The Mag - Mathieu Debuchy (NUFC)

Swansea v Newcastle United
Saturday 2 March 3pm

The Swansea manager , Michael Laudrup, has accepted that, “There could be a hangover after Wembley”.

The Swans have celebrated the magnificent achievement of winning the League Cup after not many years ago looking as though they were going out of the league AND out of existence. Their story, and Bradford’s as well, shows the power of the cups is still there if you don’t get carried away by the brainwashing of today.

We all know how we would have celebrated if Newcastle United had won a cup, in fact most of would still be partying right through to this match at Swansea.

What Saturday does surely give Newcastle though is a great chance of a win against a team who have really impressed this season.

The Swansea players had a post-match party at the Wembley Hilton (we can but dream!) and then were given a couple of days off, followed by the traditional open top bus procession on Tuesday with a civic reception afterwards.

The Welsh club’s Ashley Williams has said that, “we have had three days to prepare for Newcastle United, so there are no excuses”.

Of course in their last league match they rested pretty much their whole team and were hammered by Liverpool, helped by the fact that with the cushion of 37 points already in the league they could concentrate on Wembley.

On the negative side for Newcastle is the fact that while Laudrup has rotated his squad at times, now he has only the Premier League to worry about he is expected to play his first eleven every match.

Moving away from what is happening in the opposition’s minds,  Newcastle are showing a new found resilience and ability to score goals.

Since the January recruitment, Newcastle have scored ten goals in four Premier League matches and came back to win from losing positions in two of them. Something that hadn’t happened a single time in over two years!

The fact that Coloccini, Krul and also Ben Arfa, are all certain to miss, is a blow. However, what would have been a crisis only five or six weeks ago, is now looking a manageable situation thanks to the strengthening of the squad.

Rob Elliot had a decent match as Tim Krul’s replacement and when Mapou replaced Coloccini during that Southampton match, it certainly didn’t look as though there was any weakening of the team.

So basically, it looks as though Alan Pardew has the luxury of fielding the same team that started against Southampton, with the exception of Mapou for Colo, and no reason why a similar outcome shouldn’t be targeted.

To have the likes of Cisse, Gouffran, Sissoko and Cabaye all looking capable of scoring is a massive reassurance for a team who at one time were so reliant on either Ba or Cisse having a scoring run. In addition, going forward both Santon and Debuchy are giving a massive extra element to Newcastle’s attacking play which was shown with an assist each against Southampton.

For the opposition, Michu is clearly looking an inspirational signing, while Nathan Dyer always looks handy and somehow Laudrup is getting any amount more out of Wayne Routledge than we ever saw.

A bit like the Southampton match I think it has all the hallmarks of a really good game of football and a clean sheet would equal three points as I just can’t see Newcastle not scoring at least a goal or two in their present mood.

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Top Tips – NUFC To Win 5/2Sissoko To Score Any Time In Match 7/2NUFC Draw HT Win FT 15/2

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alreet 5pts

It was a split second late. I dont see it as a red and ice been honest this season and said that the janmaat SO against swans was silly but just.

Supposed to be a contact sport and yeah he caught his shin but its not like his boots were higher than his own ankle. If it had been a simulated stamp theen fair dos but it was literally the ball is in the air now it bounced and the midfielder was on it in a blink. Yellow and a harsh warning for me. Game on!

howaymebonnylads 5pts

Come on Alan man, everyone mistimes a tackle or two.  What you should be saying is it was clumsy and a yellow at best.  It's not like he raked him right down the shin.  These challenges are why shin pads are worn because it happens.  Shearer should be questioning why officials have it in for Mitrovic before the games even kicked off to put some uncertainty in their mind and sticking up for his own!!!

Wayne Clayton
Wayne Clayton 5pts

It's because we are who we are and they are who they are.

No complaints within the letter of the law with the sending off but the application of the same law that was applied to Arsenal was inconsistent.

Spider66 5pts

As soon as I saw who the referee was I knew we were on to a hiding for nowt not from arsenal but the ref I honestly thought we were capable of beating the arsenal until I saw the refs name

TonnekToon 5pts

What is it with the footballing gods and Newcastle ? The ref was a bit too card "happy" today , and  as its been said, he set the tone on 3 minutes  with Sissoko and his yellow . I think all our bookings and the sending off weren't malicious , just clumsy , though Mitrovic's  sending off was coming at some point early this season , it was just a matter of time. Hope he learns from it . On the positive side , we seemed solid enough once again after a lot of sustained pressure at times , their winning goal a lucky deflected OG . They didn't let their heads drop , which was a good sign and if they can stay as solid in future games we should be ok .

John Rush
John Rush 5pts

Wonder if al would have thought the same if it happened to the "united" centre forward rather than mitrovic

1957 5pts

Or when Al kicked the Leicester player in the head and should have been suspended, accidental I think he claimed at the time.

Spider66 5pts

Al would have said that was proper football then. It has got to cissyfied now Rodney Marsh was spot on what he said about it being a no contact sport before long.

AndrewCowley1 5pts

Wasn't a red,the ref obviously had it in his mind about mitrovic before the game began.ruined the game absolute joke

John Rush
John Rush 5pts

Agree he pulled him up in the first minute for an aerial challenge for which you would rightly be laughed at if you appealed for a foul on a sunday morning

1957 5pts

My issue with the referee wouldn't be over the sending off, more his approach to yellow cards. NUFC 15 fouls, 6 cards, Arsenal 8 fouls, 1 card. Similar fouls didn't get equal treatment, Anita tugs someone back, yellow, Thauvin is blocked and pushed off the ball no card.

John Rush
John Rush 5pts

And tell me why is gio booked for waving an imaginary card but its ok for sanchez and giroud to demand one verbally

howaymebonnylads 5pts

@John Rush exactly mate, every time they're rolling around demanding a card why did the ref not give one to them...spineless

The Adelphi
The Adelphi 5pts

I agree with Rodney Marsh for once. They may as well make football a non contact sport if that's a straight red