First off I need to clarify that this isn’t some deluded statement from another one of those Newcastle fans who the press love poke fun at. You know the ones, the ones who are impatient and feel that we have a divine right to be at the top of the Premier League year in, year out blah blah.
Incidentally I’ve never actually met one of them on my travels up and down the country following Newcastle, which is why it can be irritating at times. Still, that is for another time I guess as today I would like to get all deluded and fuzzy by pondering whether or not Europe should be on the agenda for Newcastle this season. That’s right, this season!
It’s hard to imagine a newly-promoted (I hate that term, but it’s unfortunately true) team making Europe in their first season back in the Premier League, but it has to be a distinct possibility for boys in black and white. Being honest, my expectations have been surpassed this season and the fact that I can sit here with a semi-serious expression on my face and bleet on about Europe with ten games of the season left is testament to what a great season we have had so far.
So, is Europe really a possibility? Well you’d have to think so. I mean it’s going to need some serious luck and a bit of help from elsewhere (I’m looking at favourable FA Cup draws here), but if Sunderland and Liverpool are in with a shout of Europe then surely Newcastle have to be as well? It all makes sense when you look at the Premier League table.
As I said though, it’s going to take some serious luck for us to make Europe this season, and to be honest it’s kind of not the point of this article and is certainly not the be all and end all of the season. What is important is for the team to keep playing as though they have something to aim for still. It’s been witnessed many times in the past that when a team has achieved their primary objective, which for Newcastle was and still is staying in the league, they can tend to take their foot off the pedal and coast through the final few weeks of the season.
Now I don’t think our squad will do that as we aren’t the soft touch that we once were and have a squad full of honest players, which makes a refreshing change, but if they have something else, something extra to aim for then perhaps it could provide the fuel to rev the engine for a late season charge towards the top six and a potential Europa League spot.
At the end of the day, Newcastle aren’t even safe yet so talk of Europe and top-six finishes may just be a tad premature, but you’ve probably heard of a saying that goes something like “aim for the stars and maybe you’ll reach the sky” at some point. That is what Newcastle United should be doing from now until the end of the season. Look up, not down.
All in my opinion of course.
If you enjoyed this article and would like to check out more ramblings such as this, then please feel to visit my NUFC Blog anytime you’d like to read a different, sometimes wacky, but always original thought on Newcastle United.