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Newcastle United and international football – What’s the point?

7 years ago

As Newcastle fans, you can’t deny that when Alan Shearer was leading England out at Wembley it was a pretty good feeling.

The best striker in the country and possibly the world, playing for the Toon and captaining his country.

Of course under Kevin Keegan we ended up supplying a ridiculous number of players to the England squad.

As well as Alan Shearer there was Peter Beardsley, Steve Howey, Robert Lee, David Batty, Barry Venison, Les Ferdinand, Warren Barton – we could almost have fielded a whole team!

On top of that of course you had Andy Cole who was moulded by Keegan into the great success he became at both Newcastle and Man United, though his England days came after St.James’ Park.

It isn’t just England players of course, you’d keep an eye on how the likes of Philippe Albert was doing for Belgium, Marc Hottiger for Switzerland, Aaron Hughes for Northern Ireland and Shay Given for the Republic.

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However, this is a world away from what is happening at the minute.

Newcastle seem to send a decent number of players away in pretty much every international break and most of them are lucky to ever see the pitch – exactly what is the point?

The ridiculous schedule of international football sees United currently experiencing a third international break of the season and we have only played eleven matches!

If all the disruption and travel was to any point then fair enough but just look at this reality;

Paul Dummett has been away with Wales and not got a minute on the pitch.

Papiss Cisse linked up with Senegal and got no action against Egypt, we now await Senegal’s team selection for tonight’s meaningless last qualifying match and whether the Newcastle striker will take any part.

Tim Krul, as usual, hasn’t seen any action while away with Holland.

Rob Elliot wasn’t even on the bench for the Republic’s qualifier against Scotland and got five minutes last night against USA.

It gets worse, Mehdi Abeid WAS due to play but ends up breaking a toe in training and comes back to Tyneside injured and out for X number of matches.

Moussa Sissoko is the only one who had any kind of meaningful point to his travels, playing 80 minutes against Albania and then 30 minutes in last night’s victory over Sweden.

I’m sure most of you hate the international breaks as much as me anyway, but this charade of players traveling around the world to no good effect is just an unnecessary distraction that we could all do without.


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