Habib Beye has said that after the Aston Villa game, when we conceded 4 second half goals after being ahead 1-0 at half time on merit, the team just had to come to grips with how they needed to improve their defensive play.
Habib Beye – team had to get to grips with improving the defense
The 4-1 defeat by Aston Villa on 9th February was followed two weeks later by a 5-1 hammering at home by Manchester United, and that was the time Kevin and the team realized they just couldn’t keep leaking goals at that rate. That’s also how our goal difference got so bad so quickly.
The Senegal international says the meeting Kevin held with the team after those two defeats stopped the defensive crisis that threatened to cost Newcastle their Premier League status.
Beye said today:
“When you concede a lot of goals like the game against Man U and four goals against Aston Villa you have to sit down and talk. You have to do something that will change things.”
“After these games we spoke to the manager and everybody listened to the possibilities of how we could play better.” “Against Fulham we kept a clean sheet and then against Spurs we conceded just one goal which was a great header from Darren Bent.”
“It’s good to work all of the time on keeping clean sheets.” “The defence worked really hard at Spurs. And when you are doing that at the back the midfield follow suit and the attack.”
“Mark Viduka and Oba and Michael Owen also worked for the team. When the strikers defend from the front too it’s easier for the midfield and then it’s easier for the defence.” “Forty points is the target, we have Reading next and we have to continue the confidence into that game.”
Since the Manchester United debacle we’ve conceded just 6 goals in our last 5 games, with 3 of them being away to Liverpool. So things are looking up and Kevin plays a consistent back four now in Beye Faye Taylor and Enrique, which is probably our best back four right now, with 3 of them being new this season.
One thing we cannot afford to do now is slip back into any of our old ways. We must keep our good form going, and keep picking up points.
As we’ve said before, if we can beat Spurs away by 4-1 in the way we accomplished that, there’s no reason why we cannot win every one of the 6 games remaining.
That must be the goal of the team in the short term, and that should send us up the league a little.
What do you think?