Eriksson supports Allardyce as board look for a quick fix

Last updated at 11:06 03 January 2008

Under-pressure Newcastle boss Sam Allardyce has received the backing of Sven Goran Eriksson as he attempts to prevent his side's season spiralling out of control.

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The 53-year-old was plunged deeper into trouble by the Swede's Manchester City after they left St James' Park last night with all three points in a 2-0 win to condemn the Magpies to a third successive Barclays Premier League defeat.

Newcastle have now taken just one point from a possible 12 over the holiday period and nine from the last 12 games.

Sam Allardyce

Eriksson consoles Michael Owen

With Allardyce due to lose Abdoulaye Faye, Habib Beye, Geremi and Obafemi Martins on African Nations' Cup duty, there is little light at the end of the tunnel.

They head to Stoke for a tricky FA Cup third-round clash on Sunday with the manager's critics sharpening their knives once again, although he has an ally in Eriksson.

Asked if he had sympathy with his opposite number, the City boss said: "Yes, of course. I said it before the game.

"The longer you are in this job, you know sooner or later, it will happen. It has happened to me many times in my career, and that's football.

"You cannot expect to always play good football and win. Sometimes there are hard times - and it can be for weeks, it can be for months. But Sam Allardyce is a very good manager - you saw that in the past with Bolton. Give him time and he will sort it out, I am sure."

It does seem that he also has the backing of his board - for now. Chairman Chris Mort has revealed Allardyce will be making some signings in the transfer-window but made it clear he expects the current squad to improve performances soon.

Owner Mike Ashley has invested a net figure of around £10million in players to date, but has ploughed £75m into addressing club debt.

"I would expect us to make a couple of further additions to the squad in January but, like any other club, we would prefer to add players in the summer transfer window than in January-so that players have a chance to settle into the team," said Mort.

"With the strength we have in the squad, I am hopeful that the team will soon settle into a winning run that will push us back up to where we should be."

Ironically, Newcastle turned in one of their better performances, as they attempted to deny City a first away win in the League since the opening day of the campaign, and had chances to cancel out Elano's clinical 38th-minute finish.

Michael Owen, on as a half-time substitute, could have levelled within 35 seconds, but could not beat keeper Joe Hart, and the game was ultimately settled by City's own replacement Gelson Fernandes 14 minutes from time.