Friday, December 24, 2010

Knuckle down Nile

Interesting comments from Alan Pardew today concerning Nile Ranger. The striker was due to start at Birmingham after his cameo against Liverpool helped to unsettle the Reds' defence and ultimately win the game, but Pardew said: "At the moment, he's probably still at the stage of being an impact player to a degree. When I see a bit more of him in training, and see him on time and being disciplined, that's when I'll feel willing to put him in the first team."

What's worrying is that this isn't the first time Ranger's attitude has been questioned - clearly the problem lies with the player rather than the incoming manager, who seems to have quickly reached the same conclusion as his predecessors and other observers. Ranger would do well to heed the warnings - he may have secured himself a long-term contract, but as yet he's only shown "potential" and is some way off becoming "a consistently good player". A place alongside Rocky is probably his for the taking (and of course Rocky is a good role model - at least on the pitch...) - but it remains to be seen whether he can find the necessary discipline, desire and drive to succeed.

On the subject of attitude problems, ASBO's continued to spout off to the Journal, claiming he thrives in (self-created) adversity: "I’ve been blessed with an extraordinary inner strength. To get yourself in the shit I’ve got myself in and to come back, and the level I’m at, with everything that goes on with the media intrusion and media spotlight."

He went on to criticise the hypocritical attitudes of others: "I see a lot of people in this industry being false to themselves and being this person they want others to perceive them as. I see that every single day, there’s a load of bullshit merchants, I don’t need to name names, that’s the industry we’re in. For me I know the person I am and it’s taken me to fall off the track a couple of times to find that person, but I’m thankful I got there." Look, ASBO, I'll hold my hands up and admit your performances this season have been team-oriented and excellent, so you're finally justifying your signing three years after arriving, at least in footballing terms - but to claim you've fallen off the track "a couple of times"?! We're not goldfish. I'd rather you didn't insult our memories and instead focused on getting revenge on City.

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Anonymous toongoon said...

damn you are bout the most negative newcastle site on the net as far as bashing our own. regardless of bartons past he has become a team leader in the dressing room and on the pitch and probably our best player behind big andy and king kev. get off his back and give the lad some just due for what he's done for our club. that is if you are a newcastle supporter. the way you take digs at our troops i could see you mistaken for a mackem...

2:24 am  
Blogger Ben said...

"Barton's past"? If only it could be neatly compartmentalised like that. His "past" is actually continually present. Even this season he's been banned for an off-the-ball punch and earned an FA reprimand for his gestures towards Fernando Torres. It's all very well him saying time and again that he's learned from his mistakes - but why then does he keep on making them?

"Give the lad some just due for what he's done for our club" - I did, in this post. This season may be shaping up differently (and long may it continue) in terms of his performances and fitness, but please don't try and tell me he's made any positive contribution in his previous three seasons on Tyneside. His influence prior to this season was negligible at best, damaging and divisive at worst.

Being a fan doesn't mean you should abandon all sense of reason and perspective, and blindly support anything that moves in a black and white shirt.

11:18 am  

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