Tottenham Hotspur v Newcastle United - Premier LeagueEven though Newcastle United have enjoyed a month or so of mainly gushing headlines about the French revolution and the style of football in recent games, you just know it is only a question of time before the press will be sticking the knife in again.

Yesterday’s match at Swansea led to the aptly named ‘Harry Pratt’ writing the following comments in his ‘report’, appearing on both the Daily Star and Express websites;

‘If you can’t beat them, kick them. That was Newcastle United’s motto at Swansea yesterday.

Luckily for those who like the beautiful game, the below the belt dirty approach of Alan Pardew’s strugglers only worked for 86 minutes.

If you think it was harsh on the Geordies, it was not.

Booting your silky, skilful opponents at every opportunity, as they did throughout the first half, was unnecessary.

The 2nd half was a far more even contest and Papiss Cisse been anywhere near his best, Newcastle would have taken an unlikely lead.

With both sides ready to settle for the draw, Moore came off the bench to grab his first goal since late August’.

Whether Harry has previously been to Newcastle and got knocked back in the Bigg Market, or whether he is just going for a bit of attention seeking, the end result is the same.

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While Alan Pardew clearly told his players to wake up in the first half and get tight on Swansea, it wasn’t exactly the carnage Pratt is describing. United picked up two bookings and one of those was for high feet by Tiote and he didn’t even make any contact.

Those bookings for Tiote and Cabaye in quick succession led to a series of dubious cheap free-kicks as an inexperienced ref allowed himself to be conned by a lightweight Swansea midfield. In fact the worst challenge of the match was by Nathan Dyer and he only got a talking to.

A foul count of Newcastle’s 17 to their 9 was distorted by the home side’s players easily going down but where Pratt does a total disservice is in not recognising Newcastle’s second half domination.

Newcastle were easily as dominant in the second period as Swansea had been in the first, with the bonus of putting at least half a dozen decent chances on top of controlling the ball.

A final shot count of 14 to Swansea’s 10 tells you the true picture.

One good thing though, when the press start having a go at us then you know that Newcastle United are on the way back!

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24 comments
GR1125
GR1125

Excellent article. Folks make decisions to stay or go, it's their decision & everyone's circumstances are different.

Me? I meet the same lads who I started to go to the match with 47 years ago; we have a beer or five, our sons now join us - it's what we do. We see the same faces in the pubs, all desperate folks just like us!

Yes, we want things to change but if it was trophies we were after we would have stopped going years ago.

I still think we need some Messiah figure to organize something against the regime but I believe that it will be embarrassment or shame which will drive Ashley out, not losing a few quid at the turnstile.

Pardew suddenly departed & Ashley will certainly depart.

Until then, why should I allow him to stop me having a good day out in my town (apart from 90 minutes sometimes) with friends & family? 

v0ices
v0ices

@GR1125 no one wants to stop that but there are other activities you could do. Ashley has no shame he only cares about money.

Maximus Moose
Maximus Moose

A very good article but at the end of the day by going to the match your condoning Ashley

SGM
SGM

Your protests would make a huge impact on the club, but for one thing, Gate receipts are a fraction of a clubs income, so a club doesn't need to keep them happy, they are now no longer courted, in fact they are becoming a problem, all clubs in the Prem. now discourage individuals in favour of corporate.

v0ices
v0ices

@SGM a rather large fraction of a clubs income don't make it sound like pennies when its tens of millions, not to mention all the associated income from merchandise etc. The mans greedy cut his profits and he will sell up so he can take his money elsewhere for a better return. That's not taking into account any penalties sky or BT may have written into contracts regarding empty grounds. Staying away may not work but going will just continue to feed the fat mans wallet and justify his tenure as custodian of our club.

SGM
SGM

@v0ices @SGM Merchandise has been sold off, internal catering has been sold off, even the match-day programmes.Individuals need marshalling and crowd control is becoming expensive, corporate is far more profitable. And i believe its Sky that feeds the wallet. if you want to hit his Wallet cancel your Sky subscription.

v0ices
v0ices

@SGM @v0ices sky and BT sport do indeed feed the wallet if you want to hit his wallet don't go and see what sanctions they have about playing in front of a empty stadium. The match day costs like stewards and policing have to be paid even if the ground is empty see how long Ashley is willing to pay that out of his own money. Only action can cause change inaction is acceptance. I cancelled my subscription to sky sports several years ago.

1957
1957

It's always nice to read Chris's articles, wish I could do as well. I don't always agree with them but they are a blessed relief from the rehashed Chronicle rubbish and the efforts from the let's write anything so everyone can slag off the regime crew.

I still go to the match, not because I'm a particular admirer of the clubs business plan, but because it's time I get to spend with my son who lives out of the area and travels home for each home game. Oddly for some we still enjoy the games and the chance to interact with the supporters around us, some of whom we have sat with for many years. None of these are contemplating a boycott, because we all feel it will have no effect on Ashley.

A boycott of SD would have as much effect as the mackem's Sugar Puffs effort years ago, SD is a national company and our small corner of the world is of little consequence in the grand scheme of things

mentalman
mentalman

Finally a decent article.

I would disagree with you on the success of the 60minute walkout simply because there was a 69th minute walkout to. Hats off to the guys who arranged the walkout but then a seperate group came along and decided to do their own walkout 9mins later which turned both into a joke. I can remember watching it on TV and on 60mins the commentators said is this the arranged walkout or is it just a load of geordies going for a pie.

Why couldn't eveyone just agree to leave at one point, it would have made a much bigger statement.

Brian Standen
Brian Standen

Top artucle, puts my writing to shame. Excellent points

Rangers1ST
Rangers1ST

@MikeAshleyLies Boycott wouldn't work anyway with the TV £ you get. Only way to be rid of him is a collective vilification of SD by fans.

andy_emmers
andy_emmers

@MikeAshleyLies Excellent article - see it all over the fan pages, all want action but end up falling out over preaching their point of view

LeazesEnder
LeazesEnder

I always presumed these Mills and Boon articles were written for 'the Ladies' or ex-pats reminiscing over salad days fare...