Analysing Newcastle United's Jekyll and Hyde Personality

Dan SheridanContributor INovember 3, 2013

Loic Remy celebrates his goal against Chelsea
Loic Remy celebrates his goal against ChelseaShaun Botterill/Getty Images

It was an inevitable question. And in the aftermath of Newcastle United’s deserved victory over Chelsea on Saturday, one that needed to be asked.

How could Alan Pardew’s men perform with such determination against genuine title challengers, yet surrender to the Premier League’s bottom club and lose just six days earlier?

It’s the kind of query that has surfaced on a regular basis at St. James’ Park and highlights the bewilderment felt by many of the Magpies’ followers.

And a quick glance at the Toon’s 10 top-flight games this season underlines the kind of inconsistencies that have pleased and frustrated in equal measure.

Defeat against Sunderland was sandwiched in between a battling draw with Liverpool and victory over Jose Mourinho’s men—two clubs where Champions League qualification is on the menu.

Not so surprising was an opening-day rout at Manchester City, but in their loss at Everton at the end of September, United’s Jekyll and Hyde temperament was exposed for all to see.

In the first half at Goodison Park, Pardew’s men were all at sea, crumbling spectacularly and finding themselves three goals down at the break.

By the end of the match, however, they had rallied and were unlucky not to leave Merseyside with a point in a fixture that ended 3-2 to the Toffees.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 21:  Moussa Sissoko (L) and Loic Remy (R) of Newcastle United react during the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Hull City at St James' Park on September 21, 2013 in Newcastle upon Tyne, En
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Nine days prior, a home defeat to newly promoted Hull City succeeded an away win at Aston Villa—and so the roller-coaster ride continues.

What was proved by Saturday’s triumph over Chelsea is that Newcastle have the quality to compete with the best that England has to offer. But they must curb their irrational tendencies.

In a squad packed with internationals, there’s no reason why their current top-10 placing can’t be consolidated, and Pardew must find a formula that encourages dependability.

The Magpies have a tricky trip to Tottenham Hotspur on the horizon, followed by home games with Norwich City and West Bromwich Albion.

Such fixtures have brought no guarantees in the past, but if stability is what Pardew and Co crave, then the Toon must end November with performances to match that desire.