Sam Allardyce would love to bring a trophy to St James’ Park in this his first year in charge of the club.
Newcastle’s best chance this season will be in the Carling Cup and the Magpies start their campaign tomorrow evening when they play Barnsley at St. James’ Park in the second round.
While it would be easy to think Newcastle should get through the tie easily, strange things can happen in these encounters and Sam will not take any chances.
Big Sam – will not take Barnsley lightly tomorrow night
Sam talked to the Evening Chronicle this afternoon about tomorrow’s game and this is what he had to say:
â€œApart from the injuries to Stephen Carr and Peter Ramage, we had a few other knocks from our trip to Middlesbrough on Sunday, which we will have to look at during the next couple of days.â€
â€œBut I am looking to play Michael Owen and Shola Ameobi up front, and Emre is back in training so he could come into it as well.
â€œCacapa is now ready but he cannot really play at right-back, so he will go in as a central defender.â€
Big Sam then went on to say that he wasn’t taking tomorrow’s tie as a given – and will field a team he believes will be able to get the job done and defeat Barnsley on the night.
â€œWe will be picking a team which we feel will be capable of winning our Carling Cup tie tomorrow night, but it is very important our players are up to that capability.â€
â€œThe Carling Cup is a bit low-key at this stage of the season but we are still looking on it as a very important competition.â€
â€œI always feel the first hurdle can be the most difficult because it is the opposing teamâ€™s cup final and we will go out and try to be very positive tomorrow night.â€
It would be very good for the club to have two good cup runs this year. With one tie in the Carling Cup and one in the FA Cup the total number of games this season is just 40 – so that’s not a lot of games and the squad should not be too overstretched this year. Compare that to last year when Newcastle played 13 ties in Europe.
We’d like to play as many games over 40 as possible because that will mean we are making progress in both cups. First step is to beat Barnsley tomorrow night, and it may not be as easy on the night – as it looks on paper. But we still expect a win.