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SHAY Given has admitted Newcastle United’s new stars will have to learn quickly how to deal with the unique pressure that comes with playing football on Tyneside.

 

While every club has supporters who demand success, Given knows that satisfying the Magpies’ passionate following can be difficult, particularly following performances and results like the one at Manchester City last weekend.

 

And the Irishman, who was delighted to be selected ahead of Steve Harper at the City of Manchester Stadium after a magnificent performance in the Carling Cup against Arsenal, knows the new arrivals will have to develop broad shoulders and a thick skin to deal with the ferocity of football feeling in Newcastle. However, Given, who is United’s second-longest serving player behind Harper, has urged supporters to be more patient with a side which is barely recognisable from last season.

 

“I’m used to the reaction to defeats on Tyneside but some of the new players probably aren’t,” said Given, who insisted he sympathised with Harper’s irritation at being dropped. “They knew they were coming to a big club and expectation levels are high with a massive fanbase, but it can be difficult for some to get used to. If they weren’t prepared for it they’ve had to get used to it pretty sharply because the fans demand success and a certain standard of performance.

 

“There isn’t much patience up here, but perhaps there needs to be because it is a new manager, with new coaching staff and a new squad with new ideas. It takes a while for those ideas to be put into practice and it also takes players some time to settle into a new club.

 

“There have been so many changes at the club, but it’s all about results. We’ve just got to look forward to the game at home to Everton and put Saturday behind us. The good thing with football is there is always another game to put things right, but we know we have to get it right against Everton because the fans aren’t happy with the result at Manchester City.”

 

Harper is still struggling to come to terms with Given’s recall and was deeply upset when he was told on Friday night he was not playing. But the Easington-born stopper has not complained in public about manager Sam Allardyce’s decision. And although Given was equally irritated by his failure to come straight back into the side following his recovery from a groin injury at the start of the season, he admitted Allardyce had a thankless task in trying to keep them both happy.

 

No club in the Premier League boasts two better keepers than United and Given conceded that his close friend had been unfortunate to miss out. He explained: “Steve wasn’t happy at all. I wasn’t particularly happy when I wasn’t playing either. It’s very difficult and it’s very frustrating not to be playing. He feels the same as I do about not playing, it’s not pleasant.

 

“The manager had a difficult decision to make and only one of us can play. It was a tough decision and Steve probably didn’t deserve to be dropped on the way he was playing. It could have been either one of us.

 

“There wasn’t much I could say to him about it really. He was obviously pretty unhappy about it, just as I was unhappy when he was in the team and I wasn’t. He’s just got to keep his head up, he’s done really well and it’s not down to a loss of form or anything. It was the manager’s decision and he felt it was right at the time.”

 

Given added: “Personally, I was just delighted to be back playing again. I was really excited when I found out, I was really looking forward to the game and I’d missed that the last few weeks. I was buzzing to be on the pitch again, to be honest.”

 

Meanwhile, Joey Barton will play for Newcastle’s reserves against his former club Manchester City tonight as he pushes to be involved against Everton at the weekend. Although Allardyce has suggested the midfielder is still three or four weeks away from playing for the first team, Barton hopes to be on the bench against the club he supported as a boy on Sunday.

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Still waiting for some reporter to say our lack of patience has developed over the years of completely shite football we have been paying huge amounts to watch.

 

I think its a bit of a mixture. There is a large number of fans who continually overreact and get on the teams back all the time when supporting them would be far more productive. But there's also a definite affect from several years of utter shit that has changed the fans en masse and made things quite unpleasant alot of the time.

 

But the fans need to back off as its counterproductive and never does any good, even if they are pissed off with a performance. Getting at the team won't ever make them play better during a match, individually or collectively.

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For all the wierd formations and continually playing Smith, I think this Harper thing is the worst thing Sam has done yet.

 

I've said it many times before, but we're lucky not only to have had as good a keeper as Harper as a back up, but also that he will deal with this sort of thing without running to the papers and/or throwing a public strop (and frankly he probably has a right to in this situation).

 

Given wouldn't and hasn't when the tables have been turned.

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No club in the Premier League boasts two better keepers than United

 

Bollocks

 

Over the period of time Given and Harper have been here? I say that was a fair comment.

 

I can't think of many, if any, clubs that have had such a good starting and back up keeper so consistently for so many years.

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For all the wierd formations and continually playing Smith, I think this Harper thing is the worst thing Sam has done yet.

 

I've said it many times before, but we're lucky not only to have had as good a keeper as Harper as a back up, but also that he will deal with this sort of thing without running to the papers and/or throwing a public strop (and frankly he probably has a right to in this situation).

 

Given wouldn't and hasn't when the tables have been turned.

Well he put in a transfer request when they were. Agree about Harper though.

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For all the wierd formations and continually playing Smith, I think this Harper thing is the worst thing Sam has done yet.

 

I've said it many times before, but we're lucky not only to have had as good a keeper as Harper as a back up, but also that he will deal with this sort of thing without running to the papers and/or throwing a public strop (and frankly he probably has a right to in this situation).

 

Given wouldn't and hasn't when the tables have been turned.

Well he put in a transfer request when they were. Agree about Harper though.

 

Aye, but I think that was after a season where he played 0 games and was more of a "I'm never going to get 1st team football" thing. Where as Given's was just because he was being held out of the team by Harpers form (who then got injured).

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For all the wierd formations and continually playing Smith, I think this Harper thing is the worst thing Sam has done yet.

 

I've said it many times before, but we're lucky not only to have had as good a keeper as Harper as a back up, but also that he will deal with this sort of thing without running to the papers and/or throwing a public strop (and frankly he probably has a right to in this situation).

 

Given wouldn't and hasn't when the tables have been turned.

Well he put in a transfer request when they were. Agree about Harper though.

 

Aye, but I think that was after a season where he played 0 games and was more of a "I'm never going to get 1st team football" thing. Where as Given's was just because he was being held out of the team by Harpers form (who then got injured).

My point was Given has spat the dummy out before. He was being kept out the team under fairer circumstances though really. Pretty much a one-off in any case. I think both have generally been very loyal though as both could have left. Perhaps it's a lack of ambition with Harper but that's to the good of the club.

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If Given could kick like Robinson he'd be fantastic, but he has one of the worst distribution skills of any keeper in the league which is a shame. At least he can catch a ball though, more than can be said for that trainwreck Paul Robinson =/

 

 

Robinson's kicking isn't much better, I remember his party trick of the 2006 world cup by continually giving away posession by booting it over the heads of everyone to the other keeper.

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If Given could kick like Robinson he'd be fantastic, but he has one of the worst distribution skills of any keeper in the league which is a shame. At least he can catch a ball though, more than can be said for that trainwreck Paul Robinson =/

 

How often does Given come out and claim a cross though? One of his biggest flaws is that he doesn't command his area well enough.

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If Given could kick like Robinson he'd be fantastic, but he has one of the worst distribution skills of any keeper in the league which is a shame. At least he can catch a ball though, more than can be said for that trainwreck Paul Robinson =/

 

How often does Given come out and claim a cross though? One of his biggest flaws is that he doesn't command his area well enough.

 

Same could also be said of the mighty Cech in my opinion. He's never convinced me with his aerial ability either.

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