Perhaps it's just me and the totality of my personal circumstance, but it seems like this week has just dragged by. Odd, since the match v. Stoke was on Monday... logic would dictate the opposite feeling. I dropped a couple of links last night because a) I was just kind of throwing a bone with the Leon Best thing and b) I thought that the Obertan thing deserved at least 150 words. . . so if you haven't, you might check those out for starters. Kind of like a pre-breakfast slice of bacon. Without further ado, this is what has been going on in Toon Land.
From the just plain asinine department:
Today's social-media society has relieved much of the pressure to verify or worry about what you say... the anonymity makes people feel somewhat invincible (separate social commentary somewhere, I'm sure). These guys did something extremely stupid and reprehensible, and I hope there is at least some manner of punishment in it for them.
From the What and Why Are Newcastle Department:
Owner Mike Ashley has said that he would reinvest the Andy Carroll sale money. He hasn’t done so yet, and what makes the improvement so impressive is that the books virtually balanced over the summer window – a net £3.6 million were spent on a major refit.
This was a pretty nice read overall-- and it's not entirely concerned with the quote above. Two things about the quote, though: A) It's wrong in that it does not include any financial info on salaries, etc. and B) With the flying start to the season and the relative thawing of attitude towards Ashley (however much or little), it bears remembering that this elephant is still in the room.
l Note of caution, in the 2008-09 season Hull City had 20 points after their first 10 games. They eventually finished 17th, maintaining their Premier League status on the last day.
I really believe that this squad is much closer to the other end than the Hull City 08-09 end of things, and although many pundits are just waiting for the bottom to fall out and us to be scrapping against relegation, I don't think it's going to happen. Yes the numbers and history in this article involve lots of Arsenals and Tottenhams and such... but why not us?
Did I mention that some pundits are just waiting for the bottom to fall out for us?
To all the Newcastle fans out there, enjoy the view from the ivory heights of the Barclays Premier League while you can. I find it ludicrous when I hear people talking about the Magpies challenging for a top-four spot. It has undoubtedly been a magnificent run of form so far this season for Alan Pardew's men - one which sees them rubbing shoulders with the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United. But as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. And so will Newcastle's impressive adventure at the top of the standings. Newcastle remain the only club besides City to be unbeaten in the league so far. But mark my words - south is the way to go for the Magpies when their bubble finally bursts with a defeat. However, few will bet against them collecting their seventh win of the season at St James' Park this Saturday when they host an Everton side who would be disappointed not to have taken something out of their game against United last weekend at Goodison Park. But a home win is not a given for Newcastle. Let's not forget how they struggled and rode their luck in the 1-0 win over Wigan at St James Park a fortnight ago. So it would be foolish to think that David Moyes' men will lie low and let the hosts have their own way.
A Couple of Links from the Blue Side of This Weekend's Match:
"People have said that Demba Ba is ‘one that got away’ because Everton were linked with him in the summer, and he’s scored eight goals in the Premier league so far. "There’s no doubting that he has a good predatory instinct, but it’s important to remember he’s playing with a strike partner, usually Leon Best.
This was another pretty good read- we're up against another "We could have signed Demba Ba!!!111!1!11!!" club. There was also this quote, which is somewhat encouraging considering the graft that Jonas and Taylor have put in over the last two matches and specifically against Stoke:
"Opposition managers aren’t daft. They’ve realised that our most potent weapon is the left-flank, and that if you stop Bainesy you hurt Everton. "Last weekend Alex Ferguson used Park Ji-Sung to neutralise him, and other managers will double up to peg him back. "Equally Bainsey has missed Steven Pienaar badly. He has got to develop the same trust with another left sided midfielder, say for example Royston Drenthe, and that means being reassured that they will fill in for him if he pushes on. So far Royston hasn’t quite cottoned onto the need to do that. While he’s an exciting talent he has to pitch in with the defensive work."
One game at a time... one game at a time...
"We Love one" and "I Don't Really Want To Leave"
It would be nice to have Peter for the FA Cup, but I don't see that, barring terrible circumstances, that he's got any first-team prospects in this squad... particularly if Modibo Maiga comes in January or Cisse... or both.
I like that Alan is professing genuine affection and care about the club. I just don't know that what he's doing at this point is worth £50,000 a week. Someone tell me why I'm wrong.
Business Links-- Two Good Reads to Take With You
When this was first announced, it sounded like it would be doom for Newcastle and the new player development model. This article lets on that it may not be all that bad for Newcastle, and the club are actually in favor of the change having been made. If you don't read any-- read this one.
We made the Wall Street Journal! Another good read about football economics and Newcastle specifically.
Enjoy-- it's Friday! Newcastle v. Everton at St. James' (early match) and then a week of "It's all over for Newcastle!" stories! Hooay! HTL!