Ever since Newcastle were 5th top back in 2012 we have been fighting relegation in all but one season – and that’s when we finished 10th two years ago – but even then we lost seven of our last eight games.
So it hasn’t exactly been a great time for Newcastle fans.
Steve McClaren – relegation fight will go down to the wire
Last year was a living nightmare with John Carver in charge and we lost nine of our last eleven games and only just avoided relegation in the last game at home to West Ham, when we managed to win a game 2-0.
Since then Newcastle have spent around £70M on new players, but we are now third bottom of the league and our new manager Steve McClaren expects the relegation fight to go down to the wire.
Presumably that would mean to the last game of the season again.
That’s hardly good news for fans and it’s not the kind of message to send out if you want to attract some good players to the club in January.
Here’s what Steve has said:
“It’s going to go all the way, right down to the wire.” “You’re never out of the mire, even if you’re up there on 29 or 30 points, that’s still the prospect of another three or four wins needed to be safe and it’s difficult.”
“When you are there you can get dragged into it.” “The league is tough this year. All we’re looking at is ourselves. You can look at the others but if you don’t win and collect the points, then you’re not going to get out of it.”
“Last week we talked about the win and that was important just to get back in the pack and we’ve done that. Each game racks up more and more pressure.”
“It’s a thin dividing line and it will become more apparent the longer it goes on what the safety mark will be, but you never quite know.”
Newcastle’s chronic injury problems are also a concern and we have only four fit defenders for today’s game at Vicarage Road, with Paul Dummett, Jack Colback, Kevin Mbabu, Vurnon Anita and Massadio Haidara all out with injuries.
And it could be that Steven Taylor is on the bench this afternoon after being out with a hamstring problem for almost five months.
Today’s game at Watford is vital – but so are all the remaining 16 league and a success will be a win – nothing less than that.
These comments from Steve McClaren are even alarming in a way – given all the money spent on players since the end of last season.