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Nov 28 / Jamie Hardesty

Match Preview: What we don’t want to see in Stoke City tonight

Watching Newcastle United at the minute is a bit like going to a McDonalds restaurant if you’re on a diet. You know you shouldn’t, you’ll be left feeling depressed afterwards and you’ll ask yourself why you put yourself through it yet again. In fact there’s not much difference between the two at all; they’re unrewardingly addictive. But hey, here’s hoping tonight’s display can leave a better aftertaste than what we’ve been used to lately.

Here at CarryingCoals we think Newcastle need to do something different tonight, so I’m changing the format of tonight’s preview in the hope that it inspires Mr. Pardew to do a little tinkering of his own this evening… (he always checks the blog before kick off)

Here are the ten things we don’t want to see on a cold Wednesday evening in Stoke:

  1. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE no Jonas on the wing. I’ve always said I’m a big fan of Jonas but at the start of the season and throughout, I’ve argued for him to be played somewhere else other than the wing. Why not in the middle of midfield playing in a 4-4-2 or at fullback, allowing Santon further freedom to penetrate up the pitch?
  2. No 4-4-2 at all!! It doesn’t work for us, it hasn’t worked all season. Ba and Cisse can’t play together in it and we don’t have the wingers to suit it.
  3. If Pards insists on 4-2-2 then drop one of Ba and Cisse. We can’t suffer another night of watching them get in eachother’s way and limiting our play when we do have the ball
  4. Mike Williamson nowhere near Jon Walters. Walters isn’t the best Premier League player in the division but he’s a nuisance and a real workhorse. His pace and directness will cause Willo more problems than my blood pressure will be able to handle, so I want us to set up with Colo sticking tightly to him.
  5. Tiote thrashing round the pitch and giving falls away around the 18 yard area. Stoke thrive on set pieces and Tiote is going to be a culprit of that tonight, giving chances away.
  6. Danny Simpson pumping a long diagonal ball 60 yards up the pitch straight to a Stoke defender.
  7. Stoke scoring first. Whenever we concede first in a game, we lose. It’s as simple as that. Stoke score first tonight, we capitulate – guaranteed.
  8. We’ve been so bad recently that everyone seems to be throwing their hat in to the ring and voicing where it’s all going wrong. I don’t want to see us just sit back and let Stoke come on to us all game. With a settled back four and Krul, we usually defend very well as a unit but there have been a lot of individual errors in the past 4 games. We don’t want to see Newcastle pinned back to their box on ’33 minutes and frantically waiting for half time to come.
  9. Anita/Cisse/Marveaux (if on)/Jonas going missing in the game and letting the 90 minutes pass them by. We need to be so much more active and demand the ball, stand up and be counted!
  10. Pardew coming out after a 2-0 defeat and saying, ‘well we wasn’t at our best tonight but with so many injuries we knew it would be tough for us’

Tonight I can see us playing with a flat 4-4-2 with the Demba’s upfront, Jonas on the right and Fergie on the left. I’d go 4-3-3 with Jonas, Tiote and Anita in the middle whilst Fergie and Marveaux line up either side of Ba. Cisse to come on in the second half if Ba has been anonymous and Sammy to provide something different in the last twenty minutes.

This is what it’s come to Pards, I know your hands are tied with injuries and lack of investment to a small squad, but please please please don’t give us another lacklustre display with players going missing in the 4-4-2 we all know and love…

Final Note:

With our run of form at the minute and lack of able bodied players, a draw would be a tremendous result tonight but I just can’t see it. Stoke are resolute defensively and we are finding goals so hard to come by. We haven’t won away yet this season and I can’t see that trend being reversed.

Even if we don’t see a win or even a draw, I just don’t want to be subjected to the same old tripe we’ve had to watch recently. Maybe I’ll just head to McDonalds instead….

(Try to) Enjoy the Game!

Comments Welcome.

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