Ah, Steve McClaren. How no one on Tyneside misses you in the slightest. The former manager of England managed Newcastle for all of nine months during the 2015-2016 campaign as most will vividly remember. He gave way to the man we now call our (eventual) savior, Rafa Benitez.
Following his firing from Newcastle, McClaren returned to Derby County, where he had previously managed in 2013. He would last just five months before being sacked once again, a year and a day after being let go from the Magpies.
McClaren has been a controversial character for some time now, ever since England missed the 2008 EUROs. Newcastle supporters were never very fond of Steve and it is widely believed that fans were excited to see him leave town last March.
Now he is making odd comments about Jonjo Shelvey. Shelvey was brought to Tyneside when McClaren was still in charge. He has been better than a very good signing for the Toons. Though most probably wouldn’t refer to him as a “revelation” as McClaren does.
The Mag reported on Tuesday that the unemployed manager had an interesting take on Shelvey. It certainly is bizarre. Most expected the 25-year-old to be a key cog in Newcastle’s fight for promotion. Revelation isn’t exactly the word I would use to describe his play. We all saw this coming.
But that wouldn’t be the end of his bizarre rants. He went on the record with the Nottingham Post calling Derby a “volatile environment.”
Quick theory here. When a club has an awful manager that is struggling to return to the top league, it probably is volatile. But wouldn’t most of that blame fall on the manager?
There is some history here that makes sense for McClaren, as he was the sixth manager in 18 months for Derby. He certainly didn’t do anything to change the situation though, in many ways just making it worse.
And just to cap off all of the controversial things that come out of Steve McClaren’s mouth, he has said that he was “disappointed and shocked” that he was sacked by Derby. Disappointed I get. Shocked, not so much.
At the time of McClaren’s firing, he had won just one of the clubs past 10 games. His last match in charge was a heavy 3-0 defeat to Brighton. They dropped out of a playoff spot and it became clear that McClaren was still the same manager he was when Derby fired him three years prior.
All in all, just feel good about the fact that Newcastle has Benitez.