Chris Hughton has come out today and said that the loss of key players to Newcastle is one reason why we are again in a relegation mess, for the 3rd season in a row.
Michael Owen – finally back after being injured in late January
But we know our squad was too small for a while and Kevin Keegan had mentioned this at this time last year, but nothing was done last summer to correct the situation.
Let’s see what Chris said to the Newcastle Journal this morning:
“The very simple reason we are in the position we are is because we haven’t won enough games. If I look at the season, there have been changes in the season.”
“It has been a very challenging season, as I am sure everyone would agree.”
“We have also had the problems of having a lot of key players out who are valuable to the squad and that’s one that people appreciate and understand.”
“When you have a squad like ours, with the quality we have, I feel that, if we had more of those players available, for more of the season, then we wouldn’t be in the position we are in.”
“So I feel it is a combination of factors, but we are in the position we are in. The league table doesn’t lie and there is only us that can get ourselves out of it.”
Having top players missing this seasons sounds too much like an excuse to us, and a rather convenient excuse too.
All teams have important players missing during a season, but the difference with them is that they have a big enough squad to combat those difficulties.
They ensure they have big enough squads so that when key players are injured good players are available to come in, and get the job done.
Not so at Newcastle United this season or even last season for that matter.
We just don’t have a big enough squad and we knew we didn’t on the last day of the transfer window, and it’s come back to haunt us again big time.
As we’ve said before, that’s an excuse, and one we shouldn’t allow, given what we all know happened last summer. We just didn’t get enough players through the door, and that’s one reason Kevin Keegan was rightly upset at the end of the transfer window – he just didn’t get all the players he had been promised.
Yes, that’s water under the bridge we know, but if we do survive this season, the club had better learn from its many mistakes this season, and ensure we not only have a big enough squad for next season, but one that is at least good enough to avoid another relegation scrap next season.
Small ambitions indeed.