Poor Yohan

Posted by Marc Duffy

Poor Yohan Cabaye had to withdraw from Newcastle's team for the season opener at Manchester City on Monday because he was 'not in the right frame of mind to play' after a comedy-low bid from Arsenal on Monday afternoon.

Do professionalism, loyalty and self-respect not exist in football anymore? Perhaps his frame of mind was disrupted and upset because Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger obviously values him so cheaply? Seriously though; Cabaye's actions are unforgivable.

- Report: Cabaye not close to PSG move

I didn't hold out any hope for a Newcastle win on Monday but whatever slim chance there might have been was destroyed by the disruption to the team poor old Yohan's withdrawal caused.

Cabaye's actions came two days after Leighton Baines, Marouane Fellaini and Wayne Rooney -- all the subjects of bids from bigger clubs or wanting to leave their current clubs -- put in admirable performances for their teams as professionals should.

Even before Monday night's actions Cabaye had lost a lot of favouritism in the eyes of Newcastle supporters after an indifferent and apparently half-hearted season last year. Gone are the passionate "Don't sell Cabaye!" chants from the terraces.

Rumours were rife throughout Newcastle's terrible 2012-13 campaign that Cabaye could be an unsettling, miserable figure in the dressing room after a possible summer move to Tottenham broke down. A Daily Telegraph journalist was banned from St James' Park after writing of an alleged divide in the Newcastle dressing room.

Cabaye managed to play in only 26 Premier League games last season and was substituted in 14 of them! He suffered from injury problems and missed a run of games over the Christmas period when he underwent surgery. He returned after that surgery looking no fitter. A hobbling Cabaye looking to be replaced was all too common a sight, especially if his side were losing.

Compare that to 2011-12 when he played in 34 Premier League games. He was also subbed off 14 times in 11-12 -- 28 substitutions in two seasons is an incredible amount.

One thing I don't buy into is Pardew's alleged unhappiness about the Arsenal bid. Was the timing of their bid any worse than Pardew's apparent mission to sell the French midfielder all summer? It seems that Pardew is talking the player up and saying how the club would struggle to keep him each and every week.

I suspect the lack of incoming transfers at Newcastle has been because they expected to sell Cabaye sooner and would use some of the funds to bring in new faces despite the windfall of a massive new TV deal, a billionaire owner and world football top-20 revenue.

Statistically, Cabaye will be a loss to the team. Newcastle have won 25 of the 60 Premier League games he has played in (42%) but have won only four of the 17 games he's missed (24%)

Even more concerning is that Newcastle have lost 12 of the 17 league games he's missed (71%) losing only 20 of the 60 in which he's played (33%).

These stats aren't really skewed by him missing big games either -- including Monday's no-show he's missed only four of the 17 games against last season's top four in the time he has been with Newcastle.

I don't blame Cabaye for wanting to leave, but I won't forgive him for his actions on Monday.

Another day, another fine mess at Newcastle United Football Club, but if they get the £20million they are asking for it's not a bad piece of business.

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