Atromitos F.C. v Newcastle – Europa League match preview

Europe starts here for United
Newcastle return to European action for the first time in five years tomorrow evening when we pay a visit to Athens to take on Greek side Atromitos F.C.

This isn’t the Europa League proper though, not just yet, and we have to beat the Greek side over two legs first and foremost before we can start looking at the group stages of the competition.

Being honest I know precisely zip about the Greek outfit aside from bits and bobs I’ve found on my internet trawls. I know they have only played two European games in their entire history (a 6-1 aggregate defeat to Sevilla back in the 2006-2007 season) and I know they have the younger brother of former Newcastle “striker” Shefki Kuqi on their books. Aside from those facts, plus the fact they are from Greece, Athens to be precise, and play in the 10,200 capacity Peristeri Stadium I know not a lot about them so will focus mainly on Newcastle for this preview.

In terms of injury news, Shola Ameobi will miss out as will his younger brother Sammy. Sylvain Marveaux is missing in action as nobody seems to know where he actually right now while Fabricio Coloccini is likely to be given some extra time to recover from the thigh injury that kept him out of the weekend game against Spurs. Hatem Ben Arfa will also not feature as he starts a suspension earned during his days at Marseille.

We are likely to see a largely second string outfit for the game. Partly it’s down to being able to blood some of the fringe players, but a larger proportion of that will be to do with the fact that we play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge less that 48 hours after our game in Athens. Newcastle did try and get the games switched but the Metropolitan Police refused on the grounds that the Notting Hill Carnival will be using up their resources on the Sunday and Monday.

So who can we expect to see in action? Well I’m not too sure so perhaps we can have a bit of a debate about that. What we do know is that Alan Pardew has already prioritised the league and has dropped hints about leaving first team players on Tyneside for this particular trip, which leads to the conclusion that names like Gael Bigirimana, Dan Gosling and Romain Amalfitano will get some game time.

Using nothing but my opinion, and taking Alan Pardew’s words into consideration plus our game against Chelsea at the weekend, I’d field a team that looked something like this:

Newcastle: Steve Harper, James Tavernier, James Perch, Mike Williamson, Jonas Gutierrez, Gabriel Obertan, Gael Bigirimana, Vurnon Anita, Romain Amalfitano, Haris Vuckic, Adam Campbell.

Having said that the team I propose may not have enough experience although the likes of Harper, Jonas, Obertan and Anita have all been playing senior football for years so should be able to help the rest through.

What we need to do is keep things tight ad try to sneak an away goal. The Greek side will see us as a scalp and will want to give themselves something to defend in the second leg so are likely to come at us. We need to soak it up to start with and then hit them where it hurts.

I’m looking forward to our European return. It gives us a chance to look at other clubs who we haven’t for years, or ever as is the case with this fixture. But we still need to do a job and the game is there to be won.

To Atromitos and beyond….

Howay the lads!

P.S. Don’t forget it a 6pm kick-off, UK time.

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.

124 thoughts on “Atromitos F.C. v Newcastle – Europa League match preview

  1. Switch Gutti with Raylor and Vuckic (since i read somewhere else he is injured) with Gosling i’d agree with that team!

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  2. Rodz@3-

    I hope so. Marveaux has looked good pretty much every time he’s played. I trust Pardew to take care of it, though, and assure him that he’s very much in the mix.

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  3. Marveaux is shown as being with the team on the NUFC official site.
    Seems to me AP will want to use his #1 subs in this. Harper, Tav, Willo, Raylor, Gosling, Amal., Marv., Cab. or Anita, Ober., Bigi., & Abeid. I’d like to see AP throw on Campbell. Too bad Ranger is on the “outs” as this would have been perfect for him.
    I would not be surprised to see NUFC play with just 3 in the back, packing the midfield, and trying to get the ball to the lone striker with penetrating runs. Not having a proven striker available, maybe we will look like Barcalona!

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  4. As long as Anita and Marveaux are in the midfield, I’ll be happy. Obertan makes sense to me, as well. I can see going either way with striker – Campbell first, then Cisse on if we need a goal or Cisse to try to score early and allow Campbell to come in later. Defense worries me, but we’re thin there right now, so not much we can do about it.

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  5. I don’t know what to expect from the Greek side so I can’t tell if im nervous about it or not, seems like we’re bringing a strong team though so I’m confident we’ll win.

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  6. Harper – Tavernier – Perch – Williamson – Raylor – Obertan – Anita – Bigrimana – Marv – Vuckic – Campbell

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  7. A lot of people putting Vuckic in their team which is strange because he wasn’t selected in the squad as far as I’m aware.. 😐 πŸ˜•

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  8. Lacedaemonian – It’s sad news about Sheedy but by all accounts he’s caught it early as there is a history of bowel cancer in his family. My dad had bowel cancer 3 yrs ago and fortunately caught it early. The fix is easy, they removed 6 foot of intestine and cancer gone – never to return which is the best news. The only down side is that the recovery from the op is quite lengthy and needs a colostomy bag, which, depending on how the intestine heels may be with him for life. I mean no disrespect to Kevin or his family but trying to see a positive – there are worse cancers to get. That said, wish him and his family well and hopefully no complications with the op and a speedy recovery.

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  9. Sharpy ,I replied to you on previous thread only to find we’d moved on πŸ‘Ώ ,Anyway I agree we need additions, won’t write it all again.

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  10. Hope sheedy can recover
    As for the Greeks my mate who is half greek and lived their for a fair few years and returns for family visit’s every couple of years has never even heard of them , thats how good they are . 😯 I reckon this one is in the bag and we can look forward too the group stages .

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  11. Axel, we should go there to take the game to them, and crack in a couple of away goals. We can then go on cruise control for the home game…

    The better option for the fans is to get a draw tomorrow, means a few more may come through the turnstiles at SJP for the home leg..

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  12. MUNICH MAG i think Pardew will tell the older heads too nurse the kids through and as long as we score 1 goal that will do . It would be good for the fans too have something to go for in the home leg . If we come back 3 or 4 goals to the good ,they would need to reduce ticket prices too get SJP full .

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  13. Axel, my thoughts exactly.

    Cannot see it being a classic game tomorrow I’m afraid πŸ™ Avoid defeat, and serious injuries, and we’ll have had a canny day out.

    There again, maybe young Campbell and the bairns wanting to show themselves tomorrow, could be a few goals in it after all…

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  14. MUNICH MAG that would be good for their confidence and progression , knowing they can cut it against that sort of opposition in a competitive competition is something that would be good for the young players and coaching staff . .

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  15. Arrgh, bloody hell. Just realised games tomorrow. Just got out of hospital so don;t know where I am.

    Apologies lads. 😳

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  16. dave

    Aye read that earlier πŸ™„ just when you think these sites cant be any ****ter they play their joker… πŸ™„

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  17. Batts I was looking over an old thread and you are one right nasty piece of **** 😈 just thought I would share that with you πŸ˜†

    CC it’s the most read one on news now πŸ˜€ when I seen it I thought **** thats all we need another MF

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  18. Kim – I’m multi tasking my dear πŸ˜‰

    Playing away with a weakened team I’d like to see 4-4-2:

    Harper
    Tav/Willamson/Good/Raylor
    Oba/Amalfitano/Anita/Marv
    Vukic and Campbell

    I know it’s a fairly inexperienced team but if we don’t play them, how will we know?, plus 4-4-2 should keep things fairly solid and should be capable enough of getting a result to win the tie back at our place.

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  19. It gets worse. Looking at another blog who are criticising Pards for taking a weakened squad to Greece. Listing all those with knocks as though they were all fit and raring to go.

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  20. hahaha Prem. 😯
    I just saw everyone else selecting him so thought I’d join in the fun. πŸ˜†

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  21. With the squad going Id like to see :

    Harps

    Tav / Williamson / Perch / Raylor

    Marv / Gosling / Bigi / Amalfitano

    Obertan/ Campbell

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  22. Batts 😯 have others said that about you πŸ˜†
    Here what was all the gossip about Carroll I seen earlier, it looked as if some thought we made a Β£12mil bid πŸ˜•

    Ice your just jealous because you would love to relive your 80s

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  23. Dave, I just brought it up on the other thread, cos I’d been reading stuff on newsnoo. There’s still plenty of speculation surrounding him.
    I ‘thought’ we’d bid 12m for him a while back and they said FO. Who knows though…

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  24. I heard we offered a season long loan deal with the option to buy. Total package cost of Β£12m. Alternatively they could have it all up front as an offer to buy.

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  25. Oops posted on the wrong thread. Anyway, heard Marveaux was sent home on saturday because his little baby was ill. That’s from an interview with John Carver.

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  26. Not too fussed with a depleted and young squad, gives us a chance to see what they can all do, as long as they don’t get slaughtered it’s all good.

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  27. Sharpy – Thanks for sharing that. I grew up in a world where bowel cancer was terminal with no fix. Great to hear your father recovered, let’s hope Sheedy and other unfortunate souls share the same fortune.

    I aint posted for awhile but read all of the articles on ****facedbook.

    I am concerned about putting out a weakened team in Europe. I have this awful feeling we are not going to qualify.

    I am also concerned about this transfer window, and hope it closes without any major losses from our side.

    I am interested to know what people feel about our new boy, Anita? I thought he looked a lot better than Gutherie.

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  28. i hope no players that will start against chelsea play as carnt get any more injuries its going to be hard as it is playing chelsea dont no why pardew has taken cissie he needs a rest for saturday all first team players should of stayed back

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  29. @Dave that link you posted is the worst thing i’ve ever seen! Someone on that site needs to be fired asap if it’s serious.

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  30. LACE the bit ive seen of him hes diff class to guthrie, he filled well when he had to like good luck to him at his new club

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  31. Solano, some of the comments are pretty funny on it though. πŸ˜†

    Clubcall have always been shocking bull****ters anyway.

    I can remember ringing up their premium rate numbers for transfer rumours advertised on Teletext in the 90s, before the internet became a household staple. …****, how did people survive before the internet. 😯 πŸ˜†

    Their favourite trick to hook people in was to finish every subtle rumour with a question mark.

    ‘Newcastle to sign Josep Guardiola?’
    ‘Ariel Ortega flies in for Toon medical?’ …etc πŸ˜†

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  32. Gavin McCormack Β· Top Commenter Β· Ferryhill comprehensive
    here I heard gazza wants to leave and go to tot…
    Reply Β· Like Β· Follow Post Β· about an hour ago

    Paul Robinson Β· School of Hard Knocks, University of Life
    we got him wats this about
    Reply Β· Like Β· about an hour ago

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  33. Tbh I hadn’t heard of the website or been on it before. Maybe they deliberately did a shoddy article to attract attention. Daily Mail have been known to troll on purpose to get people flooding in.
    “Any publicity is good publicity” and all that

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  34. Andy-Reading. Hoping Reading make it a tight game and tire Chelsea, they have such a good squad now though probably won’t help us much πŸ˜•

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