Away at Wolves and Home to Blackburn but we turned them both over… History means little on the day.


  8. I would snap someone’s hand off for 4 points and to get into next round of the cup.

    No reason why we cant

    think spurs and wigan r good teams for Ben arfa to start against as either not over physical.


  9. There’s always been a rivalry between us and the spuds as two sides who were always relatively well matched. Of all the money they’ve spent I don’t see them as having that much of a lead on us anymore in terms of personel and quality. Obviously they still have some players a class above us but we’re finally good across the whole park. That and their track record at SJP I would say we’ve got a good chance of coming away with maximum points from this game, so long as everyone stays fit! It’s about time we show them we’re back for good and back on top!


  10. I reckon if we just go for it, we will beat Spurs. Traditionally over the last 15 years they have always been the side closest to us in terms of pushing for the top 4 occasionally and being the ‘best of the rest’.

    The only difference is that they have always found it easier to attract the bigger players due to their geographic positioning…. We tend to do fairly well against them and should not fear them.

    Yes, these days they have taken off thanks to a good manager and lots of investment. All of our players will need to be 100% focused, especially against the likes of Bale and Adebayor but if they stay focused, get stuck in and attack with gusto then we will do them in. Spurs also face more risk of injuries/fatigue to their players over the intenational break than us, which is clearly a good thing.

    No disrespect to Wigan (and I hate to dismiss anybody in this league as it usually backfires) but they are aweful at the moment. Martinez may regret not taking the opportunity to further his career and work with a better budget and better quality of player at Villa… That really is a game we should be winning. Wigan are almost a poor man’s Spurs in terms of style of play actually…

    My only concern would be if we do let Spurs beat us soundly, then will heads drop and will that affect our performance against Wigan? We do not know what these boys are like responding to a loss yet!

    As for Blackburn, by the time we face them I reckon Kean will be gone. They could well have a new manager in, with new ideas and they may well be playing with renewed confidence and a fanbase behind them again. Could be trickier than we think…

    On one hand I genuinely believe we can take 6 points and safe passage to the next round, but if we lose focus and heads drop we may just as easily find ourselves with only 1 point and being dumped out of the cup…


  11. i think its time for us to taste our first defeat against spurs…i cant handle all this optimism and high expectation


  12. Our performance against Wolves second half was very very poor. For this reason I think we will lose against Spurs but win the two other games


  13. @17 – I reckon that was a bit of a tactical mistake as opposed to player effort. Nothing we did worked. That was a determined and desparate Wolves side we were playing, hurting from going 2 goals down. Despite the pressure they put us under and the luck with the ref, we hung on in there and claimed the points so we did a good job under difficult circumstances. People were far too quick to dismiss Wolves prior t that game. They are a determined and robust team.


  14. Against Spurs it will be more open, with the home crowd behind us. The type of game we tend to do better in. 🙂


  15. Shamrock
    October 3, 2011 at 09:24

    “People were far too quick to dismiss Wolves prior t that game. They are a determined and robust team.”

    Agree 100%


  16. So Ba might be injured. No problem – I’m sure Shola will be fit again …..

    Seriously it is rather a conundrum for Pardew. Of course he would like to be able to introduce Santon, Ben Arfa and Marveaux. But who can you drop from a team which has performed so admirably so far. Obertan is perhaps one whose performance is less reliable but I don’t like second guessing the coach who see the players day in and day out so leave it to Pardew I say. He seems to have the knack of keeping the players happy and playing with confidence. A tricky job but I prefer the current situation to previous years for sure.


  17. Tend to agree that Benny time hasn’t arrived yet – why would Pardew drop Ba or Best? At least for the Spurs match anyway…..

    I t will be very interesting to see if Santon starts tho…. personally I can’t see it and don’t think it would be the wisest choice to throw him in for his debut against Bale and/or Lennon (if he’s fit) – unless he’s playing right midfield to help Simpson out? Might be an idea……

    Wigan – great opportunity for 3 points and we might see more of our new boys if things haven’t gone so well against Spurs

    Bburn in the cup – let’s hope that [email protected] Kean is still there, if so a great chance for us to secure a QF spot


  18. Tony Toon
    October 3, 2011 at 09:37

    “So Ba might be injured. No problem”

    I’ve still seen nothing to suggest that he is injured.Nothing official anyway. I dislike speculating on injuries which is why I’ve not said anything on it.

    For all we really know he could be fine. he could be injured? It could be a ploy to stop him travelling halfway round the world for a meaningless friendly? Who knows?


  19. Simpson versus Bale is a scary thought, if he doesnt get his act together i can see this as the game where he finally gets exposed for what he actually is.


  20. [email protected]….I tend to agree with you. For some reason we seem to tire in the second half, hopefully not against Spurs as they have the fire power to take advantage of this. Actually that is the big difference with the top 8 sides, they invariably have that little something else to help them win the tight games.

    There again, if Pardew gets his tactics and team right, and everyone is fit, a point should be there for the taking against Spurs. If everything goes right for us we could win it too. Howay the lads !


  21. Robert…in Simpsons defence, Bale has made quite a few top class defenders look poor in his time, not just Simmo…

    Pardew will hopefully have Bale stitched up tactically so Simpson get’s the cover he needs…and Raylor too for that matter…. 😉


  22. i remember last year it was lennon who ripped us apart..anyone know why he didnt play last night?or is he just a bench player now


  23. M
    October 3, 2011 at 09:41:
    why would Pardew drop Ba or Best? At least for the Spurs match anyway…..

    For tactical reasons… The Spurs midfield is absolutely deadly in all areas and their attack is very strong now Adebayor is on board. It’s only opinion of course, but I would pad our midfield out to enable us to stifle their forward play and give us fluidity to move forward ourselves. This tactic really relies on Ba being fit, as I dont think our other strikers have the deadly edge to be able to pull off being up front on their own and finishing off less chances. It would look something like this:


    Simpson Saylor Colo Santon

    Obertan Ben Arfa


    Tiote can drop in to support Simmo, leaving Cabeye to fill in the holding role for those brief moments. Guti will track back as always so no worries down our left. IfSanton is fit, he has to be the better option. When Tiote is not covering Simmo, Cabeye has the freedom to interchange with Ben Arfa through the middle, with Benny also haveing the freedom to move wide and swap with Obertan who I have noticed likes to cut inside occasionally. This will leave Ben Arfa effectively ‘free’ to link up forward play, terrorising Spurs in the final third with quick passages of play with the wide men and accurate passes from Cabeye. Any chances in the box can be snapped up by Ba, whose finishing is way above the standard of our other strikers.
    Only an idea, but I think 4-4-2 will be too flat and not flexible enough against a good side like Spurs…


  24. I’ll try again:



    Obertan……………………………………….Ben Arfa……………………………………….



  25. One thing I’ll say about Simpson is that I feel like he can raise his game for a big match whereas raylor has to concentrate so much just to be at the level he has been playing at. Don’t get me wrong, I admire the work raylor has done but he’s the one I’m more worried about


  26. Quick question folks – has anyone noticed if they leave the browser on – on their mobile phone – with the current blog page open, that their battery drain appears quite high?

    Just having silly drain probs at the mo – trying to work out where it is.


  27. Lennon has been out for a month woth a groin strain. He had no impact against Shamrock Rovers and was subsituted. He was out of form long before his injury and I cant see him being 1st choice any more. They have Parker, Sandro, Modric, Van Der Vaart and Bale all vying for a slot in that midfield. Lennon and Krancjaer are going to have to work hard to get a sniff at 1st team action. What worries me is Lennon’s potential as an impact sub. In the latter 15 minutes when he is likely to come on if at all, he will try to be explosive against either a tiring Santon or slow Raylor. If that happens, I think we should push Guti further back and ask him to mark Lennon out of the match, allowing the full back to ensure he does his job effectively – that is provided we can afford to lose Guti to defensive duties – we will need to be winning at that stage…

    Chances are Lennon will be ineffectual though in my opinion. He is rusty and does not look confident these past few months.


  28. Stardust – If anything my battery drain has got less in recent weeks thanks to the speeding up of the mobile part of things 😕


  29. Spurs have a poor history at St James, we should of beaten them at home last year but got a draw and thier team isnt much changed since then.

    Tough game but us to nick it. And why not! 🙂


  30. adam campbell…better then rooney at his age…will play for newcastle next season..the real deal…we will are going places with this kid..


  31. Stardust – No worries. My HTC eats battery so I notice it more if it starts lastingfor longer 😆

    Asim – What is that based on? Rooney was playing in the Premier League at Campbell’s age.In fact Rooney had already scored in the premier league at Campbell’s age.

    Not saying he’s not a good prospect, but leave the comparisons and pressure off and let him show it without being compared to someone like Rooney


  32. I would say that 4 points and cup progress is very likely, but then again, im still not that confident that we are over the times where we do ever so well for a few games and then end up with nothing from games like these.


  33. “…no.1 cnut…has to be that fookin fat, ugly little excuse for it toonsy…seen the bile he posted over there while sucking up on here…hadn’t posted on here for a while since I collared who he was on facebook…no smoke without fookin fire he says…this is one cnut I would happily burn…smoke and fookin fire and salt in the fookin wounds…but the fookin screems would be something…”

    😯 😆


  34. Anything less than 12 points and FA Cup winner’s medals from the next 3 games will be seen as an abject failure in my eyes.


  35. Stardust
    Those motorila bricks only last 20 mins fully charged! You really must exchange it and use it as a door wedge!


  36. Newcastle 2 – 1 Tottenham
    Newcastle 2 – 1 Wigan
    Blackburn 3 – 4 Newcastle 4 (a.e.t)


  37. Stardust, being connected to the internet on a phone will drain the battery a bit.

    Just watching the motd highlights of the game now. What the hell was STaylor thinking when he felled that guy in the box? He just has to shepherd him out. Bad defending. Trying to be a hero again.
    Krul outstanding, simpson poor positioning again, unbelievable block by Raylor.
    Just from the highlights, mind. Second half now.


  38. Just saw the first half of the game from one of the full match links toonsy posted the other day i can say it was pretty even but did not want to watch the second half after reading some of the comments here the last two days about the performance or should I….?
    Anyway if the team is as bad as (ur claim) as the second half i really cant see us taking any point from the hotsperm 😛 game.


  39. And when is the next game … in two weeks that is so boooooring 👿
    Since i had some time today i just chose Mr Bruce to be the next england manager when capelo is out on dailly mirror 😆


  40. @MM 29
    I don’t think they really have been tiring in second half on a regular basis though. How many goals have we been scoring in the first half of games? And it’s not as though we’ve been losing our games. I think it’s just a change of tactics at half time that is making them appear as though they’re tiring. Just an opinion though


  41. KSMIT, I’d agree with that. It was a combination of Wolves really wanting it and Pardew setting us out wrong that led to the 2nd half collapse of form as opposed to fatigue in my opinion.


  42. Thanks for the feedback guys.

    I went with the HBA angle, because I genuinely believe that he’ll be a force for us in the League.
    The only problem is, who do we take out to accomodate him? Best and Ba have a 35% shots to goals ratio, the League average is 12.3%


  43. Tom: really enjoyed reading this. I have a couple of questions for you as I’m looking to go to the Uni your at to study sports journalism. i’ve just followed you on twitter maybe we could do it through that


  44. Now now now…why such pessimism around SJP wen we hv made such a decent start.We have nothing to fear Spurs,they are pity awful away from home against evenly matched teams.Last season,we wud hv given dem a hiding if our players,especially Ranger,had learnt to finish!!Don’t let such pessimism cloud our vision of making it back to Europe,we gotta start beating teams as Spurs in order to strengthen our claims.So I expect nothing short of 6 pts n a passage to the 5th round!!Howay d lads!!


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