Has James Perch proved his worth?

Perch silencing his critics
Much of the focus of this season has been on our “big hitters” such as Demba Ba, Yohan Cabaye, Cheik Tiote, Tim Krul, Fabricio Coloccini and, more recently, Papiss Demba Cisse.

However I’d like to spare a thought for some of the unsung heroes of the season. The ones who haven’t had the headlines and aren’t the subject of media fawning. I’ll start off with James Perch.

For me he is easily the most improved player of the season. You could argue that it wasn’t exactly hard for him to improve on last season, but I’d counter that by daring to suggest that he was never as bad as some made out. Granted he made a shaky start to his Newcastle career and picked up a string of bookings before scoring an own goal against Stoke and from then on became the poster boy for the boo boys, and once you have that “honour” it’s hard to shake it.

However fast forward to now and we see almost the perfect utility player. No problems off the pitch and good performances on it, Perch has shown that he can deliver in a number of roles. In fact last night at Chelsea I would even go as far as saying that our defence looked more assured with James Perch sticking to his defensive task rather than going walkabout like Danny Simpson.

I honestly can’t believe I’m going to say these, but Perch has proved his worth to me. I don’t think we’ll be able to find a player as versatile for him for as little as what he costs. Sure there are better players out there, but not at the wage Perch takes home.

Something has changed with Perch. I don’t whether it’s confidence or something else, but right now we are getting the best out of him and it’s fantastic to see. Getting the best out of the squad players is one of the reasons why we’ve done so well this season, and Perch has been one contributing factor to that.

About toonsy

A lifelong Newcastle fan and current webmaster of this very 'blog who has the sole aim of creating a place by Newcastle United fans, for Newcastle United fans.

118 thoughts on “Has James Perch proved his worth?

  1. Hear Hear

    Perch has been nothing short of outstanding when called upon, can’t remember him putting a foot wrong.

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  2. Once again every 50/50 he won, every footrace he won, every header he won.

    He even made a block when they were a yard offside!

    Hes got pace, abit of strength and will not lose 50/50s. He wont be marauding up the wing as a full back, but I think he should keep his place ahead of Simmo.

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  3. AMAZING!!!This time last year EVERYONE wanted him kicked out of the club!! Now he is the hero!!

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  4. Course he has. Toon legend. Last year everyone wanted him gone, or worse….Then there were the sarcastic remarks at the start of this season when he seemed to be finding his feet. Now praise is almost universal.

    Not fickle in the slightest, us lot 🙄 😆

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  5. He has been great for us this season and that says a lot, i used to dread seeing him come on but now i like seeing him coming on or in the starting squad! 🙂

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  6. So happy for Perch, he’s been just fantastic. Proper quality ‘utility player’, although yeah, based on last night he could make RB his own.

    And a shout out to Raylor for that lovely throw in too. 😀
    Nice that two of our subs came on and set up a goal.

    God I love it when one of our players scores a goal that you have to watch like 50 times before going to bed and another couple of dozen in the morning 😆 What a night! Big screen in the pub with Greek commentary, a few pints of wheat beer, analysis in the local after with an Arse fan urging me to believe we’re still in it for 3rd. Up far too late buzzing and missed practice this morning, don’t care. Plaudits all around at work, gracious Chelsea fans, everyone’s paper on the desk with Papisto jumping off the page. Couldn’t be prouder of the lads if I’d given birth to them all myself 😆

    Can’t wait for Sunday! 😀

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  7. Got to hold my hands up here and say I wanted him sold.
    Don’t know what they’re feeding him on, but he seems like a different player. Great utility player to have on the books, as he can cover most defensive areas on the pitch. I think a lot to do with it may be because the whole team is now playing as a unit, and have more of an understanding of each other. Either that or it’s the goat curry.

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  8. Yeah Perch has done brilliant, but like Willo when he was called upon to stand in he gave everything and looked good, but once he got a place that he was almost assured to keep it he started to fall apart, and not give his all.
    I think Perchs best position is to be a utility player and not a permanant RB, sorry but im a big believer in that it is easier to give your all to try to impress but when the spot is yours you become comfortable with it.
    I want to keep Perch as cover because he offers so much in somany positions, but to better ourselves I think we need new top quality dedicated fullbacks.

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  9. DAVE you were among the ones who picked on him with those “fish” jokes if i remember 😆 😉

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  10. For me Perch along with Raylor & Shola are the first names on the subs bench. Brilliant to bring on when needed.

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  11. He’s certainly made me eat my words, along with Ryan Taylor he is the most improved player at the Toon.

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  12. Perch has been fantastic.

    You couldn’t have a team of eleven Perch’s but one or two grafters with passion like him in a team of quality like Cissa, Ba, Ben Arfa, Cabaye, Tiote, Colo, Santon, Krul etc is a perfect blend.

    Cisse, Ba, Ben Arfa, Cabaye, Tiote, Colo, Krul – I can honestly catagorize as class. They could fit into any team in the league and look quality.
    With Santon coming on, Marveaux returning, and Steven Taylor returning. The addition of a quality right back and centre back would put our squad amongst the top five/six easily in the league every year.

    We have some truely fantastic players.

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  13. Anyone see Michael Owen’s tweet yesterday or early today about Newcastle having 4 of the 5 signings of the season? Who do you reckon he meant?
    I have Ba, Cisse and Cabaye…who would be the 4th signing for the year? Who am I missing? Santon? Marveaux? Elliot? Would you count a new contract as a signing?

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  14. So will we be saying this about Obertan this time next year?

    in my opinion theres 2 type of footballers, world class which make up maybe 5% of top tier and then theres the rest.

    The world class players have small dips in form but are always capable of wonder no matter how bad they’ve played in game or in a season.

    The rest are players who can vary from poor to excellent depending on form, the team/environment they are in and also confidence.

    Take Bobby Zamora as an example of someone who got so much grief 5 years ago, then he looked like a world beater at Fulham, now at QPR we’re not so sure.

    I believe Perch, and almost any player who could have played for us this year, have been spurred on by the momentum and the positive attitude that has already made this campaign a massive success story and has allowed average guys to play to their full potential

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  15. I agree with Big Dave. Dont give him a permanent slot, but rather keep him on his toes and hungry.
    Its a tad tough on the Lad, as he was magnificent last night. Far superior to Simmo, but I would worry he got complacent if he was simmos pemanent replacement.
    Then again I know nowt, so thats ok. 😆

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  16. @11. Agreed. I’d add Guthrie to that list

    Perch and raylor have really become reliable players. Perch’s transformation has been remarkable.

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  17. By the way, when I filled in that match predictor table thingy, I had us finishing 5th on 68 points.
    I dont see us winning on sunday, a draw would be good tho.
    I think we could beat everton tho.
    Now we need the villains to do us a favour by beating Spunks, but they wont do owt for us as they are a bunch of kunts 👿

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  18. Norcal- just saw your comment to me from yesterday. Agreed- we’ve been spoiled by FSC this year.. I guess now we know what’s like to be a ManU or LPool supporter. 😉 Long may it continue

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  19. Perch is going to end up getting drugs tested soon if he keeps this sort of form up.

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  20. If you don’t reward players with a spot when they’ve performed admirably though then what’s to keep them performing? If you never let them start no matter how they play, they well end up thinking “**** it” and I wouldn’t blame them……..I’ve defended simmo a lot this season, but Perch could very well throw down the gauntlet in these last three matches, as Taylor did to Willo last season………

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  21. Got to agree with what many others have said, think Pearch is the most improved player this season and now happy to see him take his place in the side. Can cover either full back, centre half or centre mid, who could ask for more?

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  22. After the own goal home to Stoke last year I had written the guy off. But give him all the credit he has turned his career around and for me I would want him in our squad next season. A better all round footballer than Simpson

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  23. Newkie@21- Maybe the answer is to let him hold that rb slot for all cup games and the odd PL and Euro game on a kind of rotation thing. You would have to be consistant though as if he played every lge cup and f.a cup game and we got to the final he’d have to play that too. 😕

    Big dave@9 Very much agree with that.

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  24. The lads form is so good the question has to be should the new England manager pick him in this summers squad ? Lets face it ,name another English defender that can play right across the back 4 and is in this form . Surly he has too now have an outside chance .

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  25. TOONSY lol had to laugh at one of there sites they have been showing a great goal (its ****e) that one of there players scored against toon in 2001 for fk sake just because cisse getting all the hype,there a sad lot

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  26. Thing is BIG DAVE all Englands specialists are injury prone these days and most well past their sell by date so as Terry , Ferdinand , Cole ,Carragher and King . It may be worth taking a player like Perch to cover any injuries that will occur .

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  27. @29
    Haha 😆 , btw what’s with the new avatar toonsy? why that one in particular? Are you to be Geordie ambassador in the EU when the toon are in Europe? :mrgreen:

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  28. Just like so many other players, it seems like Perch needed a season to bed in. He may not have come from overseas, but making the step up to the Premier League is still a significant transition. Very few players can come in straight away and make a difference like Cisse has. Coloccini, Jonas and Enrique all needed time when they first arrived, and Ba got off to a slow start this year. I think we’re just seeing once again that it’s rash to judge a player after a small number games.

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  29. CP
    Ba’s had the opposite effect started off brilliantly, well adapted to the league, now that he’s ‘bedded in’ he’s ****e 😈 😆

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  30. i think some praise for pardew and coaching staff is due imo the improvement to perch,taylor even guthrie and benny to some degree its there for all to see,lets hope he can do the same with obertan ect

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  31. Playing 4-2-3-1 next season can see a bench of Elliot, Raylor, Perch, Jonas, Gosling, Shola & Ba.

    Can live with that.

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  32. Ice
    Yeah, I was well impressed how well benny was doing at tracking back and helping with the defence, was presuring their attackers. Thought he could’ve taken advantage of Bertrand a bit better but overall did ok.

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  33. Andy – The avatar is because we’re in Europe 🙂

    Dave – They got along just fine by the sounds of it. Both look well 🙂

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  34. Alan Pardew and his man mamagement end of…..
    Handled BA perfectly in my opinion by not giving him a regular place in the team until he proved he could do the hard graft as well as the fancy stuff. Took some bottle that but by doing so it showed every player at the club that it is one rule for all and there are no exceptions. All the players are giving their all and improving because they have total RESPECT for AP and rightly so because this guy is a class act on all fronts.
    Keep it going Pard’s the expression zero to hero springs to mind.

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  35. Premandup-Can’t see Ba ever being benched….or certainly not happy to be on the bench. Imo he’s still one of the best strikers in the Premiership….better than Drogba, Hernandez or Defoe. Too good to ever drop from this squad.

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  36. Premandup
    to be honest if we were to play that formation I’d play
    —————Tiote——Cabaye————–
    —-Ben Arfa——–Ba———Marv/Guti
    with Cisse up top

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  37. Perch’s improvement has been nothing short of incredible. He has been tremendous for several months now. Definitely not a CB though to be fair to him but a find stand-in at fullback or midfield. He has definitely rescued his career. I hated to see him come on early in the season but now feel quite confident when he is subbed in. The whole team including manager and coaches deserve tremendous credit! Long may it continue.

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  38. I agree Perch has been very solid and is my vote for most improved player. Would anyone start him over Simpson for the Man City game? I sure would 🙂

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  39. TOONSY try reading a footy blog,you can buy comic books from newsagents,we have the best blog why wander into the world of half-wits 😉

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  40. Perch has done really well and he was solid as a rock last night
    Reminds me of the way players like Evans at man u can look good though – play in the right team under the right manager and you can become a decent player, reckon pards has done a fantastic job with him, a lot of it is belief and he must have loads of that now – total respect to him

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  41. toonsy says:
    May 3, 2012 at 20:33
    I see the manager is getting a roasting still on another website
    ——————
    Funny how no one ever feels the need to specify which one 😆

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  42. Cheers for the support Ice 😀 . I hope Obertan eventually comes good as well. I havent written him off yet and I think he has potential. He just needs a football brain and he needs to wax his head. He could distract or blind many a defender that way 😛

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  43. Reasoning as follows. I think Ba is off to PSG in the summer, but if he stays he is great alongside Cisse in a front 2, but if we are playing a front 3 -1 then I think we will have more natural options for the three as I indicated above. That bench is for 4-2-3-1 only. He would not be on the bench in a 4-4-2 or a 3-2-3-2.

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  44. Also do rate Jonas he is playing as a CDM which I think suits him, Just feel that we may buy another in the summer.

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  45. Premandup I think so too but makes me wonder if this goal drought Ba is going through might discourage potential buyers? But having said that he said hell score the winner at Man City 🙂

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  46. keep looking at that link on the goals on a couple of diff sites on one cisse is limping at the end 😯 just hopeing its cramp

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  47. Got a funny feeling Norwich might just get a point out of Arsenil on saturday.
    Oh how that would make me laugh. It would also put the cat among the pigeons, so to speak. 😆
    COME ON THE CANARIES

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  48. Ice yeah he was limping so I hope its a bit of cramp 😕

    Prem so what makes you think Marv will be better than Jonas ? have you seen much of him playing ? I have high hopes for him but I haven’t seen enough of him to say he should replace Jonas, as I think Jonas is a very important player and a tireless worker for us.

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  49. evening CISSE lovers 😛 😛 😛
    just off the subject for a bit — anyone been listening to TALKSPORT today??
    all day, every presenter has praised us :mrgreen: :mrgreen: and talked about “that” goal, :mrgreen: :mrgreen: even at 4pm on the gingerone and goffy’s show they had a “TOON” special, 😆 😆 very interesteing indeed, praise after praise coming our way, and they even dared anyone to ring up, and say our season has been a “fluke” 😯 😯 and CISSE’S goal was a fluke!! 😯 😯 😉 😉

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  50. Got to say since Mike Ahsley took over our signing success : failure ratio has been quit impressive. Even though some may have taken a while to settle, but the only ones who never really performed are Smith and Xisco, still think that if the second had a chance, he would have proven himself, but I think h’s not allowed to play due to appearance payments most likely.

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  51. GMAC I always find the Xisco one real strange, unless he doesn’t bother in training or something, but Pards said that he was good in training and that if he didn’t get a loan club he would work with him and give him a chance, because he was a real good lad. I don’t know why but from it came out that he was gay he just didn’t seem to get a chance, or maybe i’m just reading too much into things

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  52. I think the gay thing deffo had something to do with it.
    No one wanted to play with him 😯

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  53. I’m guessing thats why there’s not any fuss being made about paying 90% of his loan wages etc, just so he was away somewhere else.

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  54. BB I honestly believe that has something to do with it, I don’t think the management etc had any probs, but as you say maybe the players didn’t want him about.
    Which in this day and age is a bit ott, but then players have a lot of power

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  55. BigDave thats true. Chelsea is a good example. But im sure theres many more gay players in the Prem and everywhere. Theyre just scared to come out 😯

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  56. plus football has a long way still to go with its biggotry and and anti gay attitudes.
    It really shouldn’t make any difference, what your sexual preferences are, so long as you are putting the graft in on the pitch and in training.

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