Most Newcastle fans will agree that the team has surpassed expectations this season.
Danny Simpson – in action at Villa Park
And even if the lads don’t pick up any points tomorrow, at home to West Brom in their final league game of the season, then 45 points is not too bad a return on the first season back, and it’s 11 points better than we did two years ago when the side were relegated.
West Brom have been transformed since Roy Hodgson took over earlier in the year, and what a season Roy has had, after failing badly at Liverpool, but then showing what a good coach he really is, by reviving the fortunes of West Brom.
And we watched Sky Sports last night and saw the reports on Wigan, Blackpool, Wolves, Birmingham and Blackburn – and the torment their fans are going though at the moment, since two of those clubs will take the drop after tomorrow’s games.
But the betting has to be that the current bottom three will be relegated, since it’s hard to see Wigan getting anything at Stoke, and Blackpool getting anything at Old Trafford.
Their only hope is that Tottenham annihilate Birmingham at White Hart Lane and Birmingham go down on goal difference.
That would be true If Birmingham lose by one more goal than Blackpool lose at Old Trafford – because then Blackpool would be safe and Birmingham and Wigan would go down.
Blackpool have scored more goals than Birmingham and the goal differences would be equal, so Blackpool would sneak above Birmingham, who have been simply hopeless since the Carling Cup final.
I’d be very worried if I was a Birmingham or Blackburn fan right now, and it seems the season has come to and end at the right time – otherwise both would probably have been relegated and both teams will need to strengthen big time in the summer, or risk relegation next season.
Danny Simpson is pleased with the way the season has gone for Newcastle, and the former Manchester United player had this to say today:
“I think we’ve exceeded some people’s expectations – not our own, because we knew with the players we’d got and the team spirit here we could do what we wanted, really,”“But we’d come up from the Championship and people had tipped us to get relegated. We’ve proved people wrong and it’s been a pretty good season.”
“The manager left, Andy Carroll left, and we’ve had a couple of results go against us. You do start to get that feeling from two years ago. You can feel what the fans are thinking. But we’ve not really ever been in it (the relegation scrap). I don’t think we’ve ever been in the bottom three.”
“Whenever we’ve had a few bad results we’ve bounced back and pushed ourselves back into mid-table. When various things have gone on that aren’t in our control, we’ve moved on.”
It’s good not being in any relegation trouble at all this season, so different from two years ago, and now the team must strengthen in the summer, and we could even be in very decent shape a year from now.
That’s the hope.