Newcastle have just announced Steve McClaren as Newcastle’s new head coach along with a change in the Board of Directors that we just reported on.
Looks like we got that in the wrong order!
Steve McClaren – our new head coach – that was a surprise
Here is the statement released by Newcastle United:
Newcastle United are delighted to announce the appointment of Steve McClaren as the Club’s new head coach. McClaren joins United on a deal for an initial term of three years, which could be extended to eight.
Managing Director Lee Charnley said:
“From my first meeting with Steve I knew he was the perfect fit for Newcastle United.” “I am delighted that we have secured the services of one of the best coaches in English football.”
“He has 20 years’ experience, including for the national team and at the highest level of European competition. His most notable achievements include winning the Eredivisie with FC Twente and guiding Middlesbrough to a League Cup win in 2004 and to the final of the UEFA Cup in 2006.”
“He has a proven track record of being an innovative and forward-thinking coach and developing and improving players, which was a key quality we sought in the individual to fill this role.”
“Steve also brings with him a great enthusiasm and passion for the job, the Club and the city, which he articulated to me very clearly from the outset.”
“This is a huge job which comes with considerable pressures and I am convinced that Steve not only understands the weight of expectation that comes with this role, but that he has the strength of character and professionalism befitting of a club of our size and status.”
“Steve has been tasked to secure a top-eight finish in the Premier League and he is also heavily incentivised to try to win a cup competition.” “We recognize supporters’ strong desire to win a trophy.”
“It’s an ambition which the Club now shares as Mike Ashley made clear in his comments on the final day of the season. Steve is excited by this and he has our full support in trying to achieve this goal.”
“Our immediate focus will be on working with Steve to assess and improve upon our playing squad, as well as appointing individuals to his backroom staff.”
Speaking of his appointment, McClaren said:
“I am privileged to be appointed head coach of Newcastle United. This is a big club with a wonderful heritage.” “St. James’ Park is like a cathedral on a Saturday afternoon, a symbol for the city and I am excited to be given this opportunity.”
“I know how important Newcastle United is to the city and the region.” “The supporters are some of the most loyal, passionate and devoted in the world. Despite everything they maintain their faith. We owe it to them to do everything we can to reward them with success.”
“There’s a lot of work to do, but the Club has made it clear about wanting success and I would not have come here if I didn’t believe they were serious.” “This Club has waited far too long to win a trophy. That’s one of my primary objectives here.”
“I’ve already won trophies as a manager, and a club the size of Newcastle United should be winning cups and finishing in the top eight in the Premier League.” “I’m determined to give the supporters of Newcastle United a team they can be proud of.”
“The hard work starts now.”
Those are good words from both Steve McClaren and Lee Charnley and there is definite follow-through on what Mike Ashley said to Sky Sports an hour before the final game of the season, when he said he wanted to win a trophy.
This is a big change at Newcastle.
It seems like Steve’ backroom staff is still being sorted out, but it should be very good one, and we really hope that Steve and his coaches can get the very best out of the players we already have – they are much better than they showed this year in those final 20 games of the season.
This does seem like a new beginning at Newcastle, but it couldn’t have been much worse in that second of the season when we nearly took the drop.
With McClaren said to be an excellent coach and no doubt putting together a top class coaching team for Newcastle, it looks like we will make a real effort to win something next season, and we are aiming for a top eight finish – none of this top ten nonsense any longer.
That in itself shows a new ambition at the club that we are targeting top eight.
We still need to hear what Steve’s coaching team will be, and we expect Steve to now be hard at work with Lee and Graham Carr getting some good players through the door.
Let’s hope this really is a new era beginning at Newcastle, where at least the club now acknowledges it wants to win something.
That’s a big change in itself.