It was good to see Chris Hughton back at St. Jame’s Park on Saturday as the Brighton manager, and his side played well to get a 0-0 draw.
Of course, we would have been much happier if we could have nicked a 1-0 win and things would now be a lot more positive at Newcastle.
But it was a fair result, and we didn’t play well, and there were some boos heard around the stadium at the final whistle.
The players had attacked well in the last 15 minutes trying to get 3 points, but we couldn’t do it.
Rafa Benitez and Chris Hughton – mutual admiration society
Chris stood up to the pressures of managing Newcastle very well until he was shockingly sacked in December of 2010 after he had brought us straight up from the Championship with a massive 102 points and only four defeats.
Since then Mike Ashley has said that was of his (many) mistakes at Newcastle and he apologized to the now Brighton manager.
So that’s something, and Chris accepted the apology.
Chris knows all about what it’s like playing for Newcastle, and you have to be mentally strong because you will be criticized when we go on bad runs – like we are on at the moment.
This is what Chris has said as reported in the Shields Gazette:
“If you want to play for Newcastle, you have to be able to deal with the anxiety of the crowd sometimes.”
“Every single one of these players wants to play for Newcastle. It’s a brilliant arena, but it comes with the territory.”
“The top players, anywhere in the world, are under pressure every time they play, and that comes here at Newcastle.”
“But it’s a wonderful place to play football. “As an opposition manager, it’s the same at any big stadium if you can have good periods and frustrate the opposition.”
“Newcastle supporters are no different. They’re desperate to get behind their team.”
“They want to see their team pushing forward – and scoring goals – and if it doesn’t happen, as good as this crowd at Newcastle is, anxiety can set in.”
“The only way we can exploit that, is to play well. “We’re not doing anything underhand, we just had good periods in the game.”
We are hoping we can go to Stoke today and come back with all 3 points – we need them.