McClaren has been confirmed as the new Magpies boss for next season, with John Carver having been sacked from his role.
McClaren has already made the ambitious statement that he wants a top eight finish with the club and success in one of the domestic cup competitions, but Howey has suggested it’s more important he just gets the team to register some wins by any means necessary.
“Everybody wants attractive football and to win but sometimes you just have to win ugly – I think the main thing is to be picking up results week in and week out and not be looking at that Premier League table and seeing the team right down the bottom half,” he said.
Howey’s comments are understandable given the struggles Newcastle had to endure throughout last season, eventually avoiding the drop down to the Championship on the final day of the league campaign with a win against West Ham.
McClaren will want to breed a culture of ambition and positivity, which is what the fans want, but the best way for him to arguably do that is by stringing more than one win together.
A couple of scrappy wins at the start of the next campaign will put the club into a very good position initially and confidence and momentum can grow from there.
Once the club is in a stable position, he can then focus on more expansive tactics and entertaining football but the most important thing for the club is being comfortable in the top flight.