Manager on Matchday


Good morning everyone,

We know the importance of getting a victory against Middlesbrough today.

It can be dangerous if you are searching for excuses, but to detect the situation that we currently find ourselves in, we have to find the reasons for what has happened.

We can look at a few injuries to key players and then some of the back-up players got injured.

A few of the new signings needed time because they didn't play much last year and we also have the move into the new Stadium.

But we have to do better and we have to start winning games.

It is all about the balance in the team and we have shown the players some of the videos of what they did last season because it is the same players, the same jerseys and the same haircuts who did so well. It was not that long ago.

We cannot live in the past but we have to come together, get that bond even stronger and work harder in training.

I am asking myself questions all the time of how we can improve the situation and I talk to my staff all the time. The way we are playing is raising questions in a negative way and I agree with that.

The questions I ask myself is mostly about the line-up and a little bit about some modifications of the system. But it is not that we lost and conceded so many goals, it is also the way we are playing.

We are hoping to have back some of our key players after the international break like Cresswell and Carroll.

We are also expecting Andre Ayew to be back ahead of schedule and Sakho as well.

It is a big boost for us because we are talking about players who make the other players feel good when they are on the pitch because they are top quality players.

The players care about the situation because this is their career and as a group they believe. We now have to show that belief even more.

It is very challenging at the moment but the only way to stop this is to work harder. You cannot stop believing and I am confident we can turn things around.

We know the fans are disappointed at the moment but they have been brilliant towards us in every game – even the last one against Southampton.

They need from us some crazy energy and that is enough for them to get behind us. This is the moment that we need them and I ask them to stay behind us.

We know it will not be easy against Middlesbrough on Saturday.

I don't know their manager Aitor Karanka personally but I know he was a player with Real Madrid and then an assistant of Mourinho.

He has been there for a long time now if we are talking about the modern days.

He has done a great job taking them back to the Premier League. He changed the team a lot and has a few good names there so we know what to expect.

Enjoy the game this afternoon.