It’s looking grim up north for Sam Allardyce and his chances of remaining Newcastle Utd’s boss. After a dour draw with Derby and a loss to Wigan over the weekend, I reckon he may be hours away from the A1 and the P45. I don’t think the long-suffering Magpies fans have ever minded losing providing the team played with panache and spirit. But the quality of the football recently has been awful. Against lowly Wigan the team couldn’t muster a single shot at goal. What’s gone wrong?
Allardyce always seemed to be the guy who could handle the big temperaments but he’s clearly struggling to relate with his players. His tactics are hard to read, his selection policy is all over the place and his buys haven’t come off. He can’t blame it on the rotten apples any longer as they were all shipped out when he arrived. The fans haven’t taken to him at all. The team are playing with no confidence and here’s the rub; the next few matches are against:
Chelsea (A), high-flying Man City (H), away to in-form Stoke in the Cup, Man U (A), Bolton fighting for their survival (H), Arsenal (A), a tough derby match v Boro (H), Villa (A), Man U (H). That’s all before the end of Feb and at best I can see Newcastle achieving 3 draws but I could also imagine that unless something were to change soon, then they could easily lose all those matches. Then they’d be in the mire. If you were the hard-headed businessman who owned the club would you want to give big Sam quite a few million more quid to spend in the January transfer window on some desperation buys? No, nor would I.
Shearer’s lurking in the shadows but has he got the bottle especially if Sir Bobby Robson were too frail to be his wise counsellor? Maybe especially if El Tel could be tempted to be his No2. A dream team for the Geordie’s? Not quite. Keegan as a No2 would be needed for that and I’m not sure it’s such a crazy idea. The place would be rocking again. Short term. But I can’t believe Shearer’s got the hardness within him to know when to sell a Hughes, Ince, Henry, Vierra. He’s not clever nor miserable enough to be a great manager I believe. But it would be a roller coaster up there for a while.