December 2010 Archives

Joey Barton has made it crystal clear that he wants to stay on Tyneside and that can only be a good thing for Newcastle United and the members of the Toon Army who appear to adore him.

It was pretty obvious how much United missed him when he was in the sin bin last month and if he can stay fit there is no reason why the Magpies can seal a bit more than just survival.

The Scouser was obviously deeply upset to see Chris Hughton leave as manager and his post-game "The King is dead, long live the King" line underlined his feelings for the Londoner who won over the Geordie nation.

Those who can't handle the madness need not apply - or at least that could the be the job advert if Alan Pardew decided to go public with his Newcastle United recruitment drive.

The new United manager has only been in the job eight days but already admits he feels like it's been "four dog years" since taking the reins at St James' Park.

He was joking of course, but in his media conference ahead of the Birmingham game he admitted that plans to bring in new faces were already well under way.

The more Joey Barton goes on putting in quality performances in a black and white shirt and gaining England recognition, the more it will upset the knockers of the Scouser and the haters of Newcastle United.

For the thinking fan, Barton has done more than just put in a string of quality performances so far this season.

He's also kept his head under intense provocation which would lead to weaker human beings breaking down in tears.

We know fine well Barton has not been an angel in the past, but how long do some people want to hit him over the head with the bad boy stick?

Somewhere over the rainbow

By Lee Ryder on Dec 13, 10 08:31 AM

To call the 3-1 win over Liverpool a "happy ending" would be merely papering over some very open cracks at St James' Park.

Alan Pardew could not have asked for a better start as manager of the much maligned Magpies and at least on the pitch it is clear that the current crop of Newcastle United troops are fighting for both the fans and their new boss.

Both Kevin Nolan and Joey Barton hit back at claims of a revolt straight after the game and fresh from the battlefield after putting Liverpool to the sword.

The pair acknowledged that the fans are unhappy for a reason and even though there are still questions that remain unanswered for the Geordie public, the duo claimed that they were satisfied with the answers given in a meeting with Derek Llambias - the fact the players are in the right mental state is at least something.

Alan Pardew summed it all up well enough at his first meeting with the media when stating he'd had texts from friends telling him he was "mad" to take the managerial post at Newcastle United.

Already without a ball being kicked Pardew faces a battle to win over supporters after replacing the popular figure of Chris Hughton.

He stated it was impossibe to win a PR battle, he was right about that too, and then he went on to claim it was all about results.

He was right about that one too.

Whatever you're feelings are on Pardew - you can't say he doesn't have bottle.

He arrived at St James' Park as some bloke who used to play for the Cockneys with Spurs but left as an adopted Geordie.

Chris Hughton gave the Geordies their pride back after relegation, the Championship title, the 5-1 win over Sunderland, the win at Arsenal and a treasure trove of memories.

He should be remembered as the man who bought back dignity to Newcastle United. A song that became an anthem of the Championship title win.

Chris Hughton deserved better than this. But he'll never have to buy a drink in Newcastle again.

Chris Hughton we salute you!

Reborn at the Hawthorns

By Lee Ryder on Dec 2, 10 08:56 AM

Take your mind back to August 8 2009 on a pleasant summer day at the Hawthorns.

Newcastle United had been freshly relegated and the whole of Tyneside were up in arms at just where the much maligned Mags would be come the end of the season.

United's first game of the new season had been especially selected for BBC broadcast live to the nation with the public undressing of a once great football club about to unfold on the box to the blood thirsty non-Tyneside audience.

Or at least that was how many expected it to go the last time Newcastle travelled to the Hawthorns for a league clash.

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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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