Two steps forward and three back seems to be a recurring theme at Newcastle United

A day after a beaming manager and chairman revealed they had persuaded Alan Shearer to change his mind and put his retirement on hold, all hell breaks loose.

When all hell breaks loose among the Newcastle players it normally relates to nocturnal activities when their eating, drinking and merriment is taken a little too far.

A few days later it then leaks out and a collective shaking of the football-watching public head takes place. Newcastle again.

When Kieron Dyer said team-mates shouldn't be fighting in front of 50,000 fans he was almost right. Workmates should never behave like that at all.

Freddy Shepherd wants to see the club he chairs force itself into the top four year after year and make the Champions League a regular destination.

The Arsenals and Manchester Uniteds of this world - clubs that have done just that - don't have team-mates scrapping on the pitch. The miscreants who somehow slip through their nets and make it to the first team squad are told to shape up or ship out.

If they don't then they are sold. It's no coincidence that Jermaine Pennant is plying his trade at Birmingham City, or that Mark Bosnich now finds himself trading blows with DJ Spoony on BBC Three.

Pennant was seen as one of the best teenager footballers of his generation and has undoubted talent. His self-destruct button has been pressed more than once and the chance of him ever playing for Arsene Wenger again are slim and none - guess where slim's gone?

Bosnich appeared never to be Sir Alex Ferguson's cup of tea, and he was soon heading out of the exit door at Old Trafford.

Dyer, the apparent 'victim', has already been handed two chances this season. One from the chairman for disobeying a direct order from then manager Sir Bobby Robson, and one from his successor, Souness, for urinating in the street.

In the post-match press conference - where was the players' handshake? - he looked genuinely remorseful and claimed he was merely attempting to restrain Lee Bowyer.

But that final right arm flying over the top may well prove to be the stumbling block to his defence - the one that Match Of The Day appeared delighted to show more than once.

Oh the irony of Saturday morning's sports news agenda. High on it was the story of how Dyer still felt deep regret at the role he played in Robson's sacking.

In an interview with The Independent (back page and double page spread inside), Dyer spoke of his first real conversation with Souness. That was in a car on the way to Market Street police station in the city centre after Dyer had been caught urinating in the street.

"If you ever do anything like this again I will bin you," was Souness's take.

A lot of water has passed under the bridge since then, if you'll pardon the pun, and after Saturday's events Dyer may still find himself somewhere near the moral high ground.

Bowyer, however, has more form than the Lavender Hill Mob and he has no defence. He walked up to his team-mate, whom he'd verbally castigated seconds previously for not passing him the ball, and stuck his head into his face.

He followed that up with a couple of right handers and his torn shirt merely backs up Dyer's defence of restraint.

If someone is throwing punches in your direction you hold them off.

If the punches are hitting you, you either go down or you eventually return the compliment.

Bowyer is a player you must accept complete with baggage, as Sir Bobby Robson did. He is not Souness's player and as such his future would appear to be in considerable doubt.

A summer move appears inevitable for him but Dyer may again find his tag of Mr Teflon 'sticking'