The first half today against Blackburn had Newcastle almost down and out, when they were trailing 2-0, and both those goals were again caused by poor marking by our defense.
Joe Kinnear – half time talk made a difference
Kinnear took the team-talk duties for today’s match, and his words at half-time seemed to get through to the players, and certainly inspired a reaction in his side.
He told the press after the game today:
“We needed to stop feeling sorry for ourselves.” “We need to get rid of all the issues that are going on – Is the club being sold? Are we bringing back Kevin Keegan? – until it actually happens.”
“We need to focus on playing football, it’s as simple as that. And they need to play football well.” “But what has not helped matters, I am told, is that six or seven of the best players are missing.”
“On the good side, with the international break coming up we could have four or five of them back.” “We need to be more vocal in the dressing room, we need more input.”
“It’s something that I have always had throughout my career, feedback from players, players who show emotion, players who want to win, players who have things to say.”
The game looked over at half time after Newcastle had gone two goals behind, but a penalty by captain Michael Owen, brought Newcastle right back into it, and the crowd got right the players, who were trying to get into another gear.
And Kinnear seemed happy with his side’s display after the break:
“I was pleased with the second half. When we got the early goal we had a reasonable chance with Geremi and he tried to bring it down in the six-yard box when I thought he might have got a shot off.”
“But we were tighter at the back, we limited them to maybe two shots in the second half. Having said that, we need to get more end product ourselves from the strikers we have.”
Asked about his touchline ban, to which there is a real comedic aspect, he had called one of the match officials Coco the Clown some four years ago: 😀
“I got two matches for calling one of the referees Coco the Clown. I asked the referee what he did in his spare time, and that was it.”
Good words from Joe, and he is very straight and down to earth person, who has an earned reputation for inspiring his players. He will need to show that this week with the Newcastle players, but any result at Everton next Sunday afternoon will be a win for the club and for Joe.