Alan Pardew’s Tactical Noose Or Nous?
Let’s face it, lady luck hasn’t been on our side this season.
Even with a heavy fixture list we’ve had a torrid time with injuries, and when it’s not that, dodgy refereeing decisions have cost us. That said, we haven’t exactly done ourselves any favours. And by we, I mean our gaffer. Too often we’re left scratching our heads at his selection and tactics. And I just want to know why.
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Where better to start? I reckon Yohan Cabaye is our best player. His ability to pick a pass rivals the great Paul Scholes (As does his tackling. So why you would play him just in front of our back line is beyond me. He plays best just in behind the strikers, as we saw last season. For me, Cisse hasn’t got a problem with being offside, he’s just got a better football brain than anyone around him, except Cabaye, whose ability allows him to pick out Cisse’s clever runs in behind. Playing Cabaye deep can only result in him getting stupid bookings, because he can’t tackle cleanly to save his life.
Pardew seems to insist on playing with a trequartista, a playmaker, a maverick if you will. Last season he was convinced it was Ben Arfa, now it’s Sissoko. No, it’s Cabaye. Sissoko is a central midfielder. If anything we want to play him alongside Tiote. His strength and energy will allow him to win the ball and his pace allows him to get up and down the pitch anyway (Playing the big man here has the added bonus of taking the pressure of Tiote).
The most frustrating thing about Alan Pardew’s tactics is his constant negativity. We could potentially put out a forward line of Ben Arfa, Gouffran, Cisse, Cabaye and Sissoko. So why would you sit back and draw the opposition onto you? We never seem to put our opposition on the back foot except for when we’re chasing games. Even against teams we should be beating like Wigan and Reading we find ourselves pinned back, even at home! We caught a glimpse of what we’re capable of when we finally decided to throw caution to the wind against Man Utd on Boxing Day. We really got at them and almost came away with something. At least we got an entertaining spectacle instead of the usual howking.
Mr Dependable. Yep, you can count on Jonas to run around a lot and generally do sod all. “Oh but he has a great workrate!” the apologists argue. So what? That’s the least I expect of any Newcastle United player! I’d rather play a winger who has a chance of actually creating something. Like Marveaux or Gouffran. Drop him, he’s past it.
The old cliché that football is unpredictable would be true if you couldn’t guarantee at least a few corners but you can. So why haven’t we scored from a corner since October 2011? For those of you who haven’t been counting we’ve had more than 300 since then. It’s not lack of ability, we have plenty of lads who can strike a ball and plenty who can head it. What do they work on in training, I thought we were supposed to be good at this?
In spite of all of this I still like Alan Pardew and reckon we’d be mad to sack him.
He and his staff have built a cracking team who really could kick on and do great things, but howay gaffer, sort the tactics out!
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