Spyin' Kop: Newcastle United v Liverpool (Saturday February 10th)

Posted by Benitez on February 9, 2007, 09:05:16 AM

Now, I know this is a shock to the system - but, we have a 3pm kick-off this weekend! Liverpool head up to the Toon, with expectations of goals and entertainment - cos thatís what always happens in games between us you see, so Iíve been told! (Now if it's a 0-0, don't blame me).

Newcastle Utd v Liverpool
Saturday, 10th February 2007
St Jamesí Park
Kick Off: 3pm

Newcastle United
Nickname: Magpies
Founded: 1892
Stadium: St James' Park, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, NE1 4ST
Capacity: 52,387

Major Honours:
  • League Champions: 1904-05; 1906-07; 1908-09; 1926-27
  • FA Cup Winners: 1910, 1924, 1932, 1951, 1952, 1955
  • European Fairs Cup Winners: 1969
  • Charity Shield Winners: 1909

Players To Watch: Obafemi Martins, James Milner
Recent form (All Comps) : DDWLDWL

Hereís what the Magpies fans have to say. It was all a bit short notice this, so many thanks to Newcastle-Online.com administrator Ally and everyone else there who took the time to get these answers in double quick.

And onto the questions:

1. At the start of the season what where your expectations, and are things going as you expected

DazzaNufc1892: Personally I thought a top 10 finish would be a good season, especially as we failed to improve our defence and only had Shola to start the season with.

JJ7: I expected us to challenge for 5th place. 7th last year after a terrible start to the season and a good ending. Can't see why anyone outside the top 4 should be finishing above us.

3-1 NYD:  Mid-table mediocrity  and things are going as expected.

Ally: At the end of last season I expected us to build on the good finish to the campaign and get back in the top six. A shambolic summer transfer window saw my expectations change completely by September. Martins is looking an excellent signing, but it was blindingly obvious that we needed defenders, and the injury problems that we've had this season would have been cushioned if we'd actually bothered to sign anyone. By the start of the season a top half finish was my realistic target.

Yorkie-Geordie: I initially expected a similar turn-out to last season, brinking on the Top 6 if not being there. But then, that was before the summer transfer window shambles. With the 'squad' that Roeder had 'built', i was expecting nothing more than mid-table mediocrity, so yes - things are going as expected.

OzzieMandias: I predicted 11th place. That's about where we seem to be heading.

2. Who's been your best performer this season?

DazzaNufc1892: Recently Milner, works hard, always looks busy, tidy player. Canít ever really look past Given though

Ally: Given as usual has been excellent, but has missed quite a lot of games through injury which is very unlike him. Solano has been a revelation at right back, Nicky Butt has been surprisingly good in midfield, as has James Milner. After a slow start, Martins has been on fire recently and has scored some quality goals. Hard to pick one from those, if I had to it would probably be Milner.

Big Geordie: James Milner - has come in from the cold (nearly being sold to Villa) - to make the right wing spot his own.

NSG: James Milner without a shadow of a doubt. The lad has come on leaps and bounds in recent months

gazza ladra:  Martins.

Wullie: Oba Martins. Or maybe Milner. One of them anyway.

3. And your worst/most disappointing?

JJ7: Titus Bramble is a joke. But he doesnít disappoint me as I know he is s*** and expect him to be. He continues to be a laughing stock of the Premiership, but unfortunately, we arenít laughing. Other than that Stephen Carr.

3-1 NYD: Duff's had one decent game when he played left back, he's been pony.

Optomystyc Nyt: I would say Carr but i knew he was going to be s**** so he's not really disappointed me too much. Duff has been patchy, Owen has been quite quiet as well so far.

Big Geordie: Carr and Babayaro

gazza ladra:  Worst = Carr
Most Disappointing = Duff

Wullie: Another toss up, between Carr and Duff this time.

4. You had a quiet January transfer window, if you where the manager, who would you have tried to sign? 

DazzaNufc1892:  Daniel Van Buyten to sure up the defence, somebody in the mould of Liam Rosenior and possibly Paul Konchesky for cover at left back, wouldnít have minded a cheeky loan bid for Mido to see us though until the end of the year.

Wullie: A veteran striker to see us through until the summer, possibly Montella who went to Fulham, a centre back, hopefully Gooch will live up to his reputation and crucially, the position which does not exist at NUFC, a left back.

NSG: Wayne Bridge, Jonathan Woodgate, John Carew

Big Geordie: Upson, Warnock and also had a go for Dave Nugent

Bobyule: There wasn't any money, so the question's a bit academic. A dominating centre back and a left back are the priorities but who was available?

5. What are your best and worst memories of our previous meetings?

DazzaNufc1892: 4-3, both times must be the worst, especially the first 1. best moment must be at Anfield when we came back to 2-2 after not even being in the game.

JJ7: Worst, the 4-1 home defeat when Owen scored 3. Best, probably the Shearer equaliser when we drew at Anfield. Roberts winners were special but Liverpool were pretty crap at the times we played you. Bartonís equaliser at Anfield was great, but the joy didnít last, ha.

Bobyule: Worst - 1-4 in Gullit's first match in charge. I've never quite forgiven Owen for rubbing his hands in that smug way after he scored.

3-1 NYD:Best, winning 2-1 @ Anfield with a MIRANDINHA penalty in front of the Kop (still got relegated like!). The worst losing the first 4-3 @ Anfield when Collymore got the winner.

Ally: Worst memory - the 4-3 in 1996, absolutely sick to death of seeing that image of Keegan after the Collymore goal. 
Best memory - Andy Cole's hat-trick in 1993.

Yorkie-Geordie: The latter of the 4-3s being my worst memory, although i wasn't really old enough to experience it properly. I hear explanations of the treacherous experience from the likes of my dad and my grandads. Again, using the same method of experience, the Cole hattrick in the 3-0 win early nineties was great. When we beat you 1-0 in the 02/03 season, that really signalled that we really were one of the big four, so that was nice.

NSG:  Best - Watsonís goal at Anfield
Worst - Do you even have to ask?

OzzieMandias: Worst - it's a photo finish between the 1974 FA Cup Final and Gullit's first game.
Best - maybe the 2-1 a few years back, just because I watched it with a Scouse relative, who was finally rendered speechless.

6. Do you have any favourite/best chants (and perhaps any that require an explanation)?

DazzaNufc1892: From Liverpool canít beat your anthem, gives goosebumps to any football fan. for us, I love shoes off for the Toon, but that can be a little unpopular

3-1 NYD: They all refer to Sunderland.

Optomystyc Nyt: I'm a Southern poof who doesn't go to games (many).

Ally: Any of my favourite chants wouldn't be heard at a home game.

NSG: Favourite chant for me is TOON TOON when the whole stadium are being really passionate about it. Or a good la la la la la la laaaaaaaaa la la la laaaaaaaaaaa GEORDIES

Ozzie Mandias: "You find a dead rat and you think it's a treat..."

7. Whatís the banter like between Newcastle and Liverpool fans at St James, would you say that the 2 sets of fans get on?

3-1 NYD: Normally no grief between us unlike your Blue counterparts. 2 sets of (mainly) working class supporters.

Optomystyc Nyt: I would say we both dislike the Evertonians a fair amount, so we are united in that respect. I reckon you get on our nerves quite a bit, mainly because it wasn't so long ago that we were similar in stature.

Ally: I'm extremely bored of the 'feed the Scousers' and 'sign on' songs that will inevitably be sung for 90 minutes, its cringeworthy.

Big Geordie: Sit next to the away fans in Leazes Level 7. There does seem to be a respect for each other, and that's good enough for me. Looking forward to some good craic on Saturday !

NSG: Same as any other set of fans really, except you didn't win it 5 times in Istanbul, you won  it once.

Wullie: Banter's very unimaginative these days unfortunately, it is for most clubs. I'd say we get on canny though, we're similar clubs in many ways, apart from the main difference, you win everything, we win nowt.

8. In the summer, Liverpool and Newcastle are told to swap 3 first team regulars, who would you send to Liverpool, and who would you like from us?

DazzaNufc1892: Shola, Carr, Babayaro
BELLAMY, Carragher, Agger

JJ7: Bramble, Carr, Babayaro for Gerrard, Agger and Carragher

Bobyule: Babayaro, Carr, Ramage to you. Gerrard, Bellamy and Carragher from you.

Optomystyc Nyt: You can have Carr (great right back, if you like players standing around with their hands on their hips then he's your man), Baba (great left back, often on his backside) and Shola (may need a new hip). I'll have Bellamy, Riise and Carrager if you don't mind.

Ally: I'd give you Bramble, Carr and Babayaro (you offered!), in a swap with Finnan, Carragher and Agger.

Yorkie-Geordie: I'd get rid of Carr, Bramble and Sibierski. Bringing in Carragher, Agger and Crouch.

NSG: Send - Carr, Baba, Luque. Take - Carragher, Riise, Gerrard

9. Liverpool have become the lastest club to gain new owners, Newcastle have been mentioned as well as a likely candiate for a takeover. How do you feel about these take-overs by foreign owners, and would you like to see it happen at Newcastle?

DazzaNufc1892: Would love it, its about time the fat c*** that owns us left and gave us all a reason to have a party

Wullie: As long as they don't look to make too many changes, I've no problem with it. There's been enough Englishmen messed up enough clubs over the years, the foreigners can't do more damage than some. I'd like to see it, yes, Shepherd's taking us further backwards all the time.

OzzieMandias: The foreign owners thing is just a function of the increasing revenues at the top end of the game. There are huge rewards but huge investments are needed to reap them, and the business side of football is currently going through one of its periods of reinvention, like it did when the Premiership started. Yes, I'd like to see us bought by some big, deep-pocket concern that knows what it's about. Don't care whether it's foreign or home-grown. If that doesn't happen, I think we'll stagnate or slide further.

Big Geordie: I'm wary of the motives of foreign investors, but then again - our chairman has held back the potential of this club for too long. The club will never move forward whilst he and the Hall's have influence.

Ally: Its a case of better the devil you know as far as i'm concerned. A lot of people can't stand Freddy Shepherd, and i'm no big fan of the bloke, but he can never be accused of not backing his managers. How do we know that a new board will back the managers to the same extent? People say that at least a new board will appoint top-class managers, but how is that guaranteed? I'm glad the mysterious Belgravia and Polygon takeovers fell through. If we were to be taken over, I'd like it to be in the way Liverpool have where there are clear figures you can assess and see if they are right for the club. Not a random hedge fund out to make a quick return.

3-1 NYD: Itís the final nail in the coffin of football as we used to know it.
Good luck to you and all that, personally I'm against it but if you had the gluttonous Shepherd as your chief you would want shot of him too! Sign of the times I'm afraid, however I get the feeling that no-one wants to touch us with a barge pole.

NSG: I'd cream my pants if we got a loaded sugar daddy

Bobyule: Yes. Shepherd is a poor Chairman, meddling and out of his depth. I don't care where any new owners come from.

10. Care to predict Mr Roederís starting line up for the game?

Bobyule:  Harper - Solano, Onyewu, Bramble, Taylor - Milner, Butt, Parker, Duff - Dyer, Martins.

JJ7: No. But at least Carr is out.

OzzieMandias: No. There'll be some mystifying selection only he could have come up with.

NSG: Harper, Nobby, Bramble, Gooch, Tayls, Milner, Butt, Parker, Duff, Martins, Dyer

11. And finally, letís have your score predictions for the game:

gazza ladra: NUFC 2-0 (I'm a delusional optimist)

Wullie: 3-1 to Liverpool.

Big Geordie: Head says a Liverpool win - heart says Newcastle to pinch it 2-1.

Ally: I'd be delighted with a draw, but can see a 2-0 defeat.

3-1 NYD: 2-2

Bobyule: Ummmm.... you're on good form, but we'll be up for this. A draw.

DazzaNufc1892: 2-0 Liverpool

Thanks again to everyone at Newcastle-Online.com for their help.

© Benitez 2007

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