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Transfer bargains great for NUFC, but team spirit is at risk

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Transfer bargains great for NUFC, but team spirit is at risk

Post  1892NUFF on Tue May 31, 2011 8:36 pm


Newcastle are moving fast to inject quality into their squad this summer. But Mark Douglas hopes the club don’t lose sight of the importance of team spirit

JOEY Barton’s one-man welcoming committee was as uncompromising as any of his on-field exploits this season.

Writing on his new favourite social networking site, Twitter convert Barton saluted the imminent arrival of Lille’s excellent midfield playmaker Yohan Cabaye with the internet equivalent of a two-footed challenge.

In a midnight post on Sunday he told his 55,000 followers: “Cabaye = happy days...... keep spending. Teams win trophies not individuals Tweeps.”

The thinly-veiled message from Newcastle’s seething number seven didn’t take much deciphering. Bring in all the stars you want, he’s essentially saying, but the success of the class of 2011 has been built on something that money can’t buy – team spirit.

That priceless commodity was behind the barnstorming comeback against Arsenal, the terrific Tyne-Wear derby rout and it underscored all of their efforts to bounce back from the sale of Andy Carroll in those first months of 2011.

So it makes sense that preserving it should be the priority when pitching for new players this summer.

The problem is that while United are prepared to dump one of the men responsible for forging that morale, it creates a potential problem for Alan Pardew.

He has been quick to acknowledge the importance of Newcastle’s dressing room unity this term, but the changes being planned this summer will bring a different vibe to a club sailing on the crest of a wave since the regrouping that followed relegation.

United need players of Cabaye’s ilk to progress next season, but they need to maintain morale just as much. And that is why Pardew will have to tread carefully when he reconvenes his remodelled squad in some six weeks’ time.

Given the speed with which United are moving, new faces with impressive international pedigrees seem certain to be among the group that reports to the club’s Benton training ground on July 4.

Cabaye is the first, but one of two highly-rated Ligue 1 strikers in Kevin Gameiro or Gervinho is likely to have joined the club by the time they return for pre-season.

And with former problem child Charles N’Zogbia also high on Newcastle’s shopping list, there is a very real risk of creating an entirely new dressing-room dynamic when the new season starts.

Clearly, the priority is to bring in good players, and on that front the board have succeeded by snapping up Cabaye in a serious coup. Never mind the fact that he is a box-to-box playmaker of the highest order, the fee of £4.5m represents brilliant business.



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Re: Transfer bargains great for NUFC, but team spirit is at risk

Post  Fruity on Wed Jun 01, 2011 4:36 am

surely team spirit will rise if they know they stand a better chance of doing better next season?
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