Steve McClaren Can Shock Newcastle Fans Next Season

Since Steve McClaren was fired by England in late 2007 after failing to qualify for the Euro 2008 Championship,  it’s difficult to say the former England manager has been too successful in club football.

Steve’s been hired and fired by two English clubs – Nottingham Forest and Derby County – and at Forest he lasted only four months and 13 games before being fired with Forest winning only three of their first 13 games and losing seven.

Steve McClaren -007

Steve McClaren – to be appointed Newcastle head coach

And it doesn’t heighten his appeal of Newcastle fans that he’s just been fired by Derby County, and is therefore available to Newcastle as a free agent – and no compensation needs to be paid for him.

Steve did have some success in Holland with FC Twente, and he took them to their first ever Dutch Championship in 2010, and became the first Englishman to manage a team to a league title in Europe since Bobby Robson did it with F.C. Porto in 1996.

And Steve was good friends with Bobby Robson and learned a lot form the former Newcastle and England manager.

But McClaren didn’t do well at Wolfsburg back in 2010, who he joined them after winning the Dutch Championship, and he lasted only just over seven months and 33 games, and was sacked with a win ratio of around 29%.

The good news is that he’s a million miles better than John Carver, who was simply a complete disaster as the club’s interim head coach, and almost had us relegated after we were 9th top when he took over.

John was in charge for 20 games and lost 13 and won only three for a win rate of 15%, and in the league we got only 13 points from 19 league games – a terrible record by anybody’s standards.

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When Steve McClaren was at Manchester United from 1999 through 2001  he was reckoned to be a good up-and-coming coach willing to learn, and this is what we found in the Northern Echo today – a quote form Teddy Sheringham about him while Steve was at the Red Devils:

“Steve was fantastic,” “He was ready to learn from other clubs, other countries and other sports. And his interest in video analysis and sports psychology gave us another dimension.”

Steve seems to be appreciated most by the players he coaches, and that has to be a good sign.

And the Newcastle fans think he’s a better coach than Alan Pardew.

Is Steve McClaren a Better Coach Than Alan Pardew?

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If we can get some decent players through the door this summer, then we should have a decent squad for next season, certainly better than the one we had last season, and maybe we can also reduce those injuries?

Steve McClaren  has won things as a manager and the opportunity for Steve is that Mike Ashley now wants to win something at Newcastle – that’s official – so the first time for many years Newcastle can try to win one of the local cups.

Maybe Steve  can do that next season, and at least get us into the FA Cup or League Cup final – and even win a trophy for Newcastle for the first time since 1969, and win our first domestic trophy since 1955 when we took Manchester City apart 3-1 in the FA Cup Final.

And last week we learned that was the very first FA Cup final Arsene Wenger was able to watch on TV in France – when he was just five years old – so no wonder he always talks well about Newcastle.

It’s a decent possibility that Steve can help us win a cup next season – and if he can do that he’ll be an unlikely hero on Tyneside.

And that’s not beyond the realm of possibility.

That’s what we are hoping for.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

99 comments so far

  • HarriboNo9

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:40 AM

    Comment #1

    Toon army!

  • Reyantoon

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #2

    From Chronicle:

    why Newcastle chose McLaren..
    Don’t get it twisted: McClaren’s CV is not flawless,but it has substance. When he arrives back from holiday in the early days of next week to ink a long-term contract at Newcastle, he will become the first United manager for 11 years to arrive with a major honour to his name.With stints at Manchester United, Wolfsburg and in charge of England, he will also probably be the most qualified United manager since Sir Bobby Robson – even if his last two jobs were in the Championship. Players line up to speak highly of him as a coach.

  • I chose de jong team

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #3

    Hiring a ‘head coach’ rather than a manager means they are less accountable when things start to go wrong. Ashley can’t use a head coach as a shield for his under-invested in team to the same extent. He’s usually a step ahead of the game when it comes to cynical business practices, so no doubt he’ll be aware of this. Just have to hope that means he’ll loosen the purse-strings a bit…

  • Laurent Robert 32

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:45 AM

    Comment #4

    Here’s a thought for ambition… Get a manager who hasn’t been sacked from his recent clubs.

    Ashley out.

  • Laurent Robert 32

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #5

    …lower league at that.

  • will die for the toon army

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:49 AM

    Comment #6

    For me I was never scared of who to in charge but the incomings coz we r too slow at making transfers. We r very poor.

    I was ok with Mclaren in January and am still ok with him now. Mclaren is a good coach and is very organised.

    Its Carr am worried abt. Let me hop we get the players in . IN CARR WE TRUST.

  • will die for the toon army

    Jun 6, 2015 at 9:53 AM

    Comment #7

    Mclarenz teams are hard to score and at the same time his team find it hard to score that is why he will need some one (a coach) who knows how to organize to score goals.

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:02 AM

    Comment #8

    Rotondo from previous thread

    Magath replaced mcclaren at Wolfsburg and he also struggled n

    I know many premier league fans don’t rate Magath based on his time at fulham but I implore anyone to look at his cv and then tell me that Magath is not a good manager.

    When mcclaren joined wolsfsburg they were in a similar position to the one we were when we appointed pardew (of after the end of that season pardew was appointed) they needed a squad rebuild and had owners with arguably unrealistic ambitions to challenge for the title.

    They didn’t have the players they do now. (Ba’s dost hitting form, de bruyne, gustavo, perisic). They had just lost their top scorers and their top assist provider.

    Mcclarens time is always represented as 1 win in 10 games but as a matter of fact it was 2 losses a win and 7 draws. It could’ve been 1 loss 1 win and 8 draws were diego not to disobeyed orders and take the penalty and ultimately miss.

    I know that record is not exciting but they had showed some decent form before that and in the early parts of the seasons they were only loosing to Bayer, dortmund (who won the title that year), Leverkusen in other words. Top teams.

    Plus a 4-3 loss to Mainz who were managed by Tuchel.

    There are some circles that believe that mcclaren was just starting to show signs of improvement (converting the draws to wins) before he was cut down by a board that expected far too much in his first season after a squad rebuild.

    You can’t really judge a manager in six months can you?

  • Vask

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:03 AM

    Comment #9

    I’m not too worried about the McLaren appointment. I’m not worried about anything much. I’d like to see a stronger back line. And some new coaches. If that doesn’t happen, ah well, better luck in the future perhaps.

  • will die for the toon army

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:08 AM

    Comment #10

    I hear our current coaches r hardworking. I think all they need is an experienced head to guide them. And I believe Mclaren is ideal.

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:09 AM

    Comment #11

    me to not so worried about the McLaren appointment – BUT I’m worried about the transfer window and what comes in we need quality and in most positions.

  • magpie6699

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:14 AM

    Comment #12

    Can never tell how things will turn out. Ask Liverpool fans about Rafa Benitez who, I believe, was sacked or allowed to leave at a time of great unpopularity. Done well since and about to take on one of the most prestigious jobs in football at Real Madrid. And weren’t we turned down by Steve Bruce more than once? Could well have dodged a bullet there..

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:17 AM

    Comment #13

    Will die

    It’s that I’m worried about. Coaches are there to develop and instruct. They therefore need the technical knowledge which I don’t think our guys have.

    Managers are there to worry about the man management and lead the whole thing.

    Fergie widely acknowledge he wasn’t the best coach at United, far from it. However he was a great motivator and he was astute when it came to signings and getting the righ coaches in and overseeing their work. Fergie seldom lead training sessions.

    For this reason I was most excited by the prospect of Garde coming in, provided he would be able to bring his own team that did a great job a lyon.

    That said I will back mcclaren if he gets the job. It’s the board that I will be directing my anger towards.

    A manager without good backing (from support, patience, structures from coaches to scouts and financial backing (not to be confused with simply spending money in large amounts)) is nothing and will not get results.

    Management is like any business. I’ve just seen a sales director fired from my work place. A guy who had an exceptional cv developing multi-million pound companies in the past. Oxbridge educated etc. he came in to take charge of a retracting company and was given no resource. He wasn’t even granted a marketing budget. He was forced to work with a database that is about to collapse any minute because it is not structurally stable. Not to mention the database was not developed for the purpose it is being used for. On top of that the company as a whole was experiencing capacity issues from a production point of view.

    And he was fired for not turning water into wine.


    The guy was clearly very good and more than capable of carrying out that role. But he was not given anything to work with. “You can’t make an omlette without the eggs.

  • mactoon

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:18 AM

    Comment #14

    McClaren only got 5 points more than Carver during the same period, and that was in the Championship so i’m not too enthused by Charnleys interpretation of Ashleys interview

  • will die for the toon army

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:25 AM

    Comment #15


    U r right Mclaren is a good coach and I can guarantee he will do a good job.

    it is Carr to do a better job.

  • Vask

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:25 AM

    Comment #16

    I admit that we do need to strengthen most positions. However, the quality of players that we attract needs a strong coaching set up and I’m not sure just plonking SM at the top of our current set up will do the trick. It feels like we’ve got the most archaic coaching set up in the league.

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:29 AM

    Comment #17


    Citing the points is fair. But I don’t think bringing the championship part in validates the point anymore.

    Football leagues are relative. It isn’t any easier to win the championship than the premier league. In facts it is probably harder because there is less disparity between the riches. Ie the financial muscle isn’t horded by a few teams. Meaning there is arguably greater test of smarts to get out of it.

    Theoretically a manager that is capable of achieving 8th in the championship could also do the same in the premier league given there is an exact scaling up of squad ability. I know that logic is very mechanical. But I stand by my point that a coach that finishes 3rd in the championship is likely to have something about him and that achievement should not be scoffed at. While you are working in a lower standard of league. You are also working with lesser able players.

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:33 AM

    Comment #18

    Will die

    I’m not saying he will do a good job. I’m just saying it’s not wise to write him off before he gets to work.

    As fans I’m sure we want the club to do the best it possibly can. Therefore being on the managers back before he’s given a fair crack compounds the problem rather than helping it.

    Crowd atmosphere can easily have an effect on players and if the crowd is not doing its bit at kickoff of the new season then we are no better than the board that appears to love setting us up to fail.

    If we do wish the best for our team the. I think fans should show it regardless of whether they got their first choice manager.

    I will be giving mcclaren a 6 month period before I cast any stone unless we are seeing carver’s kind of return again.

  • will die for the toon army

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:34 AM

    Comment #19


    believe it Mclarenz head was turned abt NUFC job.

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:48 AM

    Comment #20

    The other problem with win rates is that they don’t factor in draws. Whether people are entertained or not. A draw is still better than a loss.

    Therefore if you take mcclarens 51 wins, 21 draws and 22 loses in 94 games at Derby.

    And you consider half of the draws a win, half of them a loss (10.5 + 51)/ 94 = 65% ratio controlling for draws.

    If you wanted to consider it in terms of points
    Mcclaren competed for a total of 282 points. He won 174 meaning he achieved 61% of total points available.

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:54 AM

    Comment #21

    To put context on that points rate

    Tuchel achieved 48% at Mainz and he is now dortmunds coach.

    Garde achieved 59%

    Galtier achieved 51%

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #22

    I known that doesn’t take into context how good the squads each were working with compared to the rest of their league.

    But from personal opinion

    Garde had a very good squad in the french league
    Galtier has a mediocre squad that is massively over achieving.
    Tuchel had a poor squad so his rating doesn’t surprise me.

  • Toon-Prodigy

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:57 AM

    Comment #23

    Any news on signings? Looking forward to the Messi show later, it should be a great game.

    Funny comment from Sissoko:

    When asked about Steve McClaren the French midfielder commented:

    “I don’t know who this manager is but I am happy for him.”


  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #24

    At twente Steve had 70% first time and 57% the second stint.

    And that was with a squad that was arguably not as strong as the major dutch league players.

    Not to mention the forced sale of luke de Jong who scored a ton of goals for twente

  • Vask

    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #25

    Nice posting lfgaud. Interesting stuff .

  • Vask

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #26

    Sissoko , I won’t miss him when he’s gone.

  • lesh

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:10 AM

    Comment #27


    Ashley never said he wants to win something.

    He said he wouldn’t sell the Club until we had won something!

    Quite a difference eh and history suggests we’re stuck with him forever!

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #28

    Last I will say as I am not trying to advocate mcclaren just correct some clearly uninformed opinions I see (especially from people that wanted Viera a man with no experience to get the job)

    Mcclaren got sacked from:

    Wolfsburg after 24 games
    Forrest after 13 games
    England after 18 games

    By the logic applied here. Fergie wouldn’t have made IT through his first season at Man U, moyes wouldn’t have survived his first season at Everton

    The other jobs he was sacked from Twente the second time round he was doing ok in and was arguably harshly sacked. The squad was weaker than the one he left and he still had a respectable points total considering Twente are not one of the big dogs in the dutch league (az, ajax, feynoord, psv)

    And Derby where there is some case that the sacking was also harsh. He was 2 years into a 5 year plan (stated by Sam Rush Derby chairman) and had a achieved a 3rd place finish as well as leading the table for the most of it in his second before it all went wrong.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:15 AM

    Comment #29

    Steve might be a nice guy, but I think some of you better get too high hopes about what he can deliver…falling down is just going to hurt so much more!

    If he can bring in his own team chances are he’ll do better, but if he’s to work with our under average coaches then he’ll probably do about the same as Pardew!

    Will the football be better? Guess we’ll know soon enough.

  • Blofal

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:15 AM

    Comment #30

    Look I’m the first to say McClaren is the wring appointment. But hey lets face it. We’ve seen a lot worse at our club.

    I’m willing to give him half a season and see what happens.

    If he plays a style we want to see, and stands up to Graham Carr and demands the players that fit his system, then maybe I’ll end up liking him.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #31

    lesh @27…I think you just hit the nail on the head there

  • LGFUAD21

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #32

    As for my take on the Derby squad.

    They had a strong championship squad but far from the best. The one thing about the Derby squad is that mcclaren had a massive hand in improving it.

    He brought the best out of martin who had done next to nowt before his arrival. He signed Ince, bent and ibe on loans and all were very good for the team. Particularly the fact he got such a good return out of bent who had been mediocre at fulham and Brighton before going to Derby.

    Often strikers goal return can be in part affected by the number of chances created. I believe this to be very true about cisse who I think would score more in more creative teams.

    That derby’s team had a number of high goal scorers is a testament to the way Steve had them playing with pace and attacking fluidity giving the likes of martin, bent, Ince and Hughes and abundance of chances.

  • frogonthetyne

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #33

    Think of the positives with McClaren. He can speak Dutch haha. Surely his pep talks to Krul, Janmaat, de jong and Anita will inspire them. He wouldn’t be my first choice but Ashley has hired a lot worse.

    Keegan was never gonna work second time round
    Kinnear was a shocking decision (worst football decision ever)
    Sheared unproven and a sentimental choice
    Hughton had no management experience
    Pardew was a sacked league one manager

    My point being having a man in charge who has won trophies, managed a top 10 international team and has praise from his peers and pundits alike should be given a fair crack of the whip.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #34

    Blofal…so we are back to “it could be worse” 😉

  • Blofal

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #35

    Everyone saying Derby played great football the first half of the season… what system did they play?

    Im assuming we’d play the same?

  • Blofal

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #36


    Its either that or self harm!

  • beermonkey

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #37


    the only thing we can take from ashleys interview is
    F you I am stay no matter what you say or do

  • Toon-Prodigy

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #38

    The proof will be in how many players we sign and replace, not the coach or coaches.

    Wembley next year lads!

    Hows that for optimism! We only need 10 players or so!

  • BoyDoneGood

    Jun 6, 2015 at 11:29 AM

    Comment #40


    Excellent analysis. For me, the numbers always talk. Grinding out a draw when you can’t get the win is a key skill, and the first priority of a manager has to be safety – which means at least not falling short of one point per match. I hadn’t stopped to think about how one-dimensional that standard win-rate statistic is. Thanks.


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