Date: 6th November 2006 at 2:40pm
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The Magpies turned in a lifeless display against a hard-working Sheffield United to slump to second bottom in the table after their worst ever start to a Premiership campaign.

The St James’ Park crowd need a scapegoat and chairman Freddy Shepherd fits the bill perfectly, and hundreds stayed behind to organise a prolonged demonstration after the match.

Shepherd missed the match and was in Mallorca, but there is little doubt he will have got the message.

One thing is certain, it is business as usual for Glenn Roeder, who has surprisingly not yet suffered at the hands of the club’s supporters. He took his previous clubs West Ham and Watford down, and had Gillingham 92nd in the Football League when they sacked him. Plus … guess who was captain of Newcastle the last time they were relegated?



We are now in a relegation dog fight, having taken just five points from home matches against Wigan, Fulham, Everton, Bolton, Charlton and the Blades.

Roeder: ‘I have to find players in that squad – and it is not the biggest squad – who are prepared to get into the trenches. I have been here as a player, I know what it is like.

‘The fans need to know – although they would not have believed it on Saturday night, I accept that – that the players I have worked with when they have played well this year and have not got results have been hurting as much as the supporters.

‘Nobody likes to bleed, but now is the time to stand up more than ever, and let’s see.’