Off Topic Messages

Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:44 am

Great first weekend! Man U & Arsenal are 'business as usual' and Chelsea? Poor, but what a finish by Crespo! Spurs made a good start (As did West Ham & Charlton). Newcastle were unlucky as Jenas didn't deserve to go and they need a striker.

Team of the weekend?.........Wigan Athletic! Made Abramovich's £160M worth of talent look ordinary for an hour at least. It's going to be a great season!

And what's this about the FA booking the Millenium Stadium as back-up for the FA Cup Final? Can't we can't decent builders in the UK any more?? :D :wink:

Mon Aug 15, 2005 1:51 am

Have to feel sorry for Wigan!

What a performance by the underdog!

They were only so unlucky to get that goal against them, 2 minutes into extra time...!

Typical Chelsea, ehh..? :?

But this weekend's results should indicate that the Premiership will be a thrilling experience in the months to come! 8)


Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:37 pm

Sadly, as Delboy has already hinted, it was not the greatest of starts for Newcastle United. Why? Because Jermaine Jenas got a red card for something that at worst was a yellow card offence. Plus, the Toon held out for 81 minutes before conceding a daft penalty. Shearer was replaced after 72 minutes leaving no recognised centre forwards on the pitch. These are dire times for the black and whites, although credit must be given for keeping Arse nal at bay for 81 minutes of the game. Souness to go, I reckon, and the sooner the better. Unfortunately, in a wider context, I imagine the Newcastle board will think hard before sacking Souness, since we do have something of a reputation for chucking out managers early in a season. The last 3 have all been sacked in August.

Mon Aug 15, 2005 1:32 pm


I just can't understand why Newcastle hired Souness in the first place!!!???

Surely there must have been better alternatives out there at the time he was appointed?

I rememeber him stating that he (Souness) was thrilled about the offer from Newcastle, and that it was a big opportunity for him.

Sure it was!

At the time he was offered the Manager spot at Newcastle, his Blackburn side was struggling like h*** at the bottom of the Premiership!!!

And what happened at Blackburn when Souness left?
Yup, Blackburn eventually got their engine burning, and saved their Premiership ticket with lots of place to spare!!!

And what exactly has Souness done to show for in his Manager career, except destroying Liverpool and putting them back to square one?
As a Man United fan I actually thank him for that, though... :wink:

Still, to this day, I think sacking ol' Robson in favour of Souness was a huge mistake...


Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:51 pm

What is football?.

Don"t have this sport? in my country.

Mon Aug 15, 2005 6:11 pm

iamhekev wrote:What is football?.

Don"t have this sport? in my country.

:lol: :lol:

Tue Aug 16, 2005 12:37 pm


Nobody can understand the decision to hire Souness. You could smell trouble from day one. When Robson was sacked, sure we were not doing brilliantly at the time, but remember this was the guy who saved us from relegation in 1999.

However, Robson did seem a little out of touch towards the end. It was he who bought many of the players who subsequently caused trouble: Bellamy, Robert, Bowyer, Kluivert, etc etc. Dyer was a left-over from the Gullitt era. It was also noted that he did not seem to know how to discipline the younger players. But at the age of 71 he was still out there on the training field every day, loving it as much as he had done 50 years before.

But, Robson did go, and there were other managers in the frame: Steve Bruce, for example, would have been my choice.

Tue Aug 16, 2005 1:36 pm


Newcastle has to be the best team not to win any trophies over the last decade or so!

Premiership Runners Up in 1996 and 1997.

Defeated in the FA Cup finals in 1998 and 1999.

Even defeat in the Charity Shield in 1996!

Surely they'd deserved some silverware to show for it!

But, ehm... a certain club from Manchester wearing red shirts has stood in their way on a couple of occasions... :oops: :roll: :wink:


Fri Aug 19, 2005 10:13 pm

As a Dutchman I feel the need to ask this:

Why did Newcastle put Gullit in the topspot?
And WHY did Robson buy Kluivert?

Gullit has to be one of Holland's top players ever, but as a coach he is terrible! Same story last year at Feyenoord ....
And Kluivert had everything to become one the world's best strikers, but after his early years (Ajax + Barca) he went downhill very fast. That guy was so extremely good in scoring goals that he is Holland's leading international goalscorer, even though he hasn't played for Holland for a while now ...

Who needs Kluivert, when you have Van The Man, Makaay and Robben. 8)

Sat Aug 20, 2005 10:25 pm

Well, one thing is for sure, the Premiership will not be going Newcastle's way this season. Two games in, no goals and one point.


As to why Newcastle appointed Ruud Gullit, I'll never know. He was fired by Chelsea as an indirect result of his arrogance, which he carried over nicely to his Newcastle job, culminating in that infamous match against Sunderland when he left Alan Shearer and Duncan Ferguson on the bench in a game Newcastle ultimately lost. The following morning, Ferguson went and kicked down Gullit's office door and by the weekend the Dutchman was out.

As to the signing of Kluivert, that is a little more understandable, since he was available on a free transfer and, it seems, anzious to prove himself again. If a player says that they want to turn things around and be given another chance, what do you do, particularly with a player of Kluivert's quality? Many have complained that Kluivert sat on the bench and took home a huge wage, rumoured to be in the region of £60,000 a week, and perhaps Newcastle should have got rid of him in the January transfer window instead of waiting until the summer.

A proven goalscorer is what we now need. The best that Graeme Souness can come up with (there was never a realistic chance of landing Michael Owen), is Luque from Deportivo La Curuna.

As others have testified in this thread already, Newcastle is a side that is always the bridesmaid, never the bride. And that is the reason why, in games where Newcastle is involved, neutral fans always want them to win. I don't know how I would be able to cope if they actually do win something one day.

Sun Aug 21, 2005 12:37 am

Advocaat persisted in a Kluivert-Nistelrooy strikeforce, but the result had always been zero. Van Nistelrooy worked his ass off (as usual), but Kluivert only seemed to work his ass off in the various nightclubs in Spain and Amsterdam. He bacame very 'famous' for his lifestyle and he was more in the news because of an alleged rape and a speeding accident (in which a man got killed) than as a good player. And also in his last year with Barca Kluivert was terrible and it seemed like he had to intention at all anymore to do what he was good at: scoring goals.
Kluivert is indeed a very expensive player. Although Newcastle got him on a tranferfree-base he still cost them a lot of pounds. When Rijkaard came to Barcelona he offered Kluivert a new contract that was worth only 60 % of his old contract, but in the case that he would play well the contract would become 120 % of his old contract. So (naturally) Kluivert decided to leave! He did not want to work for his money! These are the exact same words Rijkaard used when asked about the leaving of Kluivert on Dutch TV. And keep in mind that these two played together in the Ajax squad that won the Champions League. Rijkaard sent away nearly all Dutch players at Barca with the exception of Gio, and he also wanted to keep Davids (whom he got on loan from Italy) but Davids wanted to succeed at Inter. By the way I just saw Davids making his debut in the Premiership for Spurs, and I sure hope he will do well.
I'm afraid Kluivert's career is over. But he's had his chances.

Don't start with Gullit! He is the one who retired from the Dutch national squad 3 (!!) times, and he is the one who left Holland only a couple of days before their first match during the World Championship in 1990. One of the biggest ego's in football! If there is a high-society party going on or a catwalk nearby somewhere in your neighbourhood, that is where you'll find Gullit. No, he is not my kind of player/coach.

Sun Aug 21, 2005 12:47 am

Do you guys have to talk about Newcastle? I'm from Sunderland for God's sake! We're sworn enemies :shock: :wink:

Sun Aug 21, 2005 2:03 am

CHELSEA are gonna walk away with the title for the next 5 years. :lol:

We certainly dont have to worry about any injury worries.We can just buy another player. :lol:
Our B-Team will beat Arsenal or Man.Utd A-Team any day. :wink:

The title is gonna has blue ribbons on it for a long time.Get used to it.


Sun Aug 21, 2005 1:59 pm

Bob-Holland wrote:When Rijkaard came to Barcelona he offered Kluivert a new contract that was worth only 60 % of his old contract, but in the case that he would play well the contract would become 120 % of his old contract.


How does that work? By playing well do you mean he had to score a certain amount of goals? That seems a bit unfair as a contract.

I remember the Gullit / Sunderland fiasco! Newcastle could certainly use managerial consistency! :D Souness is already talking about losing his job. This is the manager, two games in. Doesn't bode well. As a neutral I'd love to see Newcastle do well but if they can't get the right manager the blame lies with the board!

Sun Aug 21, 2005 3:58 pm


By all means, let's talk about Sunderland. I don't agree that the two sides are sworn enemies. Rivals, yes, of course, but I hate the way Newcastle fans behave every time the Sunderland team coach pulls up to St. James' Park. Shameful and embarrassing. But it was the sheer horror of the Sunderland game in 1999 that ended Gullitt's career on Tyneside.


I too watched Davids play for Tottenham yesterday and already they are top of the Premiership (not for long, I fear). Davids is a great player and an excellent buy for them.


Sadly, you have hit upon both the delights and the downfall of having a multi-billionaire in charge of the club. Thank God, for a start, we only have two opportunities a season when players can be bought and sold, precisely so that the likes of Chelsea cannot just go out and spend £20 million just to replace an injured player. The reason why Chelsea won the title last season is not simply their £160 million worth of talent, but Jose Morinho, a proven winner who can motivate any team. Although it was, of course, Newcastle who kicked them out of the FA Cup last season and Liverpool who beat them in the Champions League. Chelsea will expect to do better, particularly in the latter competition, this time around.

I watched the highlights this morning of The Championship (the old Division 1 for those, like me, who find it hard to keep up), and in almost every game there were goals that would have graced any Premiership match. The one I remember in particular was Leeds United's second goal against Wolves. Rob Hulse is a name to watch in the future in my view.

Sun Aug 21, 2005 11:53 pm

Yes, the new contract, offered to Kluivert, was a contract based on 'the better you play, the more you earn'. And to be fair, Kluivert hardly worked anymore for his top paycheque (in fact, he still doens't) in his last two years in Spain. Rijkaard's idea was a brilliant one, mainly because he also offered Kluivert a 20 % increase on his (already exteremely high) salary, but the catch was that (this time) he had to work for it! And what is wrong with working hard for your money and give Nou Camp want they deserve? Kluivert showed his real face by leaving Barca. And since a few years he hardly seems motivated anymore. At Newacastle he brought nothing. And now he is back in Spain playing for Valencia. I really have my doubts he will ever be on top of the game again.

When it comes to Chelsea I have mixed feelings. I really enjoyed players like Zola because of their love for the game, and I used to really enjoy watching their matches. A lot of great players come to mind, like Vialli, Wise, etc. But over the past years the face of Chelsea has changed, and of course that Russian sugardaddy is the cause of this. I don't know. For instance Robben: he always said that he wanted to play for Man United, and he was close to signing a deal. He even was quoted saying that he would never play for a club like Chelsea. But within 24 hours the deal with United was off and he had signed for Chelsea! The only reason for this is: $$$'s and lots of it!
The papers said Man U was 'Robbed', and I guess they were.
What I'm trying to say is the same old story that it's not hard to buy a team once you have a billionaire playing with his new 'toy'. I do not believe players come to Chelsea because of it's history or because of it's stadium or because of it's fan-base. They only come for one thing.
On the other hand, big names do not guarantee anything. Look at Real Madrid.
Lineker summed it up perfectly last year saying: "The USA have offered $ 10 mln for the capture of Sadam Hussein, but Chelsea offered $ 20 mln".

By the way, Robben is from my hometown, and he used to play for the local team (FC Groningen) for many years before he went from PSV to Chelsea. When Chelsea paid top dollar for him FC Groningen also received a huge amount (next to the 9.5 million they received from PSV) because they 'invested' in him as a young player.
Robben is now THE face of the new Dutch squad, and everybody in football agrees that he will be the new star. Did any of you watch him against Germany last week?

Here's a pic of Robben playing for PSV against his old team: FC Groningen


Mon Aug 22, 2005 4:48 am

Stephen Butler wrote:I too watched Davids play for Tottenham yesterday and already they are top of the Premiership (not for long, I fear). Davids is a great player and an excellent buy for them.

I'm certain that Tottenham won't stay top, but I can see them being in the top 6 for most of the season, which would be a rare achievement for the club. Defoe will have given Erikson something to think about with his fine goal yesterday.

Mon Aug 22, 2005 12:07 pm

TJ wrote:
Stephen Butler wrote:I too watched Davids play for Tottenham yesterday and already they are top of the Premiership (not for long, I fear). Davids is a great player and an excellent buy for them.

I'm certain that Tottenham won't stay top, but I can see them being in the top 6 for most of the season, which would be a rare achievement for the club. Defoe will have given Erikson something to think about with his fine goal yesterday.

Spurs might do an Everton this year, and I'm sure they can manage to stay in the top 6!

Now, it looks like Man United and Chelsea already have managed to start the engines. They both look strong.

Arsenal and Liverpool also looks like serious contenders, but it's still early.
Very early.


Mon Aug 22, 2005 12:46 pm

It is still very early, but one side not mentioned so far who are sitting at second spot is Charlton, another side who are more than capable of making this season the one in which they qualify for Europe. Of course, the two teams they have beaten are Sunderland and Wigan, so you could argue that their difficult games are yet to come. In fact that is most definitely the case. Both West Ham and West Brom are 5th and 7th respectively, with a win and a draw each, although I do not expect either to last the distance.

Mon Aug 22, 2005 1:15 pm

TJ wrote:Defoe will have given Erikson something to think about with his fine goal yesterday.

After the fiasco against Denmark Erikkson has plenty to think about! When things are not going England's way he seems unable to lift the players and motivate the team.

Charlton are notorious for starting strongly then tail off as the season progresses. I would expect them to be in a group than includes Middlesboro, Aston Villa, Everton, Spurs, Bolton and Newcastle in fighting for a Uefa bup spot and of these Spurs look strongest.

Thu Aug 25, 2005 11:31 am

I just heard on Dutch TV that Newcastle is indeed close to singning Owen for 20 million from Real!
Owen wants to go back to England, and Liverpool fans want him back, but only Newcastle agreed to come up with the transfer fee.

By the way, that 2 - 0 loss at Bolton placed them in 18th place ...
A bad start of the season.

Thu Aug 25, 2005 11:42 am

The question is, will Owen arrive soon enough to save Souness? This time last year poor old Bobby got the boot. At least Newcastle had points on the board and had scored. It's a funny old game!

Thu Aug 25, 2005 1:37 pm

Seems Owen is not keen on Newcastle, there was talk of him perhaps coming on loan.....gee thanks....not good enough to make a commitment to eh? :? :wink:

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Thu Aug 25, 2005 8:27 pm

About the Michael Owen situation, it's one of those things where I can equally understand both points of view. If I were him, I'm not sure I would be able to make a commitment to a club which has no prospect of European football, and is alot further away from home than a return to Liverpool would be. If he did return to Liverpool, the pressure would most certainly be on Benitez to make sure Owen gets a start for every game he is fit. Equally, I can see why Newcastle rejected his "kind" offer to play on loan, just so he can get himself in the England squad. I can just imagine the reaction he will get from Newcastle fans.

But the whole thing is getting ever more bizarre by the hour. In order to get Owen, Liverpool have not only got to now beat Newcastle's bid, but the board have now got to make their team manager look like an idiot. That will not sit well for future relations. As for Newcastle, the more desperate they are to land him, in terms of results on the pitch, the less likely he is to want to go there. The idea of going on loan has been rejected out of hand, a position I agree with. Better to sign him properly or not at all.

So Michael Owen is, I think, going to have to eat some humble pie in the next few days. Liverpool cannot sign him without stumping up a huge wad of cash they seem unprepared to spend, plus they then have to deal with a manager they have just shat on by over-riding him in matters of football; and Newcastle will only sign him on a permanent deal, not on loan. Owen is, to use the technical term, stuck. It's another season on the bench for Real Madrid by the looks of things - most importantly a World Cup season - precisely the reason why Owen said he wanted to be playing.

Fri Aug 26, 2005 12:29 am

The Michael Owen situation is the Steve McMoneyman saga once again, I guess...

The difference is that McManaman didn't mind warming the bench in Madrid, as long as the pesetas came pouring into his bank account...

Owen, thankfully, seems to be eager to play regularly and make a difference.

But why on earth go to Newcastle, then?
There's no way Owen can save Souness' ass, that's for sure!

As pointed out already, this time last season Robson got sacked, and last year Newcastle at least scored goals!