Kevin Keegan savored Newcastle’s third win on the trot for the first time this season, and thinks the team is now safe from relegation.
Kevin Keegan – pleased with his players today
After the 3-0 victory over Reading, Newcastle now are 12 points clear of third-bottom placed Bolton Wanderers, who were hammered 4-0 today at Villa Park. We also have a superior goal difference on Bolton now, and Keegan was asked if he thought Newcastle were safe from the drop:
“We’ve started to play with the confidence and the style that this group of players should play with.”
“I would have thought so, but mathematically you could still say we could be caught.â€ “But looking at the fixtures and who’s got to play each other, yes, I think so.â€
“Although it’s a small squad, there’s a lot of talent there and an awful lot of experience – and one or two players who can set us alive.”
Keegan said that confidence has been the one ingredient that has made the difference in the last three weeks.
“We needed to win a football match. We had a week where we gained something rather than talking about conceding goals and making mistakes.â€
“I don’t think we played as well as we can but we still could have scored five or six goals today.â€
“We went ahead against the run of play, no doubt about that. Reading were causing us more problems than we were causing them, but when you look at our front three we know that if you get it together for 10 or 15 minutes we will score goals.”
Keegan thought that Reading’s plan to stop Michael Owen opened up space for others up front in which what turned out to be an easy victory after the 90 minutes:
“What Reading did today was try to stop Michael, and by trying to stop Michael they left space down both sides. And Nicky Butt could pull all the strings.â€
“So while they stopped Michael a little bit, like all teams you need other areas where you can cause them problems, and we had that today.â€ “What was vital was that we got the first goal.”
It was a good win and Kevin was right, we weren’t at our best but to win 3-0 when that’s the case, makes it even better.
We have 5 games left and we’d really like to see 5 wins to round off the season.
That would put all Newcastle fans in very good stead throughout the summer as we await next season’s arrival.