Merry Christmas eve, my friends. It had been a pretty active news week up until today, so today's links is very brief. Here's hoping that you and yours are well and happy and that you enjoy your holiday, coming back refreshed for Boxing Day!
But in a defiant festive message the Newcastle boss is urging supporters to look on the bright side, pointing out that they are still seventh and flying high. "They’re one of those teams at home that can undo anybody on their day. We have to be wary of that," he said. "Whatever is written and said, we’re seventh in the division, and we’re three points above Stoke, who are meant to be having a fantastic season. "We’re still in a great position, and we want to protect that. "The only way you can do that is by winning games. It’s about the next game. We can’t dwell on West Brom – we’ve got to move on."
I am frustrated with this narrative. While it is true, it invalidates the idea that we should have come away with more than 2 points from our last 6 matches, which is an extremely valid viewpoint.
And Huddersfield boss Clark – a former Newcastle midfielder who trained and played with Andrew Cole, Les Ferdinand and Shearer – believes Rhodes’ accuracy is comparable to those greats. Clark said: "There’s no danger we won’t be talking about Jordan in years to come because his finishing is right up there alongside the best of them."
Jordan Rhodes has been watched by Newcastle United with a view to a potential transfer. Lee Clark likes him a lot, and so he rises in my estimation a bit.
This isn't necessarily directly related to Newcastle United, but was kind of interesting. There were soooo many legendary players active during Les Ferdinand's career. This is his Best XI Teammates... I wonder if we'll eventually look back at this era and see the major players in the same light. I also wonder if Newcastle's lack of form since the time that Les was playing will ultimately influence our view of the major players of today?
And football isn’t the only sport that rips up tradition for the sake of a few extra pounds. The powers in charge of one of rugby league’s most recognised club names – Wakefield Trinity – not only add the ridiculous Wildcats to their title, they also change the name of Belle Vue – film set for This Sporting Life – to Rapid Solutions Stadium. Unfortunately for the cash-strapped club the title has become more of a hindrance than a help ... there is no rapid solution to the stadium problem that is threatening their Super League existence.
This is a pretty interesting piece that I dug up this morning regarding sponsorship deals and the influence or lack there-of that they really have on clubs. I was interested in the quote above particularly, honestly. I don't have direct parallels between the Rugby League and the EPL, but I would think that although the EPL has a much greater amount of money floating about, the parallels and relativity has got to be present. Care to talk about SDA again in this light?
Merry Christmas, all and Howay the lads!
P.S. If you wanted to remember how much fun the WBA match was, here's the highlights. #DembaBaOverTheWall was awesome, and the interplay between Ba and Ben Arfa on our second might be worth it... the rest... ehh... not so much.