Newcastle boss Steve McClaren hoping for happy new year after disappointing 2015

first_img The 54-year-old said: “That hasn’t been good enough. We’re working and working and seeing the progress. More consistency needs to be there and we need a damn better second half then we did the first. “We need a better 2016 than 2015, when there wasn’t a lot to cheer about all the way through.” McClaren was charged with the task of securing a top-eight finish and targeting cup success when he was handed his job during the summer, but life on Tyneside has proved challenging to say the least during the first half of the campaign. Newcastle have won just five times in all competitions since his arrival and only four times in the league, and two of those three-point hauls have come in their last three outings. However, the head coach remains philosophical, insisting that the introduction of a new manager, new methods and new players always meant it was likely to be a rocky road initially. He said: “You always have to make targets. We’re not even halfway through yet. Let’s see where we finish. “We had a new manager coming in and new players as well. There was also the aftermath of what happened last season. It was very much an unknown. “We said look at it after 10 to 12 games, but then someone said it’s usually the first 19 and we have two of them to go. “We are where we are, but we want to have a better second half to the season than we did the first.” Newcastle head coach Steve McClaren is targeting a significant improvement in 2016 after admitting 2015 has simply not been good enough. The Magpies head into their Boxing Day clash with Everton sitting in 17th place in the Barclays Premier League table and having won just eight games in all competitions during the calendar year to date. That comes nowhere near matching the club’s relatively modest ambitions, let alone those of the fans, and McClaren is well aware things have to improve significantly if he is to make a success of his reign with the club having collected just 30 points from their last 36 league fixtures. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

US Open 2013: Rafael Nadal thrashes Rogerio Dutra Silva

first_imgRafael Nadal’s irrepressible form continued as he thrashed Brazilian qualifier Rogerio Dutra Silva to move into round three of the US Open.The world number two, who has won nine of his 12 tournaments this year and all 21 hard court matches, outclassed Dutra Silva 6-2 6-1 6-0 in 92 minutes.Defending champion Serena Williams, five-time winner Roger Federer and second seed Victoria Azarenka also won.But fourth seed Sara Errani was eliminated by Flavia Pennetta.Arthur Ashe StadiumFlavia Pennetta (Ita) bt Sara Errani (Ita) [4] 6-3 6-1 Fourth seed Errani admitted she felt so weighed down by pressure that she did not want to go on the court before losing to her compatriot.Maria Sharapova’s withdrawal meant the 26-year-old was elevated to fourth seed and she struggled to cope with it.“I think it’s the pressure,” said a tearful Errani. “I have never been in this situation. I don’t want to go on the court. I don’t want to go to play. I don’t want to stay there on the court. I feel very bad.”Serena Williams (US) [1] bt Galina Voskoboeva (Kaz) 6-3 6-0The 16-time Grand Slam champion needed just 69 minutes to book a third-round meeting with Yaroslava Shvedova, of Kazakhstan, and has now lost only four games in two matches. Roger Federer (Swi) [7] bt Carlos Berlocq (Arg) 6-3 6-2 6-1“It might take a few matches and next thing you know you’re playing really, really good tennis again and you’re close to playing some really great tennis,” said Federer, who is at his lowest world ranking – seventh – since 2002.“I think that’s kind of where I am right now, and that’s where every match is really important to me and how I play every single point.”Caroline Wozniacki (Den) [6] bt Chanelle Scheepers (RSA) 6-1 6-2Rafael Nadal (Spa) [2] bt Rogerio Dutra Silva (Bra) 6-2 6-1 6-0 Nadal showed no sign of the injuries that have plagued him over the past two years and later said: “I’m trying to play more aggressive.“I didn’t have time to practise a lot because I was injured for seven months and when I started to feel better I started to compete. I need to play more aggressive – I’m trying to work on this my whole career but it’s more mental than a training thing.”Louis Armstrong StadiumAngelique Kerber (Ger) [8] bt Eugenie Bouchard (Can) 6-4 2-6 6-3Bouchard, 19, has been tipped as a future star, but Kerber battled through and remains on course for a quarter-final meeting with Serena Williams.David Ferrer (Spa) [4] bt Roberto Bautista Agut (Spa) 6-3 6-7 (5-7) 6-1 6-2 His pre-tournament form was unimpressive, but Ferrer has now made it to round three or better at each of the last 15 Grand Slams.Victoria Azarenka (Blr) [2] bt Aleksandra Wozniak (Can) 6-3 6-1Azarenka, who beat Serena Williams at the recent Cincinnati Open, was broken three times on a windy day – but she prevailed in a little over an hour to book a meeting with Alize Cornet of France.John Isner (US) [13] bt Gael Monfils (Fra) 7-5 6-2 4-6 7-6 (7-4)Number 13 seed Isner held off Monfils to progress as the last-seeded American in the men’s draw, despite the Frenchman getting more than his share of support in front of Isner’s home crowd.Grandstand Ana Ivanovic (Ser) [13] bt Alexandra Dulgheru (Rom) 6-2 6-1Adrian Mannarino (Fra) bt Sam Querrey (US) [26] 7-6 (7-4) 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (5-7) 6-2Mannarino is through to round three of a Grand Slam for only the second time, and his reward is a meeting with Roger Federer.Querrey’s first defeat before round three at Flushing Meadows since 2007 means the highest-ranked US man left in the draw is 13th seed Isner.Brits abroadDan Evans (GB) bt Bernard Tomic (Aus) 1-6 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-3 Match reportJamie Murray (GB) and John Peers (Aus) bt Fernando Verdasco (Spa) [9] David Marrero (Spa) [9] 7-6 (7-4) 6-4Britain’s Murray and his Australian partner Peers will continue their doubles bid against Feliciano Lopez and Andre Sa after an impressive 81-minute victory over ninth seeds Verdasco and Marrero.Dominic Inglot (GB) [16] and Treat Huey (Phi) [16] bt Jurgen Melzer (Aut) and Julian Knowle (Aut) 6-2 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (7-5)Jiri Vesely (Cze) and Jaroslav Levinsky (Cze) bt Ken Skupski (GB) and Denis Istomin (Uzb) 6-3 6-3Outside courtsPetra Kvitova (Cze) [7] bt Bojana Jovanovski (Ser) 6-2 6-4Richard Gasquet (Fra) [8] bt Stephane Robert (Fra) 6-3 7-5 7-5Tommy Robredo (Spa) [19] bt Frank Dancevic (Can) 6-4 6-4 6-1The 31-year-old former world number five looked hugely impressive as he knocked out Dancevic to set up a meeting with Britain’s Dan Evans.last_img read more