Could do with a lot more strength up front. Ba's been phenomenal (think since Ramadan finished? He was fasting through that so didn't play much) but don't forget we didn't actually get other strikers we were rumoured to be after (Shane Long, Melvut Erdinc, I think Maiga (sp?) from Sochaux). Hopefully we'll manage to get a decent striker in January, if only on loan as short term cover for Ba when he's away.
As for Samba, certainly wouldn't say no to him! Would love to keep Colo, but there were pretty strong rumours linking him to Valencia towards the end of the summer. If, if
we manage a good finish (top 6 as someone mentioned? That would be a dream!), we might just keep him on. Thing is, he's our highest-paid player and Ashley is a sucker for trimming the wage bill at any given opportunity. Not sure I'd keep Ryan Taylor in the back four though. He's doing a tremendous job (and getting a few cracking goals along with it!) as cover at left back, but I would like to see Santon get gradually brought in at that position. Could switch R. Taylor to right back, his natural side, and stick Simpson on the bench though, never been a big fan of Simpson.
And you're spot on about the winger. Gutierrez has had a great start to the season, but when he's having an off day he can be pretty poor. Still a bit early to pass judgement on Obertan in a Toon shirt, but thus far he's pretty hit-and-miss. His mere pace on the pitch does seem to cause some problems for the opposition, but he hasn't shown much more than that yet.
EDIT: Also, that about Ashley. One of the worst things he's done (and there are many to choose from), in my eyes at least, is tarnish the reputation of the club so badly in concern to other supporters. Like you're saying, and I hear it fairly often, a lot of people want the team to do badly merely because of the owner. We used to be "everyone's second favourite club" under Keegan and later Robson (not sure how truthful that is, but read it a bunch o' times), now everyone seems to hate our guts! Wahhh.
That also comes from our descent down the league table (began long before he came in) and a succession of managers playing dull football (hired by both Shepherd - Sounness, Allardyce - and Ashley - Kinnear).
Edited by mark-2007, 08 November 2011 - 02:37 AM.