48 year-old Carlisle-born Paul Simpson is an experienced coach, and has worked with Steve McClaren for the last couple of years at Derby County, and Steve has said Paul is an excellent organizer.
Paul’s also been talking to the press quite a lot since he joined us earlier this month and gives good interviews.
It’s hardly surprising that he is impressed with Newcastle’s terrific fans, and it’s good that he mentions the torment the fans have been through – especially in the second half of last season, which was as close to a living nightmare you will ever get.
Paul Simpson with Steve McClaren
In fact at one point after we were hammered 3-0 at Leicester and finished up with nine men on the field after Williamson and Janmaat had been sent off (our 8th defeat ion a row) – I had to pinch myself to make sure I hadn’t died and ended up in hell.
At the time it really looked like it was written in the stars that with only three games remaining we’d lose the lot and be relegated – thankfully that didn’t happen and we got 4 points and only just survived.
Paul Simpson is getting acclimatized to things at Newcastle, and he had this to say in the Chronicle today:
“The fans are fantastic.” “When you are on the outside at other clubs you know what the support is, magnificent.”
“When you think what they have been through it is incredible they are so loyal.” “We can’t promise the world and a big shake-up but we want to entertain and give them something to be proud of.”
“We want the players to be proud to wear the shirt like the fans.” “Hopefully over time we can do that.”
“The spirits are very good.” “This has been a good part of the camp for us because we have had a few days and we are in a settled state.”
“We had a really good session considering the heat.” “We did find there was a bit of lull day because we are halfway through the trip.”
“But the players responded well to what we asked.” “We aren’t trying to re-invent the wheel but it is slightly different to what they are used to.”
“We are hoping that once we get back and come into the last few games like Sheffield United and York, we will have a more settled pattern.”
It’s really chalk and cheese between the coaching of John Carver and Steve Stone, and the Steve McClaren team who are professional and are already changing the mood at Newcastle.
But we need five new players brought in this summer and then some of the current playing squad can be sold.
We have brought Wijnaldum in, and in the next day or two if we can get Aleksandar Mitrovic and Chancel Mbemba through the door from Anderlecht, we’d be on track to having an excellent transfer window.
If that happens Newcastle will have spent £31M on transfer fees for three players – around £14.5M for Georginio, £11.5M for Mitrovic and £5M for Mbemba.
Once Newcastle have completed the incoming transfer business, we can let a few players move on and recuperate some money in the process.