Rise of The Magpies

by Dave Redden

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

Kinnear’s the man

Newcastle United may well have turned the proverbial corner.  This weekend’s 3-0 away victory at Portsmouth was their first win on the road since March.  The team has lost one in its last eight games including beating Aston Villa and claiming a point at Stamford Bridge.

Before a ball was kicked this season no team was in such disarray as the Magpies.  Calls for the heads of the owner and his “Cockney Mafia”, coupled with the ugly loss of manager Kevin Keegan off the field translated into lackluster performances on the field and found the club floundering at the bottom of the league within a matter of weeks.

Today, the club’s backroom woes seem to be under control and the results are going in the right direction.

Much of the latter success must be attributed to the “interim” manager, Joe Kinnear.  Plucked from obscurity after being a huge success back in the day, Kinnear seems to have the players buying into his usual routine of a hard work ethic yields results.

Kinnear is the “love him or hate him” kind of manager.  He says what he thinks and thinks what he says, whether it’s to his players, the fans, the media and sometimes to the FA, just for good measure.

Anyone who knows anything about English football knows that Newcastle are one of those teams that are too good to fall through the old trapdoor but, if they do drop, they won’t be the first to fit that category and go down.  Realistically, I see them knocking on Europe’s door by the time the dust has settled.  Fortunately for the Magpies both time and the way the results are going around the league are on their side.

The team is finally starting to gel and I see them being able to turn those league-high seven draws into more and more wins as Michael Owen begins to return to form and find the onion sack on a regular basis, hopefully working his way back onto the international scene too.  Maybe a dip into the transfer market to help shore up the back line wouldn’t go amiss either.

Now that we’ve righted the world on Tyneside, can someone work on the Baggies post haste?

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  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Darren

    Roy Kinnear has done well, he was especially good in Willy Wonker!

    Seriously though, Joe Kinnear has brought some much needed personality back into the game. His post match interviews are brilliant, never scripted, never dull, pure old school, he isn’t afraid to speak his mind and doesn’t give a toss what any thinks of him. 1 defeat in games says it all, the players obviously like playing for him too. I think Europe is out of the question but he came in to keep them up and that’s exactly what he will do.

    All we need now is for Gordon Strachen to come to the Premiership, all of a sudden the game has some personalities!!

  • Jamie Farrier

    I’d have agree on that with extreme caution.

    Kinnear has done well, but there’s a pattern emerging amongst Newcastle managers that started ever since the end of King Kev’s first reign back in the day:

    A poor start to the 98/99 season, Dalgleish replaced by Gullit, who turns things around.
    A very poor start to the 99/00 season, Gullit replaced by Bobby Robson, who saves them from relegation.
    Another poor start to the 04/05 season, Robson replaced by Souness, and they bounce back to mid-table.
    Hanging above relegation during 2006, Souness replaced by Roeder. Back to up 7th, but Roeder gone the next year, to be replaced by Allardyce, who was only given 8 months before being given the boot. King Kev returned and Toon rejoiced.

    So before everyone in Geordieland gives themselves a big pat on the back for having their club rescued, let’s just remember that this club have fallen in to the same sorry trap of complacency and short-term expectation time and time again. Of the above list of managers, only Bobby Robson has only managed to hold the job for any amount of time to give himself any credit.

    What happens for the rest of this season is obsolete; but if Kinnear can sustain these sorts of results in the long term rather than just razzle-dazzle Tyneside with his honeymoon period, then I too shall tip my hat to him.

  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Darren

    ah yeah, who can forget the Rodent! We used to do Roland Rat impressions when he was doing his post match interviews. No to much charisma but I’m sure he’s a very nice Rat

  • Dave

    I wouldn’t say that they’ve been rescued …. yet! Just maybe turned the corner. The Christmas period is usually a big time in the positional shake up in the Premier League. This year’s version will have a bigger impact if any teams can either win out or lose all their holiday games. Hoping the Magpies can come out of it on the positive side of the tracks!

  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Darren

    with Man United playing in the pointless cup it also opens the door for the other contenders including Villa.

    I think we’ll see a West Ham or a Man City in the bottom 3, thats my precition

  • Steve W

    yep, he’ll get the job full time, get the sack 3 months later, talk of Keegan will return, they’ll bring someone else in, he will keep them up, get the job, get the sack 3 months later, talk of Keegan will return, they’ll bring someone else in, he’ll keep them up, get the job, get the sack 3 months later, and so it goes on and on…..

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