Quite a quiet and mellow week on Tyneside then! The point picked up vs. Southampton wasn’t a complete disaster. It was probably a fair result given Southampton’s second half performance, but we still have a platform to kick on (assuming that’s the plan, like!)
With no cup commitments, it’s allowed another solid week’s worth of planning and preparation on the training ground. When Pardew guided us to 5th in 2011/12 he made comments frequently about attention to detail on the training ground and made big things about recovery times etc. Last year, we spent less time preparing for the weekend fixture due to spending the first portion of the week planning for the European games and time lost to travelling, and it bloody well showed. But hopefully, this time around, we’re in a good position to prepare for games and put the points on the board.
Crystal Palace is our next port of call. A lot of excitement generated on the social media sites this week with many picking this one as a trip to make. There should be a large travelling support. I’m going fully strapped with an arsenal of AK-47’s, Uzi’s and AR 15’s and if I see any of our lot acting in any way that could be described by ‘Soccer AM cunts’ as “bantz,” they will be wiped from the face of the fucking map. “We’ll do what we want,” “I wanna go home,” “your support is,” “my garden shed” any shoe waving, beer throwing or general dickheadness will see an air cooled, rifle, unleashed. Mind, given that Millwall, Middlesbrough and Leicester are all kicking about in London on Saturday any little tossers, acting the big lad, may well be kicked to fuck without the need of a sub-machine gun. Be warned.
Palace, now under the management of Tony Pulis are slowly starting to show signs of life. Holloway, who is an absolute cock, had been looking well out of his depth, and appeared to be overseeing an immediate return to the second division, but action was taken and the former Stoke boss was appointed. He’s generally considered a “safe” pair of hands. His style is perfect to finish between 17th and 15th. It’s fucking brutal to watch. But it is effective and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see him recruit heavily from his reliable hands at Stoke who he trusts. Holloway spunked a fortune on shite, but Pulis has recently placed short term trust in lads who have Premier League experience, and whilst they’re not great players, the likes of Gabbidon, Cameron Jerome, Chamakh, Bannon and Puncheon have stood up.
If they’re going to stop up, then Selhurst Park will need to provide the bulk of their points. Already, they have won more home games than anyone else in the bottom 5. They’ve beaten Sunderland (3-1), West Ham (1-0) and Cardiff (2-0) whilst earning a 0-0 draw with Everton. Their 4 home defeats, all prior to Pulis taking over, were Fulham (1-4), Arsenal (0-2), Swansea (0-2) and Spurs (0-1).
It appears Chamakh has had a rocket fired up his arse to kick start his goal scoring as he has 4 goals. 3 in his last 3 games.
Physioroom.com has recently been proving about as reliable as Darren Bradshaw was in a shaky United back four, but, they have injury doubts over Dikgacoi, Moxey, Jerome Thomas, Hunt, Glen Murray, McCarthy and Guediora. They have no suspensions.
Yohan Cabaye is back from his 1 game suspension, and whilst sometimes it can look like games are completely passing him by, our midfield was lacking in his absence vs. Southampton. I expect him to return, but whether that means there’ll be 5 in midfield a la, Man Utd away or 2 up front with 1 of last week’s midfielders dropping out, remains to be seen.
Despite snippets in the paper from Steven Taylor (or his agent) and also despite Santon twice recently getting ‘the hook’ for Haidara, I can’t see any changes in our defence.
For all their effort, link up play other strengths, neither Cisse nor Shola Ameobi look like scoring in a brothel, with £50 notes strapped ‘round their length, so it is hoped that Remy leaves Rob McDonald’s shooting boots with the kit man this week, instead of wearing them for a laugh, like last week.
Ryan Taylor – Knee – not expected back this year
Possible Team (4-3-3)
1.Krul: 2. Debuchy, 5. Williamson, 6.Coloccini (Capt), 3. Santon: 8. Cabaye, 4. Tiote 10. Anita: 7. Sissoko, 9. Remy, 11. Gouffran:
Elliot, Yanga-Mbiwa, Anita, Haidara, Shola Ameobi, Ben Arfa, Cisse
Referee: Neil Swarbrick
League History at Palace
1983/84 lost 1-3 With United still smarting from the 4-0 FA cup defeat to Liverpool at Anfield, the next league action was at Crystal Palace. A Peter Beardsley goal wasn’t enough and the home side ran out 3-1 winners. Of course, we’d be promoted and that would be the last time we would pla this fixture for some time. Attendance, 9,464
1994/95 won 1-0 Now ripping it up in the Premier League, United had raced to a fantastic start to the season, Beardsley had returned from a fractured cheekbone, picked up at Leicester in the first game of the season (Ed: wasn’t it in a pre-season friendly at Liverpool courtesy of arsehole Neil Ruddock?), and we were turning over all comers. Pedro, struck in the 89th minute with a trademark belter. Nigel Martyn was briefly within smelling distance as Beardsley’s rocket, rattled the onion bag. Attendance, 17,739
See here, 7 minutes in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYil_M0F_3s
1997/98 won 2-1 By now, Kenny Dalglish had decided to dismantle Kevin Keegan’s side and for some strange reason, Let’s put it down to a cocktail of class A, B and C drugs and heavy drinking. In fact, if only wobbly eggs and a bag of glue could explain the 97/98 summer, transfer activity. Many, kind, excuses had been made for Jon Dahl Tomasson’s shitness in a black and white (Blue/Orange/Green) shirt, the truth was, he was rubbish. Anyhow, this day, him and Georgian, lunatic, Temuri Ketsbaia secured 3 points. Attendance, 26,085
2004/05 won 2-0 Palace’s stay was a fleeting one, but by the time they returned to the Premier League, Graeme Souness was doing horrible things to Bobby Robson’s team. Patrick Kluivert was struggling to make the transition from Greggs’s pastry counter to the football pitch, but when the mood took him, the boy could play. Him and Craig Bellamy earned us the win. Attendance, 22,937
See Kluivert’s exquisite, back heel after 3 mins http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3DVcwkzg9oY
2009/10 won 2-0 Having ducked out of the Premier League ourselves thanks to some grand incompetence, we had begun the campaign well. Kevin Nolan and a Ryan Taylor free kick maintained our cracking start. Attendance, 20,643
1 minute 15 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CJZEvDBNzM
Crystal Palace Fanzines
Five Year Plan http://www.fiveyearplanfanzine.co.uk/
Keep it posted on twitter on Saturday and we’ll provide any info we can on where Mags are holing up in Palace.
I can’t get any of these correct this season, so if I say 1-0 to the home side, we should win!!
So, all that remains, is to wish all of you beautiful people, a Merry Christmas, a happy new year, and, here’s hoping that the return train on Saturday is booming with “Jingle Bells” and our version of the 12 days of Christmas…………… “5 Ollie Burton, 4 Tommy Gibb, 3 Frank Clark, 2 David Craig and McFaul is the goalie!”
Thanks for reading …
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AFRICA AND BLACK & WHITE – A Mag in Malawi – 20/Dec/13