Chrissy Hughton’s Black and White Army

Saturday, December 5, 2009 7:20 | Filed in Newcastle United

Also known as ‘a number of rambling thoughts relating to the on-field activities of Newcastle United’.

I’m deliberately excluding the off-field activities as it appears that Ashley and Llambias are attempting to replicate, entirely by themselves, the Millwall chant “no one likes us, we don’t care”, and as well as being somewhat depressing, retreading the same old ground with those two is also somewhat boring.

Instead, I’ll just look at what we have so far achieved this season with a paper-thin squad which was plainly not good enough for the top-flight last year and has been severely depleted since.

One of the key things I can see is that there is a significant lack of flair in the second tier. Newcastle’s much maligned defence are currently the meanest in the division, having conceded only 10 goals (only Chelsea and Leeds in their respective divisions have conceded less goals, and Chelsea have conceded more per game) simply because most teams do not have flair players who can produce a magical pass or shot to unlock a mean and well organised defence. This is somewhat different to the top flight…

At the start of the season, I certainly wasn’t entirely convinced the club would be capable of mounting and sustaining a promotion challenge (I’m still not convinced about sustaining; I think the squad far too thin to cope with injuries), but I have to say that Chris Hughton has done a marvellous job in getting the players to play reasonably well (or at least, even if we play badly, still be hard to beat), and while I wasn’t, and I’m still not, convinced that he is the right man to lead the club forward in the long term, I have been impressed with not only how he has handled the role this season, but how he has spoken to the media (and therefore the fans).

He seems to see that the main goal is not to attempt to win the league: it’d certainly be nice, but from interviews it seems quite plain that for now at least his ambition is one place lower: automatic promotion. And that’d do. I think any fan offered that now would accept it, and most would have bitten your hand off if offered that at the start of the season.

We may not always be pretty: but Hughton has got them at least trying to play football; he’s got us conceding few goals, well organised and actually playing for each other. Almost as if they were a … oh, what’s the word… a team. Which is quite a new and refreshing concept, given the last few years.

So I’d like to wish him the best of luck, and remember that first and foremost we need fifty points. That’d keep us up. Once we’ve got that, if we can get another forty after that, that should guarantee us automatic promotion (over the last five years, only one team has needed 90 points to take second place). Of course, I’m saying this before we play Watford, so things could go terribly wrong here…

And then we’d just need about ten or eleven new top quality players to stay there.

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2 Comments to Chrissy Hughton’s Black and White Army

  1. garment news daily says:

    July 28th, 2011 at 5:22 pm

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  2. Belen says:

    December 12th, 2012 at 6:59 am

    Your post captreus the issue perfectly!

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