You will find no bigger critic than me of Fabricio Coloccini, but the rumours this weekend of changing to another Newcastle Captain at this stage, are surely too daft for even Newcastle United to consider.
The popular view appears to be that anybody would make a better Newcastle Captain than the reserved and struggling Argentine, who appears to lack any of the leadership qualities necessary in the Premier League.
I would agree that it wouldn’t be difficult to find at least a few more suitable candidates, even in this current squad of United players, but the time and place for that is pre-season, isn’t it?
It was a baffling and disastrous decision to give Coloccini both an extended contract and confirmation he would be once again Newcastle Captain, on the eve of the new season.
However, the idea to now change your captain with the team in the relegation zone and less than a third of the season left, must definitely be nonsense.
Not sure whether the rumours were started before or after the team was announced for the Lillestrom friendly but they very quickly spread.
The Express newspaper ran a dodgy headline saying ‘Newcastle announce shock new captain’ after Jonjo Shelvey was given the armband against Lillestrom but the story made no reference to him having it permanently, though clearly that was what you were supposed to assume from the ‘shock’ headline…
The ‘shock’ bit seemingly being just that it was a ‘shock’ he’d been given the captain’s job in this meaningless friendly so soon after arriving, with Coloccini only on the bench.
Coloccini’s fragile confidence hardly needs the blow of losing the captaincy, especially when we have no idea when Chancel Mbemba is back and the stupidity of the transfer policy means we are relying on him and Steven Taylor, unless Lascelles is surprisingly given a job in the centre of defence.
I understand fans fancying a change but it is a bit of a quantum leap to suddenly think Jonjo Shelvey is the ideal candidate.
I don’t think he has any track record of doing the job with Liverpool or Swansea and after only five matches at Newcastle it would surely just be daft to throw that extra expectation on his shoulders, particularly when we are expecting him to be the one to provide the creativity to drag us out of relegation trouble.
Rightly or wrongly, Shelvey has also been accused by the likes of Garry Monk of not having the best attitude at times, so it isn’t as though he jumps out at you with a faultless reputation.
Like a lot of things at St James Park, giving Coloccini the job of Newcastle Captain originally (when Kevin Nolan left) was bizarre, then even more baffling when he was allowed to keep it season after season, despite showing no leadership qualities on the pitch, or even a willingness to carry out the most basic of media duties in terms of TV interviews before and after matches.
The time though to try and get to the bottom of Newcastle United’s many problems is at the end of the season AFTER successfully surviving this latest relegation battle.
Then fingers crossed we can move on without Coloccini as both Captain and first team player.
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