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.

Barton was clearly emotional on Saturday evening but did also go on to say "Do you ever know the truth?" when attempting to sum things up to Stan Collymore on a radio interview.

Collymore went on to suggest that Mike Ashley should perhaps engage in a fan forum to answer some of the questions that supporters have to ask.

It's a novel idea but an unlikely one.

Although, IF Newcastle United did partake in such an adventure, then it would surely sooth some of the raw tension that currently exists.

Many of you will ask, why don't the Chronicle or the media ask the questions to the current board about the vision of the next few years.

The current board will not engage with the media - but we'll keep trying.

Therefore, like Chris Hughton, Joe Kinnear and Alan Shearer before him, it is now down to Alan Pardew to keep fans up to date with what is going on at Newcastle - while also managing a football club.

If Saturday showed anything to the rest of the world, it was just what a jumping place St James' Park can be.

And that the level of support is unbreakable.

With all things considered it was one of the best atmospheres of United's Premier League history.

It was special.

It left the mob of southern based journalists on Saturday without the story they really wanted.

Just for good measure it is also worth noting that London-based journalist also grilled Sunderland boss Steve Bruce on Pardew's future to which he replied: "He could be celebrating his first win in a couple of hours", to which the response was: "He won't."

Well he did.

The sun still rose this morning and as Les Ferdinand said before the game: "The manager, the players and the chairman can change - but the one thing that always stays the same is the fans - they will always be there."

That was so true as 50,137 fans made it a cauldron of noise.

Pardew, Barton, Nolan, Andy Carroll, Tim Krul and a clutch of other players dedicated the win to Chris Hughton after the game - and rightly so - the new boss still had a job to do which he carried out professionally.

Pardew will look at the Premier League table today and see his new team in eighth place.

Surely that is a great platform left by Hughton to build on despite some tough games coming.

Liverpool was tough but Newcastle got through it.

Predicting where Newcastle will finish is no easier than it has ever been.

But when has it been any different in recent years?

Will we ever get back to the level of challenging in Europe or for a trophy?

That is a question that for now, will only be answered by the manager and the playing staff.


jac mills said:


I was thrilled to watch NUFC beat Liverpool. They deserved their win, but I suspect that emotion will not carry them well through the season. They will need player changes, tightening in defense. They especially will have to eliminate the let-down by the back line. Taylor looked out of sorts, not ready for this team. His partner, ditto. They left a massive weakness in the center but Liverpool failed to take the chances.

But great win. I love to see Carroll play. He can be a great one!!

relton said:

Over the rainbow !!!!! too true - in this wizard of Oz production, - Ashley is the wicked witch, pardew the nodding dog and Barton could play the scarecrow if he gets in trouble for another needless act.
A good win - but lets hope that there is no place like home from hereonin - cos up to now - we have thrown too many needless points away.

toonagain said:

lets hope AP continues do very little, always the sign of a good manager and whole sale change is not how to build on where we have come so far. Past idiots sorry managers such as SA GR etc., have tried it and its fell apart. good mangers as we see coming into chelsea have only tweaked things here and there and they have been able to build on what was already solid, so lets hope thats where we are going.

DormAntDormAnt said:

So, the hand grenade lobbed into our midst by Rant & Wreck failed to explode, the team refused to implode, there were no casualties let alone fatalities and collateral damage (by way of our credibility in the southern press) was kept to a minimum.

Another battle honour, in another campaign on the glory trail being blazed by the Toon army. The forlorn hope, the cannon fodder, stepped up to the plate and went over the top to a man when the whistle went, none wavered.

In truth, it was a good time to play Liverpool as they were without Gerard and Carragher, and Torres is still far from his best form. Still, we did what we had to do and ran out comfortable winners in the end (with a few wobbles along the way in defence)and picked up three valuable points.

Dare I say it, the rainbow over St. James' Park has taken on a new colour, a Pardhue if you'll pardon the pun.

DormAnt said:

Hells teeth Iv'e got a stutter.

Cannyman said:

Shiiite ...if we'd have waited a few more days we could have had Saladface back!

marcusTOON4LIFE said:

Well said Lee. I was very delighted with the Liverpool win as all the supporters were. There is no place to play your football than ST. JAMES' PARK that's for sure. With everything that had gone on during the week, everyone was waiting for us to fall flat on our faces, to implode under the strain - but that didn't materialise. Nolan and the boys now realise what it means to wear the sacred black and white shirt. They know they will never exprience such an electric atmosphere with fans that are as passionate and supportive as us. But I must say I'm still mightily aggrieved with sacking of C.H. I've heard time and again it's not Pardew's fault Chris go the sack. RUBBISH!! He was part of an elaborate plan with that FAT SLUG! I will tell you why. When we lost 4-0 to Arsenal in the carling cup some two months ago, Pardew was out of work after getting the sack at Southampton. What happened before the game? Bookies suspended betting on Pardew being the next Newcastle manager. Are people so deluded and blinkered not to realise Pardew was waiting in the wings for any deep in form and the axe would fall on Hughton? (Food for thought there) The players are not stupid, they know what went on. Straightaway, Pardew's influence and authority on the team is severely undermined already. If he tries to raffle any feathers (which he probaly will) player power will come into play and he has nowhere else to turn because of what went on. (Watch this space) In the meantime, let's rally behind our troops, they have shown they are prepared to sweat blood for NUFC cause. But the sooner that FAT CONTROLLING PSYCHOPATH is out of our club, the better. IN NOLAN AND THE BOYS WE TRUST!!! LONG LIVE WOR HUGHTON!!!!


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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