Cardiff 0-2 Newcastle: Record away win keeps title hopes alive

After a week of highs and lows, Newcastle put their problems off the pitch to one side with a 2-0 win away at Cardiff last night.

Two stunning second half strikes from Christian Atsu and Issac Hayden were enough to seal the points in an improved away performance from the Magpies.

Our first half display was fairly nondescript, but the players dug in and found two moments of magic in the second half to keep us in the race for the Championship title, piling the pressure on Chris Hughton’s Brighton to get the job done tomorrow.

The win was not only a crucial one, keeping alive our slim title hopes, but also saw us achieve a club record 14th away win of the season, made all the more impressive given how bad our away form has been prior to Benitez’s appointment. It may no have always been pretty, but this change in mentality is key moving forward, with Benitez developing a side capable of grinding out wins and getting the job done.

After dismal displays at Ipswich and Sheffield Wednesday and no win away from home in our last 4, it was nice to see the boys back at it on the road, giving something for the 4,200 travelling fans to cheer about.

Player ratings

Rob Elliot – 7 – Had little to do but dealt with everything he needed to. Commanded his box well and looked a safe pair of hands, helping NUFC to their 22nd clean sheet of the season.

DeAndre Yedlin – 7.5 – Provided a good outlet down the right and was defensively sound, despite having little to do.

Chancel Mbemba – 8 – Read the game well and carried the ball out of defence confidently.

Ciaran Clark – 8 – Yet another calm and composed performance from the Irishman who was also very effective in possession.

Paul Dummett – 7.5 – Solid defensively as he has been so many times away from home this season. Some decent play offensively too with some clever through balls.

Jack Colback – 7 – A tidy performance by his recent standards. Kept it ticking in the middle and was more forward thinking in possession than he has been.

Isaac Hayden – 9 – Another all action performance from the midfielder, capped off with a superb drilled strike to seal the 3 points. He’s got all the makings of a very capable Premier League midfielder.

Christian Atsu* – 9 – Outstanding free-kick to open the scoring. Was a constant threat throughout and did no harm in his bid to win a permanent contract at the club. Man of the match.

Mohamed Diame – 7 – Grew into the game. Got us up the pitch with a few driving runs and won back possession on several occasions. An improvement but needs to offer more for a player of his ability.

Ayoze Perez – 7.5 – Operated on the right hand side of midfield and put in a good shift. Made things happen and could and should have won us a penalty.

Daryl Murphy – 5 – Anonymous display from the striker, who’s hold up play and impact on the game was fairly non existent.

Let’s hope Brighton slip up at home to Bristol City tomorrow to keep our title hopes alive!

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About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

70 thoughts on “Cardiff 0-2 Newcastle: Record away win keeps title hopes alive

  1. another god write up Olly,just about agree with your ratings,tough call for Rafa on Atsu,what can you get for 6.5 mill? costs 10 mil at least for a ccc player these days,dont think hes quite up to PL standard unless Rafa can improve his final ball and his crossing the lad has skill,Aarons should be fit for next season but will he stay fit?they both play on the left sd,ill leave the choice to Rafa i think

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  2. Thanks Olly, yep it was a workman like performance, got the job done without being overly exciting to watch, other than the two goals.
    Will be hoping City give Brighton a good game today, they need the points to be sure they are safe so should be well up for it. Thing with Brighton is, with Knockeart they have a guy who can produce a bit of magic even when they are playing poorly. Chris has been very lucky keeping him fit all season as he is the key imo to them being where they are.

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  3. Strangely I don’t care about winning the title. Two amazing strikes last night. Atsu was so casual and so accurate.

    I also think this HMRC stuff will all fade away. It’s Bemba Ba’s agent they’re after following his ‘free’ transfer to us from West Ham.

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  4. georgio:
    Strangely I don’t care about winning the title. Two amazing strikes last night. Atsu was so casual and so accurate.

    I also think this HMRC stuff will all fade away. It’s Bemba Ba’s agent they’re after following his ‘free’ transfer to us from West Ham.

    Marveaux was arrested too wasn’t he ?

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  5. Yeah, Carr said he expected to be interviewed too. If I remember correctly that was the summer we signed Ba, Obertan, Marv and Cabaye. Not sure what the Marseille link is about unless it’s more recent transfers like Thauvin and Cabella

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  6. I don’t normally take any pleasure in seeing any team get relegated, but after that fly past and fat Sam dancing around like some demented pilsbury doh boy when they survived last season , I will make an exception.
    Only fan I feel for is little Bradley, he don’t deserve it.

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  7. I would defo make Atsu a permanent deal for £6.5m and not just on yesterdays performance. He’s better than Gouffran (IMO) and even if he’s a squad player – that’s not a big amount of money for a player we’ve tried and tested.

    Leeds fail to make play offs. Personally I’d go after Chris Wood – he’d replace Murphy in our squad & is arguably doing a better job than Mitro as well.
    Have Wood replace Murphy – that gives Mitro & Wood. Than buy another forward similar to Gayle.

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  8. Sharpy17:
    I would defo make Atsu a permanent deal for £6.5m and not just on yesterdays performance.He’s better than Gouffran (IMO) and even if he’s a squad player – that’s not a big amount of money for a player we’ve tried and tested.

    Leeds fail to make play offs.Personally I’d go after Chris Wood – he’d replace Murphy in our squad & is arguably doing a better job than Mitro as well.
    Have Wood replace Murphy – that gives Mitro & Wood.Than buy another forward similar to Gayle.

    I would like us to try and get Tammy Abraham if we can Sharpy.

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  9. kimtoon: I would like us to try and get Tammy Abraham if we can Sharpy.

    Kim – he’s a cracking young player but I reckon Wood could be got for around £12-15m. I’d love the other to have a bit of PL experience. I know it’s probably just paper talk but Vardy has been mentioned – would love him to help get us secured back into the PL.

    I’m happy enough with keepers, RBs of Anita & Yedlin I’m happy enough with. CBs of Lascelles, Clark, Mbemba & Grant – yeah happy with them. I think we need another LB with Dummett. Happy with Shelvey, Hayden & Diame – so 1 in to replace Colback for me.
    Keep Ritchie & Atsu – we need 2 more wide men. Perez?! I’m not convinced personally, but I think Rafa will stick with him. He may also give De Jong a chance before looking at that no. 10 role.
    Up front – Murphy out & 2 in for me.

    That’s at least 6 in this summer for me (7 with Atsu) – quality not quantity needed for those 6.

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  10. Yeah I can see him looking at De Jong, there’s reports he has been in contact with him regularly throughout the season.

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  11. georgio:
    Yeah, Carr said he expected to be interviewed too. If I remember correctly that was the summer we signed Ba, Obertan, Marv and Cabaye. Not sure what the Marseille link is about unless it’s more recent transfers like Thauvin and Cabella

    Ben Arfa?

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  12. Shaping up to be a very interesting weekend. Kim, I agree re; Scumderland. I hope they stay down. Looks like a shoot out on the final day for the title. Did not think Brighton would fluff it. Looks like they are feeling the nerves.

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  13. Sharpy I think your transfer requirement analysis is about right.

    I’m sorry to see Leeds slip out of the reckoning. Wood might be a good shout. Vardy turned Arsenal down and is on big money. Can’t see that one coming off.

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  14. Unfortunately Brighton have Villa next, who really have been useless lately. Hopefully a few of their squad know they are playing for their careers next week and will put a shift in.

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  15. shamrock:
    Shaping up to be a very interesting weekend. Kim, I agree re; Scumderland. I hope they stay down. Looks like a shoot out on the final day for the title. Did not think Brighton would fluff it. Looks like they are feeling the nerves.

    i really think they will not come back next season,if fact looking at the age of their ages of their players a owner that will spend very little imo they will go down another lge not come up

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  16. enough to make you spit now when we saw them let in that bloody goal in against Leeds,could have had the ccc won

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  17. Dirty, Stinkin’ Mackems down. Desperate Dave’s ploughed field of a forehead will add even more lines now. I just cannot see them coming back up and there could be a death spiral given their debt, crap players and disinterested owner.

    Don’t laugh. I can see them sacking Desperate Dave and hiring Arrogant Alan. I am serious.

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  18. really pleased Leeds are out of it now,would not like to see them come up,i traveled a lot watching toon until the last three or four years and leeds fans must be the worst fans ive ever ran into (Millwall apart like)

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  19. Thanks Kim (from previous thread)

    Well happy days. The scum are down and Brighton lost, which means it’s all to play for on the last day. I don’t think Villa will role over and it will be tough for Brighton so we do have a chance. ??

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  20. I was trying to think of something for a fly over banner but drew a blank. They have never done anything of significance so I am flummoxed. As I have said before, their heroes are Jim Montgomery, Peytar Reid and Niall Quinn. They are all nice people or a bit nuts in Reidy’s case, but there is nothing there, there, to produce a banner about.

    They can’t even come up with a meaningful nickname or stadium name. Who the hell came up with “Stadium of Light”? How could they not know that “light” would be turned into “****e” from people 14 miles up the road? My guess is they had a competition at local primary schools and a kid who had been on holiday in Portugal came up with it. Since the Mackem staff have never been to Europe with the team they probably thought it was an inventive and original name.

    I mean, how can the entire population of an entire city not have done anything of significance, ever. C’mon. Name me a famous Mackem? Not footballers.

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  21. And before you ask what have I ever done. I did appear on a long running TV show with Hatty Jakes.

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  22. icedog:
    enough to make you spit now when we saw them let in that bloody goal in against Leeds,could have had the ccc won

    was thinking the same mate.

    Had a feeling Bristol city would win, they desperately needed to secure championship football and are more than capable of getting goals, it’s the other end they are a bit iffy with; but not today. 😀

    Horrible feeling Villa will roll over and let Brighton tickle their tummy next sunday, if only to spite us. I do think we’ll beat Barnsley .

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  23. Just read Louise “Uber Mackem” Taylor in the Guardian and she says Desperate Dave is set to resign next week. Also said their debts are 110 million (I had seen 170) and they have a payroll in the top 10 of the PL. They are well and truly ….

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  24. shamrock:
    Sharpy I think your transfer requirement analysis is about right.

    I’m sorry to see Leeds slip out of the reckoning. Wood might be a good shout. Vardy turned Arsenal down and is on big money. Can’t see that one coming off.

    Sham – yeah like I say, I reckon it’s just papertalk, but if there is a chance I wouldn’t be disappointed.

    With Man Utd & City likely to spend big in the summer I wonder whether the likes of Rashford or Ianacho might be available – on loan most likely. I know it’s massively unlikely as well but Walcott as a pacey forward – could be like a Townsend type signing. I think a good run in a team where he’s the main player & he could prove to be a lot better than he looks at Arsenal.

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  25. Yup got to agree I hope smb’s stay away for good.

    From jarra and when I was a lad it was pretty even split between mags and smb’s and I still follow some jarra forums. The spite there last season was purile.

    There was a lot about enjoying our prospective trip to burton etc .. well i did and glad to see they survived but pity them with wearside rabble attending next season

    Next week will be great as Brighton and toon go head to head for title

    shamrock:
    Shaping up to be a very interesting weekend. Kim, I agree re; Scumderland. I hope they stay down. Looks like a shoot out on the final day for the title. Did not think Brighton would fluff it. Looks like they are feeling the nerves.

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  26. Was Bob Paisley a Mackem? I can never tell if Hetton-le-Hole and Washington are classed as Mackemland?

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  27. Eric Sykes:
    Was Bob Paisley a Mackem? I can never tell if Hetton-le-Hole and Washington are classed as Mackemland?

    Eric – it’s either the Mackem reserves/youth team or ladies play at Hetton le Hole. My boy has his swimming lessons at the pool and the ground is behind the leisure centre – I’m sure its called the Bob Paisley centre or something like that.

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  28. I must be lost off I thought Paisley was born in the same area as wor Bobby Langley park area or there-a bouts,I worked in the Washington area for quite a while and found most were toon fans

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  29. Sharpy17: Sham – yeah like I say, I reckon it’s just papertalk, but if there is a chance I wouldn’t be disappointed.

    With Man Utd & City likely to spend big in the summer I wonder whether the likes of Rashford or Ianacho might be available – on loan most likely.I know it’s massively unlikely as well but Walcott as a pacey forward – could be like a Townsend type signing.I think a good run in a team where he’s the main player & he could prove to be a lot better than he looks at Arsenal.

    Yep I’d be more than happy with either of those 3. I think Mourinho likes Rashford so that one is unlikely. Is a senior player and wears the Captains band, so cant him leaving either unless like you say, he wants to be a main man for a while. Iheanicho or whatever its spelt could happen, on loan.

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  30. GlosMag:
    Yup got to agree I hope smb’s stay away for good.

    From jarra and when I was a lad it was pretty even split between mags and smb’s and I still follow some jarra forums. The spite there last season was purile.

    There was a lot about enjoying our prospective trip to burton etc .. well i did and glad to see they survived but pity them with wearside rabble attending next season

    Next week will be great as Brighton and toon go head to head for title

    Be good dor them to learn a bit of humility mate. I’m sure they will look back at their time in the PL and at least cherish those Champions League nights they expwrienced and teips to Milan and Barcelona etc. Oh wait, that was us, not them. LOL.

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  31. All time PL table;
    8th – Newcastle Utd – 844 points.
    15th – Sunserland – 602 points.

    And next season we add a few more to the tally. Who’s the top dogs in the NE?

    To be fair , that proves they should be a PL side. But we should be a top 10 side. ashley needs to get his act together.

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  32. just shows what a hard league this is. Hats of to Rafa and the team for battling through the full season. we were 7 points off brighton and looked like we may have been caught by huddersfield.

    1 game to go and Brighton have to travel to Villa. I reckon we must be favorites to go up as Champions.

    I’ll probably watch more championship games next season due to the fact every team can upset the other.

    Regarding Sunderland. I always empathise when a decent club goes down due to the incompetence of the men running it but Sunderlands joy over our demise last season makes it even sweeter that theyre cast out with not much going their way. There’s no chance players will be bought for them to do well nect season. I’ll enjoy watching their every struggle 😆

    Up the mags!

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  33. Sham: I have nothing against the Mackems except for their inferiority complex against Newcastle. I left Newcastle when I was 19, and this is true. I have only ever met 4 Mackems in my life. I grew up in a mining village.

    1. The woman that took the tickets at the Sunderland Empire when I went to watch a pantomime when I was like 8.

    2. Some 6 ft 7 stick insect who lived next door to me in University and would run around in his underwear all the time.

    3. A Barman in London who said he was from Newcastle. When I asked him what part of Newcastle, he said Sunderland 🙂

    4. Malcolm the Mackem. He runs a B and B in Seahouses and said he would refund me a night because of a mistake he had made. He didn’t. I sat in front of the cnt when he said he would make the refund.

    So, there’s my Mackem history 🙂

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  34. anyone catch the fight tonight? cracking comeback by AJ after his knock-down
    Get DC sports installed on Kodi. it had 17 links for the fight, 5 in HD 😀

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  35. kimtoon: I would like us to try and get Tammy Abraham if we can Sharpy.

    id go with that too Kim, cracking prospect. Your home team did us proud tonight 😎

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  36. Eric Sykes:
    Sham: I have nothing against the Mackems except for their inferiority complex against Newcastle. I left Newcastle when I was 19, and this is true. I have only ever met 4 Mackems in my life. I grew up in a mining village.

    1. The woman that took the tickets at the Sunderland Empire when I went to watch a pantomime when I was like 8.

    2. Some 6 ft 7 stick insect who lived next door to me in University and would run around in his underwear all the time.

    3. A Barman in London who said he was from Newcastle. When I asked him what part of Newcastle, he said Sunderland

    4. Malcolm the Mackem. He runs a B and B in Seahouses and said he would refund me a night because of a mistake he had made. He didn’t. I sat in front of the cnt when he said he would make the refund.

    So, there’s my Mackem history

    Eric. I often work in Sunderland. not sure when you last visited the place but its a total dump. theyre definitely a bit of a thick bunch 😛

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  37. Can’t see Brighton beating Villa. They have finished for the season as the last two results have shown.

    As for next season, we need at least 6 first team players. Big summer for Jabba…

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  38. Ba’s agent is called funnily enough – Sissoko. No coincidence the clubs raided were West Ham, Us and Chelsea. Ba, Ba, Ba.

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  39. Stuart79:
    Can’t see Brighton beating Villa. They have finished for the season as the last two results have shown.

    As for next season, we need at least 6 first team players. Big summer for Jabba…

    Depends which Villa turn up and if Brighton can hold their nerve I reckon. Part of me worries that Villa will be on the beach with nothing to play for now, plus Brighton will not want to slip up having gotten so close; it is after all in their hands whether they win it.
    All we can do is win ours or draw even if Villa win cause our goal difference is better.
    Wow that would be a kick in the teeth to Brighton if goal difference did for them for a second season albeit in different circumstances.

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  40. I see Thauvin hit a hat trick yesterday. He’s still a toon player at the mo – is there a way back for him or is his form just increasing his value & adding to Rafas transfer kitty?.

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  41. Eric Sykes:
    Doesn’t Thauvin have a transfer clause that has already been triggered?

    I’m not sure mate. I’ve read OM have an option to buy, but he’s still down as a toon player at the mo – if a clause had been triggered I would have thought he’d be listed as a Marseille player now.

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  42. The stuff I read was the fee was agreed and would be triggered after a certain number of games similar to Cabella. Probably not able to transfer his registration until the transfer window opens? Marseille have new owners and new money so they are a buying club now unlike when we got Cabella and Thauvin.

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  43. Eric Sykes:
    The stuff I read was the fee was agreed and would be triggered after a certain number of games similar to Cabella. Probably not able to transfer his registration until the transfer window opens? Marseille have new owners and new money so they are a buying club now unlike when we got Cabella and Thauvin.

    Eric – that sounds about right to be fair. I don’t see him in our plans and I think the PL was just too physical for him.
    If we get £12m back for him & Atsu in for £6.5m – that’s not a bad bit of business I guess.

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  44. I really hope people don’t get blind sided by Atsu. He has been pretty sub standard all season and turned it on for the last 2 games. Next season is the PL, where we can assume he will struggle to reach the same standard as this season, which by the way was a pretty basic standard.

    Players like Sissoko switch it on at last minute then everyone starts drooling over them and go on to make mistakes in the market. I know the numbers are not the same, but the principle is. We are talking about being lumbered with a very average player for 5 years. Have we not had enough of that carry on? I say give him another year on loan and see how he goes, or move on to players proven at that level.

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  45. Dead right Sham – lacks the determination/bottle required at the top level. Mind you that was some free kick at Cardiff.

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  46. shamrock:
    I really hope people don’t get blind sided by Atsu. He has been pretty sub standard all season and turned it on for the last 2 games. Next season is the PL, where we can assume he will struggle to reach the same standard as this season, which by the way was a pretty basic standard.

    Players like Sissoko switch it on at last minute then everyone starts drooling over them and go on to make mistakes in the market. I know the numbers are not the same, but the principle is. We are talking about being lumbered with a very average player for 5 years. Have we not had enough of that carry on? I say give him another year on loan and see how he goes, or move on to players proven at that level.

    Totally agree mate, decent fk other day but otherwise hasn’t really laid down a marker for me.

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  47. Sham – not blind sided mate (and I know you weren’t directing that solely at me). He would never be my first choice and said the other day we need 2 wingers in. 1 ahead of Atsu, the other back up for Ritchie. All I meant was that we would probably get more use out of Atsu that we did Thauvin – and he’s half the cost.
    At £6.5m I think he’d be a useful squad player & better than what we currently have in Gouffran & Sammi.

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  48. Wonder if Jabba will see winning the Championship as winning something. If so does that mean he will sell up…?

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  49. Stuart79:
    Wonder if Jabba will see winning the Championship as winning something. If so does that mean he will sell up…?

    I hope so I remember what he said that day,i don’t think there’s any way Villa will get anything their fans are not right in the head six thousand fans went to cheer Blackburn on hoping it would send Brum down so they won’t be cheering their team on never known so many sick’os

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  50. Just listened to a football podcast on The Guardian and they gave these scary facts:

    * Debt is 150 million
    * Wage bill is 83 million
    * Under 16 season tickets are 50 pounds which is why it appears they fill the SOL
    * Arsenal make more in matchday revenue in 3 games than Sunderland do for the whole season.

    I don’t want to dwell too much on the Mackems but they really could do a Leeds, or a Rangers. I remember when Coventry had like over 20 consecutive years in the top flight and look at them now.

    Who the hell are they paying 83 million in salary to? Dofoe and Kone, I am sure. Their best player, Pickford, can’t be on much.

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  51. Eric Sykes:
    Just listened to a football podcast on The Guardian and they gave these scary facts:

    * Debt is 150 million
    * Wage bill is 83 million
    * Under 16 season tickets are 50 pounds which is why it appears they fill the SOL
    * Arsenal make more in matchday revenue in 3 games than Sunderland do for the whole season.

    I don’t want to dwell too much on the Mackems but they really could do a Leeds, or a Rangers. I remember when Coventry had like over 20 consecutive years in the top flight and look at them now.

    Who the hell are they paying 83 million in salary to? Dofoe and Kone, I am sure. Their best player, Pickford, can’t be on much.

    It’s not just players though Eric, that’s everyone at all levels right down to the tea lady. Soon mounts up at a premier league club. Still I agree it’s crazy amount of cash.

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  52. So Lascelles is having a double hernia operation as he has played through the pain barrier since the end of last season !
    That could explain an awful lot in his form of late. Fair play to the lad, can’t of been easy playing with that condition.

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  53. Kim – doesn’t explain how he loses his attacker so often and stands behind him at set pieces or dwells on the ball too long. Overrated!

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  54. What has Paul Merson got against Newcastle ?

    Saying Rafa can walk away with his head held high.

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  55. Stem – It’s not out of the question. what has Ashley ever done to make you think he will back Rafa? At the moment for me it’s 50/50 at best. I have very little faith in Jabba.

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  56. Stem: isn’t Merson one of those people that if you do the opposite of what they say then you will be correct? I have only seen that Soccer Saturday a few times and he seems like a complete knacker on there for comedy value.

    I do read the website Football365 who have a Daily feature taking the press to task and taking the piss out of their comments and contradictions. Merson is probably the one most quoted.

    Plus, he has a giant balloon head.

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  57. georgio:
    Kim – doesn’t explain how he loses his attacker so often and stands behind him at set pieces or dwells on the ball too long. Overrated!

    fair points

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  58. Does anybody think that Rafa is naïve enough to think NUFC can be transformed in one transfer window? He would have to be shooting for 8th to 15th and therefore be in the same class a Bournemouth, Stoke, Watford, West Brom etc.

    That would need 60 million plus whatever came in from sales, so 80 to 90 million. We will have about 150 million in revenue, TV alone would be 120+. That is doable and then spend more the next year.

    Benitez did a lot of wheeling and dealing at Liverpool. He was not afraid to ditch his transfer failures and I have no doubt that some of the NUFC buys were always meant for 1 year only.

    There doesn’t have to be an impasse but Fatty’s track record says there might be 🙂

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