Charlie Nicholas declares “Newcastle are there to survive in the Premier League” (We know our place!)
Charlie Nicholas is consistent, if he’s nothing else.
The former Arsenal player talking once again about the various Premier League clubs and their fixtures.
Week in week out he has exactly the same narrative about Newcastle United.
He talks about survival as though it would be some outstanding achievement for Newcastle this season and clearly believes it should be the sum total of our ambitions.
He doesn’t talk about any other club the same.
This week Charlie Nicholas states: ‘Newcastle are there to survive in the Premier League.’ Thanks very much!
As always the NUFC Head Coach gets a mention…’Steve Bruce has done a remarkable job.’
The football has been mostly poor and negative for Newcastle but 11th place is very credible for Bruce but there are five clubs below NUFC who are all within four points or less of Newcastle. With only Liverpool outstanding this season and Leicester doing very well, far more points have been lost by the more fancied teams, boosting the totals of all but maybe one or two clubs at the very bottom, though even second bottom Norwich have beaten Man City!
However, to talk now of Newcastle as some kind of paupers who should be expected to struggle is very misleading from Charlie Nicholas.
Newcastle have got the 12th most expensive squad at £246m (stats from Transfermarkt) this season, costing £34m more than Saturday’s opponents Palace, £58m more than Burnley who beat NUFC last weekend, whilst Sheffield United’s squad cost £164m less than Newcastle’s.
The past two seasons, Newcastle’s squad cost £151m and was the 15th most expensive and NUFC finished 10th, whilst last season it was the 12th most expensive (£180m) and the Magpies ended up 13th in the table.
Anything lower than mid-table would be failure this season and that would have also been the case if Rafa Benitez had still been here.
One thing Charlie Nicholas is hopefully correct on, is he has predicted a 2-1 win for NUFC, which would mean Newcastle being top half at Christmas.
Charlie Nicholas talking to Sky Sports:
“I called out those type of games for Crystal Palace against Brighton.
“Wilfried Zaha did do something magical but only got his side a point in the end.
“Palace had to face a Brighton team that has been on the resurgence but they did not make it into a derby match and got dominated – they never really got going.
“Newcastle had a setback last week.
“They do not need Almiron because he does not score but they need his pace and movement, as Allan Saint-Maximin is out with injury.
“Newcastle are there to survive in the Premier League.
“And they are four or five wins from doing it already, which is a testament to the results they have earned this campaign.
“Steve Bruce has done a remarkable job but it is about trying to hold a unit together and I think he will do that again this weekend.
“Prediction is Newcastle 2 Crystal Palace 1.”
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