How important is Premier League experience?

Many fans were hoping for players to be added this summer who would already have a few seasons under their belt in terms of playing in the English top tier.

So far though, Newcastle have only added two signings with one Premier League start between them.

I have compiled this list below, showing how many Premier League starts each of these 30 Newcastle United players have made in their whole careers, including at other clubs:

156 Jack Colback

156 Tim Krul

152 Mohamed Diame

119 Ciaran Clark

99 Jonjo Shelvey

58 Paul Dummett

47 Ayoze Perez

35 Rob Elliot

34 Matt Ritchie

33 Chancel Mbemba

33 Daryl Murphy

27 Dwight Gayle

25 Grant Hanley

23 Massadio Haidara

22 Aleksandar Mitrovic

21 DeAndre Yedlin

16 Emmanuel Riviere

10 Jamaal Lascelles

9 Karl Darlow

4 Siem de Jong

3 Rolando Aarons

2 Henri Saivet

1 Adam Armstrong

1 Christian Atsu

0 Freddie Woodman, Jesus Gamez, Achraf Lazaar, Florian Lejeune, Jamie Sterry, Isaac Hayden

So only six of these 30 Newcastle players have started more than 47 Premier League games in their careers.

With Tim Krul clearly going to leave, I would say that only Ciaran Clark and Jonjo Shelvey would be most supporters’ idea in an ideal world, of being good enough to start against Spurs in 27 days time.

Paul Dummett, Jack Colback and Mohamed Diame may have a role as squad players this coming season but haven’t suggested they could be anything more.

The lack of experience at a decent level anywhere is quite striking in this group of players, when it comes to the big five leagues (Italy, England, Germany, Spain and France) only really Jesus Gamez (in La Liga) has any significant decent experience in a top league outside of the Premier League. The likes of de Jong, Mitrovic and Mbemba having played in the weak Dutch and Belgian leagues.

When you look back at the Newcastle squad that faced up to the challenge of the Premier League in 2010/11 after promotion, you had by then a host of players who had at least decent experience in one or more of the five big leagues, especially the Premier League – players such as Barton, Smith, Nolan, Harper, Coloccini, Gutierrez, Enrique, Campbell, Enrique, Ben Arfa – even Steven Taylor and Shola Ameobi both had at least a hundred games worth of PL experience by the time that 2010/11 season came about.

Experience isn’t everything but when the going gets tough it is usually a very valuable asset.

Newcastle will need leaders on and off the pitch next season, so adding more Premier League experience in the next few weeks would do no harm.

(All contributions from Newcastle fans welcome, send articles (as well as ideas/suggestions) to [email protected])



  • Leazes Ender

    Well to me it looks to be the same squad currently standing at fifteenth in the ‘squad valuation table’ which essentially means a season of struggle

    • Wor Monga

      Just like it did for Leicester after finishing 2pts above us in 14th at the end of the 2014/15 season…

      …who knows Saivet’s value might go the same way as Kante’s did by the end of next season…funny old game football nothing to do with any ‘mad theories’ and negativity, but a lot more to do with effort, attitude and superb coaching!!!

      • Pelican

        And how often does a side that starts the season with a valuation similar to Leicester’s go on to win the title? It was a complete one-off. The top 8 in the PL last season had the top 8 wage bills.

        Essentially put, if you are not only waiting for another Leicester, but that Leicester feat to be achieved by Newcastle with a similar squad value disparity to the top clubs, you would in all likelihood be waiting hundreds of thousands of years.

        • Damon Horner

          Who was in the bottom three for wages bill and squad values?

          Top 8 isn’t really representative of anything.

          • Pelican

            The top 8 sides having the top 8 wage bills in the PL, “isn’t really representative of anything”‽

            The sides with the top wages fight at the top end, the sides with the lowest wages fight at the other end of the table. It couldn’t really be anymore representative…

          • Damon Horner

            Understood. Guess you’ve told us where we should be then. Settling for 15th.

          • Leazes Ender

            That’s where Robbe Elliot thinks we should have been…. we were relegated.

        • Wor Monga

          Look, birdbrain…I can probably name the top 4, out of order with certainty every year, and possibly the top 7 in a round about fashion with some difficulty…but the top 10,…mmm just try it, it’s not that easy even in any order…downover the next 3 will too close to call on points and GD…and the next 6 will probably not be sorted til the last day of the season…try and put them in the correct order now on some madcap ‘Squad Valuation Theory’ dreamed up simply to attack the Toon, and you’ll lose your money…go on try it…see if I’m wrong!!!

          • Pelican

            Why are you going off on a tangent about something completely different. You referenced Leicester’s achievement of winning the league, not me.

          • Wor Monga

            Look…what Leicester did showed that the theory…which is supposed to cover the whole PL…was nothing more than bullshite, and if they managed it once then there’s nothing to stop another club doing a similar thing at any time, in the future…geddit!!!

  • Leazes Ender

    Good News ….. were up to 14th in the Squad Valuation Table….. I think some team above us sold a player.