Team Spirit Or Clique? Depends If You're Mike Ashley

10 July 2011 04:46
Toon number two John Carver has dismissed any possibility of dressing-room cliques unfolding at Newcastle United . but what is a "clique" and what is good old fashioned "team spirit"? During the Championship winning season Chris Hughton was proud to say there was a special "team spirit" about Newcastle United. "If we get bad results, like at Orient and Derby, the dressing room get locked and the players sort it out". It probably wouldn't happen at Old Trafford or Stamford Bridge, but it seemed to work at Newcastle. Until the "clique" got a little too big for there boots, and they spoke out in favour of Mr Hughton . and took a sideways swipe at the owner. Hughton left by the back door with a boot up his arse; Andy Carroll was shipped off to Anfield; Kevin Nolan has ended up back in the Championship; Joey Barton is on the transfer list; and Alan Smith was offered to Leeds with Newcastle paying half his wages. The end of the clique? The Toon assistant manager says no such thing is happening on Tyneside. Carver: “The new guys have integrated remarkably well this week and quickly settled in. There will be no cliques here this season. “Alan Pardew has given me the responsibility to make sure they all settle in well, and this is something we have done before at the club. “The French guys have already begun to mix and that is a good sign. “We split the lads up into three different groups and already the new boys have been spending time with players who have been at the club a while. "This means they get to know people – but more importantly get to know the club quicker and what things are all about. “There has been an excellent response from the lads. “We are building up to the first friendly at Darlington next Friday, which everybody is looking forward to. “I think the fans can expect to see most of the squad on duty that night and we will be giving as many as we can a taste of things. “Then we will be off to the States and we should be fit and raring to go for the new season.”