Sunday, August 20, 2006

Cole to Newcastle?

Apologies for the inevitable title of this post...

Today's News Of The World is apparently reporting that the ongoing Ashley Cole saga has taken a new twist, with Arsenal having offered him to us because they've got a substantial debt to reduce and talks with Chelsea have reached an impasse.

While we're in the market for a left back, Celestine Babayaro not being up to the job, this should be taken with a very large sackful of salt. It's the kind of story designed to sell papers and inflate the optimism of the gullible.

But, quite apart from whether there's any grain of truth in it, would we actually welcome him at St James' Park? Personally I'm not sure I would. Great player though he is, he habitually dives, trips and whinges his way through games against us, and his recent conduct with regard to the club that pays his wages suggests that he'd be a potential troublemaker. Add to that his superstar's ego and it's not such an appealing prospect.

But at least the new Mrs Cole wouldn't have a problem developing an allegiance to the Toon, eh?

The News Of The World are also claiming that we're back in the hunt for Inter's Obafemi Martins, now that we've ascertained that his real age is 21 rather than the 28 that had been rumoured. It's obvious we need reinforcements up front, especially with Shola Ameobi picking up another knock yesterday after notching the winner over Wigan.

In a pre-match interview on BBC Radio Newcastle Roeder stressed how difficult it's been trying to identify quality strikers to bring in at the right price, and assured fans that he and Fat Fred are doing everything they can. He added that he didn't think he'd missed out on any strikers who've moved this summer other than those going to the top four. Don't know about that, Glenn - I would have welcomed Dimitar Berbatov and Benni McCarthy, at least.

In much more serious news, it turns out that the scans our old boss Sir Bobby Robson had after being taken ill at an Ipswich match earlier this month have revealed he has a brain tumour. It's only small, though, and apparently easily removable, and he's due to undergo surgery on it on Wednesday. Best wishes Sir Bobby.

(A report on yesterday's Premiership opener against Wigan will follow tomorrow.)


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