Steve McClaren: I know I’ll NOT get a honeymoon period at Newcastle

Paul Simpson and Steve McClaren
Paul Simpson and Steve McClaren

Steve McClaren was delighted to tie the knot with Newcastle United – but he knows there’ll be no honeymoon period.

McClaren’s side open their Premier League campaign on Sunday with a home game against Ronald Koeman’s Southampton.

And the Magpies’ head coach is acutely aware that the pressure is on him from day one given the need to draw a line under last season’s relegation battle.

Asked if he felt he felt he would get a “honeymoon period” at St James’s Park, McClaren said: “I never believe in that.

“I think it’s becoming less and less than a few years ago.

“I’ve got to say it doesn’t matter where you are – that’s any country. (The pressure is on) from the outset, without any doubt.

“We do a lot of work, but we’ve got a lot of exams.

“We’re judged on those exams, rightly or wrongly, and criticised, rightly or wrongly. For everybody, it’s about results.

“What I’m looking for is to build on that so you get a good performance and generally you get a result.

“I don’t believe in these honeymoon periods.

“I think once it starts, and whatever happens on Sunday, on Monday at least we’ll have evidence.”

However, McClaren, appointed in June, feels he needs time to implement his ideas.

The 54-year-old is attempting to change the playing style at United, who had mixed results in pre-season.

McClaren wants his team to play from the back – and attack with pace and purpose.

“I know it will take time – I think everybody does – but in the Premier League, you’re judged every game,” he said.

“We know where we want to be, and we’re nowhere near. We have to progress to that.”