Despite defeats to Tottenham, Nottingham Forest and Huddersfield in the first three games of the season, Rob Elliot insists that the stick he and other Newcastle players got ‘has been unfair’.
He hopes that after ‘a proper performance against West Ham’, both team and fans can now move on and that with the pressure of getting a first win of the season now behind them, ‘we can kick on’.
The match on Sunday against Swansea should be a good guide as to how Newcastle may be set to do this season.
A Premier League club for a fair few seasons now but usually nearer the bottom than the top, they have had major changes in terms of first team players this summer, whereas with Mike Ashley starving him of funds/backing – Rafa has had to go the budget route.
Rob Elliot is one of those to benefit from Ashley’s lack of backing, as Rafa Benitez had made clear he wanted to bring in a new number one goalkeeper.
Elliot insists though that Newcastle are ‘a good team and a great group that gut us promoted’.
Nobody is questioning the commitment of players but it remains to be seen exactly how much quality Newcastle will have this season.
With a net spend of only £11.5m compared to Huddersfield’s £43m and Brighton’s £48m, hopefully it will be just in cash spent terms that Newcastle will be poor relations this season.
“After the Huddersfield game you hold your hands up, it wasn’t good, but I think we gave a proper performance against West Ham.
“It was a good result because we were getting a lot of stick and I think it has been unfair.
“It is a good team and a great group that got us promoted.
“If we can keep performing like that we will be fine – hopefully we can replicate it and push on this season.
“That bit of pressure before the first win has gone and we can kick on.”