City boss gives his view ahead of Magpies matchCity boss Malky Mackay is expecting nothing less than a tough game against Newcastle United at Cardiff City Stadium on Saturday.
The Magpies suffered a 3-2 defeat to Everton at Goodison Park on Monday night but are just one point behind the Bluebirds going into Saturday’s game; the tight nature of the Premier League so far puts Alan Pardew’s side five places below the Bluebirds despite the minimal gap.
But buoyed by an excellent away victory over Fulham last weekend, City’s first in the Barclays Premier League, Malky is looking for that same belief from his players that saw them to victory at Craven Cottage.
“It was great to get the three points last weekend,” said Malky, “The way we played to win our first away game in the Premier League was important given the belief it gives the players to go away from home and do well. Overall it was a very good day.
“I’m expecting nothing other than a very tough game on Saturday, against a team who on their day can take anybody apart when they attack. We come up against another team who have excellent players and International footballers.
“They’re a team that can hurt you but I could say that every week about teams in this league, that’s what we’re up against. Fulham had four or five that can really hurt you but it’s about what you do on the day.”
Malky will stand in the opposite dugout to a close friend of his on Saturday, having been signed and handed the captaincy by current Newcastle manager Alan Pardew during his time as a player with West Ham United nearly ten years ago.
And when asked how he thought his former boss was doing at St James’ Park, Malky replied: “He’s done a very good job at Newcastle. He was given a long-term contract and he’s brought stability to that club.
“I know Alan well, he’s a good friend of mine and has certainly been a good mentor for me over the past few years. We’ve had plenty of conversations and I played for him as his captain at West Ham so we’ve got a good relationship.
“He’s orchestrated a lot of the recent recruitment at Newcastle, and that stability is important in football. That’s what I’m trying to bring here.
“Of course every team can be fragile at times. He’s a very experienced manager, he knows his squad and has been through plenty of highs and lows as a manager. He knows how to tweak things and he’s proved it coming back from poor results before. He’s got a very dangerous squad there at his disposal and that’s something we have to be wary of tomorrow.”
And with no new injury worries for the City manager going into Saturday’s game, Malky is confident his side can continue their good start in the top flight so far, saying: “We just focus and concentrate on the team that’s in front of us and don’t get too high or too low with results.
“I certainly hoped for a start like this. We had three of the top six in the first three home games, which was always going to be tough but the whole league is like that. We’re talking about good players and good teams that we’re playing against. It’s about us going into these games with belief and I’m delighted with the belief that the players have shown.
“Any game at home you try and win and you know that every away game is going to be tough. At the same time it’s about sending your team out on the day to be as competitive as you can.”
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