I’m not one for paying too much attention to how all the ‘teams around us’ are doing. My philosophy has always been, when your chances of achieving your goals (in footballing terms) rest in your own hands, why worry about what everyone around is doing?
Well, in an all-too-familiar season where maintaining our top-flight status is a major concern, sometimes it’s hard not to take a step back and see how our prospects look based on the performances of teams in a similarly perilous position.
In my very first article for NUFC Blog, my ‘philosophies’ have taken a back seat and I’ve compiled a short a run-down of how today’s results look from a Magpie perspective.
West Ham 1-0 Sunderland
The Hammers did just enough to squeeze past our local rivals Sunderland with a 1-0 win at the Boleyn ground today. The Mackems’ improvement on the pitch since ‘Big Sam’ took over has certainly been evident this season but by all accounts they were made to rue some good missed chances as well as a Jack Rodwell goal that was ruled out for offside.
With arguably winnable games against Crystal Palace and Southampton up next for Sunderland, here’s to hoping that their far from potent streak in front of goal continues.
Leicester City 1-0 Norwich
Leonardo Ulloa’s late goal lifted the roof off the King Power stadium and could prove to be crucial to our chances of our survival come the end of the season. We’ve now played one game less than the Canaries and just a point against next opponents Stoke City, will see us out the bottom three.
This defeat will no doubt have dented an already fragile Norwich psyche. Disappointing losses to Villa and Liverpool in 2016 all point to signs that Alex Neil’s men are in freefall with less than a third of the season left to go.
Stoke City 2-1 Aston Villa
Let’s face it, Villa were already down and deservedly so. Remi Garde’s men have been woeful this season but this defeat at the Britannia Stadium further cemented any chances the Midlands club may have of a late revival.
With Villa fans famously mocking our relegation plight back in the 2008/2009 season, it looks almost a certainty that the Midlands’ supposedly ‘biggest club’ will have to suffer the same fate this year.
Watford 0-0 Bournemouth
It was a very decent point indeed for plucky Bournemouth at Vicarage Road this afternoon. Both sides missed very good chances according to the match report posted on BBC football and should the remarkable happen and we pick up three points at the Britannia Stadium on Wednesday, we’ll be placed just two points behind Eddie Howe’s Cherries side.
In truth, of all the sides in and around this Catalina Mixer of relegation-threatened sides in the Premier League this season, it is AFC Bournemouth that I’d most like to see avoid the drop (assuming we do as well of course!).
It was unfathomable how we managed to pull-off our 1-0 smash and grab at the Vitality stadium earlier in the season (in truth, we deserved nothing out of that game) and for a club with such limited resources, it is refreshing to see them stick to their guns and play exciting, attacking football.
What did you make of today’s results then folks? Have your say in the comments below.