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SBR: Souness Couldn't Handle Bellamy

SBR: Souness Couldn't Handle Bellamy

Never a man to milk a situation, but former Newcastle boss Sir Bobby Robson couldn't help but say he felt Graeme Souness' sacking had become inevitable. Souness replaced Robson 17 months ago, and Robson has been bitter ever since.

Robson: 'Make no mistake, this is an alarming time for Newcastle United. It's why Freddy Shepherd had no choice in sacking Graeme Souness. After all, they sacked the last manager - me! - after finishing fifth. So 15th position, as they were on Wednesday night, isn't even close to being respectable.

'Graeme had a lot of injuries, but he also let a lot of good young players go, either selling them or sending them out on loan.

'James Milner, Jermaine Jenas, Darren Ambrose, Craig Bellamy, Laurent Robert, Aaron Hughes, Andy O'Brien - all of them would have done a job for the team.

'I know better than anyone Craig could be an irritant, but he wasn't so bad that he couldn't be handled. By falling out with him so publicly, Newcastle lost a star player for the knockdown price of £5million and the team's attacking play has not been as fluent since.

'In recent weeks, there has been talk of an injury curse, which I don't buy.
Certainly the club have suffered poor luck but there were still enough expensive players on the pitch for results to have been better. However many mistakes Jean-Alain Boumsong made at the back, communication with the rest of his defenders never improved under Graeme and his coaches, which baffled me, to be honest.'

Writer:
Date:Sunday February 5 2006
Time: 12:16PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
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2 Brighton 25 16 6 3 54 23
3 Leeds Utd 26 15 3 8 48 11
4 Reading 25 14 4 7 46 3
5 Huddersfield 26 14 4 8 46 0
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9 Preston 26 11 6 9 39 3
10 Barnsley 26 11 5 10 38 4
11 Norwich 26 11 4 11 37 3
12 Birmingham 26 9 9 8 36 -5
13 Aston Villa 26 8 11 7 35 1
14 Ipswich 26 9 7 10 34 -3
15 Brentford 26 9 6 11 33 0
16 Wolves 26 8 8 10 32 -1
17 Q.P.R. 26 9 5 12 32 -11
18 Cardiff 25 8 6 11 30 -10
19 Bristol City 26 8 3 15 27 -3
20 Forest 26 7 6 13 27 -8
21 Burton 26 6 7 13 25 -10
22 Blackburn 26 6 6 14 24 -12
23 Wigan 26 5 7 14 22 -9
24 Rotherham 26 4 4 18 16 -29
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