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About smoggeordie

  • Birthday 04/23/1987

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  1. Some coaches, rather than anti-coaches, would be nice.
  2. Was Howaythetoon the one that followed on from toon-chat.co.uk? Think I first joined up in about 04/05.
  3. I posted this on NO yesterday which I suppose half ties in with the KK stuff, but it's my views on football in general at the mo (long post) : After having a fair few hours to reflect on today, it's confirmed a lot of things for me. Before I go on, this isn't a whinge saying how i've fallen out of love with NUFC. I very much love my club, our club, and I always will. But, to quote Sir Bobby, what is a club in any case? The noise, the passion, the feeling of belonging, the pride in your city. I feel a lot of these are on the wane for our once great club. I've been considering over the past few weeks just what is wrong with football. It's hard to put your finger on it. The best way to start I reckon is to think 'what made me like football in the first place?'. As a youngster who was born into a family where football was much of a non event (my dad had never been to a game and, bizarrly, my mum had only been to one game – an away game at Chelsea in the 70s I believe). I, like many kids in the 90s, got into football on the playground. The 'jumpers for goalposts', using 'numbers' to pick teams over school dinner, hoping for the best player in the school to be on your team type of game. Personally I was always the goalkeeper. I don't know why I chose that position, but over a number of years I actually got decent there. Plus, i'm cack outfield. The game grew on me, as you'd expect, because I enjoyed playing it. That got me into watching it. Unfortunately, just as I was really getting used to playing daily over lunchtime my folks upped sticks, I was taken out of John Vianney school and taken down to Kettering. At this age I wasn't that much into NUFC as it's more about the playground, so being a young Geordie lad down south isn't easy and I suppose it could have gone one of two ways when I moved there. It would either be i'd join the ranks of the local glory hunters, being a Man U, Liverpool or Arsenal fan at the time, or I could be the polar opposite and, despite my young age, stick firmly to my roots. At this age it was firmly in the time where we were in the prime of Rob Lee, Beardsley was in the twilight of his career, Sir Les was snapped up, Ginola and Barton came in. I went to a pre season friendly down there, Rushden and Diamonds vs NUFC, pretty sure we won 3-1 but if someone could confirm that it would be nice...... I was hooked. I looked at the Newcastle side and even as a schoolboy I could tell we were 'different' to other clubs. We were special. The type of football we played was like having 11 of the 'best kid in the school' playing for us. So fluid, exciting and entertaining. So Keegan. The noise from 36,610 inside SJP was deafening, even as I listened to the 5-0 on the radio. There was a magic about NUFC and, dare I say it, football in general? Euro 96 had the nation all together as one and, a much as you hated them, you had a lot of respect for the other teams around us. So, all in all, the entertainment and the pride of where I was from, who I was, was what made me love football. All summed up by Bobby's quote. Even though I was an 8 year old kid living 200 miles from NE1, I was part of the club. A club that was built on the beliefs that it's sole purpose was to entertain it's adoring fans. Fast forward 18 years and we're unrecognisable. Often at work people tell me how much of a joke NUFC are and I will defend us to the hilt. “Who else would get 52k with no trophies for 50 years”, “i'll think of you when i'm on my eurpean tour', 'youd dream of having players like ben arfa and Cabaye'. It's an assumed duty to be defensive about your club. It's the classic thing of we can slag them off, but if someone else does then we'll defend them. The sad facts are that, save for a couple of magical years under Bobby and riding a crest of a wave under Pardew last year, we've been on the decline since 1996. We've 'expanded' as a club, got a bigger stadium, more globally recognised. But IMO we're 1/10th of the club we were back then. The whole ethos of the club has changed. I genuinely believe when we had Shepherd he wanted the team to do well. Yes, he was a fucking idiot with his comments, decision making and crazy signings, but I think he wanted us to do well. He was just a buffoon who was steadily taking us down. Ashley came in as the big geezer, splashing the cash on a load of big signings, and trying to be the hero by bringing in Keegan. I actually think that could have been a masterstroke. When Keegan came back he brought a buzz that hadn't been here for years, and I think he could have taken us back to being a regular top 6 side, even without the money to spend. Keegan was special, and honesty feel guilty when some of our younger fans slate him. They don't appreciate what he did for us in the 90s. It's not their fault they don't understand, but sometimes I find myself resenting them. How dare they slate him? The very man who gave us the opportunity to become something special. It was a sad day when he left under such a cloud. My club and my hero at legal loggerheads was hard to take and that took a lot out of me that season, so half an eye was taken off relegation. It almost paled into insignificance for me. Football, for me, is about heroes. It's about your Gazzas, Shearers, Bobby Lee's, Bobby Robsons, and Keegans. Hell, even your Laurent Roberts, Ben Arfas and Nobby Solanos. It's about grafting your arse off all week so that you have the cash to spend on going to be entertained. It's not about winning, if anyone supports NUFC because they want us to win trophies, then you're supporting the wrong team. Winning games is great. Dont be fooled by the media bollocks of “we'd rather lose 4-3 than win 1-0' because we wouldn't. It's bollocks. I suppose that's where I get round to today. If we were given that choice of the 1-0 win i'd be delighted, but I want us to do it in the right way. I don't want to be one nil up against fucking Reading and sub off our only two attacking midfielders and end up with FOUR defensive midfielders on the pitch to 'see it out' (granted we now know Cabaye was injures and we couldnt see it out). Jonas, Bigi, Perch and Anita all on at the same time against one of the worst teams in the past 5 years of the PL. Bobby would shudder. Keegan probably is. I don't want this to turn into a Pardew bashing because his failings are obvious, so don't need to be repeated. Similarly, Ashley's are too. The saddest thing of all for me is the fact that money dominates all in football. It's all about seeing games out now. 2-0 up and clubs shut up shop. If my club ever got to the lofty position of being 2-0 up i'd want us to stick 4, 5, 6 past them. The thought of doing that is simply gone in modern football. Clubs see cups as not worth going for as they're not financially viable. Personally I couldn't give two hoots if the Europa League isn't fiinancially viable. If it takes 16 games against Scandanavian farmers in front of sub 20k crowds in the snow, then so be it. A lot of people say football sold it's soul when Abroamovich came to Chelsea but I don't buy that completely. For decades it's largely been a case of he who has money does well. It's just largely more highlighted now because of the Sky era. The sad thing I think is that because of the complete vastness of his and the Man City wealth, it means we start a season knowing that the best that 17 out of the 30 clubs can hope for is 4th place. A depressing situation. It eliminates the skill of coaches and management, almost making it worthless. If Allardyce got his dream role at someone like man u, they'd still more than likely end up in the top two. It's sickening seeing people get paid millions to be very average and have very little input into work, when 10k people are being made redundant from blockbuster, comet, hmv, jessops etc. I'm waffing now so getting away from my original point, what is wrong with football? The answer would probably be 'nothing' if Abramovich had bought us, or even if we'd seen out a win against Reading today. But he didn't and we didn't. There are significant issues at our football club both from boardroom level to pitch level, but it' nothing new. What is new to us is we now have a club that's sole purpose isn't to entertain us, it's to be profitable. We may benefit in this window with a couple of panic buys so we don't miss out on the new TV deal, but ultimately it's going to leave us with a constant feeling of a half full club. Keep the faith.
  4. They've covered it in a black sheet apparently. Like a massive roll of duct tape.
  5. ESPN advertising that they're showing NUFC vs Monaco and NUFC vs Fenerbahce.
  6. Apparently not. I thought he'd gone to Borrusia Munchingflapjack.
  7. The Times and Talkshite both saying we've held talks with Hoilett.
  8. Olympiakos confirmed on their website they're playing NUFC at Porto's stadium on 27th July. Assume we'll play Porto while we're out there too. http://www.olympiacos.org/en/article/11950/friendlies-portugal
  9. Sporting Lisbon and Cardiff away games set to be confirmed soon apparently.
  10. I believe if Liverpool win the FA Cup, it doesn't matter who the losing finalists are. Their FA cup place would take precedence over their Carling Cup one, so Liverpool would take FA Cup place and their CC one would go to league. Everton only 7 points behind us now. With us going there on the last day and having Man City, Arsenal and Liverpool all to play, they're a bit close for comfort now!
  11. Nice that you've been told your allocation so swiftly. You couldn't give Wigan a game at the Stadium of Copyright infringement.
  12. Why? Well, to win the FA Cup It's a very extreme view Chris as they don't go hand in hand (unless you're Birmingham...), but I see your point. As terrible as relegation is, the club would recover. To have the memory of a cup win would last forever, the stuff of legends. There's no reason why we can't beat any team left in the cup, but then again we could get stuffed by Brighton. May as well give ourselves the best chance possible and go full strength.
  13. Early goal ls key. They'll come to park the bus and play for a 0-0.
  14. Cheers for this. My dad is a patron for a local charity (Clarke Lister Foundation) and a couple of NUFC players are patrons too. I'll forward it on and hope they remember me if they win it!
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