Toon fans go for self-sooth option again

By Lee Ryder on Jan 22, 07 08:58 AM

It's funny the things you tell yourself to feel better after games like West Ham.

Obviously things could have been a lot worse after going 2-0 down before the first half an hour.

So it was no surprise to see, "It was a point gained in the circumstances" rolled out by many of the fans.

And although West Ham scored their first away goal for just over 15 hours a lot of people had to subscribe to this theory due to a spirited fightback.

But was this not very much a case of two points dropped?

Goals from James Milner and Nobby Solano's 52nd minute pen gave us all real reason to believe United could win with good chances not taken and Roy Carroll pulling off a couple of good saves.

After the shambles against Birmingham Toon fans were expecting a good response early on and they didn't get it.

But how about getting back to those things you say to feel better.

It would be downright silly to say something like "draw your home games and win your away games and you are sure of success."

Yet that's what we've done against West Ham and in our last two Premiership games against the Hammers and Tottenham respectively!

That's certainly Newcastle for you isn't it?

The injury crisis hasn't helped but it's about time we got used to it.

Peter Ramage hobbled off before the break with a hamstring problem while Shay Given, also subbed, is hurt with a groin problem.

No sign of any new players with NINE days left of the window open and injuries still bad is hardly encouraging.

Sounding positive is something this author has been attacked for before.

So looking at things from a worse case scenario the good thing is that United have a 10 point cushion between themselves and West Ham which would have been seven had Newcastle packed in all together.

And with 14 games left we need to sweep up around 15 points from those games to stay in the Premiership.

And if I may look at the glass from a half full point of view with 14 games left.

We need to take 28 more points from the remaining 42 to emulate last term's finish, which helped us finish 7th on 58 points.

Glenn Roeder did an amazing job to achieve that - largely helped by six wins and a draw from the last seven games.

Now as the nights begin to get lighter day by day, would it be unreasonable to ask for the same again?

Tough one given the amount of injuries, shortage of signings and in some departments a shortage of experience or confidence.


oxboy said:

The lethargy which seems to be overwhelming the players now is one of many signs that we are desperate to refresh our playing resources.
I've said numerous times we must sign reinforcements. Higher league position, eufa cup, poss europe next season is all money in the bank and pays for the new faces.
Is the problem money, our diminishing standing in the league or does roeder lack the clout to attract who we need? Whichever we cant continue giving away games and then struggling to recover them.

Rob Tulip said:

Not too upset about going out of the FA Cup just the manner in which it was achieved -- we couldn't have won it anyway, Man U,Chelsea & Arsenal will fight that one out.Think we'll go out at the last 16 or at best the 1/4 final in Uefa. That leaves the most important thing, getting as high up the league as possible and our one single aim a top 6 finish which will give us Euro footy next year.Thats a win win situation, not only Euro footy but the lever to attract newer(& better) players to the squad in the summer.I think GR is a slow learner but a good learner and won't make the same mistakes as last summer.Fans forget it took Sir Bobby almost 3 seasons to turn things around after the Dalglish/Gullit debacles -- although I don't think we'll do it, GR should be only thinking Top 6 Top 6 Top 6 and we can start again next season. If we don't make it forget the Inter Toto joke and give Europe a miss for a season.Lets have some long term strategies applied here and get this great club back on track

Adam said:

oxboy hit the nail on the head - our players are simply drained. Trouble is, Roeder seems to be pinning his hopes on the return of players like Bramble and Babayaro! I would much prefer if we stuck with our youngsters to be honest. From where I'm standing, Huntington and Edgar should be ahead of Bramble in the pecking order when he returns. And I'd rather see pretty much any of our defenders at left-back than Babayaro.

The answer is simple - Freddy must get a number of players in if we want to challenge for a top 6 or 7 finish, otherwise we'll end up in the bottom half guaranteed. The fact Freddy has been pretty quiet suggests he is working hard at bringing players in, so let's hope his apparent hard work pays off before the window shuts!

Ian Teasdale said:

I don't think GR is a big enough name in the game to attract the big name players we need(not that there is the money needed to buy them if he did.
The whole team is just so tired with no players to rotate the squad. We would have to look to bring in 7-8 min players to stand the best chance of a top six finish or to progress much farther in the UEFA cup. We don't have a hope of getting 2 or 3 from my point of view.
The goal this season has to be to hit the 40 points needed to stay up and try again next season.
The most likely out come for next season is more pain and misery for the fans and more dropped points and another futile search for much needed reinforcements.

john Gilroy said:

After the shambles of Birmingham I would have accepted a point from this game. Afterall confidence was bound to be rock bottom

Gerry Hagon said:

Never mind whether GR is the right man for the job, remember he earned it, unlike many of the so-called big names we have had.

It would be an absolute disgrace if we even thought about sacking him in a period when he is struggling even to get eleven players together.

It is not an excuse to point out our desperate injury situation. It is a reason! Most of the big names had a bigger squad and far fewer injuries. Glen is respected by the Toon Fans for the way he handles himself and has never been under any pressure from the terraces. Let's continue to get behind him, it is the least we can do.

Eddie said:

Has the question been asked What is the root cause of so many injuries? if you think about it over the past few seasons what has been our bigest downfall? INJURIES and the main injuries are leg injuries Has the powers that be, not analised the cause,And Just maybe the problem could be sorted, and then we might enjoy the Glory that the Fans deserve by Rites.


Lee Ryder

Lee Ryder - Proudly born and bred on Tyneside, the Chronicle's chief sports writer has followed the fortunes of the club over the last three decades as a Toon fan and football writer.

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