McClaren – We’re Still Only Halfway There

This pre-season was short this year because the season will finish early next year on May 15th, rather than on May 24th – which was the last day of last season.

That’s because the Euro 2016 Championships are to be held in France next June – so an early season end happens every two years, for the Euros and the World Cup.

steve mcclaren

Steve McClaren – we’re only half way there

It’s because of that and the two week International break which has just ended, that has slowed many teams from getting into the groove this season.

Most teams have been inconsistent so far this season – including both Newcastle and West Ham.

Steve McClaren is changing the way Newcastle play, and  the team still needs time to get accustomed to the new way Steve and the coaching staff want them to play.

This is what the Newcastle head coach has said in the Chronicle today:

“We’re probably about halfway in terms of remodeling things on the field.”

“That’s purely because of the short pre-season and because for two games we’ve played with 10 men.”

“We’ve not got a true picture of our capabilities in terms of an attacking force so I think that we’d like over the next few games to have evidence and see that.”

“Yeah OK – keep that spirit, keep that organisation, stay in games and fight for 95 minutes and those things.”

“And now let’s play our own football, create chances and score goals.”

“There’ll be very little change to the preparation, the Premier League’s always different.” “You get games on a Friday now.”

“And we’ve played two games now at 12:45pm, and two at 3:00pm, but it’s changed so much in terms of when you play, that players just have to adapt and cope with that every single week.”

It’s due to the popularity of the Premier League around the world that games have been played at various times on Saturday and Sunday and Monday night too over the last several years.

As Steve points out, Friday night games are also being played this season for the first time – so that’s now a four-day window in which Premier League games are played.

McClaren has emphasized a few time since he took over the team, that fans have to be patient as the players get used to the new coaching staff and the new way of playing.

But we hope to see the lads play well on Monday night at Upton Park,  and Newcastle need to start winning some of these games.

With West Ham losing both their home games this season, maybe we can get all 3 points on Monday night?

Hope so.

How Will Newcastle Fare At West Ham?

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Comments welcome.

82 comments so far

  • Jail for Ashley

    Sep 12, 2015 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #1

    Collocini sums up what has been wrong with this whole sad Mike Ashley business and should have been shipped out to signal the start of this new era, surely there cannot be another PL defender with so many goals against to his name !

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 9:55 AM

    Comment #2

    living on a prayer… 😉

  • Jail for Ashley

    Sep 12, 2015 at 9:57 AM

    Comment #3

    You probably can’t google that type of information so can anyone think of another PL defender who has shipped so many goals !

  • Jail for Ashley

    Sep 12, 2015 at 9:57 AM

    Comment #4

    Apart fro Williamson !

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:02 AM

    Comment #5

    It’s true we have to be patient but Steve needs to understand that he does not have all the time in the world!

    …to quote one Louis Armstrong 😉

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:03 AM

    Comment #6

    Damn…was about to say Willo

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:07 AM

    Comment #7

    We have to be patient very patient. Sir Alex really took a long time to gel. Lets give it time. Finish in the top table for 2 season coz its up down for us.

    12th – 5th – 16th – 10th – 17th.

    We first become a Top 10 team before dreamimg of Top 8.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:10 AM

    Comment #8

    I am pretty sure both Tottenham and Everton have worse defensive records than us…

    Go back to their worse PL season and see who played the more games in defense. ?

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:11 AM

    Comment #9

    We are so ambitious which we r supposed to be not too much. at times. I remember wen we finished 5th we had started talking abt the title and champions league.

    Lets calm down a little bit. We like a loss from a MCCLAREN OUT.

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:18 AM

    Comment #10

    I had lost my ambition wen RIP Sir Bobby left. Roeder tried to bring it back but was sucked in a flash. Then there came KK was happy he was back but not sure if he wld succeed.

    Allan came started but he always has a good start and a very bad ending. so was still biting my nails and Thank God he left that Guy had no clue only backed him coz I had no choice.

    Now Mcca, I like the start. very impressed with the organisation at the back but I have no clue where the goals r going to come from. We leave a game and all we can talk abt that we were solid at the back.

  • The overrated Frenchman

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:20 AM

    Comment #11

    Mind-boggling to me that Colo and Williamson are probably going to be, at some point, our CB pairing again this season. That is truly making your own luck. Pech rather than Gluck, however.

  • toon kk

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #12

    Will die,
    survival in the premier league has to be our first goal this season, we are no different to a newly promoted club, with us being so far run doon, its just like starting over.
    Many people expect to much from our squad.

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:31 AM

    Comment #13

    Toon KK

    If we finish 17th I wld b happy. Its all over again. With a very young squad 26 and below. With only and Colo 33 who is a dependable experienced starter. We r a long way to go.

    And people don’t see why Mcca needed Colo to stay.

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:38 AM

    Comment #14

    Mcca needs a whole season to get this team gelling;

    Krul – Ok jst needs moral

    Janmatt – Mbemba – Colo – Haidara

    First time playing together with a 20yr and 22yr old still learning there trade. Language barrier for Mbemba.

    Anita – Colback which can b changed to Wijnaldum – Anita / Colback
    First time playing together.

    Wat I know all our players are playing together for the first time.

  • toon kk

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:44 AM

    Comment #15

    Tbh I don’t really rate the scouting at Newcastle, all this “in Carr we trust” is nothing but a load of bullshit. There’s been very good pacey players been over looked to bring in flops, which haven’t been cheep.
    you need pace and power in the premier league.

  • davetoon

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #16

    thought Toon Brother had hacked JFAs account for a second there…

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #17

    I think with the players bought young they will adopt. Pardew was never a coach only wanted finished articles. Thats why he might succeed at Palace.

    Wat we have Mcca is a good Coach and wants to develop players. Carr and Mcca will work out.

  • hibbit

    Sep 12, 2015 at 10:59 AM

    Comment #18

    toon kk….. and a good back 4 with cover not square pegs in round holes

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #19
  • SUTTY1978

    Sep 12, 2015 at 11:15 AM

    Comment #20

    Halfway there? We’re not even a tenth in my view. I would be more patient if I could see some changes materialising but I can just see the same Pardew tendency to try and stay in a game and try and nick a goal, McClaren even says that in Ed’s quotes.
    How about going on the offensive from the off instead of sitting deep conceding possession? Crazy ideas I know.

  • toon kk

    Sep 12, 2015 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #21

    Will die
    Your right when you say Pards wants/needs the finished article. But a squad needs a balance. Trouble with MA his regime of buy to sell is very important, so we’ve always got a squad made up of mainly unexperienced kids. People say we need time to gel, we may not have that time.

  • will die for the toon army

    Sep 12, 2015 at 11:40 AM

    Comment #22

    Toon Kk I think we have a balance.

    Season we finished;
    Simpson. …..Taylor……….Colo………Enrique




    It looks balanced to me. Jst our senior players let us down. The shocking thing with NUFC its the kids that show ambition while the seniors look on.

  • Bobbybee

    Sep 12, 2015 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #23

    We’ve played four games of a 38 game season and people are saying we’re running out of time already. Nobody ever said Macca would work miracles overnight and like anybody else, he needs time. The club was a mess when he came in, with confidence at an all time low. Two games with ten men didn’t help, nor did the fixture list. We were rock bottom and now the only way is up. We haven’t had one easy game yet and you don’t go from finishing 17th to beating the top clubs in a close season. There have been massive changes already and the quality of football is filtering through to all levels. He’s asked for time – because it takes time – and I don’t see why he can’t be given it. None of the mess is his fault, but he’s tasked with fixing it. The least he should expect is a bit of understanding and support from the fans.

  • Thump

    Sep 12, 2015 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #24

    @will die: The shocking thing with NUFC its the kids that show ambition while the seniors look on.

    That tends to happen at every club, in fairness. Young lads tend to be a bit more enthusiastic because it’s the start of their career, they’re finally in the first team, and it’s a genuine pleasure for them to pull on the shirt. Young lads will almost always have more energy for the game than the older ones.

    No excuse for some of the seniors being as docile as they have been (not so much this season, though the usual suspects have popped up), though.

  • toon kk

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:19 PM

    Comment #25

    What was obvious for us all to see towards the end of last season was not just we lacked quality, (which by the way we still have most of them player’s) but the team was unfit and didn’t care.
    S mc has definitely got a more togetherness going but one thing that is missing from a couple of years ago is a top goal scorer last season we really lacked cutting edge this season we’re relying on a twenty year old who’s in the wrong sport, Mitrovic should have taken up kick boxing. But it is early days with him, so time will tell.

  • SUTTY1978

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:29 PM

    Comment #26

    Bobby, the changes haven’t been that massive though. New manager and a handful of new players. Look at West Ham, they’ve had the same changes as us if not more so on the playing side. They’re not sitting rock bottom of the league, they have managed to get results.
    With a host of changes you would expect some inconsistency, but you would expect there to be some significant highs at some point in the games. I haven’t seen that.
    The club off the field is getting fixed, they’re doing some good stuff, it’s on the field we need to start putting on some performances.
    I was horrified when I found out McClaren was coming in. Everything i’ve seen through preseason and beyond has not yet changed my opinion. I really hope he does get things right but he just seems to be bottling it and backing the wrong horses.

  • Bobbybee

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:36 PM

    Comment #27

    I was at the U21 game last night and the new philosophy is working there too. Not once did Darlow kick the ball long, either out of his hands or a goal kick. Every time, the ball was played out through the defence and midfield. Kevin Mbabu, who always looked promising as an Academy player, is getting back to his best following a long injury. The right back shone last night and could be our answer to cover for Janmaat. Following the unfortunate red card, he then slipped seamlessly into the CB role. Before the red card we dominated Arsenal completely and played some lovely one touch football. All in all, a very good performance, despite Arsenal taking advantage of the extra man.


    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:36 PM

    Comment #28

    I never really saw why everyone was so against McClaren when he was linked never been a terrible manager but had some tough times but most have

    Then Viera was linked and everyone was over the moon…another think I never understood considering the state we are in

  • SUTTY1978

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:44 PM

    Comment #29

    The U21’s beat Arsenal at home last season, we lost this time around, it’s not exactly progress results wise.
    We saw a smattering of decent passing football against Southampton but thats it, the three games since then have been woeful aside from some last ditch defending and probably more relevant an inform Krul.
    Anyway, new start, bring on Monday and lets hope it all comes good on the pitch, would love to see some incisive passing and goals, goals, goals!

  • Jib

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:44 PM

    Comment #30

    A great link for Everton v Chelsea

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:46 PM

    Comment #31

    Yo…I cannot speak for everyone but in my opinion McClaren is not a great manager either and he is not an up and coming manager either!

    His stats recently are not inspiring and the last time he managed a PL team was Middleborough.

    Yo…it’s nothing personal. McClaren would probably be a better DoF than manager. Just an opinion 😉

  • Bobbybee

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:48 PM

    Comment #32

    Not massive changes? New coaching staff of higher quality, including one of the most highly rated young coaches in Ian Cathro. Ashley taking a back seat. The football board handling football issues. Communicating with the fans for the first time. £50m spent on quality players, including a country’s footballer of the year. More money promised in future windows. A complete change in the philosophy of how the game is played. Open training sessions. A complete change of feeling throughout the ground with the fans. Challenging for cups. Happier players. These a massive changes compared to the past few seasons.

  • SUTTY1978

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:50 PM

    Comment #33

    On Mbabu, certainly looks physically more suited to the league than some of the other young players, probably not tall enough to commanding CB but well suited to RB where strength and pace are important.
    Satka is the other end of the scale, skinny as a rake!

  • Bobbybee

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:53 PM

    Comment #34

    McClaren has won things, whether individuals like him or not. He’s won things with unfancied teams, more to the point. What have our previous few managers ever won? As a coach with Manu he won the treble as well. His football is much more pleasant on the eye than in previous seasons and he’s getting performances out of players others haven’t.

  • SUTTY1978

    Sep 12, 2015 at 12:54 PM

    Comment #35

    Bobby, sorry I meant massive changes in relation to the playing side of things, which is why i referenced WHam. They’re in the same boat. All the changes you mention are big positives so they cant really be used as excuses for our negative performances. Anyway as I’ve said I’m putting those first four games to bed and look forward to rosier times starting Monday.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 1:03 PM

    Comment #36

    Bobbybee…but what has he done lately?

    …I dont really care what he has done in the past on terms of a cup or a championship in the Dutch league.

    What use is that to use? We cannot live on past merit and a dusted shelf with two trophies!

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Sep 12, 2015 at 1:04 PM

    Comment #37

    *in terms

  • Bobbybee

    Sep 12, 2015 at 1:08 PM

    Comment #38

    Sutty, come on mate, give them a break. Two games with ten men. Granted, self inflicted, but harsh to blame the other ten for personal actions of one man. Most has us down to zero points at this stage, but we’ve got two hard earned points. Did we expect to beat Swansea away? Really? When did we last beat Arsenal at home? Four games – hard games for any team – and far too early to be panicking. It will take time and I thought everybody had acknowledged that already? The difference last night is that we had no first teamers in the side, just kids. We played them off the park for the majority of the game and should’ve been out of sight before they scored.

  • Bobbybee

    Sep 12, 2015 at 1:16 PM

    Comment #39

    Ask Derby fans what he did to them jesper. I lived down there and remain in contact with a good few and they said he had them playing the best football in decades. If you can’t see the improvement already, you simply ain’t looking. But then, some people are only happy when they moan – that’s life.

  • Ian Toon

    Sep 12, 2015 at 1:19 PM

    Comment #40

    Bobbybee- The voice of reason. It takes time for a manager to integrate players and devise a playing style and system to combat opposition teams. More so when you have to get existing players to adopt practices and principles. Football fans frequently just don’t appreciate what’s actually involved. Progress towards desired change can be slow and punishing.
    I like Macca. The sickening abuse he got during and immediately after his England stint would have broken a lot of people. The way he reserrected his career deserves admiration. Fans often have short memories.
    On Under 21’s good to see us adopting a similar style of play which means players can naturally graduate smoothly with a similar way of playing. That’s very much the Wenger way at Arsenal. I am encouraged by your match comments – that’s why scouts watch in person and not on TV/ you tube if your the poisoned dwarf.


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