Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Keegan: Let's Keep It Going; THE FRIDAY FILE

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Keegan: Let's Keep It Going; THE FRIDAY FILE

Article excerpt

Byline: By ALAN OLIVER Chief Sports Writer

KEVIN KEEGAN has paid tribute to the way his Newcastle United players have made an unbeaten start to their season.

And the United boss expects them to carry on with their good work in tomorrow's game with Arsenal at The Emirates before the fortnight's international break for the World Cup qualifiers.

No-one expected United to be heading to London sitting pretty in sixth place in the Premier League table with Arsenal eight slots below them.

But before flying to London, Keegan told me today: "The players have been very professional in the way they have started the season and they have got themselves very fit.

"And to be honest we have flogged some players to death in our opening games but instead of complaining they have just got on with it.

"They have got themselves so fit that the longer the game against Coventry went on we seemed to find more energy and we got our reward for hard work determination and a really good spirit."

Keegan has never been a big believer in worrying about the opposition and he did not take the chance to run the rule over Arsenal in their Champions League win over FC Twente at The Emirates on Wednesday night.

However, he insisted: "We do our homework so we know what to expect at Arsenal."

Keegan's first two away games when he returned to United in January were an FA Cup tie at Arsenal followed three days later by a Premier League match against Arsene Wenger's men. United lost both those games 3-0 to go with a 2-0 Carling Cup reverse at The Emirates earlier in the season.

I can remember watching Keegan before the FA Cup tie as he took his seat in the visiting dug-out and he looked around and took in the magnificent stadium and atmosphere and it struck me that he knew this is what he had been missing while concentrating on his soccer circus in Glasgow.

He added: "We had Arsenal twice in my first two games away from home.

They've made a couple of changes, and so have we.

"It's another year, another season, another game, and hopefully a different result."

United have not won at Arsenal since they finally broke their London hoodoo under Sir Bobby Robson in a controversial match back in 2001-02. …

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