I have a lot of Newcastle United opinions, obviously I believe they are right because they belong to me, but I don’t have a problem with anybody disagreeing with me.
I particularly have a lot of opinions with regard to ‘looking forward’ to next season, though I am sure there will be at least one person sitting in their own living room, maybe even next door, who thinks the polar opposite of all my opinions.
For example, I think there is more chance of my missus getting signed up on a permanent deal as there is of Loic Remy staying at Newcastle for a single minute after his last matchday on Tyneside this season. The same with Coloccini – I’d be amazed if he stayed beyond this summer and I think there is every chance that he will go and we’ll find out there was an agreement made that he could go this year if he gave us another (this) season.
I’m already getting that fear in the pit of my stomach that the likes of Dan Gosling and even maybe Shola will end up still at St.James’ Park when the season kicks off in August. Already we’ve heard nonsense from the manager about how well Gosling’s done since Blackpool turfed him out and I can just hear Pardew saying Shola’s impact at the world cup made him change his mind – even though Ameobi the older didn’t get any pitch time in Brazil.
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The same with the younger homegrown players, who aren’t really that young any more…
Pardew has already started saying how well many of them are doing out on loan, even though some of them are getting very little pitch time such as Shane Ferguson, while none of them are regularly playing at a level anywhere near the Premier League standard – Scotland, Greece, League One, League Two, non-league, French second division etc etc.
Paul Dummett has done ok and is undoubtedly putting everything into it but hand on heart he’s not first team material is he? However, I can see next season there been at least four or five of the likes of Dummett, Sammy Ameobi, Vuckic, Tavernier, Campbell, Abeid etc in our first eighteen. That sadly could spell disaster if we get any number of injuries, that is of course assuming that we’ll have strengthened in any vaguely serious way our first team squad, which brings me onto my next point.
Sadly I can’t see Ashley doing one of his only two sensible options; either selling up or allocating realistic money for team rebuilding – a minimum of at least £40m-£50m and that is if he sells nobody else of consequence. Needing two goalscorers and a playmaker, plus a top centre-back probably, and that is just the essentials!
Instead I see a cobbled together ‘plan’ which will include at least another two players in on loan, a load of baloney about giving homegrown talent a chance, plus something like £15m max added to anything raised from lesser players leaving as a ‘war chest’ to be spent on three or four players we’ve never heard of and have everybody praying that they are the new Remy, Cabaye, Coloccini etc who Graham Carr has unearthed for buttons without anybody else having heard of them. Not forgetting the small matter of convincing these hidden gems that Newcastle United is where it is all going to be happening!
So I think of my polar opposite sitting there in ignorant (in my opinion) bliss; thinking Remy is all but in the bag, Coloccini will live away from his family for another season, all the deadwood such as Gosling, Marveaux, Shola etc will have been escorted from the premises, that our ‘young’ players out on loan have magically turned into battle-hardened Premier League class players and of course Ashley to hand over significant funds (Cabaye £20m, plus the money that should have been available in the last year and the minimum that should have been available to spend this coming summer regardless) for Graham Carr to play with in the transfer market.
We all have to believe in something but my faith in Newcastle United has been knocked into the middle of next week.
Sad thing is that given just a little bit of help there is still something of substance to build on but I think my polar opposite is going to get a massive shock when the reality hits home over the five or six months, at least I won’t have far to fall from when they really turn this club into the final mess we are heading to under Ashley.
I really do hope I’m wrong but I feel there is more chance of Alan Pardew putting his best players on the pitch for cup matches than there is of the Mike Ashley era ending in anything but tears.