John Carver’s spelled out the hidden consequences of relegation to Newcastle United’s players – in a meeting held to get everything out in the open.
Carver spoke to the squad AND the club’s training ground staff this week ahead of Sunday’s game against West Ham United.
There’s an awful lot of good local people who’ve been here a long time, and a lot of their friends lost their jobs last time.John Carver
The players were reminded there were a number of job losses after the club’s last relegation six years ago.
And should 17th-placed Newcastle suffer a second relegation under Mike Ashley, more staff are likely to lose their jobs with cuts to the club’s budget seemingly inevitable.
Asked about the meeting, Carver said: “It was all the travelling staff, what you might term the senior staff – the kit men, masseurs, doctors, physios.
“A lot of those people were here when the club got relegated. I wanted to give everybody an opportunity to have their say, but this week is about being as positive as we can.”
Carver asked anyone who was not up to the challenge to leave the room.
“Forget about what’s gone on in the past, this is effectively a season in a week now,” he said. “I said ‘if anybody doesn’t fancy it, if anybody wants to back-bite, if anybody wants to be negative – there’s the door’.
“Steve Stone opened the door, and I told them to leave the room. I told them I was ready for a fight, and not one person got up and left.”
The players are well aware that peoples’ livelihoods depend on Premier League survival.
Carver added: “That was one of the reasons why I brought all of the staff into the meeting with the players this week.
“There’s an awful lot of good local people who have been here a long time and a lot of their friends lost their jobs last time.
“Sometimes that can be a motivation for players. We’re a tight group, and we’re going to be even tighter this week.
“I gave the players an opportunity if they didn’t fancy it to leave the room and nobody left the room, that tells me they’re up for the fight. There’s going to be pressure on them.
“They’ve got to play the game – not the occasion.”