Commitment issues surface at Newcastle United
Is it players not buying into the Newcastle United philosophy (if there is one!), the players seeing Newcastle as a stepping stone to greater things, or players seeing the rotten core, that makes them move on?
All of the above?
Plus Mike Ashley and his ‘buy cheap,sell high’ policy when he can.
For far too many years there has been a revolving door of players coming in, showing promise, winning the fans over then waving goodbye. As Steve McClaren is now on the board of directors, and has been given credit for persuading the club to buy some homegrown talent with premier league experience, he now needs to persuade them to keep hold of them and add more quality.
We all know that this is glaringly obvious as fans, so why is it so hard for the ‘professionals’ to see? Yes cut the dead wood (Messrs Ranger, Amalfitano, Abeid) but for heavens sake keep the good ones and the ones showing good ability. Everyone makes mistakes in games and some more frequently than others but it is not intentional and no reason to cut them off via loan-to-buy schemes.
What a squad we could have now if the modern player could stand firm and commit to a club where they have a very good chance of regular football and if they can only pay attention to the coaches and the fans, ignoring the politics at boardroom level.
Every player has that ‘dream’ move and ‘desire to win trophies’ but it takes a strong man to look around the dressing room and say we can do something special as a group. If the club buys a few more experienced stars we can go places. A quick glance of the depth of squad we could have:-
Would now be in his third year of a five year contract. Finished secod in Serie A with Roma and now sitting fifth in Ligue 1 with Lyon. Playing Champions League with both clubs.
Would be in final year of contract and would have made the position his own with very little competition for his place. Being used sparingly now at Inter Milan sitting fifth in Serie A
Hatem Ben Arfa
Contract expiry 2015. Ok, so he’d be out of contract but had the hierarchy and player not clashed there would undoubtedly have been an extension. Who knows what magic he could conjuring up for us. Now getting his career back on track with Nice, after a loan spell to forget with Hull City, sitting third in Ligue 1
This would have been the final year of contract. Both the lure of PSG and the fee they paid was against us. Did the French treble the 18 months he was there but lack of opportunities saw him reunite with Pardew and is now pulling strings in Palace’s midfield. Something we have been sorely missing.
Would be third year of contract. Like Cabaye was sold for another tidy profit, to Arsenal. Lost his place to Bellerin and now third in league and in with a shout of another FA Cup, if he was still there. Loan move to Bordeaux to get game time.
Youth product that we sold for peanuts to Celtic after being Norwich’s players’ player of the year in their promotion season. Set club record for clean sheets, memorable performance for Celtic in a 2-1 win over a certain Barcelona and collected 3 league titles and 2 Scottish cups. Sitting sixth in our Premiership with Saints.
There are other moves that did or didn’t work out for other players that I believe would be at least good squad players, Danny Simpson springs to mind, but I think I have my opinion across.
How I pray that the likes of Gini, Perez and Shelvey don’t get pushed into the revolving door and follow others out of St James Park.
Then who knows? If our current batch of best players are willing to stick around and show the commitment the fans do, there may be some experienced out of work manager that may actually want to take the Newcastle job.
Finally, who says they need to be pushed into this revolving door?
Relegation or failure of the club to show some real ambition may see the players find it for themselves.
Please Newcastle, brick up the doors and stop our best talents leaving. We don’t demand a team that wins, we demand a team that tries and when they pull on that black and white shirt, commits 100% for 90 minutes.
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