Chris Hughton, the Newcastle stand-in manager has talked about how he has tried to keep the spirit of the Newcastle players high in training, and that he has had good help from some of our senior players like captain Michael Owen.
Chris Hughton – has hard job right now at the club
This is what Chris said today about the efforts to keep the players’ morale high this week:
“Michael Owen’s had a big role,” “We’ve spoken frequently about maintaining a spirit at the training ground. The senior players become very important to that. Michael is the captain and a very big player for us but it’s not just him, there’s Shay Given, Nicky Butt, Geremi, Steven Harper. They become more important in a situation like this.”
“The mood has been good. The players realize it’s a difficult time and they can’t affect anything that’s gone on or will go on outside of the training ground. I think they’re conscious of that and the fact they need to keep together as a group and make sure the spirit is as good as it can be.”
“All you can do is work with them as a group,” “Individual players will have their different thoughts and ideas on what should happen and could happen. That you can’t affect. You can only affect them as a group of lads and try to create an atmosphere at the training ground which is good.”
Chris Hughton is of course anxious to ensure his players do not use problems off the field as an excuse for performances on it. The performance last week certainly seemed affected by off the field actions.
“That’s one thing we are stressing, it could be the easy option if things are not going well,” “But what we have is a group of professionals. This is a situation you might see in any other industry and the end product has to be the same: you have a group of professionals who have to get on, apply their trade and turn up every day prepared to work and be part of that group.”
“That’s the only thing the players can do.” “One thing they do know is they can’t affect anything that’s going to happen. The easy thing would be to say it had some bearing on the result but the fact is we had a very good team on the park that day (against Hull) and whatever team plays at West Ham will also be a very good team.”
We heard the same last week and the lads didn’t produce, but they have now had a good week to get their heads together and today’s the day they have to show their professionalism and get the job done at West Ham. While a win may be asking too much, a draw would be a good result for the lads.
We really hope they can go out there and get a result today, and of course the Newcastle fans will again be at Upton Park in large numbers.
Howay The Lads!