Speaking to the Sunday Sun this weekend Yohan Cabaye revealed the background to his signing for Newcastle; “The first time I met Alan Pardew I asked him ‘How do you want to play? What is the style?”. “He said ‘With you, it will change’. I told him I want to have the ball at my feet, I want to pass the ball, pass again”.

“It reassured me a lot to hear that the first time I met him. It was my first move since Lille and not to another French club so it was more difficult. I was pleased and relieved for him to say that. I was reassured and I felt good”.

“I love the passing game. I love getting my foot on the ball, I love touching the ball. For me Xavi and Iniesta are the best – it is like they do not play the same game as us”.

“Last season I was focused on the ball and how many times I touched it. When I was 100 or over I was happy – when I was under 100 I was sad”.

“I want to touch the ball every minute I can. I want to find the very difficult pass, to maybe find the striker or Hatem or the wide player.”  “It’s my job and I want to be focused on that”.

“For me the very difficult or beautiful pass – I like that”.

Cabaye is going to be a big miss on Wednesday, his range of passing is excellent and is a player who always wants the ball.

That is something we haven’t always seen in our midfield players, those such as Butt, Smith and countless others who treat the ball like the proverbial hot potato.

If a player isn’t prepared to try and keep the ball in midfield then I seriously doubt if they are good enough. It is all very well having players who fly into tackles, sliding here there and everywhere but it takes a different kind of (football) bravery to want to hold onto the ball and take the risk of getting caught in possession.

For some it might seem the easy option to be getting rid as soon as they can but the easy option is often not what the team needs.

Yohan Cabaye, showing the way forward.