Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

We Need Cup Form in League ( Roeder

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

We Need Cup Form in League ( Roeder

Article excerpt

Byline: By Stuart Rayner

Glenn Roeder admits he is "surprised" Newcastle United have not been able to translate their cup form into league results this season.

The Magpies fly to Sicily this morning for arguably the toughest game of their campaign to date against joint Serie A leaders Palermo buoyed by an impressive run of cup form.

Roeder's men are unbeaten in eight games in the Intertoto, Uefa and League Cups this term ( winning six, drawing two and conceding only two goals in the process. Although that is to some degree a reflection of the quality of opponents United have faced in the knockout competitions, the confidence they should have gained from it has seemingly had no effect on their league showing.

Newcastle's league form has been miserable, with just eight points from a possible 30 this season leaving them a place above the Premiership relegation zone. And while Roeder admits he is perplexed by the Jekyll and Hyde nature of his team's results, he believes he can see signs of an imminent improvement in their precarious league position.

"I'm surprised and frustrated that our cup results haven't been translated into points in the league," said the 50-year-old Londoner (pictured left), who will take on Italian football's surprise package without the ineligible Giuseppe Rossi and Pavel Srnicek. Roeder believes recent Premiership performances have been better than results suggest.

"I have always believed if your first port of call is a good performance then results will follow," he said. "We are getting decent performances and the lads have deserved more than they are getting in the league.

"They are doing extremely well to retain confidence and play the way they are. These lads are managing to play football the way we want them to without getting the results we want. Recently it has been a case of not finishing off a host of chances."

Rossi, who despite being born in New York is an Italian Under-19 international, has been the club's most impressive performer in their last two matches, against Portmouth and Charlton Athletic. …

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