Shay So Happy To Prove Critics Wrong

Shay Given was delighted that Newcastle disappointed the many people who were hoping for a defeat at Stoke City on Sunday, so they could get at under-pressure manager Sam Allardyce again.


Shay Given – delighted to prove the doubters wrong

Sam told the Newcastle Journal this morning:

“We’re delighted to disappoint everyone who wanted us to fall flat on our faces,” “People wanted us to fail so they could have another go at the manager, but we avoided becoming the upset they all wanted. We stuck together and we knew what to expect from Stoke.”

“The television cameras were at Stoke because they expected it to be another upset, that was why there was all the interest in us. We had to go there and do a professional job, although obviously it would have been better if we had won the game. We passed the ball well, but the conditions got worse as the game went on and that helped them rather than us.”

“We created a few chances but we didn’t take them and we had to defend well at the end because they put us under a lot of pressure in the second half.”

We thought the lads played well on Sunday when they had everything to lose and not too much to gain. The TV cameras beamed the game around the world, but we thought it was a very good game to watch. Newcastle were a bit unlucky in the first half not to get a goal and were a bit lucky in the second half to get away with a clean sheet.

But that’s the luck you tend to get when you play with the grit, determination and skill the lads displayed on Sunday. We are going to continue to look on the bright things of things at the Newcastle club, but also be realistic about things. Yes, you’re right, we’re not doing too grand at the moment.

Shay continued:

“The main thing was to avoid defeat, but the tie is not over yet. They showed some good quality, particularly in the second half and they are a team who are flying high in the Championship, so it’s certainly not job done.”

“But we’re delighted we’re still in the draw, especially after watching the games over the weekend. A lot of Premier League teams were knocked out by lower league opposition and Liverpool only managed to draw at Luton, so the FA Cup still has the ability to produce plenty of shocks.”

“We’re happy we’re not one of them at the moment because this competition can do that, it’s their cup final.” “We had a nightmare against Birmingham City last year having earned a replay, so there will be no complacency. Those memories are still too fresh in the memory for that.”

The press will no doubt continue to try to get Big Sam sacked. That would be good news for them because it will likely sell more of their papers. But we think Sam has proved in the last 3 games that he can get the players to play for him, and he definitely hasn’t lost the dressing room.

It’s not going to be at all easy in January, because we now have two games away at the Emirates Stadium (if we get through the 3rd round replay) and one at Manchester United, so we may not get too many wins this month.

Shay added:

“We as players have to stand up and be counted because the only reason the manager is under pressure is that we are under-performing. We’ve got to put that right, stick together and start playing better.”

“As I’ve said before, the manager doesn’t cross the line, it’s up to the players. The team he picks has to start performing for Newcastle United.”

Well Shay is right there, and our next game is one for heroes at Old Trafford on Saturday. That w ill be a tough game, and much will rest on whether our defense can handle the Manchester fire-power. It’s also about time our own Michael Owen started coming into the picture more with a goal or two. We’d also like to continue to see Lua Lua and Carroll on the bench, so we can see what the young pair can do.

Comments always welcome.

9 comments so far

  • Leo

    Jan 8, 2008 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #1

    who care about that. newcastle approach arsenal about lassana diarra… didnt i say so… will be a good signing because he can play right back right midfield and centre midfield.

  • Andy C

    Jan 8, 2008 at 12:03 PM

    Comment #2

    Well said Shay, and Ed your right about us probs not gettin too many points this month but as longer as the players are out their fightin and showing what it means to them we cant have too many complaints. Sounds like Sam is creating the right attitude in the dressing room. That ‘people are out to get us – lets stick together’ mentality is something Fergie used at Man U for a long time and Venables used it with England, it works a treat and definatly applies to us at the minute. Will be interesting to see who Sam adds in transfer window because an attacking midfielder must be top of the list. Would like to see our current defenders given a chance but we could maybe do with more cover at left and right back.

  • James

    Jan 8, 2008 at 12:05 PM

    Comment #3

    This is what the fans have written on the Bolton website about Fat Sam wanting to sign Nolan :

    “We have offered to drive him to Tyneside, which presumably explains this morning`s traffic jam at the Reebok.

    We`re firmly in the driver camp. Nolan can`t pass or tackle and spends most of the time loitering on the six yard line, tripping over the ball when given chances that a five-year old would put away. His absence from the midfield position that he`s supposed to occupy has been a major weakness in Bolton`s play for at least a year. He sounds like just the man for Newcastle.”

  • Midjew

    Jan 8, 2008 at 12:07 PM

    Comment #4

    Anyone seen this article yet, i really rate him so hope it is true.,19528,11678_3030624,00.html

  • true

    Jan 8, 2008 at 12:07 PM

    Comment #5

    Leo, I agree Diarra would be a top signing

  • UTD111

    Jan 8, 2008 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #6

    Well said Shay. Now lets sit back and wait for the comments from the Sam haters in here along the lines of “well he would say that wouldn’t he……”
    Perhaps Nicky Butt was telling the truth too?

  • Bill F

    Jan 8, 2008 at 1:59 PM

    Comment #7

    Have to admit I’ve been eating a few words re. Shay he has been playing out of his skin for the Toon and kept us in games we could easily have been hammered in. Still think it’s a pity he can’t boss the box more but he is a fantastic shot stopper.

  • James

    Jan 8, 2008 at 2:36 PM

    Comment #8

    Bill – I dread to think what division we’d be in right now if it wasn’t for Shay’s saves over the years.

  • Greg

    Jan 9, 2008 at 3:24 AM

    Comment #9

    Well said shay my ass, we were lucky to get a draw against STOKE, thats falling flat on your face.
    If your happy drawing against stoke then there is some serious issues.


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