The Toon away. We do OK up there but as RC78 so rightly says, this will be a difficult fixture from which to garner 3 points. NU have only lost by one goal against the Chavs, MC and the Lilly-livered Lillywhites
Last season we lost 2-1 at St James. With good fortune and the wind at our backs we hope for a better result this afternoon.
Benitez has done a wonderful job and deserves a Toon statue. Promotion plus keeping them up with hardly any money and an appalling group of Southern lardarses on the BoD.
What is lacking is a proper No.9 and that is an essential requirement for the Toon Army. What a history of great CF’s they have had: SuperMac, Dirty Shearer, Thieving (allegedly) Cole, Keegan, Beardsley and back in GN5’s time, Jackie Milburn. Now they have … Rondon. That said, Rondon and probably Rondon’s mother could score against our fragile defence.
Newcastle could well have Shelvey and Matt Ritchie back in midfield so we have be secure – surely a start for Terrier to put a marker on Shelvey.
Thankfully, Rafa has got rid of the filthy tactics previously employed by NU managers – let us not forget that Joey Barton played for this prestigious club.
Given our flaky back five scoring is essential and thankfully we have the firepower upfront. Did you know that we have scored 8 PL goals this season with 8 different scorers?!
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Should we start this team the onus is very much on the FB’s to provide the width. As always, we have a strong attacking bench.
I fear that away from home Emery will be more pragmatic and choose to play with just one upfront, perhaps including Mhiki as a false 8 (whatever that means). Had Iwobi been fit, I would expect him to start ahead of Laca.
And just in case you have forgotten, St James was the scene of the worst refereeing performance ever seen. Who will ever forget the afternoon in which Phil Dowd showed himself to be a complete and utter ****.? No Gooner will. Dowd is now a Traffic Warden in Wallsend.
Newcastle’s recent tactics have been PTB and hope for the best, I expect Benitez to be more expansive this afternoon, correctly surmising that our defence is prone to lapses. Should be another exciting game.