The mood amongst fans of Newcastle United has been somewhat downbeat since the start of the season.
I have no doubt that a lot of that is to do with the failure to strengthen the squad sufficiently over the summer.
We’ve not really hit the ground running this season. Performances have been disjointed and some players seem to be struggling for form for one reason or another, but is it really as bad as is being made out?
Obviously we all want to see us playing nice football and steamrolling teams out of the way, but the fact is that we rarely did that last season aside from in the odd few games. Off the top of my head, the two games against Stoke, the home game against Manchester United and the away game at West Brom were the best performances of the season. As for the rest, performances this season are not too different to how we got on last season.
I mean let’s look at some facts. So far we’ve played eight games in all competitions. Two of those have been away at teams who sit 1st and 3rd in the league currently with one of them being against a team that would have been in the Champions League had it not been for one of the other teams we’d played actually winning the competition last season. We’ve lost just one of those games.
Add to that the fact that we’ve done so with a striker who is out of form and out of luck at the moment, an important midfield general missing in the shape of Cheik Tiote, and with two of our first choice defensive unit, including our influential club captain, missing through injury.
We are one point off the points total we had at the same point this time last season, which saw us set a new club record for a start to a season.
So is it really all doom and gloom?
Look, for one reason or another we aren’t playing at our best. Whether it be tactics, formation, players out of form, players under performing or any other factor, we are far from what we know we can do, but we are still picking up points. Isn’t that a good thing?
What is also a good thing is that there is so much room for improvement in our performances. In short things can only get better which in turn will bring with it an upturn in results, especially when we have all of our first team back in action.
Don’t panic, yet!