Steve McClaren says he just has to break the hoodoo that has existed over the past three seasons.

The Newcastle boss desperate to halt a run of five defeats on the bounce to Sunderland.

A run made all the more depressing by the fact that the mackems have been absolutely useless in recent years, with the points gained against Newcastle being the difference between survival and relegation for Sunderland, in each of the past three seasons.

McClaren going down the Hoodoo route will hopefully be more successful than Papiss Cisse’s alleged use of Voodoo.

A bizarre story in the club’s preferred media partner, The Mirror, claimed that the Senegalese striker had enlisted Cheick Tiote’s assistance to get some Voodoo help to get him back into form and scoring goals.

It must be slow working magic he bought into…

Whether hoodoo or voodoo, Newcastle United’s record against Sunderland is just plain embarrassing and a run of defeats that has shown serious flaws in the character of the team.

Sunday against Norwich suggested that there is certainly talent in the team, against Sunderland we will hopefully find that the character of the side has taken a turn for the better as well.

Steve McClaren:

“Football is all about momentum and we have to take it forward, a tough one next, Sunderland have won the last five derbies, they’re at home and are the favourites.

“It is a hoodoo and we have just got to break it.”

Sticking together:

 “When you are doing all of the changes and trying to change the culture and environment, you are going to get protests and people who are unhappy.

“You have to stick together and they have done that, they have been so supportive from the top to the bottom, so much potential but still a long way to go.”

(***Voodoo v Hoodoo – Both hoodoo and voodoo are widely practiced and both share similar elements and roots in Africa. Voodoo and hoodoo are also both products of mixed beliefs that include pagan traditions, ancient worship, and elements of European religions.

The main difference is that Voodoo is an existing religion practiced by people while Hoodoo is considered folk magic.)