Unbelievably NUFC will be kicking off a home game on a Saturday afternoon at 3-o-clock. Ho-ho, 3 o clock kick off, you know, hmm, on a Saturday, hmm, small boys in the park, jumpers for goalposts, you know, marvellous Along with this very rare occurrence on every one's lips is what team will Pardew pick, or even more specifically, what formation?
So with all this in mind, what will/should the team be come Saturday afternoon? This is my suggestion:
Ben Arfa has been totally wasted so far this season at St James', I even wrote an article on it Ben-Arfa-is-being-totally-wasted so in my eyes, he has to be given the number 10 role. The role he craves. We don't want to see Ben Arfa chasing back to either cover his full back or to collect the ball way too deep to make difference. We want him in the final third at all times. Give him the freedom of the pitch to destroy Swansea from all angles. Not by being handcuffed to the right sideline. Away from home? Maybe. At home against the likes of Swansea? No point. Unleash the beast.
I am desperate for Ferguson to play at left back as he will offer genuine width, an attacking threat and has the quality to deliver into the box at the drop of a hat. Something Santon fails to do from the left or Simpson fails to do full stop. We have to start trying this in my opinion as we have no real threat at goal from our full backs. If we think of ourselves as a top team, then this position shouldn't be for defending only. Look at Baines at Everton. Cole and Ivanovic at Chelsea. Evra and Rafael at Manure. Kolarov and Zabaleta at Citeh. We need to add this weapon to our armoury. We have the players. Use them.
(These are the areas we have created chances from. This is why we need Fergie at LB.)
I am also desperate to get the best out of Cisse once again. He isn't the same player he was when he first came. My own reasoning for this is when he plays as a front two with Demba Ba, Demba is no further than 5 yards away from him at all times. It's like a big shadow he cant shake off. Papiss craves space. He has more ability than Demba at making those clever runs and has the finish to match. Demba is stronger than Cisse at playing the 'inside forward' role on the left so for the sake of the team, he must play it. I don't care if he doesn't like it. Just do it. We aren't playing well enough to justify any players ego over the team.
The rest pick themselves. I don't mind if Bigi or Anita plays but seeing as Anita has hit a bit of form recently, it would be a shame to drop him. If Sammy Ameobi is fit then he should take up that inside forward role from the right. He has the skills and the left foot to create havoc. If not, Obertan can use his pace to good use and stretch the Swansea defence to leave space for the centre forward and the loose cannon Ben Arfa.
He will hear the full force of a discontented Geordie crowd. It isn't pretty. Pardew's been warned...
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