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Pardew Has His Strongest Ever Newcastle Squad But Fails To Rotate – Why?

10 years ago

Alan Pardew has previously stated this is his strongest ever Newcastle squad but then failed to rotate over the festive period.

The only change the Newcastle manager made for the West Brom match was to go back to his favoured ploy of playing Shola Ameobi up alongside Remy at the expense of midfielder Vurnon Anita.

Afterwards though, Pardew made what many fans considered to be strange statements about the players being tired/jaded as a reason for the poor performance;

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‘We was in the game and controlled most of it, with great possession, but there were few chances in the game because both teams looked a little jaded from their previous efforts.’

I find it hard to understand that if the manager really believes in his squad and not just his first eleven, why he didn’t shuffle his pack when United faced four matches between Boxing Day and this Saturday coming.

I think that the match at the Hawthorns saw United have, for the first time in a very distant memory, six outfield players where you could make a case for each and every one of them getting a game and not weakening the team.

I’m not saying I would have played all of them but hand on heart, if when the teams were announced and I heard ┬áMapou, Haidara, Ben Arfa, Anita, Cisse or Steven Taylor named in the eleven – I wouldn’t have automatically thought the manager had weakened the team – unlike say when we’ve had Obertan, Sammy Ameobi and many others just filling a space on the bench.

Now we have a situation where there will undoubtedly be a number of changes for Cardiff in the FA Cup and then at least two enforced changes due to Debuchy’s suspension and Colo’s injury; players then brought in cold and not exactly feeling full of confidence after so little, if any, pitch time.

Yes we know how much players earn these days, and they should give it 100% whatever the circumstances to earn their wages, but they are only human like the rest of us and so much of a sportsman’s game relies on confidence and feeling valued.


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