If you look at the comments after the game from Steve McClaren today, you would think everything was just fine and the only thing wrong was that the referee Robert Madley made two mistakes just before half-time – one was to award a penalty to Sunderland for a supposed foul by Coloccini on Steven Fletcher – and the other was to send Colo off with a red card.
The penalty wouldn’t have made all that much difference after Newcastle had dominated the first half – but going down to 10 men was certainly a turning point in the game.
Steve McClaren – talking to Ayoze Perez today
But even in the second half Newcastle played quite well with the possession game, but we didn’t have too much bite up front today and we didn’t score any goals.
This is what Steve said after the game:
“It was never a penalty. The penalty and red card was a double whammy. In the first half the team were excellent. I was totally relaxed. We were in control. I said to players that’s what we must continue.”
“If we continue doing that and get decisions right then we’ll do OK.” “Even with 10 men in the second half we still controlled it. Referee decisions are out of your control.”
Apart from last week against Norwich when we scored three in the last 25 minutes to win 6-2, Newcastle haven’t won any other league games and we have lost six of the first 10 games.
There’s always a reason why we lost – and if “something” hadn’t happened we would have been just fine in most of the games – according to McClaren.
- Today, it was hard luck and two refereeing mistakes, but there again before the penalty decision we could and probably should have been ahead after we had missed some chances.
- In the game at Swansea and at home to Arsenal it was because we had a man sent off before half time.
- We didn’t beat Chelsea after being 2-0 up with 12 minutes to play because Ramirez produced a fantastic goal out of the blue in the second half as Chelsea went on to draw that game 2-2 with a late equaliser from a free kick after 86 minutes.
- In our first game of the season, we were heading for a 2-1 win before the Saints equalised late in the game – and that was because our two center-backs hadn’t played much in pre-season and they tired.
- At West Ham United, it was because we got to the ground 45 minutes late but the FA wouldn’t delay the kick-off time.
- Against Watford we did very well to come back in the second half from 2-0 down and were unlucky not to get at least a point – that was the positive spin put on that defeat.
- At Manchester City, we lost our concentration for about 20 minutes but in that time we conceded six goals after being 1-0 ahead.
We suppose the follow-on from that is that if we had concentrated for those 20 minutes we would have won 1-0?
Too many times after each game there are (too many) reasons given why we didn’t win or why – like today – we have lost a game.
We understand how Steve wants to keep the morale of the Newcastle players high, but you can also overdo it.
Yes, it takes time to have the team gel, although Slaven Bilic is the new manager at West Ham and he has the Hammers in third place with 20 points from their first 10 games.
In any business, you either have the results or you have all the reasons why you don’t have the results.
We’ve had lots of reasons in the first 10 games and have only 6 points and one win to show for it.
We need to start winning games and start getting the results – like wins and all 3 points – it’s over a quarter of the season gone by.
We can start next Saturday by beating Stoke City at home.