Steve McClaren has completed his press conference for the game at Sunderland on Sunday and he describes the game spot on – for those Newcastle players who are new to a white-hot Newcastle – Sunderland derby game.
As far as both sets of fans are concerned these two games every season are the two most important games of the season.
Let’s hope this is not McClaren thinking about the game plan for Sunday
This is some of what Steve has said in his press conference today:
“It’s derby day on Sunday and the importance of this match is not lost on me or any of our players.”
“Quite simply it is one of the most important days of the season. We travel to the Stadium of Light at the weekend delighted to have our first win under our belts and looking to make it back-to-back victories.”
“Needless to say it was imperative that we won last week and whilst we all said beforehand that we would have taken a scrappy one-nil win, the bonus for everyone at the club and, in particular, you the supporters, was that it was an exciting, entertaining game with some fantastic periods of play and of course terrific goals.”
“I don’t need reminding that we have lost the last five derbies and for everyone associated with the club that is simply unbearable. It wasn’t so long ago that we won five in row and we are desperately keen and hugely motivated to turn the tide and bring the points back to Tyneside.”
The atmosphere is always incredible and I think unique to the North East and we have to go there, stand up and be counted. “There’s no question that our players understand what it means to win the derby.”
My message to the players is simple. Win every personal battle, handle the occasion and be disciplined. If we can do all that and put one or two of our chances away then we can come away with the positive result we all crave.”
All derby games are important – there’s no doubt about that and you can usually throw the form book away for who will win the game.
However, if we can win our first derby game for over four years it will give us added momentum following last Sunday’s 6-2 win over Norwich City – and put us 7 points ahead of Sunderland after 10 games – when you take into account goal difference.
That sounds good to us.
What do you think?