Spot on Joey is the man that helped pick Toon up off the floor

By Lee Ryder on Oct 29, 08 08:47 AM

Joey BartonNOBODY will be getting too carried away with it but as far as Newcastle United's recovery is concerned the three points picked up against West Brom represent the moment that the Magpies beat the count and climbed back to their feet again.

Floored by Sunderland in their last game and sent tumbling to the canvas, Newcastle probably threw a few punches as well in the game with the Baggies - and now have the bit between their teeth once more.

And in the middle of it all was the man with so much to prove, Joey Barton.

Three points against West Brom most importantly gave Toon fans belief that perhaps the current crop of players aren't as bad as people made them out to be.

A sense of pride was evident in the Newcastle players with Joey Barton the man who seemed to galvanise his team-mates.

In life in general it only takes one bad egg or one stupid idiot to spoil the party, doesn't it?

But, while some may disagree, Barton is not a stupid idiot.

And instead of upsetting the apple cart he appeared to be the one holding both handles and delicately wheeling it down a cobbled Bigg Market street against West Brom.

He's a talented player who has made mistakes through booze and lost control but is now sober and fighting for his Newcastle career.

Newcastle offered an "over my dead body" type of performance which at times wasn't pretty.

But on the flip side could have been all over at half-time - and both halves were influenced by Barton's presence.

Firstly the drive and communication with his team-mates was there for all to see.

At half-time he was clearly trying to get Jose Enrique to come out of his shell and throughout the night he positively encouraged the rest of his team-mates to keep going - something that was lacking during the seven game stretch without a win.

Some will always hate Barton but it's obvious he could make it hard for people not to warm to him especially if he can keep on giving wholehearted displays like this.

And while he has probably only repaid a couple of quid back to his transfer fee with his match winning performance and spot-kick that helped win three important points.

Like it or not, he could end up being Newcastle's main man this season.



MattyDread said:

Our future captain.

Karltoon said:

Fully agree mate.. What a breath of fresh air in the first half


he's exactly what we need, someone to liven things up, someone to gee other players up as he was doing last night, we have not had nobody to do this, it took a lot of bottle to take penalty, but his passing was crisp and positive, he looked very sharp last night to say he's had no football for months, with him and jonas in and duff seemingly looking better as each games goes by, this can only be good for us, and joe has to take a hell of a lot of credit for this.
taylor has got to be switched on more his concentration and postioning needs to improve drastically, if it does he and collocini could be a very good pairing, as collocini is without doubt a class act and will only get better the more he settles in, hes's very comfortable with the ball at his feet.
what we need is this group to stay fit and get some others back, pay viduka off just a mercenary.

Dave B said:

Hi Lee.

Joey showed glimpses of what he can do although he faded towards the end which is understandable.

Enrique needs games to build his confidence, as we saw last season.

Duffer showed that he can be a ball carrier and not a liability.

Jonas was the pick of the bunch and would have been MOM if he wasn't taken off (he looked encouragingly gutted when his number was up).

All told very positive.

TOON MAD said:

I have just lost my job - my house has been re-possessed and wor lass has ran off wiv me best marra. But all that matters is that the Toon has won. God bless the Geordie Nation. Who said it is only a game of football?

ali said:

One decent pass and a penalty. I thought he struggled otherwise. He and Guthrie were outpassed embarrasingly by West Brom midfield. Early days.

ronnie lambert said:

Some encouraging signs after S-land but last night wasn't as good a display as against last week where 10 men were as ferocious as any side I've seen in 40-odd yrs at St.James' Park. Still though encouraging to see Joey grab the ball for the pen. and confirm my choice of first goalscorer on the night. He does look like a potential captain though, and can only get better as his ringrust wears off. Great 3 points to get us off second bottom though the nerves visibly and vocally swept across the park to the players in the final ten minutes. Phew man!!!

Stephen Buchan said:

Some promising the first half anyway. We could have put the game beyond reach if we hadnt sat back & allowed them back into the game. I can see JK's reasoning but a defence like ours with confidence as low as it must be, cannot be relied on to defend a slender lead. We were destroying WBA in the first half with our attacking football!! If we try to do the same against Villa we won't be so lucky!

bob harvey said:

I lost my previous message, so I will keep it brief.
I can't understand how a toothless Championship outfit switches from a lone plodder up front to 4-4-2 and Newcastle's midfield fades out of the game, apart from Duff [man of the match?]. Match fitness perhaps?

Alan Curry said:

We've all made mistakes and got into a bit of bother and that was before CCV cameras...leave the lad alone and relish the fact we have a real gem.

Velma said:

I'm a Londoner born and bred (geographically I should be a Chelsea fan -- this aint gonna happen!). I fell in love with Newcastle United (I think I must be a closet Geordie cos I just love the game!). Joey Barton has been, and continues to be my favourite individual player so I was happy when he signed for Newcastle. It was refreshing today to read positive news reports (without the usual anti-Joey, anti-Newcastle bias), so I hope others will see what I have foreseen since his signing: that this can be a match made in football heaven. Let Joey get on with his football on the pitch, and his self improvement off the pitch. I sincerely believe we will see him try his best to be a better person in both these areas of his life.

Simon said:

JK has turned Shola into a decent player. Long live King Kinnear.

As for Joey Barton, you notice in his interviews he just wants to get on with it and play football. We'll be happy to do that if he puts in regular good perfomances.

Last chance Joey don't let us down.

Shock-headed Peter said:

Shola a decent player...
Don't watch much football, eh?

RAF Mark said:

Noticed there have been a few people still under rating Shola. Yes he dropped of the radar and lets face it he was always seen as lazy. How things HAVE change..he has worked hard in the last few matches and has come up with some vital goals. He has caused problems in every game he has played since he was given his chance. All this from a man who's carrer at NUFC was over..I will take a few more of these palyer please. We are moving in the right direction but a little slower than I would like. I don't think it is out defence or strike force that need immediate attention. The defence is coming together and wll take time, my main concern which has happened in the last few matches is the way in which our mid-field seems to disappear all to often. On both of the last 2 matches the midfield have been walked through with ease. The second half against WBA hey looked out on their feet and again as it has been for so long this season every ball feel unchallenged at the other teams feet.

Come on the toon coaches you need to sort out our defence shape and then link it with the attacking side of our game. As is stands I can't see us moving forward even with a full Squad. PS. I agree we need to of loan our dead weight..Smith, Vinduka who will never be used.


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.

Latest Premier League video


Email alerts

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

In association with


Follow my RSS feed


Follow me on

Lee Ryder's Twitter


Sponsored Links