I try to be optimistic as a Newcastle fan and was absolutely delighted when we beat Liverpool and Tottenham – but did these victories just paper over the cracks?

Sadly, this seems to be the case. The most recent games have seen us revert to type, failure to take our chances up front, woeful, abject defending and a lack of leadership on the field.

The Aston Villa game was frustrating as we had loads of chances to win but we were undone and only took a draw after a decent equaliser by Ayew.

Much as it pains me to say it but they wanted it more than us and I feel we underestimated them.

Then the Everton game and we were outclassed and outplayed and could not even go forward with any sort of attack until the second half. Followed by a depressing rerun of the previous home match, where we failed to take our chances as the match progressed, eventually losing to a late Cleverley header.

What was more mystifying was McClaren’s assessment of proceedings on the Monday at the Hawthorns. He said we were magnificent, maybe he’d had a few too many and thought we were West Brom instead of Newcastle United, as we were lucky to lose just 1-0 rather than 3 or 4.

After the Arsenal defeat, where granted we played well, we failed to take our chances and are now without a win in 4 games.

I am all for backing managers and giving them a chance but I think it is time for McClaren to go. He hardly inspires you with confidence pre or post-match and his team selections are just as baffling.

I just don’t want him to inflict more hurt in 2016 – let him go now and bring in someone more capable to try and oversee a revival.

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