April 27, 2012
No matter what happens from here on in, this has been an absolutely fantastic season.
I was confident that we would make progress in 2011/12. I optimistically forecast a 7th placed finish for this season and most of you agreed, yet here we are with only four games remaining in with a real chance of making the Champions League qualifiers. That would be beyond even our most optimistic supporters wildest dreams.
As close as we are, it will still be very difficult. We have the most difficult run in with 3 of the top 7 to play against (2 of them away from home) and tomorrows battle with relegation threatened Wigan who have gained some superb victories of late. Not to mention the fact that a 4th placed finish would not be enough if Chelsea beat Bayern in the Champions League final!
We can do it. We have the momentum and the lads are playing with a freedom that is surprising considering what is on the line for the football club.
How have we risen from relegation to top 4 candidates in only a few short years? I take a look at some of the factors behind our progress:
April 5, 2012
What a season we are having! Isn't it great? Some superb football and featuring in the top six pretty much throughout. We can thank a lot of people for this - not least the African contingent in our side. Tiote has been here the longest and battles through each and every game as if his life is at stake. Then in came Demba - now that lad can play and he even brings his friends with him. His Senegal team mate Papiss Cisse has been a tremendous addition to the squad, coming in at a vital time and (at time of writing) averaging a goal per game!
Where did it all start with African footballers coming in to play for NUFC? Not that long ago actually.
Here is a list of all African footballers who have played in the Newcastle United first team, in chronological order (and before you jump in, I have not included Shola who, despite being born in Nigeria has only ever represented England at international levels nor have I included Kaz LuaLua who has yet to commit his future to England or his place of birth, DR Congo)
And as ever - if I have missed someone please let me know!