"A Hamster Wheel Of Tedium" - Newcastle's 2013/14 End Of Season Report
What’s going right?
Not much. The season was going along nicely, wins against Chelsea, Man Utd and Spurs had us pushing for a European spot at Christmas - then the owner decided to sell our best player in January and not replace him. From then on it was pretty much a complete disaster; a shining example of how to cock up a promising season.
Following the sale of Cabaye, the predicable loss of form and monumental collapse soon followed. Like a rudderless ship Newcastle looked completely clueless without their midfield general and playmaker. Once he’d departed and Remy got injured, the wheels well and truly fell off; the season really couldn’t’ve finished soon enough. The whole sorry debacle was nicely topped off by fan walkouts and demonstrations during the final home game.
Got the right manager?
Nope. After one good season and one bad, I was willing to give Pardew this season before drawing conclusion; sadly I think it’s now time for him to go. Pardew’s only tactics this season have been to rely on his key men to produce the goods. Without Remy or Cabaye there to save the day, his team reverts to looking like a disjoined mess. He has in the past blamed injuries or Europe for these dismal performances, yet fails to absorb any blame himself. This being Newcastle though, even if he was to go, I really don’t see it making a great deal of difference. He’d just be replaced by another chancer desperate for a job.
Remy – although technically he’s not our player! Along with Cabaye, Remy was the only other player of genuine quality this season; if it hadn’t been for his goals, who knows where we would have ended up. Sadly I have no faith in the regime securing his signing on a permanent basis. With both him and Yohan gone, we’re already looking like relegation fodder next season.
Who would you like to sell in the summer?
Jesus where do you start!? If ever there was a squad in need of an overhaul, it’s this one. Remy and Shola are already out the door, with De Jong unlikely to sign permanently. There are also huge question marks over the futures of Taylor, Marveaux, Gosling, Jonas, Cisse, Ben Arfa, along with youngsters Vukic, Bigirimana and Tavernier. With the exception of Ben Arfa, I won’t be losing sleep over any of their departures, but if they do all go – they’ll need replacing.
Who do you want to sign?
Remy – but let’s be honest, as this is Newcastle, we’re far more likely to end up re-signing Shola back!
Best chant so far?
“Get Mike to Brazil, Get Mike to Brazil, F*** Gary Cahill, Get Mike to Brazil!!” was a particular favourite following Mike Williamson, somehow managing to turn his Newcastle career around, and put in his best season in a black and white shirt to date. Calling Tony Pulis a “Tramp in a tracksuit” was also amusing.
Best opposition player/team you’ve seen?
It’s hard to say who was actually good, as oppose to us just making them look good! Overall however, I think I’d have to say Eden Hazard. Back in February, the little Belgian pretty much tore us a new one as he rang rings around our boys and bagged himself a hatrick at Stamford Bridge.
Biggest w***** of the season?
If you’d have asked me earlier in the season, it would have been our legendary ‘Director of F***all’, Joe Kinnear. In two transfer windows, JFK signed no one permanently and sold our best player. Now the dust has settled however, I could easily still say Joe, but to be perfectly honest, the buck must stop with the buffoon who hired him.
Funniest Moment of the season?
Has to be JFK’s infamous TalkSport interview - so bad it was funny! At this point, his return was still unconfirmed and I was convinced Joe was on the couch in his underpants, bottle of scotch in hand, having us all on. In this now legendary interview, Mad Joe referred to a majority of first team players by their wrong names (Yohan Kebab!), made wild statements about being able to contact any top manager at the drop of a hat and even spouted a series of lies regarding his accomplishments in the game – is there any wonder no bugger wanted to sign for him!
Next season's prediction?
More of the same. We all know the score under the Ashley regime, just do enough to stay in the league, don’t bother with the cups and sell any players of significant value. New players will need to be bought this summer in order to hit the primary target of maintaining Premier League status; but in all honesty, whoever they sign will be of little significance in the long run. They certainly won’t be world beaters, and if by chance they turn out better than expected, they will soon be sold. The endless hamster wheel of tedium at St James’ Park goes on…