Chris Hughton is right to say there is no reason for him to be talking about how many points Newcastle need right now, to stay in the Premier League.
Chris Hughton– doesn’t have points total in mind
Chris said today:
“I think another 15 points will definitely be enough, but what we haven’t got is numbers in our minds,”
“We’ve had a look at each game. We went into the Hull game hoping to get three points and we have to hope results go for us. All we can do is win as many games as we can and not worry about anyone else.”
“We’ve got a draw against Hull which we are unhappy about. People felt we had to get a win, but we still went up one place in the table and that’s how the league is.”
“The way we’ve got to look at is there are nine games left and a lot of points to be won.”
It’s a really futile exercise to put down what you think you can get from each game, and it can even work against you if, like Saturday, a win is expected and you only get a draw.
If we want a draw at home against Arsenal – does that mean our game plan would be to do that – we hope not. No, it’s futile to do that kind of stuff, and does nothing good at all.
The way to go is to put a plan together to try to get maximum points out of each game, and that seems to be what Chris is doing, thankfully.
Of course Newcastle have two massively difficult games against in-form sides Arsenal and Chelsea, before they face Stoke, and then we have home games against Fulham, Portsmouth and Middlesbrough – which now look to be the crunch games that we must win, if we are to survive.
“Arsenal are a quality side, as are Man Utd who came to us a couple of weeks ago.”
“We’re very aware of their qualities and what our level of performance has to be like if we want to get something out of game.”
“Certainly there are some games which are more winnable than the next two games – but that’s the challenge to this group of players.”
“We’re going to have to perform very well to get positive results against Arsenal and Chelsea, but it can be done, the performance against Manchester United shows what we are capable of.”
We expect Newcastle to play a lot better in our next two games, than we did against Hull on Saturday.
As we showed against the Red Devils we can play well, when we have to – well at least against the better sides. But we also have to have good team selection, and we still don’t understand how come Peter Lovenkrands didn’t participate last Saturday. After all Peter partnered with Oba Martins so well against Manchester United, and scored the goal after 9 minutes..
“I was disappointed with the way we started the game. We stressed to the players what we wanted – and with this group of lads there is no doubting they knew what the game meant.”
“But sometimes, for some reason, you don’t start the way you want to.”
“It wasn’t because of a lack of effort or endeavour, we just weren’t able to get into our stride. Consequently we found ourselves behind and probably took too long to get going.”
“Once we did we were the more likely side to go on and win it, but I would have liked to have seen that attitude earlier in the game.”
“It’s an emotional game and we’re very capable of going into the next game starting a lot better, keeping hold of possession and threatening the opposition.”
“If we knew all the answers to why we started like we did we wouldn’t be where we are at this stage of the season.”
We don’t know what it is either, as to why the lads didn’t start to play until after a full 30 minutes.
But that’s the job that Chris and Colin Calderwood have now at Newcastle, and they just have to get the lads playing all out, right from the start of games, and keeping that endeavor going for the full 90 minutes.
If we cannot do that in our remaining games – we’ll likely be relegated – things are that bad.