Jets striker Adam Taggart has labelled Newcastle's failure to reach the Hyundai A-League finals for a fourth consecutive season as “completely unacceptable”.
Adam Taggart has labelled Newcastle's failure to reach the Hyundai A-League finals as “completely unacceptable” and says the players and club need to be accountable for the situation.
Jets were consigned to seventh spot and a fourth straight season without finals football after Sydney FC beat Perth 2-1 on Sunday to secure the last play-off position.
It brought to a close a frustrating campaign for the Hunter club, which at times promised a lot but ultimately, fell short of being a success.
As the club immediately begin a post-mortem of their season, a disappointed Taggart says they simply have to be better in every department next season.
"There's six teams that go into the finals every year and very few that miss out so for us to miss the finals for four seasons in a row is completely unacceptable for the whole fan base and town," he told www.footballaustralia.com.au on Monday.
"For us players it's something we really need to have a good look at ourselves and understand what kind of club we want to be.
"We want to be a top four club every single year and a finals team every year.
"That's why you play in the A-League to play in the finals. That's the motivation that gets you through the whole season.”
Taggart, who scored 16 goals for the season to finish with the A-League's golden-boot, believes the side's "strange inconsistency" was a major contributor in missing the finals.
Newcastle always managed to pick up results against tops sides like Brisbane, Western Sydney and Melbourne Victory but often struggled with teams around them on the ladder.
"We beat all the top teams, including Brisbane three times, yet teams like Perth we were struggling to get results," the 20-year-old said.
"That's something that just can't happen.
"If your beating the top sides you have to keep that motivation and consistency when you're playing the so-called bottom sides, at your home ground especially.
"Personally it was great just to play some consistent first-team football. The golden boot's lovely but it would have been even better to make the finals and really try and carry this campaign on even longer."
Taggart's outstanding season saw him rewarded with Jets' Member's Player of the Year award at the club's presentation on Saturday night.
The versatile Josh Brillante won the Player of the Year gong, ahead of Taggart and defender Kew Jaliens.
"We don't have a lot of time to sit and dwell on it now, it's about preparing for next season individually and as a team,” the Socceroo striker added.
“We have to do all we can in the off-season and make sure it doesn't happen again next year."