DAN Gosling insists Newcastle United’s players are fully behind under-fire manager Alan Pardew.
The Magpies lost for the fifth straight game on Saturday, with Swansea City scoring a penalty in second-half stoppage-time to win 2-1 at St James’s Park.
Newcastle’s recent run of form – they have lost 13 of their last 18 games – has led to many fans calling for Pardew to be sacked.
Pardew will return to the touchline after a seven-match ban for next Monday’s trip to Arsenal, and Gosling feels that will boost the players, who remain supportive of him.
“We’re all sticking together,” the midfielder said. “The manager knows he’s got all the lads on side.
“We respect him as a manager and respect all the coaching staff.
“The atmosphere around the training ground is actually OK – it’s good.
“It has obviously just been difficult come Saturday afternoon, but I think it will be a lot easier when he’s back on the sidelines.
“The bad run has actually been with him upstairs, and it’s hard to get messages across. It’s actually a big miss.
“You don’t realise that it does affect the team, and you need the gaffer on the sidelines barking orders out. It helps us.
“We need him back down in the dugout, so it will be good.”
Gosling felt Newcastle’s players initially failed to cope with the “nervous” atmosphere at St James’s Park on Saturday.
And he insists the team need the fans “more than ever” if they are to end their woeful run.
He added: “The first half was very nervy, and I think the fans were on edge as well, and that creates a nervous atmosphere for the players.
“It was difficult in the first half, but we managed to calm them down and we were the better team, and it was unfortunate to lose the game.
“The fans noticed the effort that we put in, and they backed us all the way second half. We need them more than ever now.”