After getting the first away point since the Middlesbrough game, Sam Allardyce now hoping for the best of Newcastle United side will swiftly return for the next upcoming match. The next fixtures are the real tests for his boys.
The Geordies will face six of the top seven clubs in their next 10 league games until new years eve, and Big Sam is a bit nervy that Newcastle team hasn't got enough points on the board already after a much kinder run of fixtures. But I do believe at the team more than ever, because the time is right now for them.
They have been through the Premier League baptism this season from the derby match. I think they are now know what is like to play the game and how to getting the results right for our side.
Sam said “I think we could have done a little better because fixtures have been kind. Looking at the upcoming fixtures, the next couple of months are massive for us.”
After James Milner realize the real passion of the game, Alan Smith believes it was their passion which earned them a point in the draw with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. For the last four months since joining Newcastle from Manchester, Smith still looking for his real position under Sam Allardyce.
“I see him as a utility player,” Allardyce said after Saturday’s derby. “It’s all about commitment, passion and energy with Smudger. He’s not bothered where he plays as long as he plays.”
Alan Smith is one of the few Newcastle United players so far who have the real passion and commitment for the club, something that earns him the captain’s armband around his left arm when Michael Owen being replaced.
Smith is playing just infront of the back four against Sunderland in Allardyce's 4-1-3-2 formation. And he does it quite good as he did cleared Leadbitter’s first-half shot after it beat Steve Harper. Smith once again demonstrating his another ability to sense danger.
Does Big Sam has a good reason why he keep playing Smith out of his preferred centre-forward position? The answer is yet to come when Newcastle have to deal with the upcoming African Nations Cup.
By that time, Newcastle will lose numbers of first-team pool. Oba Martins, Habib Beye, Abdoulaye Faye and Geremi all set sail to Ghana for the African Cup of Nations. The tournament lasts three weeks in total, from January 20 until February 10 – and players are expected to link up with their respective countries a fortnight before the big kick-off.
And during that period, Sam Allardyce will have to prepare to use his limited sources as if the new signings can not be ready just in time. To anticipate the situation, Mort told the Chronicle: “They are very important players to this team, and Sam and I have talked about just how we will get through that period.”
“We are developing a squad that should be capable of dealing with absentees, whether this is because of the African Cup of Nations or something else.” Mort added more, as he hinted Sam Allardyce will be allowed to bring in reinforcements when the transfer window re-opens on January 1.