Many of our Newcastle United players are maligned for their poor attitude, others criticised for their lack of ability, some for both.

As an interesting thought experiment I wondered what differences there would be between a team picked purely on ability, compared to a team picked exclusively for attitude.

Obviously we have some players who actually have a good level of ability and also seem to care, not enough but some, so they feature in both teams.

It is also interesting to note the players who feature in neither team, these should be the first out of the door.

Ability First 11

These players have demonstrated, during their careers, the highest level of technical ability for their position in the team of the available players.

I must stress that form is not a factor here, for example I know it’s been a long time since we saw anything from Tiote, this is purely based on proven ability and skill.

Krul

Janmaat

Coloccini

Mbemba

Haidara

Sissoko

Wijnaldum

Tiote

Thauvin

Mitrovic

Perez

Attitude First 11

These players are the ones who we know (or at least believe) care about winning, in their words, actions and willingness to put their bodies on the line in the name of victory.

These are the guys who face the press, give the interviews, look furious at our latest capitulation, don’t openly talk about transferring to other clubs etc…

Krul

Janmaat

Taylor

Mbemba

Dummett

Wijnaldum

Colback

Anita

Obertan

Mitrovic

Perez

No place in either team for Cisse or Willo, although I will accept that Willo’s attitude would warrant a bench spot in the ‘Attitude 11’, no room for De Jong either but he would probably get on the bench of both sides (providing he wasn’t injured…).

Other notable omissions being Aarons, Lascelles, Darlow and Marveux, all of who need to play more competitive games before it can be seen where they fit in.

So which team would win if it were possible for them to play each other?

I believe that attitude would beat ability nine times out of ten, even with Obertan playing passenger on the wing.

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