Football: Uefa Cup first round: Robson ready to play different kind of game

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The Independent Online
NEWCASTLE NEED a morale-boosting Uefa Cup result in Bulgaria tonight after their disastrous start to the domestic season. Newcastle have not won since beating Tottenham in the FA Cup semi-finals in April.

Bobby Robson, Newcastle's manager, said: "A win in Europe or in the League is what the players want and need. We have to make sure we don't lose, but bring home to Newcastle a result which will give us a chance in the second leg. It's Cup tie football, but it's not sudden death, it's not a knock-out job. We've got to learn how to play two matches.

"It won't be football as played in the Premiership. It will be different, a bit less pace and power, a bit slower football and more technique and more possession. It's a question of who has the ball and how much they have of it. We hope to dominate and we hope to get possession of the ball in fair spells and do something about it.

Newcastle's coach, John Carver, was in Bulgaria last Friday night to see 10-man CSKA defeat Slavia 3-1 to go joint top of their league, but Robson is not sure how much to read into that result. He said: "They won 3-1 with 10 players so how good the other team were is debatable."

Robson may remain loyal to the side which lost at Chelsea, with the exception of ineligible keeper Tommy Wright, who will be replaced by Steve Harper.