Yohan Cabaye has been a man of few words since he joined Newcastle from Lille back at the start of July, but today he has spoken about his move, his ambition, and what he is setting out to try and do at Newcastle.
Cabaye has said that he is going to try and help to bring attacking football back to St James’ Park, prove himself in the Premier League and, ultimately, help get the club back into Europe.
Sneer all you like at his aim, but fair play to him I say. At least he is willing to give it a go.
First off Cabaye spoke about aiming for Europe:
“My first ambition is give my best possible performances on the pitch and the second is it should be possible for Newcastle to look at qualifying for the Europa League,” he told The Journal.
“The club has the potential to be at that level. We have to show a fighting spirit, as a collective, if we want to get there.”
Before moving onto discussing why he traded Lille for Newcastle:
“Firstly, I just thought it was the right time to change club.
“Yes, I could have stayed at Lille and played Champions League football, but Newcastle offered me the chance to play in the Premier League, which I believe is the best competition in the world,” said Cabaye.
“I want to prove to myself I can succeed away from Lille, in a different culture and in an environment my family and I can adapt to. I want to go to the next level.”
Of course Cabaye is unproven in the Premier League at the moment although from what I’ve seen of him he is a cracking acquisition. I’m not the only one who thinks that way either although it is early days. Incidentally the 25-year-old added to his international caps last night as he came on a second half substitute for France and, thankfully, escaped injury after being on the end of a rough tackle.
He could be some player for us this season, and he was quick to give us an insight of what he is all about as a player. If he lives up to his own billing he will soon become a fan favourite in the eyes of the Toon Army. Again speaking to The Journal, Cabaye lifted the lid on how he and the team are going to attempt to play this season.
“I love passing the ball, the passing game. I love having the ball at my feet, shooting at goal, defending, tackling and sometimes I score goals, too. Newcastle have a proud history of attacking football and I relate to that. I adore that,” said Cabaye.
“For three years at Lille, we worked hard at playing that kind of football and it brought us the championship. I hope it is the same at Newcastle. Looking after the ball is the best way to play the game, because you have the pressure, the advantage.”
It’s this bit that really interests me as I want to see nice football. Few can deny that we were gritty last season, almost pedestrian in fact, but we now have players who can give us a bit of something different, a bit of pace, and as an added bonus we still have some grit and determination left in the tank with the likes of Cheik Tiote, Steven Taylor, Fabricio Coloccini, Joey Barton (if he stays) and even the new lad, Yohan Cabaye.
It’s about balance, and hopefully we’ve got it right. I want change, but I worry about changing too quickly although I guess only time will tell. I do think it’s unlikely that all of our new signings will hit the ground running but I’m willing to give them time, in much the same way it took Enrique and Coloccini time.
I wonder if people have learned not to write players off so quickly thanks to them?