NUFC vs AVFC

Preview: Newcastle Utd vs Aston Villa – 23/02/14

Match preview by TJR, click here to go the our match discussion thread

As a result of a diabolical run of form, the mood on Tyneside is as bleak as the weather heading into this game. With Coloccini, Tioté and Rémy expected to be back though perhaps some rays of sunshine can break through those dark clouds.

This horrific run of form has to come to an end sometime and the sooner the better as Newcastle United haven’t won a game or scored a goal for over a month now, Saturday 18th of January being the last time we managed to do either, and even that was preceded by 4 losses in a row. That day influential midfielder and fan favourite Yohan Cabaye stole the show; he was serenaded by the Newcastle fans singing his name long after the final whistle in East London.

How times change, flash forward a little more than a month and the mood amongst the Newcastle fans couldn’t be any more different. Yohan Cabaye, the last player to score a goal for Newcastle United, is no longer with the club. Sold and not replaced. From that moment on the Newcastle United train has well and truly derailed. A goalless draw at Norwich is as good as it has got, standing out above thrashings from the mackems, Chelsea and Spurs. In fact the presence of Yohan Cabaye has been so vital to the team this season that they have failed to record a win in the 7 games he hasn’t played.

It’ll be no surprise to hear that Cabaye is our joint highest rated player this season according to the ToonForumIndex, sharing the honour and an average score of 6.61 with fellow midfielder Tioté. Unfortunately the Frenchman is no longer at the club, and there is nothing that can be done about that. He is a man with ambition, a desire to succeed and a hunger to achieve, whereas the Newcastle board are the opposite, and he has gone on to bigger and better things. It is down to the manager and players currently at the club to respond and get their season back on track. Continue reading

nclavlopp

Villa Fans’ Thoughts Ahead of the Match

Originally a forum post by Yacob, click to read/comment

This week I headed to the Heroes and Villains forum. After the last few threads had poor responses, this one was a lot better. They seem a good bunch and some of the replies are well worth a read. I haven’t put all the responses on here as there are quite a few and there was other debate going on in the thread, so it is worth checking out. The questions this week are:

1 – How do you think you’ll line up?
2 – How has Aston Villa’s season gone so far? Happy?
3 – Who has been the biggest surprise this season for Aston Villa? Who has disappointed?
4 – What are your views on Paul Lambert at the moment?
5 – Which players do you see being key for both sides?
6 – Where do you think Aston Villa will finish now?
7 – Where do you think Newcastle will finish now?
8 – Who will finish in the top six? Who will go down?
9 – Scoreline prediction?
10 – If your football club was a vegetable, what vegetable would it be?

Dave P

1 – How do you think you’ll line up?
4-3-3 / 4-5-1. Guzan, Bacuna, Vlaar, Baker, Bertrand, Delph, Westwood, KEA, Weimann, Gabby, Benteke.

2 – How has Aston Villa’s season gone so far? Happy?
Inconsistent but signs of improvement over last year. Mildly happy.

3 – Who has been the biggest surprise this season for Aston Villa? Who has disappointed?
Surprise – Delph’s great form. Benteke has disappointed overall.

4 – What are your views on Paul Lambert at the moment?
Want him to stay as we need stability but if he was sacked tomorrow, I wouldn’t shed a tear.

5 – Which players do you see being key for both sides?
Gabby for us and Ben Arfa for you.

6 – Where do you think Aston Villa will finish now?
13th

7 – Where do you think Newcastle will finish now?
9th

8 – Who will finish in the top six? Who will go down?
Man C, Chelsea, Arse, Liverpool, Spurs, Man U. Going down – Fulham, Cardiff and Palace

9 – Scoreline prediction?
1-1.

10 – If your football club was a vegetable, what vegetable would it be?
A Potato. Bland, not very easy on the eye but I can’t do without them in my life!

Continue reading

tfincltot

TFI – Player Ratings vs Tottenham – 12 Feb 14

Click here to go to the discussion thread by Beatski

To come up with these figures we ask forum members to rate each player’s performance in the concerned game out of 10, which we then average out to get a rating representative of the fans’ views, we also collect a few user comments to summarise how the player did and show a few different viewpoints from the board. The top scoring player is man of the match; the lowest is mug of the match. This time 21 angry and disillusioned members cast their votes and shared their opinions.

This match saw us continue our terrible start to the year with our worst home defeat of the season, fourth home loss in a row and also our fourth match in a row without scoring. While blame can be widely spread throughout the side for shambolic performance, ultimately Tim Krul put in pretty much an inverse performance to his incredible effect in the reverse fixture, as the first 3 goals all came from sub-standard parries (following poor defensive work in the build-up). However in our fans’ eyes he wasn’t our worst player on the pitch, with Santon taking that honour with a rating of 2.08 for his 45 minutes on the pitch before tactical withdrawal, although the score was only 0-1 at that point in time.

In more positive news, Sammy Ameobi was once again our stand-out player, earning his third man of the match award in a row (and he narrowly missed out on one in the game before this streak) with a rating of just 5.76 standing out against a team average of 3.93, the lowest of the season so far. As you might expect, Pardew also came under heavy fire, also earning his lowest rating of the season, 1.84, as the calls for his head continue to grow in number and intensity. Continue reading

tfichencl

TFI – Player Ratings vs Chelsea – 08 Feb 14

Click here to go to the discussion thread by Beatski

To come up with these figures we ask forum members to rate each player’s performance in the concerned game out of 10, which we then average out to get a rating representative of the fans’ views, we also collect a few user comments to summarise how the player did and show a few different viewpoints from the board. The top scoring player is man of the match; the lowest is mug of the match. This time a measly 14 members cast their votes and shared their opinions, others no doubt too deflated by our current run of poor form to bother.

Despite our recent form against Chelsea, few were predicting anything but a loss and Newcastle duly delivered just that, being thoroughly undone by a master class performance from one of the brightest talents in football. After a 3 – 0 drubbing you don’t expect many high ratings, and indeed only one player came away from the match with anything above a 6. Our one silver lining was Sammy Ameobi, who is starting to look like that very elusive thing; an academy product that will cut it, earning an average rating of 6.75 and a host of plaudits besides.

Amongst the remaining dross, Yanga-Mbiwa emerges as the mug of the match after coming on as a first-half sub, although along with that many people are continuing to question the wisdom of playing him at right back when he has repeatedly put in poor showings there. Especially puzzling when you consider that he’s previously played well at CB, and that our current pairing are underwhelming to say the least. Continue reading

ncltot

Preview: Newcastle Utd vs Tottenham – 12/02/14

Match preview by Speedo, click here to go the our match discussion thread

With the heady days of December now further away from us than Spring, Newcastle stumble on to meet a Tottenham team in good form, apparently thanks to new(ish) boss Tim Sherwood and, to quote a friend of mine, ‘the worst player in the Premier League’ Emmanuel Adebayor. A slightly rudderless United side, a phrase that could refer to all three Uniteds in the Premier League at the moment, with little left to play for this season and approximately all the players injured, it is little wonder that morale among the fan base is somewhere between ‘apathetic’ and ‘mutinous’.

Perhaps I despair too much. After all, a debut is expected for newly contracted and newly seventeen Adam Armstrong, presumably from the bench, and Pardiola claims our target is to finish above Manchester United. For certain, this is not a match that any toon fan will go in to expecting a win. While it has been something of a habit of ours to beat the best sides and then lose to the dross the Premier League reliably provides, the sound beating from Eden Hazard and co. at the weekend suggests that maybe less than enjoyable viewing, especially if Krul is unable to recreate his form from the reverse fixture. Continue reading