Rafael van der Vaart of Tottenham Hotspur caught in the act trying to recruit Tim Krul
The news beat is still a bit slow during this long break... and the majority of the activity is on the ZOMG DEMBA BA IS LEAVING NEWCASTLE EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY HE HAS A CLAUSE IN HIS CONTRACT THAT ALLOWS HIM TO JOIN TOTTENHAM AND ONLY TOTTENHAM OUTSIDE THE WINDOW FOR ONLY 35p AND A HOT GLASS OF WATER! front, and I'm boycotting that story. There is enough out there, however, to keep ourselves moderately entertained this morning, so without further ado, here's your links!
"I think Wolves at home’s a brilliant game to have coming up. The manager’s gone, and I’m expecting Newcastle to get back to winning ways. "They must now finish it off. "It’s great now. Newcastle fans aren’t getting carried away. They’re realistic, but this club needs European football."
This squad has done nothing besides exceed expectations, and as such there is no reason to believe that they'll misstep v. Wolves on the weekend. It has to be acknowledged that this is the kind of match that they need to continue winning if they are to keep up in the chase for Europe.
Krul is contracted to United until 2014, but that deal was signed before he became the club’s first-choice goalkeeper. And it doesn’t reflect the progress he has made on the field. As such, the 23-year-old, also a senior Holland international, could be in line for a pay rise, with Newcastle manager Alan Pardew desperate to keep his key players at St James’s Park. The club is in talks with a number of players over new contracts, notably Fabricio Coloccini, Danny Simpson and Danny Guthrie.
Last year it was Liverpool that wanted to buy the Newcastle squad... and it hasn't worked that well for them. This year it is apparently Tottenham. In this situation, I encourage Tottenham to check out Manchester United who have two very young world-class goalkeepers. Buy one of those two. Leave us alone. This Tottenham want TIm story is not new, and I'll be ignoring it from now on...
Newcastle are being linked with a move for Montpellier captain Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, who was linked to Liverpool.
Also not new, and probably equally frustrating to Montpellier fans... If the January window tells us much, it may be less likely that we're going to get Yanga-Mbiwa based on the amount of ink that is persisting about the potential move. The club did a magic job of shutting down most of the stories about Papiss Cisse joining before that move went through.
DEMBA Ba has been spared a 12,000-mile round trip in the days leading up to the Tyne-Wear derby. But Newcastle United’s new No 9 has not been so lucky after Senegal called Papiss Cisse up for the first match since their ill-fated African Cup of Nations campaign. It could harm the striker’s chances of playing against Sunderland for the first time. The Lions of Teranga play South Africa in a friendly in Durban on Wednesday.
It's great that Demba is not going. Without Leon Best available, however, I'd just as soon have Papiss around. Shola will doubtlessly get the start... hopefully he breaks out of his funk and returns to Makem-killer status.
SHANE Ferguson is hoping to rebuild bridges with Northern Ireland to revive his international career. Nearly three years after his international debut, the Newcastle United left-sider was named in Michael O’Neill’s first squad as manager.
Good luck to Shane! This one also includes a little round-up of the other Toon players that will be involved in the mid-week internationals next week.