Game On! Newcastle v Norwich

Game On at SJP
Game On at SJP
Newcastle go looking for a first league win of the campaign over Alex Neil’s newly promoted Norwich City side who so far have proved to be a tough nut to to crack.

You can watch all of the action like on Sky Sports or via any number of other streamed methods for which there will most likely a link or two posted in the ‘comments’ section below.

Of course the best place to be is inside St James’ Park but for those who can’t be then why not settle here and discuss the action as it happens? Yeah sounds good doesn’t it?

I posted a match preview last night which you can view by clicking here. It’s worth a look as it details and injury news for both sides, a history of the fixture and some of my thoughts ahead of the game. No doubt those thoughts will get proved wrong.

I shall try my best to get team news as soon as I can following their announcement but inevitably someone will always beat me to it so it’s worth again checking the comments if I’ve not managed to publish the sides.

Whatever happens after that is up to the players on the pitch and is left for us to dissect and discuss. Wouldn’t it be nice to dissect and discuss three points for a change?

Howay the lads!

Newcastle: Rob Elliot; Daryl Janmaat, Fabricio Coloccini, Chancel Mbemba, Paul Dummet; Moussa Sissoko, Cheik Tiote, Jack Colback, Georginio Wijnaldum; Ayoze Perez, Aleksandar Mitrovic

Subs: Freddie Woodman, Jamal Lascelles, Massadio Haidara, Vurnon Anita, Florian Thauvin, Siem De Jong, Papiss Cisse

Norwich: John Ruddy; Steven Whittaker, Russel Martin (c), Sebastien Bassong, Martin Olsson; Nathan Redmond, Graham Dorrans, Alexander Tettey, Robbie Brady; Jonny Howson; Dieumerci Mbokani

Subs: Declan Rudd, Andre Wisdom, Cameron Jerome, Wes Hoolahan, Matt Jarvis, Ryan Bennett, Gary O’Neil

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.

275 thoughts on “Game On! Newcastle v Norwich

  1. It’s gonna be a battle royal on sunday, they are desperate for a win and if they can get it against us then so much the better. Fat Sam will have them well up for it and we have the added interest of an ex England manager up against a guy who still thinks he was unfairly overlooked for the job. 🙄 I can see stacks of crosses coming into our box and sadly I don’t think we’ll be able to cope with them. We simply have to come flying out the blocks and attack, try and get the first goal and you’ll see their nerves start to jangle I reckon. Cannot stand the thought of another gift of 3 points to that shower.

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  2. So Thauvin says he’s up for a move in Jan wtf he hasn’t gave it a go yet he’s worse than Cabella any way he’s Donald ducked you cannot play for more than two clubs in a season

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  3. Condolences Kim, hope youre ok.

    Mbemba is f00king mint. has coped superbly for his age & settled straight in. Player of the season for me already. he will take some shifting.

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  4. Ice@227, Had a feeling that was an iffy signing from the start, Carr wants his arse whipping, he was like a dog with a bone over Thauvin .

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  5. KIM it gets my goat as we left Ayew alone to set Carrs view on him win the day even though he has been having a bad press for a couple of seasons,I didn’t rate him anyway from the start plus I tend to think he thinks he’s gods gift cannot keep away from the mirror

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  6. Sunderland’s squad looks really weak. Their owner has really let them fall apart. I think we can beat them this time. 😀

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  7. Carr just waisted 13 million on that french reject and any fan would say save the money and put it towards someone else. If the french fan’s where spitting at his car then that must have won Ashleys respect.

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  8. G2 we can’t be any worse against Sunderland than we are in the fa cup 3rd round. Expect a defeat and anything else is a bonus 😀 Ashleys motto not mine.

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  9. Ice@231, yep agree mate. Truth be told I reckon Steve wanted Austin and Carr obviously had a thing for Thauvin and Carr got his way which I believe may often of been the case when Percy was in charge too.

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  10. @kim.
    Carver reckons most of the players we signed were identified before SM joined. we bailed @15mil like every other club because of his knees.

    I like Austin but unsure where he’d fit into our team. I like the speed and creativity of Perez. Bench warmer would suit me

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  11. We’ve been well linked with the young CF from Wolves as well haven’t we?.
    I agree with Kim though defence & holding midfield is where we desperately need to strengthen IMO.

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  12. Sharpy – my thoughts exactly mate. He’s our best defender in years and still has plenty of time to improve. He’s stronger, quicker and better on the deck than Taylor and hasn’t done anything stupid yet either. If we could get an experienced head in alongside him we could release Colo Tayls and Willo at the same time. I’d be tempted to play him alongside Dummett soon if Colo doesn’t improve and show consistency.

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  13. What’s the future for M’Babu if Dummett and Haidara are fit ?
    I appreciate he is a raw talent, but he has shown more defensive nous, skill and desire than either of the other two imo
    Newkie, good call playing Dummett at CB, but capitan colo seems undropable for some reason.

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  14. BB, I was really impressed with mbabu, hopefully he isn’t going to be injury prone. Both him and Aarons have the capacity to really do well. Also very happy with Mbemba so far, so good for a 20year old new to the PL, but he desperately needs some quality around him.

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  15. People criticise Haidara Dummet and Colo and I am not saying that some of the criticism is not justified but IMO Janmaat is our worst defender by a mile. Good at marking empty spaces. Put Mbabu at RB.

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  16. Newkie – if Colo finds himself in the right position, then he generally does alright. However particularly this season, he’s out of position all too often – mainly due to his rush of blood and racing out to midfield.
    CB may not be Dummetts most natural position, but he has the discipline and positional awareness to play there – at least until Jan. But for me I really want to see decent investment on a top CB.

    BB – Mbabu would be my full back mate, with Dummett on the bench to provide cover for both CB & LB. Haidara isn’t good enough IMO. He could be kept as a squad player as our defenders seem to be made of glass. However there is also the option of bringing Shane Ferguson back in who could provide cover for both LB and LCM for Colback cover. But for me I would go with Mbabu first choice before looking to recruit.

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  17. Groucho – I agree that Janmaats offensive nature means that the defensive side of things takes a hit sometimes. But no way is he our worst defender.

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  18. I dont understand whats going on with Thauvin either.
    Have we (fans) written him off already ?
    The word is he is already making noises about wanting away.
    We have hardly seen enough of him to make a full judgement surely ?
    I have heard talk of him being a ‘luxury’ player and not a grafter.
    But do we not need some creativity from the wings ?
    Has he spat the dummy because he is only on the bench or what ?

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  19. Boots – my concern with Thauvin is that he’s just a left footed Cabella – both seem more bothered about their hair & image rather than actually grafting on the football pitch.
    I read Jonny Wilkinson say when he went to play rugby in France, that the best players over there don’t really train that hard. Putting a shift in on the training ground over there is seen as a weakness – like I’m that good I don’t need to, it just comes naturally. It’s a crazy mentality, but if you think about it, you could probably attribute that mentality to a lot of the France lads we have/ have had. The likes of Sissoko, Benny, Cabella and Thauvin clearly have talent, but lack consistency – could that be because they believe they are better than they actually are and lack that work ethic to actually achieve their full potential.
    Of course it’s not the case with all French players, but I think there’s something in it.

    Personally, I’d prefer Nathan Dyer for example – similar size & build, but far more effective.
    I prefer the idea of a 4-3-3, 4-3-2-1 or 4-3-1-2 type formation with that touch line width coming from the fullbacks – but that would require some real investment in those positions.

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  20. Not heard anything on Thauvin myself – what’s up? The kid’s barely had a chance yet!

    Hope Mbabu is fit for Sunday – he’s our best full back already despite only 2 games. Dummett’s useless and Haidara fouls every time he tackles. Janmaat will pick up.
    I’ve never seen Lascelles or Darlow play. Any good anybody?

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  21. Georgio I hope you are right that Janmaat will pick up. After nine games so far I have yet to see any defensive qualities.

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  22. So fat Sam says he wanted Modric, Jagielka and Baines and ended up with Geremi, Faye and Enrique 🙄
    Modric went to Spurs around £15m, Jag cost £4m and Baines around £5m – a £25m investment for 3 top quality players yet we got 2 duds and a want away.

    Still, at least they have learned from such mistakes 🙄

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  23. I think there will be a few more disgruntled players as we get the likes of Aarons and Riviere back from injury. However, they will eventually get their chance given our injury record so I don’t think them and Thauvin should be that worried. We will also be clearing out some of the dead wood either in January or the summer so there will be less competition.

    I think Thavin’s price tag will mean Steve has to give him some chances. He easily could have come on instead of Cisse on Sunday, but then Cisse would be complaining 🙂

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  24. We paid £6m for Enrique, Faye was £2m and Geremi a free – £8m spent and off the 3 we only got £5.5m back selling Enrique to Liverpool and £2m back selling Faye to Stoke – we made a loss of half a million buying those 3 players, but more importantly it cost us a relegation.
    Yet had he spent the £24m bringing Mod, Jag & Baines – Modric was sold to Madrid for £30m – so covered all 3 with profit.

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  25. Even with a full squad would the starting 11 look any different to Sunday, except for Krul?

    I am still worried about Sissoko. He had a really good game on Sunday but they have been few and far between. Norwich were chasing the game and there was plenty of space for Sissoko to run. When games are tighter will he revert back to type and be a defensive liability and not much of a forward force? He should probably start but given the quick hook on 60 minutes if we are being overrun in midfield.

    I think he has pissed off quite a few fans by spouting off about Champions League and not producing for us. We will see if Sunday was another false dawn.

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  26. Sharpy: wasn’t Faye a Willie McKay special? At the time we seemed to be getting a lot of players from that particular Agent. Fat Sam can spout all he likes about Modric but he would probably have chosen Spurs anyway.

    I am not sure about this but wasn’t Gerimi thought of as a typical Big Sam acquisition? An experienced player on a free being wasted in the Chelsea reserves. It was only when he got to us that people realised there was a reason he was in the reserves.

    A lot of people were sad to see Enrique leave.

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  27. And another thing. It wouldn’t be like Fat Sam to make excuses or embellish his record would it? He still thinks he should have got the England job. When his teams do well, it is all down to his tactics. When they do badly it is because he doesn’t have the players. Remember also, he thought he could manage Real Madrid. His ego is larger than the moon and you have to take what he says with a pinch of salt.

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  28. Sharpy: I got the Fayes mixed up. Abdoulaye was definately an Allardyce type player and he came from Bolton so I expect that was a Sam decision.

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  29. Eric – to be fair to Sam he did a pretty decent job with WH getting them promoted and he left a decent looking squad of players for Bilic coming in. He seems to do pretty well at clubs when backed by the owners.
    You’re right, those players may have picked other clubs anyway, but what he’s saying certainly seems to fit the MO of our lot since Sam left as well like.

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  30. Sharpy: I don’t think Allardyce is a bad manager, just that he thinks he is better than he is. I wasn’t sad to see him go although what followed was a farce.

    Are these “revelations” from his new book? I can’t see too many rushing out to buy that although he is supposed to have some progressive ideas on sports fitness, if not tactics. I expect it to be going for 50p in the bargain bin.

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  31. Also, if Sam makes the Mackems hard to beat as he usually does, then other teams in the bottom 6 or 7 should be worried. At present, I see us as one of those teams for this season.

    I did see a funny Stat the other day about Fat Sam. He was crowing about “out-tacticking” Wenger. His record was something like drew 3, won 2, lost 11 (or worse). So what he was saying had no basis in reality and he must have been thinking about when he was bragging about himself after the 2 wins.

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  32. I think we are starting to get the basis of a good attack forming with the addition of Mitrovic, Wijnaldum and now Perez is getting better. The defence is a bit of a mish mash of young players still finding their way and older players on the way out.
    There are two different challenges for Macca and Simpson at the moment. Maintaining, supplementing and minor ‘tweeking’ to the forward line. At the back though there are massive decisions. When to replace Collo? Will Mbabu/Lascelles get a look in. Can Janmaat improve his defending, who will play at LB. Will Dummet, Mbabu, Lascelles replace Collo, or a new signing? Who will the centre midfielders be? Is Tiote/Anita/Colback good enough?

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  33. Will Krul get back in if Darlow or even Elliott play well? Kruls’ kicking and coming to punch/catch is a liability at times.

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  34. DJG – the most important thing Maca needs to get a grip of, is getting the board to buy the actual players he needs here and now. Not just players with potential sell on value, or players for the future.
    Good luck with that Maca, I’ll not hold me breath.

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  35. Sharpy – I was going to comment on that, it doesn’t seem just Colo being rash, it seems to have been coached into his game over the last year or so, for him to go roaming out of position as a “stopper” – and I have no ****ing clue why! He’s not great in the box when a high ball goes in, but ffs why is he running out and disrupting the backline when we have half our midfield back milling around trying to shore up a defence – he picks some odd moments to do it if it’s just his decision like, and if it’s the coaches then macca has to put a stop to it.

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  36. Newkie – I think it’s since his knee injury mate. He knows he’s going to get done for pace now so seems to be trying to read the game and snuff out the danger before it hits the back 4 – trouble is he’s not very good at it.
    It’s time to change him IMO. Im not saying that Lascelles is the obvious replacement, but from our options at the moment, I’d rather see them looking at a partnership between him & Mbemba than stick with Colo. At least he brings a bit of height & pace to the back line.

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  37. Got an email from the club this morning. Addressed in my real name too. I have no idea how the club could have got hold of this info. Anybody else? I sniff hacking going on. Let me know if you’ve got one.

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  38. Sharpy – Aye. I wouldn’t change anything for the mackems, we’ll see how his ability and leadership ability hold up against the scum. If we see another shower at the back and we manage to lose again, then I would put Dummett in and essentially take the captaincy off Colo. It’s not a coincidence that since he’s been our Captain we’ve had such a terrible run in the derby and shown such a lack of passion imo.

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  39. DJG @ 260

    You highlight for me the biggest area of concern. The two who play in midfield. None of the three, Tiote, Anita or Colback offer anything in defence or attack. At a push we should only go with one of them. Would prefer to see none of them but that is a huge leap from where we are now.

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  40. Newkie – im amazed Colo stayed to be honest mate. Maybe his missus is taking him to the cleaners and he needs the extra cash, but I really thought he’d have pushed a move with Jonas leaving the way he did. We need him out of the first team ASAP I think. A replacement for him should have been bought in the summer.

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  41. I don’t really see what is that wrong with Colback? He has a lot of energy, can tackle and harasses the opposition. When he is allowed to get forward he can chip in with a few goals. I think the problem is when he is played in tandem with Anita. With a fit Tiote, I think Colback can do a decent job and get a bit more forward. And with Perez and Gini he has players to lay it off to. I would say Sissoko but he has only had one good game this season so he isn’t redeemed yet.

    A fit Tiote will help us out but in an ideal world we would get someone who doesn’t lunge in as much. Anita playing in an almost sweeper role just invites pressure and obviously he is a liability in the air.

    An unchanged team for the Mackems.

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  42. Eric – Colback has taken some criticism as has Sissoko – hands up to both. But as I was reading your post, it did dawn on me that our midfield has been fannied about with the most this season. Mc has had a 4-2-3-1 thing going on, then a more 4-4-2 type formation with Thauvin & Anita in and out the team quite a bit as well. Maybe Colback & Sissoko are getting used to what’s being asked of them and who they are playing alongside and their game.
    The weekend suggested that we had a bit of a better balance, so it’s time for a bit of continuity in the 11 on the pitch I reckon.

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  43. Georgio: I just got an e-mail titled NUFC Weekly Update. Never got this before now. I was a member of NUFCTV years ago so maybe they went back through their old files?

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