The Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has talked today about the importance of Newcastle winning the derby game at St. James’ Park today against Sunderland.
Alan Pardew – we must play at our best to win
And of course the very last thing we want to endure is a defeat, that would be simply unbearable, and it’s way back in 2000 that Sunderland last defeated Newcastle United at St. James’ Park – when Bobby Robson was the manager.
Alan Pardew has said he doesn’t want to turn up to training next week on the back of a defeat – we fully understand that!
This is what Alan had to say in the Sunday Sun today:
“I don’t want to turn up at my training ground next week on the back of a defeat against Sunderland. That’s for sure.” “If we are to win this game then we are going to have to be at our very best because Sunderland are a tough nut to crack.”
“There will be a resilience about them and we are going to have to be very good.” “If it is a draw, I am going to have to accept that. But a win would make up for the two points we dropped against Wolves.”
“I am not sure how much Newcastle’s recent run of good derby results plays on our players’ minds.” “For the fans and the staff it is significant – we had a big win here last year.” “Sunderland haven’t had great success against us recently.”
“But you can always turn the coin over and say perhaps they are due.” “I can’t remember the last time Sunderland took the lead against Newcastle – so there are a lot of unanswered questions.”
“But the question I want answered is that I want a better performance than the one we put on against Wolves. That is the mission on Sunday.”
It’s really got to be more than just a better performance than the lads put in last week, because that could still see us end up on the losing side.
We were hardly anywhere near our best last week against Wolves, who after all are one of the weakest sides in the Premier League.
What we want to see today is a performance coming close to what the lads gave against Manchester United at home on January 4th, when we walloped the Premier League Champions 3-0 – that would be more like it!
If we can play close to that form we will be too good for Sunderland, but we agree with Alan this game will not be an easy one – we know that.
But Newcastle still have to find some way to win – if only for the fans.