Unsung heroes! How about some praise for the donkeys?

James Perch - Quality in reserve?
James Perch – Quality in reserve?
There seem to be a number of headline grabbers at United these days. You know, the ones who always seem to be there to grab the glory and the accolades.

In fairness it’s usually not without good reason as the player in question has more than likely done something to contribute to the game.

You know what I mean. I mean players like Moussa Sissoko or Yohan Cabaye or Hatem Ben Arfa. Players that are on the lips of fans because they’ve scored or assisted a goal or made a cracking pass or displayed some cracking individual skill. It’s all well and good but the team isn’t all about them they may be at the forefront of attention but there are others players who contribute.

They are the ones who just quietly get on with things in the background and contribute when called upon. I’m referring to players like James Perch and Rob Elliot recently and, going back to earlier on in the season/last season, players like Ryan Taylor. If you want to go back a bit further look at Aaron Hughes, who in my opinion we should never have sold.

These are the types of players that, for me anyway, success is built on. Having players who can come in and do a job when required is all part of having a competitive squad. At some point, all of Elliot, Taylor and Perch have come in for criticism from fans for this or that and whether it’s warranted is up for debate.

However they rarely let us down. They may not be the best but they are our own dependable little donkeys that just trudge away in the background before being called upon. Dare I say that we’ve actually missed one of those donkeys (Ryan Taylor) as times during this season?

For every great thing one of our notable players has done, there has been something that one of our lesser lights has done to equal it in another way. Elliot’s saves and assist against Southampton, Perch and his goalmouth clearance against Metalist Kharkiv, Ryan Taylor and his goals last term.

And none of that should be forgotten so how about some kind words for the squad players?

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.

189 thoughts on “Unsung heroes! How about some praise for the donkeys?

  1. Happy Birthday Kimtoon. At least have a glass of wine after the flat decorating is finished. πŸ™‚ As for the donkeys I see them more as squad players. Some are very good now. Perch’s improvement has impressed me but he is limited to being a DM. Willo is where he should be, on the bench. Obertan is where he should be, on the bench. Marveaux needs playing time as does Anita but will they get enough now? Bigi probably needs to be loaned out as with Fergie who should benefit more than sitting on the bench and playing for the reserves. Raylor will find it difficult to get any playing time when he returns, as will Vuckic. Now that we have depth the difficulty will be getting enough playing time for the younguns.

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  2. Imo we may as well just play it short to Benny every time. He has a chance of beating a player, or possibly getting them carded and getting a foul out of it. if we get a foul closer to goal/near the byline, then literally just blast it through the box and see what happens.

    Nothing can be worse than what we have currently-I can’t even remember the last time we forced a good save for a corner, let alone a goal line clearance or something? Its a joke really. Same goes for free kicks, though marv/anita showed they can deliver decent balls to attack, none of our lot seem to have the mentality to attack it…considering our height and strength advantage and with Sissoko in as well, its a bit of a joke.

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  3. I actually don’t know what’s up with Benny, didn’t he miss soton because of a virus and not the hammy problem? But who knows, he shouldn’t be played unless he’s 100% anyway so if there’s any uncertainty he shouldn’t even be on the bench..

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  4. Kim – sorry had to come into work. Hope you’ve had a good Birthday and a bottle of vino while decorating πŸ˜•
    Hope Lewis is doing well as well by the way, recovering well I mean.

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  5. Ice
    Don’t blame her. A day to celebrate after all, we don’t turn 21 more than once πŸ˜‰ . Smooth andy, smooth. 😎

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  6. MM aye mate many moons ago the old outside right days. lol,looks like your team is going to get l/pools best racist player next season

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  7. Ice, did you play when Jim Pearson was manager ?

    Does it look like Suarez is going to join FC Bayern ? Shoyt, cannot stand the bloke πŸ™

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  8. MM only names I remember was basins he was inside right,and George Atkin who played for scum and was a Scottish international in his younger at c/h best guy I ever played with and a top lad,only played a few games then went to W/Back,they payed more lol,talk about moving clubs for more money,greedy got lol

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  9. Really getting fed up with Pardew having a sly dig at Mike Williamson. Today is the third time he’s implied Williamson is crap or not good without having the nuts to openly say it.

    I hope WIlliamson leaves in the summer but not because I don’t like him – he deserves better treatment considering the amount of times he had to save Pardew when the chosen one Steven Taylor was sitting on the injured bench.

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  10. Big Dave,

    It isn’t the issue of whether Williamson is a first team player or not – it’s the disrespect of the comments. He was more than fine for Pardew when Taylor was getting hurt having a wank in the shower but now he’s bought the new French boy and suddenly he is “the other guy”.

    There are ways to filter guys out of the team and disrespecting someone who, regardless of your opinion of his talent, always tried his best seems off to me.

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  11. DAVE I tend to agree with FJ pardew should keep his gob shut,he is having a go at Benny now,it should be kept in-house imo

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  12. Ice I agree that Pards shouldn’t be running players down the sameway he did with Routledge etc, but I was only stating that I agree that Willo was not, is not and never will be good enough πŸ˜‰

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  13. Ice I just read the bit about Benny, the funny thing is I can’t understand why he was allowed to go back to france 😯 why did they not treat him here and he is then still part of the club and they can monitor him properly ❓ I really don’t get that .
    I havent found the bit about Willo yet

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  14. DAVE aye I never understood that mesel,we have real good
    gear at the club and iI know Derek he’s real good at his job,he even has a good private clinic

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  15. I can’t find the link but the first one is the same one that B&B mentioned on here the other day, the “other guy” comment.

    He then made another comment recently about our “3 centre backs” as if Williamson wasn’t on the team.

    Then today he made a comment about how we finally have centre back cover that we never had before for Taylor and Colo – again as if Willo wasn’t here.

    I fully expect Perch, Ryan Taylor, Simpson, etc. to start getting these soon. Upgrading the team is needed and expected but disrespecting those who kept us up and got us into Europe is off by my morals anyway.

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  16. DAVE I saw the pardew interview about will a lot of the press had it a couple of days ago even on sky mate FJ was spot on with it

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  17. I agree FJ. Dissing the players in public is OTT for me. I don’t regard the fitness quotes re HBA in the same league as he is not questioning ability or commitment/ It’s a problem area that is being worked on.

    However why is it wrong for to Pards to say it when the fans are saying far worse, and with less knowledge or insight.

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  18. Premandup,

    I think fans are way too over the top on some of our players too but at the end of the day, it is fans who see these guys about 95 minutes per week and most of the time, have nowhere near as much knowledge on football as the players/coaches.

    Pardew is his direct boss and he has come out about 3 times this week and either disrespected him and not even had a courtesy to use his name and been “the other guy”. Imagine your boss or department manager was like this in public.

    I expected more from Pardew as man management is his main thing but then I remember he bashed our entire young team a few months ago and said Routledge wasn’t a premiership player – who is now doing great at a club that have won a trophy.

    He seems a bit… dim.

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  19. FJ I suppose it depends what he said today about cover, if he said that we now have top class cover for the CB’s well then I have to agree with him, I really can’t believe that he is trying to slag Willo off because I have seen him bum him up a few times before so maybe he has been misinterpreted or just didn’t mean it in a bad way.
    But over all I do agree that he needs to watch what he says in public.

    Prem I agree I think from the sounds of it that Pards is more pissed with Clairefontaine than Benny

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  20. Thanks for the birthday wishes lads ,not ignoring you just been away seeing to lew and visitors too. Yeah hopeing for a good result on saturday ,Lew is supposed to go to respite for a couple of days ,only just decided to let him go . Hopefully he’ll enjoy it and I get some r&r too ,well in between decorating that is πŸ™„ .

    Andy@86 ,Yep defo didn’t sound right πŸ˜†

    I see Pards is saying he wants to see top 4 form from us πŸ™„ I say lets just reach safety first and worry about playing like a top four team later.

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  21. FJ I don’t think there is owt wrong with Fans judging players because they only see them playing 95 mins or whatever. If you watch a player and you think he’s **** well then thats their right, the sameway they think some players are brill. Thats all part of being a fan, and after all it’s the fans that pay the wages

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  22. Big Dave,

    I hope you are right and it’s just Pardew not picking the best words and being taken out of context but I fear it may not be. He has brain farts about handling players every now and again.

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  23. He certainly didn’t go to the same management school that I did.

    I tend to differentiate between fans and supporters.

    The problem is that respect is not given for the hard work and achievements that these players have put in to become premiership players. To fans it seems like they are there by accident plucked out of the abyss of lower league football on a whim with no ability or dedication. How anybody thinks that attacking our players will in anyway improve the team is beyond me. By all means identify areas where improvements can be made and recognize that players have made their limits. But a touch of class or dignity would not go amiss. That applies equally to fans and the manager.

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  24. Big Dave,

    I am not saying fans shouldn’t judge or have an opinion. Just pointing out what I think the difference is between a blog saying “Willo isn’t good enough” to his actual manager saying “the other guy isn’t going to get a chance now”.

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  25. Munich
    Didn’t see the game but caught the score, Bayern are in a class of their own now, fancy them to cruise the CL.

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  26. yes. new plates tomorrow so got a new Auris to deliver to Falmoth. Hire car back. On the road for 5 ( Cheshire) deliver at 10.30. Hire car back to Bristol to pick up another driver. Back up to Cheshire to drop him off beore getting home maybe 6ish. about 600+ miles.

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  27. Prem > How anybody thinks that attacking our players will in anyway improve the team is beyond me.
    in what way attack the players ❓

    FJ I agree with you, as I said I can’t wait to see the like’s of Strolla andWillo out the door but I don’t think Pards should publicly slate them .

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  28. Dave I suppose that players are aware of what is said about them and our job as supporters is to help the team and club to prosper. I remember discussions re willo or Saylor who was better. Some preferring Willos calmer approach to Saylors last ditch heroics. No probs, but slagging off players as not fit to wear the shirt when they have done just that. Stepping in when needed and doing a good job seems to me as not supporting the club or players but just having a go. Ok if justified, but every few weeks a different player is the subject of abuse. Why? a dip in form whatever?? It’s irrational and destructive and I fail to see how it helps.

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  29. late night chat. will check in the morning.

    this year. I’m 60, My wife is 50 and our son 10. How to celebrate. Round the world trip, Pilferage to Tibet, new Motorbike. Motorhome tour of the British isles ?? Suggestions??.

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  30. Prem it will never be any different and in a way im glad because the high’s and lows show the passion that fans have and with out that passion it would be a boring game, with no soul. we might as well become fans of indoor bowls. I do think there is a line that you shouldn’t cross but in general the players are getting highly played to play a game that they love so a bit of stick isn’t going to harm them. Its not like they are low paid soldiers or members of the armed forces etc getting shot at or maimed or killed.
    So I believe if a player plays well they will get the plaudits and rightly so but if they play **** then they have to accept a bit of stick. So my advice for the players is try your best and always give 100% and you should be ok πŸ˜‰

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  31. Accept your point Dave. Bit of letting off steam is fine by me. but as I said a bit of respect. For me the money is not that important was rich once, not any more. Doesn’t matter.

    For me current players getting stick include willo & Jonas who always give 100%

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  32. Krul out for 5 weeks? Fuck sake, thought he’d just be sitting out Soton. Guess we’ll see what Elliot is really made of

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  33. Newkie ,That’s gutting ,we just can’t have a fully fit squad at all this season it would seem. From the limited highlights I saw of sundays game Elliot seemed steady enough and his distribution looked good. πŸ˜‰ ,only problem is if he picks up an injury too.

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  34. Kim-seems so πŸ˜₯

    It will be a good test for Elliot and even if he got injured, Harps is still about and he’s still steady imo. Better than Given these days anyway :mrgreen:

    Just so frustrating, we’re trying to mould a new defence with Mbiwa coming in, and now we’ve got a different keeper for the foreseeable future πŸ™„

    Things are looking good but I’d like to wrap up safety quickly so we can at least attack the EL with full sides and preparation, the one chance of redemption in this season πŸ˜€

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  35. Pardew talking to the press about Benny πŸ˜‰

    He told reporters: “I have to say his condition has disappointed me this week, and we will be working hard in the next few days to get him up to speed because he lacks a bit of fitness, for sure.

    “I just think it’s something we need to push him on at. His upper body strength is there, but we want to work on his general fitness. I think that needs to improve.

    “My gut feeling is that I’ll take him to Swansea but he will work when he’s with me and he’ll work hard. Really and truly if I do decide to use him, it will be a 10 minute cameo.

    “I think it was pretty close to deciding to attack it again with an operation, that’s how bad it was. We took the option not to do that, probably in the long term that was the best decision because you do not want to have surgery at any time really.

    “I remember seeing a picture of it and it was a complete bleed in the whole leg so he had a lot of fluids and bad stuff in there.

    “There is no blame attached to him. I am not being critical of him. I am just telling our fans because I know our fans are like: ‘let’s get Hatem in the team,’ and he ain’t ready.”

    Newcastle will travel to Swansea’s Liberty Stadium on Saturday.

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  36. Aussie…Bearing in mind Pards was hoping to have Benny in the squad for Chelski at the start of the month 😯 , if he just had a set back fair enough but if it’s because his fitness isn’t where it should be then he has every right to be a bit pissed off. Maybe we should’nt allow our French players to go to Clairefontaine to recuperate?…who is this Claire anyway, and is she fit? πŸ˜†

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  37. Happy Birthday for yesterday Kim, just think if you’d been born a day later on a leap year you’d only be 13 now 😯 πŸ˜†

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  38. Richie-If she were fit then Benny would be suffering from exhaustion rather than being unfit, don’t you think? πŸ˜€

    Don’t get Pards though, “I’m not being critical of him.” Er, well, good, because its essentially your fault his injury got as bad as it did. Good players will always want to play and they are not medical experts, many will attempt to play through the pain. It’s up to the staff to assess whether there is any risk involved, pards and the staff failed at that and threw him in at Fulham because of how panicy they were and how ****e we had been without him..

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  39. Newkie… πŸ˜†
    I’d say that Pards will listen to the player and the medical staff and if they all agree he’s fit then it’s hardly Pards’ fault if he suffers a setback, although I think the “norm” would have been for him not to start and come on as a sub for the last 20 or so(maybe a bit of blame there)…or maybe it’s nobody’s fault and is just one of those things that happens when player’s come back from injury…or maybe Benny is just plain injury prone…or maybe Claire wore him out πŸ˜†

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  40. Richie-it just seems a bit rich, having a player come back so quickly, resulting in him being out for like 3 months and then having a bit of a dig at him. I remember being surprised he was back in so quickly, to me that means pards paicked as he knew we were reliant on him and more caution should have been used.

    Not too sure he can be considered injury prone as his biggest lay offs have come through rough challenges, but lets hope he stays fit for the rest of the season..

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  41. so jack ****a gives the dustbin a right hander & then gets done by a frilly jacket.

    oh deary me – what a tit.

    nice one batty boy.

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  42. Newkie…But if the medical staff said he was ok, then it’s not Pard’s fault, other than as I said possibly starting him in the game, but I’d assume he also got the ok from the medical staff for that. Managers go on the advice of the clubs doctors and of what the player themselves say,if they say he’s ok then the manager should be able to take them at their word, what else do you suggest they do? managers are no more medical experts than you or I. He wasn’t having a go at Benny anyway, he was having ago at Clairefontaine who will have been paid alot of money by the club to look after him, if they haven’t done that properly then he has every right to complain.
    I didn’t say he was injury prone, I just listed a few other “possible” reasons as I did with “Claire” wearing him out πŸ˜‰

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