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News and Commentary On Newcastle United Football Club By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Sam So Concerned About Newcastle Form

10:54 am, Thursday, November 1st, 2007 by Ed Harrison · 9 Comments

Sam Allardyce talked to the Newcastle Journal this morning about his side, who are showing inconsistent form, and are playing like a different team away from St. James’ Park.

What we have to hope for is all 3 points against Portsmouth on Saturday, but that will probably be our biggest test at St. James’ this season so far. Portsmouth are a good side and 2 points above Newcastle in the league table at the moment.

A win of course will leap frog us above Portsmouth in the league.

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Sam Allardyce - needs to educate his new players and have them gel – but quickly


Sam talked today to Luke Edwards of the Newcastle Journal:

“We are very happy with the bunch of players that we’ve got and we are ecstatic at our home form, but the away form is a big concern for us at the moment,”

“It’s not just a problem for Newcastle this season, it’s a deficiency which has been a problem for this club for many years and it is something we have to put right if we are going to be successful.”

“ We can’t keep relying on home wins the whole time, we have to start picking up points on our travels. Once we can do that we will also play with more confidence away from home.”

“We’ve not played well away from home since the games at Bolton and Middlesbrough. We played 4-5-1 in both those games, but we don’t really have the players available to play that way so we’ve gone to 4-4-2.”

“ It’s something we are looking at closely because our next away game is at Sunderland and we don’t want our supporters to go there and leave unhappy. It’s the biggest game of the season for both Newcastle and Sunderland supporters and we don’t want to let ours down.”

The away form since our Middlesbrough draw has been so disappointing. A surrender to the bottom team at Derby County and then we were well beaten in the second half at Manchester City followed by defeat against Reading, who are well below us in the league. In there also is our defeat at Arsenal against the Arsenal reserve side – again we played well in the first half but finally capitulated in the second half with just 10 minutes to go.

Sam went on:

“I wouldn’t say I was shocked by the performance at Reading, but we were disappointed because some of the players do not seem to have grasped the fact that you cannot play the same way in every single game”

“Every game needs different qualities to win it and we have to learn that playing and beating a team like Tottenham, who allow you to play football, is not going to be the same as playing a side like Reading who play in a completely different way.”

“For the foreign players, especially, that is something they have to learn as quickly as possible, but of course it’s going to take a little bit of time.”

“I don’t think there is any league in the world which has more diverse styles than the Premier League. You can play Arsenal one week, who play one way, and then a team like Reading the next that play in a completely different way. That can be hard for foreign players to adapt to, but it’s our job to get them to learn these lessons as quickly as we can.”

“Of course it takes time for a new team with so many defenders from abroad to gel and get used to the variations in English football, but we are trying to speed up that learning process as much as we can.”

We’re in a bit of a time warp right now, because we know it takes time for the new players to gel, but we really do not have much time if we are to finish this season high up in the league, which has to be our target. It’s a bit of a dilemma for Sam and his coaching staff.

The good thing is we only have 3 games in November, so there is time on our side, at least for the next 4 weeks. But then starting December 1st we have 8 games in 33 days. Let’s hope most of our problems have been sorted out by then. There’s a lot of points to be won before the end of the year.

Comments and opinions always welcome.



Tags: Newcastle News



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9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Rich // Nov 1, 2007 at 11:06 AM

    I wish Sam would stop blaming everyone else and look at his mistake, playing 4 centre midfielders, Width is the key Sam you cant play football on a cricket strip!! Obviously hes not aqll to blame but we really need to start playing in an attacking, confident manner away from home, we do this and we will score goals and secure more points!

  • 2 indian toon // Nov 1, 2007 at 11:11 AM

    get things sorted out soon sam.. choose between geremi/butt and emre\ barton.. please play milner and zog.. get roz back in the back four. and get smith and martins\owen preferably martins up front.. though am not a geordie so. i realize the importance of the derby match.. but nevertheless it’s much awaited game of the season.. as for portsmouth i think they’ll be low on confidence after their game against blackburn.. goin for a 2-0 ..

  • 3 Brisbane Mag // Nov 1, 2007 at 11:25 AM

    We’re all concerned with the way we play away from SJP, but we’re are home on Saturday and need 3 points.

    As for our game after Pompey, we must not lose against Sunderland; that’s a given…..

  • 4 bowsie // Nov 1, 2007 at 11:31 AM

    We should be prepared to give some slack to Sam – the home form is amazing and it shows that he’s doing something very, very right with this side. The away form will come with time, just don’t expect miracles this season.

    Most of us thought top 8 was a realistic aim for this season and as long as it looks like we’ll finish in those positions I, for one, would be really happy.

  • 5 indian toon // Nov 1, 2007 at 11:35 AM

    i’d be dissapointed if we are not in a position to qualify for intertoto atleast.. a club of nufc’s stature should be playin european football every season.. hopefully we’ll get that , even the palyer’s’ like habib beye , geremi, enrique’ barton hav all clearly stated that they want to finish on the top six. beye for 5th position. geremi 6th, enrique 5 th and barton 6th.. so aim higher so u’ll get somewhere near that…

  • 6 Rich // Nov 1, 2007 at 11:58 AM

    Totally agree Indian Toon, outwith the top 4, ourselves and Spurs have by far the next best squads in the premieship, outside the euro places is a big disappointment i feel.

  • 7 toonUSA // Nov 1, 2007 at 2:52 PM

    First off let’s quit this talk of Europe and how bad it would be if we don’t make it. We finally have a manager that has the balls to change things in the middle of the game when he realizes he got the tactics wrong. It took Sir Alex 4 years before he accomplished anything at man united. Failure brings you one step closer to success. It exposes your weakest links and allows you to build a good team. From what has transpired since the departure of Sir Boby, I think we can all agree that we have the best manager since then. How many times did we moan about the daft tactics of Gram, then Mr. Rodent and his daft use of substitutes (or lack off). Gentlemen gear up Big Sam talks a lot of sense, I see him still experimenting with the team and that is good. He is not like the Muppets we have had who stick with the team that wins them one game. Stop moaning stop thinking about the end of the season and take things one game at a time. I live in Boston and the most successful team in American football is the only team that never talks about what lies three weeks down the line. They are only concerned about the next game and that how it should be. Cut this nonsense about Europe, look back at the Carling cup and all the talk that went on about our best chance to win something and then bam we lose the next game.

    All that is in my focus is beating Pompay and that’s all that matters and god forbid we lose then I will still have faith in the manager to pull the lads back.

  • 8 Leo // Nov 1, 2007 at 5:30 PM

    how many times is he going to reiterate that???

  • 9 Tripp // Nov 1, 2007 at 6:55 PM

    until the whingers stop whinging, I suppose. I completely agree with it (maybe it’s a Stateside thing ;) )




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