Monday, 13 April 2009

Fighting Spirit or Punch Drunk?

Watching, somewhat nervously, as Newcastle fought back against Stoke on Saturday I couldn't help but feel a little let down by some of our players.

No doubt they ran all day, and they clearly want to keep the club up, but it's the way the small minority go about their business that worries me for our crucial end of season run-in.

Messers, Nolan, Guthrie and Ameobi are top of my list.

First up, our friendly midfield maestros. Whilst their inclusion in the team adds bite, grit and pure determination to our midfield I fear for our ability to finish the game with eleven men whenever either of them flies into a tackle or questions a decision.

The pure ferocity that erupts from the pair worries me beyond belief and with the upcoming fixtures set to become ever more crucial as each game passes, will they be able to keep their heads? At the Britannia stadium Nolan seemed desperate for a punch up and he is unlikely to be protected by his captain as little Mickey just seems desperate for a decent ball.

Moving onto Owen's strike partner for the day, the ever-pointless, never-useful Shola Ameobi. I struggle to find a reason why still has a shirt at Newcastle.

Is it due to his four goals in 21 games this term? It can't be because of his failure to score last season, so it must be due to his somewhat persistent injuries that have meant we've never seen enough of the guy to realise quite how useless he is.

It's not inaccurate to say he actually hampered the team by being on the pitch against Stoke. His apparent inability to sprint, shoot and jump leaves me scratching my head as to why he was on the pitch, let alone given the duty of marking the oppositions best header of the ball.

To call Ameobi a Donkey, would be harsh on Donkeys. In fact fielding a Donkey up front would probably not have aroused much more than a, "Aay, our Shola's looking lively today." from the travelling Geordie faithful.

I believe the only time Ameobi sprinted during his painful 74 minutes on the pitch, was to the touchline, when super sub Andy Carroll replaced him.

As it happened, Everything Shola wasn't, Andy was.

The born-and-bred Geordie threw himself at everything in the air, connecting more often than not, in both attack and defence. The Stoke defence were bemused at the aerial threat and it eventually produced a wonderful headed goal.

A goal that could save our season.

If I were Alan Shearer one of my goals for the remaining six games of the season, would be to make sure Carroll gets as much time on the pitch as possible.

No comments:

Post a Comment