I know Alan Pardew has to try and build up the confidence of his players but all too often it backfires and the end result is the player is knocked even further back.
Numerous times Pardew has talked up Gabriel Obertan (who could also be a starter today) after the odd decent performance only for him to slump back into his typical displays and get kicked out of the team.
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Now the manager has turned the spotlight on Sylvain Marveaux;
“Naturally he plays both positions, out wide and through the middle. Like Vurnon (Anita) he has found the pace and power of the Premier League a problem. I’ve thought just recently he has captured that part of the Premier League.
What he does give us without Hatem and Cabaye is the clever pass. We’re going to have to look to him in the next few games to come up with a few of those. We have been looking for that since Cabaye got injured.
Whereas Cabaye can do it in a 4-4-2, Marveaux would struggle in that but in a three he can do it no problem”.
I think Marveaux certainly has a level of ability but surely it is far too soon to be putting any kind of expectation on him, if he does it for 6/10/15 matches then we can start and look at him in a different light.
Despite Newcastle’s form and injury problems, in advance of Arsenal today, Marveaux has only started three Premier League matches this season, which tells you all you need to know about his lack of progress in training and the Europa League matches.
Pardew dragged him off at half-time at Goodison and after a promising showing against ten man Wigan he then was shocking against Bordeaux’s reserves and left out of the Fulham match.
A decent 15 minute cameo against QPR and very good display in a very strange match at Old Trafford give us room for optimism but putting any great expectation on him today against Arsenal could easily end in tears. With so few players to choose from at the moment, surely far better to see what happens today and if he flops then he just quietly moves on to our next match against Everton and the chance to bounce back.
Having said that, his free-kick against the bar against Manchester United at least suggests we could start delivering something from set-pieces.