Sir Bobby Robson Also Had 3 Points From 6 Games In 2003

In 2003 at the start of the 2003-2004 season,  Sir Bobby Robson and Newcastle got off to a very poor start in both the Premier League and the Champions League.

sir bobby robson john carver

John Carver and Sir Bobby Robson circa 2003

We had finished 3rd top of the Premier League in May of 2003, but in our qualifying game against Partizan to get to the group stage of the Champions League, we were knocked out and that was after winning the first leg in Partizan 1-0.

We lost the return leg 1-0 at home, and after extra time we lost on penalties 4-3, and went down to the UEFA Cup as it was then known.

Would you believe that Shearer, Dyer, Woodgate and Hughes all failed to score from the penalty spot that night.

In the Premier League we had just 3 points from our first six games – three defeats  and three draws – much like we have started this season.

This is how we did in the first three months of that season back in 2003.

Wed 13	19:45	A	Partizan	        CPLG 	1-0	
Sun 17	14:00	A	Leeds United	PREM	2-2	
Sat 23	12:00	H	Man Utd	        PREM	1-2	
Wed 27	19:45	H	Partizan	         CPLG	0-1	
Sat 30	15:00	H	Birmingham	PREM	0-1	

Sat 13	15:00	A	Everton	        PREM	2-2		
Sat 20	15:00	H	Bolton	        PREM	0-0	
Wed 24	19:45	H	NAC Breda	UEFA	5-0		
Fri 26	20:00	A	Arsenal	        PREM	2-3		

Sat 04	15:00	H	Southampton	PREM	1-0	
Wed 15	19:45	A	NAC Breda	UEFA	1-0	
Sat 18	15:00	A	Middlesbrough	PREM	1-0	
Tue 21	19:45	A	Fulham	        PREM	3-2	
Sat 25	15:00	H	Portsmouth	PREM	3-0
Wed 29	19:45	H	WBA	        LGCP 	1-2(aet)	

As you can see in October we won all four Premier League games, and in the UEFA Cup we reached the semi final the following May, only to be beaten 2-0 in the second leg in Marseilles after we had drawn the first leg 0-0 at home.

A certain Didier Drogba scored both goals for Marseilles in that game.

We finished 5th in the league, and so it is possible to pull away after a poor start to the season, and of course it helps if you have a manager of Bobby Robson’s’ skill, experience and temperament.

But as we know Sir Bobby had a poor start to the next season too, and in the first four games we picked up only 2 points in August of 2004, and Robson was fired on Monday, 30th August by Freddy Shepherd, after we had been beaten 4-2 at Aston Villa, and his sacking happened to be the day before I retired from IBM.

Newcastle United have been in continual decline ever since Bobby left.

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4 comments so far

  • Laurent Robert 32

    Oct 4, 2014 at 8:23 AM

    Comment #1

    Sir Bobby wasn’t breaking abysmal records though.

    If you ran a sprint race against Usain Bolt, you’d be neck and neck for the first metre.

  • cyprus

    Oct 4, 2014 at 8:31 AM

    Comment #2

    I like that LR.
    Nice comparison Ed and fair enough, but even then, when we were losing, we played good football. How do I remember? Someone told me, then, ‘wow you guys are terrible, look at your PL position’, and I remember answering, ‘not at all, we play good football, the chances will come.’ They did.

    Someone here asked, after the first 3-4 games, would you swap with Everton, look at how they dropped points from winning positions… The answer is (and was) ‘gladly’. Do you think they will be in danger come May? Or, if you prefer, who is most likely to be in danger come May, NUFC or Everton? I wonder…

  • Transfer Sage

    Oct 4, 2014 at 8:34 AM

    Comment #3


    I will defend pardew on certain issues as I think some of it is behind his control. For example the defence, ageing centre backs who aren’t good enough and no quality fullback, couple reasonable ones but ultimately a shoddy defence…any manager would struggle so can’t blame him as he has few options there.

    What I will blame him for is the other half of the pitch. If something isn’t working he very rarely changes it, if he just tried different styles, maybe 2 up top, maybe cabella in his natural position in the middle, maybe only 1 holding player when chasing the game, etc etc. Then people might ease off, it’s the fact we constantly try the same thing every single week (same 2 seasons ago when nearly went down)…just roll the dice with a new system, if it doesn’t work it’s just one more defeat, got to try something, I think fans would be more understanding then.

  • Mag52

    Oct 4, 2014 at 8:39 AM

    Comment #4

    I’d have to say that Dulcinera’s spirited defence of Alan Pardew in the early hours of this morning, while not agreeing with everything he said, certainly made some good points.
    For me, the strongest of these was that a player who left our club in the January window, did not leave, as so many of you Pardew haters maintain, because he didn’t get on with the manager, or because he couldn’t stand the tactics or formations. He clearly had, and still has, a good deal of respect for AP, and there is absolutely no reason to believe that anything he said was not the truth.
    A little bit of balance appears in this unbalanced, one-eyed debate.


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