He said after losing to former club West Ham United on Saturday: "You’ve got to be big enough and brave enough and we’ve got to be encouraged by that performance, and say ‘Let’s continue playing like that’. Because if we continue playing at that level then you win games because you’ll give yourself the opportunity of winning games’."
Funnily enough, it was Sunderland's win over Newcastle that prompted McClaren to tell reporters: "If we play like that and keep 11 players on the pitch, we will win eight or nine out of 10 games. You can see the progress. Some of our football was fantastic and that's progress."
The problem is McClaren has repeated that message several times since... but has it happened? No.
Allardyce is a lot more self-aware than the Newcastle boss, of course, adding: "We’ve got to continue at this level. But my worry is, just recently, some of our best performances have been against Man City and here, and we’ve got zero points."
However, that's a key point that basically overrides the Sunderland boss's original one. Just because the Black Cats performed relatively well against West Ham, they shouldn't rest on their laurels.
Sunderland's defending for West Ham's winner was criticised, while their forwards were profligate.
Playing well on its own won't be good enough, then, and Allardyce needs to emphasise that. Unfortunately, playing at a good level while not taking any points isn't good enough to battle relegation - just look at McClaren and Newcastle.