The former Newcastle boss has been discussing the club's precarious situation.
Ex-Newcastle United head coach Sam Allardyce feels the club's biggest problem is the fact they have brought so many players in from abroad without knowing how they will fare in the Premier League, according to Sky Sports.
As ever with Allardyce, he didn't really say much of value. But one thing he did single out was potentially the biggest issue facing McClaren and Newcastle right now.
Indeed, the former Newcastle boss told Sky Sports News: "The Newcastle fans were crying out over a lack of signings last year. Now they've gone and made those signings and we all know one of the most important things is who you recruit when you're spending £30m, £40m, £50m.
"When players come from abroad you cannot really say whether they're going to be successful or not. You just hope they can take the form they've shown in the country they've been playing in into the Premier League."
What memories will Big Sam have of his own time on Tyneside? He knows all too well how quickly things can unravel if you're not doing well at St James' Park.
But McClaren's start at Newcastle is worrying in terms of how poor it has been. That's added to how poor his last few games at Derby County were. His run of fixtures with only two wins to his name (one of them against Blackpool) continues.
Any more and there is no doubt McClaren absolutely has to fear for his job. Of course, he isn't the only culprit. John Carver destroyed this Newcastle squad, while Alan Pardew was blamed for his management before him.
There's also the small matter of Mike Ashley and how the club is run. But McClaren's poor form at Derby proves a lot of these problems are simply coming from his own very bad coaching.