Ben Arfa torments Villa! Aston Villa 1-2 Newcastle

Gouffran celebrates scoring the winner
Gouffran celebrates scoring the winner
Hatem Ben Arfa put in another eye-catching performance as Newcastle recorded a first away league win of the season at only the second attempt.

Ben Arfa scored one and set up another as United emerged 2-1 victors at Villa Park, with Ben Arfa proving to be tormentor in chief for Paul Lambert’s men.

The away side started brightly and looked the more assured of the two sides in the opening exchanges. United were keeping the ball well and made the most of facing a Villa side which looked disjointed and who struggled to get back into the swing of things after the international break. That resulted in United taking an 18th minute lead when Loic Remy surged past Matt Lowton on the left and crossed for Papiss Cisse who helped the ball on for Hatem Ben Arfa to apply the finish from six yards out.

We could have added more through half chances for Remy, Cabaye and Cisse along with having appeals for a penalty waved away by Mike Dean but it wasn’t to be whilst Villa fudged two decent chances through Ciaran Clark and Andreas Weimann ensuring the away side held the half-time advantage.

Paul Lambert must have had something to say during the interval as his side applied the pressure in second period. Gabriel Agbonlahor saw an effort deflected wide before missing a guilt-edged chance from just six yards out following good work from Lowton and Weimann on the right.

It took until 67 minutes for the Villa pressure to pay off after an error of judgement from Tim Krul saw him fail to claim a corner from Ashley Westwood allowing Christian Benteke to nod home into an unguarded net from eight yards out.

That goal woke the Villa Park faithful up although thankfully it was only for a brief period. United always looked threatening in attack and once again it was Ben Arfa who proved to be the key to unlock the three points as he sauntered in from the left before firing at goal only to see Brad Guzan spill the ball into the path of Yoan Gouffran who fired in the rebound to restore the lead for the away side.

Papiss Cisse headed narrowly wide and Cheik Tiote had a long range effort saved but Villa rarely threatened to equalise again and United comfortably held on to the final whistle to grab three points in an impressive showing far beyond my own lowly expectations.

Howay the lads!

Aston Villa: Brad Guzan, Matt Lowton, Ron Vlaar, Jores Okore, Antonio Luna, Karim El Ahmadi, Ashley Westwood, Gabriel Agbonlahor, Fabian Delph, Christian Benteke, Andreas Weimann

Subs: Jed Steer, Ciaran Clark, Lenadro Bacuna, Nicklas Helenius, Yacouba Sylla, Aleksander Tonev, Libor Kozak

Newcastle: Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Fabricio Coloccini, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Davide Santon; Vurnon Anita, Moussa Sissoko, Yohan Cabaye; Loic Remy, Papiss Cisse, Hatem Ben Arfa

Subs: Rob Elliot, Paul Dummett, Steven Taylor, Cheik Tiote, Sylvain Marveaux, Sammy Ameobi, Yoan Gouffran

Attendance: 37,554

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.

158 thoughts on “Ben Arfa torments Villa! Aston Villa 1-2 Newcastle

  1. @The Kid

    I disagree. Most fans (myself included) would be completely tactically destroyed by a good manager. Someone like Bielsa would make changes which would need to be explained to us before we understood it inn hindsight.

    Pardew’s tactics were predictable as soon as the starting line up was announced. So typical.

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  2. Ok, just to be clear.

    For any average league match a team should just go out and play their own style.

    We don’t have a regular style. An injury to one or two players and suddenly we become of the worst teams in the league. It doesn’t seem to happen at Swansea, Everton, Southampton etc.

    For a high stakes game, or a cup game, tactics & substitutions become even more important. I don’t think Pardew is tactically better than most managers and he’s not showed anything to suggest otherwise.

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  3. KK-

    I don’t think Pardew is tactically better than most managers and he’s not showed anything to suggest otherwise

    I’m fairly certain that nobody is close to suggesting that mate, I’m simply saying he got it right yesterday.

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  4. I would stick with Cisse for the game against Hull & Leeds. If his contribution isn’t better than Gouffran, then for the Everton game i would drop him and start with Gouffran.

    We don’t need a focal point. We have enough players that are good enough to score from all over the pitch. Cisse playing as a focal point limits the total attacking threat we offer.

    Gouffran links up better with Remy & HBA. The three of them interchanging would be much harder to nullify.

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  5. @Sharpy17

    Ok. I admit. Pardew did ‘get it right’ in terms of team selection and the Remy sub.

    He didn’t get anything else right.

    The team should have completely overawed Villa yesterday. We have good enough players to do it.

    Instead we had to rely on HBA.

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  6. There are too many fans that were (foolishly) thinking we would get relegated with only one loan singing.

    There are now too many fans that are happy if we finish 10th, 9th or 8th and they’re also happy if we put in performances to match.

    We’re a club that should have a MINIMUM top 7 target. I expect us to be able to compete on the pitch with every single team in the top 6. We might not beat them but we should be close.

    We should be beating every team below the top 7 with the odd exception.

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  7. @Stardust – 70
    We should have demo’s to get rid off Pardew. Mike Ashley has done a decent job with the exception of hiring rubbish like Joe Kinnear & Derek Llambias.

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  8. Well I’m with KK on this one.
    When we start scoring from corners and free kicks more, I will give Pardum some credit.
    As for the team selection, well it was our best 11 really. The 4-3-3 decision seems to have come from the players, having a word in his shell.
    Some of our defending was woeful yesterday. Particularly the lead up to the agbon fluff. 😳
    I can hardly watch us defending corners, and Free kicks, We look very shaky at times. But I hope this will improve over time.
    No way in hell does Tiote deserve to start ahead of Anita v Hull.

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  9. KK – I agree with you about Cisse and Gouffran. I suggested at half time yesterday that that would have been a change I’d make at half time or just after. I could be wrong but I think Cisse needs to get that hunger back. He has the ability, but his missing his mojo.

    http://uk.search.yahoo.com/r/_ylt=A7x9QbzJ3DVS5mcAP6ZB4iA5;_ylu=X3oDMTEzZ2V0MW5xBHNlYwNzcgRwb3MDMQRjb2xvA2lyZAR2dGlkA01PVUswMV8x/SIG=11v8vt223/EXP=1379290441/**http%3a//en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ciprian_Marica

    I still think this lad could fit quite well into this 4-3-3 formation as well. I think Gomis would be the wrong style of CF to get in Jan, someone like Ayew or Finnbogason would be a better option IMO.

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  10. @KK

    When Alan Pardew gets it right he deserves credit just saying πŸ˜€

    @80

    I think the Hull or Leeds game would be good test to see how them 3 work up front. I think we would look much more dangerous on the break and just off the ball movement would improve without Cisse. Though we seem to struggle alot when we are made strong favorites so i hope we dont take 3 points for granted against Hull.

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  11. We definitely look better by not carrying Jonas for 90 mins.
    I like the fella but he brings nothing bar the fact he wins us many free kicks.
    Pardum has some big decisions to make once he is fit again.

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  12. Sharpy17 mate, Marica has struggled to break through at Stuttgart and Schalke mate. When I first saw him play 4 – 5 years ago he looked really brilliant, not sure if he could do the business for us.

    There again, I think perhaps more players could make the transition from the Bundesliga to the EPL, purely on their ability to retain the ball.

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  13. Pardew is not completely tactically inept. Even Guus Hiddink who is far from tactically inept put his defeat last year with Anzi down to be out thought by Pardew.

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  14. I don’t understand what Pardew deserves credit for?

    For ages we have been crying out for a more attacking formation.

    For Sissoko to be played deeper in the middle. For Cisse to get some support and movement around him. For him to stop playing the likes of Jonas and Shola ahead of Gouffran and Anita.

    Finally, he’s basically been forced into this through injuries. And look at the result.

    FFS, its taken him FIVE months to see what it took the average reporter five minutes to see. Yet he “deserves credit”…

    Give me a break.

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  15. Having said all that,

    Hopefully, he now doesn’t dip back into negativity. Because if Ben Arfa were to get injured. We’d lose half our creativity. Which is why we so badly needed to invest.

    We have all known for a long time we have a good squad.

    I just hope that the last 120 minutes of football he seems to have got right has taught him just how badly he has been performing as a manager in the last 13 months.

    I’m delighted things seem to be improving. But it should have happened much sooner. And it’s only been 120 minutes of decent football so there’s still A LOT of work to be done yet.

    Also, I’m a huge fan of Cisse, but he needs a bit of a kick up the bum and on current form. Gouffran should perhaps be starting with Remy playing as our main striker.

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  16. Papiss Cisse has now gone ten Premier League games and a total of 882 minutes since last netting for United, at home to Fulham in April 2013.

    That’s his longest barren run to date, surpassing the 763 minutes between his incredible strike at Chelsea in May 2012 and the one that win in off his backside to beat West Brom at Gallowgate in October 2012.
    😯

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  17. Sharpy @85

    Cisse is missing his mojo for sure. But rather than play him every game. Perhaps its time to let him get confidence back by bringing him on as a sub against tired defenders in the later stages of a game once Remy or Gouff has run them ragged.

    Once he starts to get a few in the net. He’ll get somewhere close the the player he was when he arrived.

    He is a massive confidence player. But he’s totally lacking in self belief at the moment. That in itself is a lot down to Pardew’s stuff ups and man management skills.

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  18. If he makes the obvious subs and plays the player where he should then people say “I would have done the same”. If he tries something different for a change and plays a player where nobody would expect them-sissoko on the wing, then people go completely ballistic. People still complain about Ben Arfa on the wing, or Marveux on the wing, when those are the positions they have played virtually their entire career. The mind does boggle sometimes.

    We all know Pardew has his flaws, the only argument really is between those who think we can do better than him and those who don’t. I’ve defended Pardew on those grounds and now similarly i’m not going to fall over myself dripping praise on him. He made the right call with the starting 11 and now I expect to see more of the same. I also expect him to keep shtum if we do string some wins together because he and our entire set up (Owner, Coaches, Carr, Players) are all fully willing to believe their own hype and then start bragging about it.

    Don’t see Carr claiming a lot of responsibility for Tiote now do you….maybe it was Hughton who scouted him after all? πŸ˜†

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  19. Wasn’t fortunate enough to watch the match but very happy to hear the result. And we played some decent football as well apparently. Very pleased for the team and some pressure definitely comes off Pardew. The Hull game is a must win for us as well. Cisse sounds lost at best right now. His feel for the game seems to have completely deserted him. Not sure what Pardew will do with him but I would bench him against Hull and go with Remy and Gouffran with Ben Arfa in a 4-3-3. An easy choice at home for me.

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  20. KK – we are a long way off overawing teams mate and Villa are massively improved on last season.
    Villa were always going to come out strong after the break and I’ve seen us implode last season against teams like Villa after conceding an equalizer like that.
    If we can string another 2-3 wins or performances like that over the next few games, then confidence will be high and then who knows.

    MM – I wouldn’t spend a Β£7-8m fee on the lad but if he comes in for Β£20-25k p/w for a year with the chance of a further 2-3yrs if he does well, then it’s little risk IMO mate. Even if its just this season to allow Campbell and Armstrong to develop through.

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  21. Some very astute comments @95 Newkie. If we can maintain an attacking style then I think the pressure on Pardew will drop even further but it will still all come down to injuries. We have no adequate replacements for Ben Arfa, Colo, or even Mbiwa. We have some depth in midfield but not enough and certainly no depth at RW. Obertan has no future with us, nor does Williamson. The league has moved on to a higher level of competitiveness now and teams will have to keep up or fall downwards.

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  22. BEN ARFA IS PUR CLASS ❗
    I think HE S on TOP 5 FIVE BEST PLAYMAKER ON THE WORLD ❗ 😎
    And PErHAPS tHE BEST winger ON THE PREM LEAGUE ❗
    AMAZING PLAYER ❗ IF STAYFIT …he can CHALENGE FOR THE BEST PLAYER OF SEASON TROPHEE ❗ 😎

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  23. I don’t see that Pardew really has a choice but to sit Cisse. He isn’t really helping the team at all in attack. I’ve watched his decline now for more than a full season and see no sign of improvement. His shot is wild and often from too far out. He has poor ball handling ability and doesn’t seem to read the developing play well enough most of the time. Perhaps if he starts in our cup match against Leeds he will start to recover his confidence. But I would give him 60 minutes only unless he is playing well in that game.

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  24. JJ – I agree with all but the last part of ya Cisse post. I think Pardew has the kind of headache with Cisse that Jester had with Maverick when Goose died, and in a similar way, Pardew is continuing to put him in there.
    It clearly isn’t working though, coz you can tell just be the way he carries himself that he isn’t happy. He didn’t even really celebrate Gouffrans goal with a great deal of enthusiasm.
    I would give him the Hull and Leeds game like KK suggests, and if there is no improvement then I’d definately go with Gouffran and Cisse as an impact sub.

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  25. Probably not KK @82. Games played and injuries will tell the tale but I don’t see us being competitive with teams like Liverpool and Spurs let alone the top 4 through an entire season. The key is can we be consistently good against bottom 10 teams and can we beat teams like Everton, Norwich and Swansea at least at home? If we do we should be a solid 8th place team, but again injuries will have a lot to say in all of this.

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  26. Can’t argue about Ben Arfa except he isn’t top 5 in the world DJEB mate. I think we’ll see the best of him this season though and he’ll either get a big pay raise with us or go to a team competing in Europe next summer sadly. Ashley will have to cash in on him because he is too cheap to pay him well enough I suspect. That will be our continuing problem. Ashley’s desire to pay relatively low wages and his desire to cash in on players. It’s not a plan to build a contender, just to be a profit generator for him. πŸ˜₯

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  27. Sharpy17@97, you could be onto something there mate.

    I’m pretty convinced that several Bundesliga players who struggled to make the breakthrough could do a good job in the EPL. If we could get Marica for such a good price with those demands I would most definitely take a punt on him. The reasoning behind my thinking is the impact that other players have had on entering the EPL, Gooffy for example, an average player at Bordeauax is making a great go of it at the toon. There’s no reason why Marica couldn’t do the same. I would class him as a poor ma’s Mandzukic, without the aggression (or daftness) but who certainly knows where the goal lies.

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  28. After the game yesterday Pardew said that yesterday was the first time he’s been able to play the style of football he’s wanted since we sold Ba. That was coz of injury, suspension and not having the players to allow him to do that.
    I still can’t understand why (if he has felt so restricted) we didn’t do more in the summer – actively looking to sell and replace the likes of Obertan, Gosling and Marveaux – if he didn’t feel they were good enough.
    We didn’t/don’t have to spend a fortune. Someone like Jason Puncheon is a better player than Obertan – that’s as an example.

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  29. Bale isn’t even top five in the world. Can’t believe Ozil got sold for him. Of the two, Ozil is by far the more talented player.

    Apart from Ronaldo, I’d say the top five players in the world all play for Barcelona.

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  30. @JJ

    Its really all a matter of opinion like.

    Though in saying that Messi is the best player in the world without a doubt Greatest ever there is a good case for him πŸ˜€

    If Xavi is in your top 5 then Pirlo must be in there as well as he is as every bit as good as Xavi if not better. πŸ˜›

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  31. Sharpy @105,

    Just more excuse making on his poor performances.

    Yes, he didn’t have the impact of Remy. But he’s played Shola ahead of Gouffran, Jonas ahead of Anita or Marv.

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  32. MM – that’s exactly my thinking mate. Bring him in now, with that incentive of a longer contract if he does well, but more importantly, while Cisse, Remy, Benny and Goof are fit. He can have time to work on his match fitness and training with those 4 would defo give him that spark I’d think. Hell even if he’s only good for 10 goals a season, that still has to be worth Β£20k pw and no fee to pay I’d have thought.

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  33. I think that it is him Santii. If Arsenal are interested we should have a good look at him. He’s a decent player according to Munich Mag who knows the German league well. Surely it would give Joe something useful to do as well? πŸ˜†

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  34. As JJ says @109, more excuse making from Pardew Sharpy mate. And the question remains, why didn’t we spend competitively in the summer? We didn’t spend 30M pounds or anything like that in January as Pardew stated either. You just can’t believe the man.

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  35. Oh ****ing hell man!, I knew this would happen with Benny!.
    Please keep things in perspective. The lad is our best, most creative player by far and maybe one of Newcastles best players of my time – but top 5 in the world?!…… Madness.

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  36. Santii,

    Pirlo would be very close to top five. I agree. Messi is on another level all together.

    I’d say:

    Messi,

    Ronaldo
    Iniesta
    Xavi/Pirlo
    Ozil
    Van Persie
    Neymar
    Isco
    Falcao
    Bale

    I’d go with that top 10

    Defensive players:Ramos, Kompany, Thiago Silva, Busquets.

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  37. @Sharpy – 85

    That’s an interesting post. I’ve not heard of him before but i’m surprised no one has made a proper move for him.

    I also agree, Cisse is lacking in hunger. When he first joined he was humble and worked really hard for the team. I think he still tries but he is missing the extra edge he had. He knows he’s guaranteed a start and when that changes, i think he’ll be the player he should be.

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  38. Try comparing Shearer with Cisse in your mind. Shearer could play an all round game as well as score consistently including from the penalty spot. He could generate assists and was good with his feet and his head. He stood up for his team mates. Now that’s a number 9. I like Cisse as a person from what I’ve read of him but his overall playing ability is quite poor.

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  39. I say Busquets as a defender, because Barce has some poor defenders but it doesn’t matter because Busquets does most of their defending in midfield. Unreal player.

    Re Pirlo and Xavi. At their best. Pirlo would edge it. But Xavi is more consistent.

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  40. Well if Marica is linked with Arsenal as well I can’t be too far wrong then πŸ˜›

    G2 – we didn’t spend Β£30m on fees, but I reckon in total we probably would have – wages, agents fees and such like.
    I just think that improvements could have been made without having to spend big

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  41. @Santii

    I also hate being made favourites. When we are we just going into matches too complacent as though we’ve already one.

    We don’t have a ruthless agressive streak at the club where we demand a win and make the opposition fear us.

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  42. Spot on Sharpy @119. We could have had a couple of very decent players for under 10M pounds and sold Gosling and Obertan to cut the net spend even more. Instead Joe did nothing. And most clubs don’t count agents’ fees and wages when they talk about what they spent in a window. Llambias constantly whined about that but what did he expect? No wage and no agents’ fees? It’s ridiculous, and by selling a few players you can reduce the wage bill as well. I would have sold Williamson as well by now.

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  43. @Premandup – 90

    It’s true. Pardew does know some stuff about tactics. He even has a pass and move style. The problem is he needs almost perfect conditions for him to get decent results.

    A good manager is able to take most negatives, injuries, suspension, poor form, in their stride. Pardew outsmarting Hiddink in a one off game is possible but 9 times out of 10 it won’t happen.

    We only have to ask, everton, swansea, southampton and even villa fans whether they would rather have Pardew in charge. None of them would and neither should we.

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  44. JFK is in hiding now. Even he is embarrassed by his performance in the summer. The mouth that roared has finally been silenced. πŸ˜†

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  45. @JJ

    Imagine having any of them players at Newcastle πŸ˜€

    On the best defenders i would seriously have Garry Cahill in a top 10 he has been amazing for the last couple of years.

    Ramirez (Chelsea) as well has been class a bit of a work horse but has alot of other qualities to.

    I think Hamsik is better than Isco and could have a case for Gotze as well.

    Isco has been pretty beast since his move to Madrid but Hamsik has carried Napoli for 3 years without getting many of the plaudits because of Lavezzi and Cavani. Though i guess i am pretty biased because i really like Napoli πŸ˜€

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  46. I think that’s the first time my comments have ever been called astute, you are polite as always Geordietwo, thanks πŸ˜€

    I agree with you, Obertan needs to be shipped out with Willo, as Good looked half decent the other week. Willo is ok but really we don’t want youngsters learning their trade off him. Against leeds I wouldn’t mind seeing Good or Tav alongside Colo one half and Mbiwa the next, let them learn from some proper centre backs you know?

    Personally I would sell Jonas, he has decent spirit but he is on pretty big wages, way more than what he is worth. If they go in part to helping us secure Remy for good then that will be real progress.

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  47. @Newkie – 95
    Pardew played Sissoko as a number 10. It worked in 1 game and everybody gave him credit for it. That was fair.

    When he gets things wrong, it’s only fair to criticise his decisions.

    When he does the obvious i.e. picks our best 11 players he shouldn’t get praise or criticism. That’s what he did yesterday so i won’t pat him on his back or attack him.

    However, as a manager he’s supposd to do more than pick the team. He hasn’t and that’s whar i’m annoyed about.

    Ben Arfa thinks his best position is behind the strikers, not on the wing. His goals don’t come from the wing. They come when he moves inside. If he was playing inside he would score more and have more assists. It’s the same with Marv.

    We can all agree that Ben Arfa is NOT a winger, right?

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  48. @G2 -102
    Apart from the top 6, we have the strongest squad in the league. On our day we should be able to go toe to toe with every team in the top 6 even if they do end up beating us.

    There isn’t another team outside of the top 6 that can match our squad. So we should finish a minimum 7th with around 65 points.

    Anything better than that and pardew would have done a good job.

    Anything worse than that and Pardew would have done a rubbish job.

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  49. You’re leaving yourself some pretty fine margins there KK@129. I can’t see us getting 65 points this season mate. If we do that would be fantastic and I would have to completely rethink my views on Pardew. I think around 50 points or less is far more likely but only because we lack depth and did nothing in the summer. We kept players who aren’t good enough (Obertan, Williamson, Gosling), and didn’t bring in any decent replacements. We’re 2 or 3 injuries away from a very scary season. That’s not nearly good enough from Ashley.

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  50. @Santii – 108
    I think messi still has a fair way to go. He plays for one the best teams in the world alongside players who have won the world & european cup so he has plenty of chances to win trophies and score goals.

    If he’s able to single handedly drag a poop argentina or france team to a world cup final then he might be worth considering as the greatest player of all time.

    The best player in recent times for me was zidane. Not becase of the success in 98 and 2000 but because of the way he pulled france through to the final in 2006 (well after his peak). Had he not been sent off i think he would have won it for france.

    Messi has someway to go before he can match that.

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  51. Sharpy17, Santii, G2, there does seem to be some kind of transfer rumour of Marica to Arsenal…. a good squad player, probably in the Gouffran mould, but more of a target man, and a tad better perhaps…

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  52. Again what you’re saying makes very good sense to me Newkie mate @125. You’re ideas about pairing up the CB’s sound very reasonable. I think Good will end up the better of the two young’uns but haven’t seen enough of some of our other young defenders yet to be sure. I agree about Jonas as well. His pace is very reduced now and as a bench player he’s too expensive. Sell him on while he’s still worth something (possibly 3 or 4M pounds?). Joe has to starting earning his wage for me.

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  53. I like your thinking there Munich @133. If we were more ambitious we’d go for him and drop Obertan down another notch. Make Obertan realize he’s very close to being finished. He should play his way back out of the Reserves for me.

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  54. G2, I thought Obertoon was on the verge of joining Forest on loan ?
    He must be on a pretty penny – move him on I say.

    Says it all when he is no way near the first team and is content to sit there and take the wedge. πŸ‘Ώ

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  55. Spot on Munich @ 137. If he’s content to sit, he needs to go. What was Joe doing all summer? Admiring his profile in the mirror? Planning his next meeting on the yacht with Mike? It’s a mystery to me why we have either Obertan or Joe.

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  56. You’re absolutely right Premandup @139. The fitness of our starting 11 is crucial. Far more so than most teams, thanks at least in part to our brilliant DoF Joe. His silence now speaks volumes for me.

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  57. “today they shout – ‘go, go, go, take him on, take him on- you know you can fly – you go and you fly. It’s a pleasure to play in front of our supporters.”

    lol Barfa clearly loves playing for the Toon Army.. πŸ˜›

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  58. Is it possible our squad was crafted around the addition of Remy and when he didn’t arrive in January, we were missing a vital piece of the puzzle and that’s why we turned shambolic?

    It literally seems like we were terrible with the current squad but the moment Remy came on against Fulham, the jigsaw was complete and it all made sense.

    We shouldn’t craft a squad where one addition is so vital that we fall apart when they are missing.

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  59. That’s very clever FJ @142. I think it shows that we were overly reliant on Cisse who couldn’t do enough scoring. The threat of 1 player (Cisse) is far too easy to defend against. Now we have Remy and Ben Arfa healthy and Gouffran to come on so that is 4 scoring threats. Much harder to defend against and takes pressure off our defense as well.

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  60. Please..114 and115 posts…
    I say hatem is top 5 best PLAYMAKER on the world for me …and watch every week end or c1…
    Ok for top 10 easy..but he have a special class and we don t see him in 10 middle his clairefontaine and lyon formation born.. ❗
    He was a sort of player how italian technician give a special gitle he s a fiuriclass player ❗ 😎 …
    If he play on top euro team like barca or man u ..city or milan…he s potential class speak by himself ❗
    Look around him today…he s alone to give fire somtimes …we see only ben arfa !!!
    Listen specialist or commentry.. ❗
    Sorry but he s not only and simply the best player ” at newcastle”….

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  61. Even the likes of Shola to play against the Stokes and West Ham’s with Campbell being injury/cup game cover makes infinitely more sense when you include Remy in the squad.

    Sissoko was no. 10 because we had no Remy and Ben Arfa was hurt. It’s just a shame we are not sure if we will keep Remy. Also means this style of squad building does not allow for much in the way of squad depth and we have already seen the negatives it brings but it does keep costs down….

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  62. You are clearly Hatem’s top supporter DJEB! πŸ˜† I love to watch him as well. If he can stay fit and produce for a whole season he could be worth several places in the standings to our club by himself. I’m looking for somewhere around 12 goals and 10 assists from him but he must stay fit or we will slide down again.

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  63. Well we’ve had Benny for 4 years but due to injury thanks in no small part to that *&$% De Jong ,we’ve had only snippets of joy from him so it’s great to see him finally fit and on form at last . Here’s hoping he stays injury free and continues in this rich vein of form all season ,only blot on the landscape for me is Ashley already probably seeing Β£ signs πŸ‘Ώ .

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  64. Munich – I say get Marica in mate, no risk at all in it – right, we just need to convince Joe now πŸ˜†

    Djebs9 – I understand that you are excited by Benny and based on how he’s started the season you’ve got every right. But we build people up way too much – as we did with Tiote, Cabaye and Cisse. Another big fear I have is him being built up so much that he believes his own hype – which could make negotiating that new contract very difficult.
    For Benny to be rated anywhere near the level you have him at, he would need to be as influential and injury free on a far more consistent basis for me like.

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  65. KK-True, but there were many fans on here who argued where Sissoko’s best position was before we started him. I said it was CM but others claimed he had played the majority of that season as a no.10 and would be best there. After his early games there they took the credit, now its obvious he is better as a straight up box to box midfielder. I didn’t watch all that much of him in France but if that was indeed where he played nobody was really right or wrong on it imo.

    G2-I have high hopes for Goode, Tav looks decent but hasn’t really made all that much progress of the last two years, and he has the frame and build of a full back (where he mostly plays) rather than a centre back. The only reason he played there was for his composure/passing ability which are even now far better than Willo’s. Hopefully at least one of them will turn out to be a long term partner for Mbiwa but who knows? I think we would do well to get 3 mil for Jonas but who knows…maybe if Maradona becomes a club manager in Europe he can buy Jonas, he rated him massively after all πŸ˜€

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  66. Newky…the gys like u are never ever happy πŸ‘Ώ
    Always somethink is not perfect..always a ****ing probleme ❗
    Sorry mate but when the team play **** with draw or loose ..u re the first crying for not a player class to give difrence ❗ πŸ™„
    U re the first to give perfect rate for players like hazard walcot ozil aguero or silva top stars player in the world ❗ πŸ˜‰

    But if hatem was on one of this 10 top team on ghe world ..don t care..he will be more and more meditics of that and his contract will be Γ—10 more that he have here …if he s not browk legs and injury ..he was go for not under 35 M… 😎
    So thanks fully god u can watch and pay for a newcastle s player like him…
    Enjoy it before it s too late….u can class him on top 10 playmaker on the world latter …dont matter… πŸ˜€

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