Newcastle keeper Rob Elliot denies that there is a crisis at St James Park but does accept that being in the relegation zone with 12 games to go is ‘as serious as it gets’.
The one-time third choice goalkeeper thinks the table doesn’t lie after 26 matches but claims nobody within the club is complacent.
Something which definitely didn’t appear to be the case when you read what the club’s responses were at the recent NUFC fans forum. The message there appeared most definitely to be ‘crisis, what crisis’ and a blind faith that everything is going to turn out ok.
Rob Elliot says that the team have to turn their potential into reality in the remaining matches but exactly what is the potential of this current set of players?
I would say that maybe/probably they are better than bottom three but I don’t think they are anywhere near being even a top half team, unless a number of real quality players are added to the handful of decent players Newcastle currently have.
Whilst Rob Elliot has done ok since ending up as the current fit number one, I do think though that he and others look at things with rose-tinted glasses much of the time. Encouraged in that outlook in my opinion by Steve McClaren, who Elliot agrees is a ‘positive person’.
Rob Elliot says that Newcastle are ‘fantastic’ at home but away they are not.
A better description for me would be that Newcastle have been atrocious away from home and a little better at St James Park.
There hasn’t been a single match this season where United have been fantastic all game.
Against West Ham they were fantastic for the first 30 minutes and could have been four or five up but then faded and tired, leaving them hanging on at the end.
Otherwise, they were fantastic at taking their chances against Norwich, played well first 50 minutes or so against Chelsea at home, played pretty well against a shocking West Brom at home as well, last 20 minutes at Spurs, solid against Liverpool and got the luck with the opening goal…
Against Stoke I would love to see a good solid away performance where Newcastle give as good as they get and create half a dozen decent chances – even if we ended up losing by the odd goal it would give me hope for better form and results in the remaining 11 games.
Rob Elliot talking to The Mirror:
“Crisis? We are in the bottom three. That is as serious as it gets.
“I would not say it is a crisis. When we played West Ham last year, we had to win to stay up, I’d say that was a crisis.
“I don’t think crisis is the word, but believe me everyone is well aware of the situation we are in. We are not taking it lightly. I can assure the fans that.
“No one is sitting here complacently saying we’ll be fine. Don’t ever say people don’t care because we do.
“The table doesn’t lie after so long, but we know we are better than that. It is a case of getting out and doing it.
“We have to turn it into a performance against Stoke and make sure these last 12 games we become the team everyone knows we can be, rather than every week saying we have potential but we’re not quite there. Potential has to turn in to performance.
“I think the manager is a positive person. That he how he is and how he works. I think he has to be who he is and he doesn’t play any games.
“I like honesty about what is going on, then people can’t hold things against you.
“We know at home we are fantastic, away we are not. There is no in between.
We know we can be good, we have done it on occasions, but we have to do it more often. We know how good we can be – that is a positive.”