It´s a sight we see before every game now as the Newcastle players warm up for their games.
That´s Newcastle consultant Steve Black wandering around the pitch and having a little talk to each player as he tries to ensure they are all mentally ready for the upcoming game.
Steve Black – Newcastle consultant
Steve´s role seems to be to make our players mentally tough and positive and that seems to be needed with our lads collapsing too many times this season.
We watch the games on NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) and the two analysts on the show on Sunday with Rebecca Lowe were Robbie Mustoe, the former Middlesbrough player, and American Kyle Martino.
The other analyst on thr show is former Port Vale and Wimbledon midfielder Robbie Earle.
Both Mustoe and Martino were very critical of what Steve was doing before the game.
They were telling host Rebecca Lowe that it was simply pointless Steve going around when the players were trying to concentrate on getting ready for the game.
Kyle Martino, Robbie Earle, Robbie Mustoe in the NBCSN studio
Mustoe pointed out when Black was talking to Perez the 22 year-old wasn´t even looking at Steve as he was doing his warm-up exercises.
As an aside, Rebecca is married to former player Paul Buckle, who was hired in July as coach of the Sacramento Republic of the third-tier United Soccer League (USL) – that´s who we beat 1-0 on the American tour on July 19th.
The NBCSN PL studios are in Stamford Connecticut and that´s over 2500 miles from Sacramento – so when do they get to see each other?
Paul Buckle and Rebecca Lowe in New York
Anyway – back to NBC Sports and after the game – a great 6-2 home win against Norwich.
Rebecca brought the two analysts back to what they had said about Steve Black before the game – good for her.
Rebecca pointed out that Ayoze Perez had a very good game and scored a great goal and what did Robbie think about that now.
Rebecca Lowe on NBCSN Premier League show
Mustoe laughed and said he still didn´t like it but conceded we will continue to see Steve Black talk to the Newcastle players before every game.
Attitude and mental toughness are so important in any sports and particularly the high pressure Premier League – so it´s good we have Steve Black on the staff.
Steve has a big job to do in preparing the lads for the game at the Studium of Light on Sunday, because too many times in the last five derby games we have simply lacked that mental toughness against the old enemy.
It will be interesting toi see how we fare against the Black Cats on Sunday – a win would be terrific.