Siem de Jong came in against Liverpool and made a difference.
Maybe over the top to say he made THE difference but certainly he was a key figure despite having played so little football in his 18 months at St James Park.
A big talking point after the win over Liverpool, was not just his personal contribution, but just as much the impact he had on other players as he was clearly talking to others throughout the game, inspiring them.
It is also impossible not to contrast that with Coloccini, who whilst having a decent game himself on Sunday, continues to give seemingly nothing in his role as captain, on and off the pitch.
If he can stay fit and contribute to the team, it is obvious that Siem de Jong would be a very popular choice amongst supporters of given the captain’s job.
However, speaking in the aftermath of the victory, Siem de Jong has repeated once again that he needs Steve McClaren to give him the chance first to play regular first team football, to allow him to fully adapt to the Premier League.
In these latest quotes, de Jong points out that whilst the win over Liverpool was a great start to getting the season going, the players need more of a plan when coming up against the not so good teams.
Effectively, the Newcastle team needs a plan on how to win a game when they will have more possession and control, rather than just chasing and harrying and relying on the odd counter-attack, as we saw against Liverpool.
I know just the man…
Siem de Jong:
“I have spoken to the manager a lot of times this season and said that the only way I can really improve and get used to the Premier League is through playing.
“I got that chance at the weekend and gave it a good go, I need to step it up and improve my game and hopefully I’ll get the chance to do that.”
Against the lesser teams:
“Against Liverpool, you are not the ones that are on the ball all the time, they probably get the majority of possession and so we were trying to press them and break on them as well.
“We have shown in a couple of games that we are pretty good on the break and on the counter but we know we have to improve on the ball.
“When we are playing against teams who are not as good as Liverpool, sometimes we’re on the ball more but we don’t seem to have the confidence to make the game ourselves.
“I think that’s what we need to improve but it is easier to make that improvement when you have some confidence from winning.”
Hard word = Luck:
“It all has to start with the kind of pressing and fighting we showed last weekend though, when you work that hard, you make your own luck.
“Of course there has been pressure on every one of us, this win was a really important one, especially for the fans. We showed we really want to give our all to make it a good season.”
Can’t afford to drop:
“We need to keep this intensity up and then we can improve our game – we shouldn’t drop any more.
“If we get a setback or something happens, we shouldn’t drop too much and we should continue fighting for a win or for a point.”