Most Newcastle fans will agree that the players and coaches have done fantastic this season, and one of the players that has been a standout in his show of guts and courage is Alan Smith.
Alan Smith – shown courage and guts this season
Newcastle have been the team to beat in the Championship, and we were surprised when Alan Shearer last summer suggested that was a disadvantage, because it would make it so much more difficult for Newcastle.
But that’s what good teams are up against every week – every single team has wanted to beat Manchester United for over 25 years now, but that doesn’t stop them winning, and expecting a significant challenge in every single game they play.
But it does mean this season that Newcastle have had to fight in every single game whoever they are up against – and guess what – that’s exactly what the lads have done this season and continue to do.
That’s a major reason why the Newcastle fans are a very proud bunch right now.
Alan talked today about the season:
“On the first day of the season we went to West Brom and a lot of people outside of Newcastle, and outside of the club, had written us off. They questioned whether the players would want it enough.”
“They questioned our integrity and questioned whether we were professional enough but we have just got on with it. We were criticised, and rightly so, because we had been so disappointing when we went down.”
“As a club it’s been nice to have the opportunity to put that right – and winning the title will put that right.”
Smith has had some difficulty regaining his place after injury, but he will be one of the players who becomes very important for Newcastle next season.
We expect Alan to be the number one defensive midfielder at Newcastle, but there will be significant competition for a central midfield place next season, and we are also expected to bring in at least one creative midfielder in the summer.
Alan went on to talk about next season, which we know will be a significant challenge for Newcastle:
“I don’t think we will have as much pressure on us next season as we have done this. Although the only pressure that counts is what you put on yourself.”
“We know the standards we should set and the standards we have set this season. We are probably going to have to go away in the summer and come back 20% better, fitter and stronger.”
That’s the thing. To survive in the Premier League, we are going to have to be better.
“This isn’t a league which is easy by any stretch of the imagination. People didn’t think it was going to be easy for us at the start of the season when they said we didn’t have the players who would apply themselves properly.
“The application we have shown has been the main reason we’re back in the Premier League. There have been no big egos all season – and that’s what we wanted.”
The positive thing that many Newcastle fans may be missing, is that Hughton has built up what we would call a solid squad, and the lads will fight it out with every single team next season, and that should guarantee us some points in the tough games.
Alan is a positive influence both on and off the field at Newcastle, and has always given 100% for the club, and is a terrific role model for youngsters supporting Newcastle United.
Come to think of it he’s a great role model for the rest of us too, and Alan will continue to be a key player for the Newcastle club next season.