Newcastle star wants to avoid repeat of relegation

NO REPEAT ... Steven Taylor.
NO REPEAT ... Steven Taylor.

STEVEN Taylor’s determined history doesn’t repeat itself at Newcastle United.

Taylor and his team-mates take on Sam Allardyce’s West Ham United at Upton Park on Saturday with the club’s Premier League status on the line.

The defender was in the side relegated from the top flight four years ago.

And the 27-year-old, pictured, feels the class of 2013 are stronger than that team – despite a poor run of results, most recently the 6-0 drubbing at the hands of a rampant Liverpool at St James’s Park last weekend.

That result intensified the pressure on United manager Alan Pardew, who will today face the media for the first time since the defeat, the club’s heaviest home loss in 88 years.

“We’ve got the quality here – we have everything we need,” Taylor said.

“We’re in a stronger situation than we were four years ago. I’ve said it before, we are good enough, we just need a break.”

The past few days have been dominated by reports, which have been denied by the club, of dressing-room unrest.

However, Taylor insists the togetherness, which was forged during Newcastle’s year in the Championship, and owes much to West Ham captain Kevin Nolan, remains intact ahead of the club’s visit to east London, despite the disjointed performances against Liverpool and Sunderland.

“We are together, and we’ll continue to stick together,” he added.

“This week is one of the most important for a long time. We go to West Ham, and we’re going looking for a win.

“The gaffer has touched on it. With three games to go, we know we need at least three points.”

The criticism that has been directed at Pardew and his players by fans and media alike since the 3-0 Tyne-Wear derby defeat last month has, clearly, hurt.

Egos are bruised ahead of what is certain to be a bruising encounter at Upton Park, where Nolan and Andy Carroll will be waiting for Newcastle, who are 17th in the Premier League and five points above third-from-bottom Wigan Athletic, who have a game in hand.

“Everybody has looked at us and criticised the whole team, but we look at ourselves and nothing else,” said Taylor.

“We have to deliver this week - these are three cup finals for us. We’ll stick together.”