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McClaren apologises to Newcastle fans after Wear-Tyne derby defeat

Steve McClaren has apologised to Newcastle United fans after his side slipped to a sixth successive defeat to fierce rivals Sunderland last weekend.

After having captain Fabricio Coloccini sent off at the Stadium of Light, Newcastle were beaten 3-0 as Sunderland climbed above them in the Premier League table.

On Thursday, McClaren penned a letter to the Newcastle fans to express his disappointment at not giving them a victory to celebrate, but he found plenty of positives from his side's display.

"Sunday's derby defeat hurt us all and every one of us is sorry that we couldn't deliver you the victory you deserved," he is quoted as saying by The Chronicle.

"I am certain that if it hadn't been for Colo's sending off, we would have delivered you that victory.

"But with the news of our successful appeal, we draw a line under that match-defining moment and focus on recreating the positives of the minutes that went before.

"Even if you didn't see the game on Sunday, you'll know that we bossed it in the first half and hardly gave our hosts a kick.

"With 10 men on the pitch we were still the stronger side for large parts of the second half, despite what the scoreline suggests.

"In spite of the result, training this week has been nothing but positive and preparation has been first class.

"There's been no feeling sorry for ourselves. Just a group of players and staff who want to show you how passionately we care about your club.

"We'll put all of the positives and the passion into delivering you three points on Saturday."

Meanwhile, defender Mike Williamson has joined Championship outfit Wolves on a one-month loan deal.