Interviewed on the first day of pre season training, Steve McClaren says that it was great to get the players into the training ground, having been more or less on his own there since being unveiled as Newcastle’s new Head Coach.

McClaren unintentionally also reminding everybody that contributing to his lonely existence, is the fact that Newcastle United have still to announce any new assistant manager or first team coach, despite Ian Cathro and Paul Simpson being widely reported as getting the jobs.

The former England boss said it was vitally important to get as many of the players as possible in for training at the earliest opportunity, with the players (Sissoko, Krul, Janmaat) who have been on international duty this summer joining the rest of the squad on Monday.

Speaking to the official club website Steve McClaren had this to say (he wasn’t asked anything about the  failure to bring in any new signings yet):

“It is great to get them (the players) back, it’s great to get some work done.

“I have been here two and a half weeks and I think I’ve been more or less on my own. Talking to a lot of people, doing a lot of work behind the scenes.”

‘Preparation is key’:

“It feels real when players actually come back, so good to see them all. This is where the work is done, this is where we all say ’preparation is key’ Monday to Friday.

“If you work hard and get the preparation right, on Saturday you are ready to play. This is the best part of the job, as a player and as a coach – enjoying your work but working hard.”