Sam Allardyce talked to the Evening Chronicle this afternoon and you just have to read what he says to understand how real, uncomplicated and down to earth he is. He is also nearly always right in what he says – and it’s no different here.
We just hope that every member of the squad listens and understands Sam’s words and puts them into action for the full 90 minutes tomorrow. If they do then a win is very likely indeed.
Newcastle Manager Sam Allardyce – the journey to greatness begins tomorrow and the players have to be ready from the first minute on
This is what Big Sam told the Evening Chronicle this afternoon.
â€œWeâ€™ve already lost there five times on the trot and we are the underdogs tomorrow â€“ and thatâ€™s a fact because youâ€™ve got to look at the record.â€
â€œWe canâ€™t get carried away when we get down to the Reebok. In the past weâ€™ve had a miserable record there and got battered on several occasions.â€
â€œWe have to make sure we turn it around.â€
Isn’t it strange that Sam was the Bolton manager when we (Newcastle) got battered down there. Think Sam must be having some sense of satisfaction about the Bolton wins â€“ which are a little ironic (if that’s the right word). We’re sure that Sam would love to reverse that record tomorrow, however.
Sam will have four of his new signings in his starting line-up in Geremi, Mark Viduka, Alan Smith and David Rozehnal, with Joey Barton injured and Jose Enrique and Cacapa not yet ready to play after concentrating on settling in at Newcastle.
The Newcastle manager went on:
â€œI think weâ€™re improving and slowly getting better and better the more we know each other.â€œFrom my point of view, the lads need to know the game a bit more. I need to continue to show them what they need to do.â€
â€œTowards the end of the Sampdoria game I changed it to a back five. They were looking too dangerous, and we had to make sure we saw the game out 1-0.â€
â€œAdaptability is something weâ€™re going to have to learn, and learn very quickly, to get us back in a game or to make sure we win a game.â€ â€œIf we do that, then weâ€™ll win more games than we lose this season. Thatâ€™s the main focus, along with fitness and strength.â€
â€œIt was very pleasing to score from a set play and not concede a goal.â€
â€œWe must take that determination and resilience into the game tomorrow, because it wonâ€™t be about football for the first 25 minutes.â€
â€œItâ€™s about who closes who down, and who makes a serious mistake.â€
â€œThere wonâ€™t be a minute or a second when youâ€™re on the ball and there wonâ€™t be someone breathing down the back of your neck and closing you down.â€
â€œPlaying it out of the defense and rolling it across the back like weâ€™ve seen all pre-season goes out the window, believe me.â€
â€œThe lads will have to get their sleeves rolled up at the Reebok.” â€œThose who win the battles first will end up playing most of the football, taking their chances and getting a good result.
â€œI know it sounds a bit daft, but we do not have to hit the ground running at Bolton tomorrow but sprinting â€“ although at the same time the Premiership is still a marathon.â€
Great words from Sam. While we don’t want to be too melodramatic we think the game tomorrow is very important for the club. It’s the first game on a journey to greatness for the Sam Allardyce era at Newcastle. That’s also meant to be a tribute to Sam for the positive impact he has made on the club and the fans in the short 3 months he has been manager of our club.
We wish him good luck on the journey – and to be sure, we’ll be with him every step (kick?) of the wayÂ Â Â