Steve McClaren feels Newcastle United fans unfairly jeered his players during Saturday’s 1-0 FA Cup defeat at Watford.
The travelling supporters voiced their dismay with their side’s performance at Vicarage Road as Newcastle crashed out of the competition in the third round for the fourth year in a row, but McClaren believes his men deserved to be treated better after giving their all for the full 90 minutes.
“I thought the fans’ chants were very harsh,” McClaren said at a media conference following a fourth successive 1-0 loss.
“I think we’ve had two games – Leicester [City] and Crystal Palace – where, yeah, we were all angry and frustrated and we could accept criticism.
“The fans care about the attitude of the players, that’s all they ask. Do the players work, do they chase, do they win tackles, do they create chances?
“We’ve had 25 crosses in the game. They’ve gone across the goalkeeper and [Heurelho] Gomes has made saves. Our goalkeeper’s not had a save to make. You can’t ask any more from the players.”
McClaren refuses to throw in the towel, though, and has urged his players to keep showing courage as Newcastle look to haul themselves out of the Premier League relegation zone.
“It’s just not having luck at one end and not sticking the balls in the net. Unfortunately that’s the nature of football. So we just have to get on with it,” he added.
“Players have to be big enough and bold enough, have courage, and we’ve talked about that. They’re certainly having that.”
Newcastle resume Premier League action on Tuesday when they host Manchester United.