Wednesday morning has seen Nigel Clough give his press conference ahead of the visit of Newcastle United.
Slightly unusual for the opposition to be having their press call before you have even played your previous match…but Burton played last night and were unlucky losers by a single goal to Huddersfield at home.
Clearly Nigel Clough wanted to get his media duties for this weekend out of the way and use the remaining days with the sole focus on his preparations with the players.
The Burton boss had already expressed his dismay at the lack of live TV coverage for the Newcastle game, Nigel Clough declaring it the biggest contrast the Championship has ever seen – Newcastle (arguably) the biggest and Burton the smallest in recent decades.
Clough says that he knows that ‘Newcastle can thrash anybody in this league’ but that won’t stop him sending out his players with the usual instructions to ‘give them a go’ and try and cause the visitors problems.
Maybe surprisingly, Nigel Clough states he has“Never met Rafa Benitez before’ but says that the decision to go to St James Park with relegation looming was ‘a decision to be applauded to go to Newcastle when he did’.
Whatever happens, the Burton boss hopes that he will have enough space in his ‘tiny office’ so that Rafa Benitez and all his staff can come and have a glass of wine with him.
Nigel Clough Newcastle Press Conference:
“Newcastle and Villa fixtures are the two glamour games, to think we are playing the likes of them two in our eyes is amazing. We need to try and put similar displays against these teams as we did against Huddersfield. It’s a shame we aren’t going in off some good results.
“It’s certainly the strongest squad we are coming up against, they have the likes of Mitrovic and Gayle, Shelvey in midfield who has gone for big money.
“We will play the same way we usually do at home and give them a go, when we play with the energy and enthusiasm as well as some quality we can cause teams problems. We know Newcastle can thrash anybody in this league.
“Never met Rafa Benitez before, it’s a decision to be applauded to go to Newcastle when he did. I think he coming in and staying gave everybody at the club a lift and is instrumental to their performances.
“It’s probably the biggest mismatch in a league game in the country, not so many years ago we were playing the likes of Park Avenue and Accrington around this period.
“A couple of niggles from last night, Kyle had a nasty kick which was probably the worst challenge of the game. Stuart Beavon is going to train this week.
“I hope the players won’t need picking up last night (after losing to Huddersfield), the ones you need picking up from are results when you don’t do your job. I thought too a man everyone is excellent, we don’t have any time to feel sorry for ourselves with the likes of Newcastle and Villa coming up. We’ve only been off it twice out of 21 league games at Brentford and Reading.
“The honesty of the players shine through, they know when they’ve not been good enough and come out and put a great performance like last night. The honesty and integrity of the group is brilliant.
“I don’t think there is any point in us sitting back against Newcastle, we hope they recover well for Saturday. We have to play at an intensity to outplay teams in this league, to repeat it every game is going to be hard for anyone to do in England.
“I hope Rafa will join us for a glass of wine after the game and all of his staff. We aren’t sure how we will fit them all in, in our tiny office.”