Mo Diame has offered a refreshingly honest assessment of our home form so far this season – admitting that it is nowhere near good enough to be losing to ‘bottom half’ sides at St James’ Park.
Although our early season fixtures were tough, we can not hide away from the fact we have now lost 7 of our 9 home games this season – with us winnable games against Leicester, Brighton, West Ham and Wolves either side of back-to-back wins over Watford and Bournemouth.
Here’s what Diame has had to say during a brutally honest chat with the Chronicle this week:
“It was a really bad result.
“We can say everything about how we fought, we showed good attitude but we lost the points, especially at home that is disappointing.
“We had a good point against Everton last Wednesday and Wolves was a good opportunity for us with all the results from Saturday, now we are disappointed not to have done our bit to get the result we wanted.
“When you lose there is always something to blame. I know a lot of people will say we have worked hard, gave a lot but not everything because we lost and we are left disappointed again.
“At home all the bottom teams we face we need to take the three points. When you play away it is different but we should be looking to beat teams in the bottom half when we are at home.
“I don’t know what to say about the run (seven home defeats from nine). It’s bad. We know that. We need points and we need to change that as soon as possible.”
Good words from Diame here and he still deserves immense credit for turning his NUFC career around this year. After a fine campaign last time out, he was poor earlier this season but appears back to his best recently, as Shelvey remains kept out the XI due to his excellent partnership with Ki.
But our home form has certainly not been good enough, it’s only how solid we have been defensively on the road that has meant we are not in the bottom three. The way Benitez sets Newcastle up arguably doesn’t work well at home, where you have to play on the front foot and take the game to the opposition. Until Rafa is backed with investment and better players, this is likely to be an issue for Newcastle – the current crop of players are better suited to playing on the counter attack.
Let’s hope Diame can keep playing well and we can pick up more points at home, starting with Fulham who are next up at SJP. A win against the Cottagers would be a huge boost in our bid to stay up and a good way to turn things around at home for the second half of the season.