5 key battles between Newcastle and Norwich

Norwich visit St James’ Park this evening looking to regain their place at the top of the Championship. Alex Neil’s side were top at the weekend, but dropped down to second place after Huddersfield’s victory last night.

For Newcastle, it’s a chance to jump six places to third and ensure that the teams at the top don’t build up too much of a gap going into October.

Following the last minute draw against Aston Villa at the weekend Rafa Benitez’s team will be wanting to get back to winning ways against a team they hammered 6-2 at home in the Premier League last season.

Here are the 5 battles Newcastle will need to win if they want to overcome Norwich.

Sels

Sels vs Darlow

New goalkeeper Matz Sels – a £6.5m signing from Belgian side Gent – came in for a lot of abuse after the Villa game. Having looked shaky throughout the season so far fans blamed him for the side conceding late on and missing out on three vital points.

This abuse led to him deleting his Twitter account, with many believing that Karl Darlow – who had a good end to the season last year – should be given a chance in the Championship.

For his part, Rafa didn’t dodge the question in yesterday’s press conference. The Spaniard insists he will decide on the day of the game. Despite the abuse, and who Rafa eventually picks to start in goal, expect Sels to still get a great reception if he’s chosen.

Click here to view the next key battle in the game between Newcastle United and Norwich.

162 thoughts on “5 key battles between Newcastle and Norwich

  1. What I will say, is this month is our toughest set of fixtures. In theory, we should do much better in the next 30 days and we are still within touching distance. All is not lost but some of the lads need to man up quickly.

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  2. Shamrock, too many journeyman players not good enough, Diame, Mitrovic, Gouffron, Colback, Dummet, Lascalles all average.

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  3. DJG:
    Can we all stop pretending we’re going to win the league after today? We’re ****. 3 defeats at home already.

    A few believed that before a ball was kicked…

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  4. We can’t beat the average teams but can beat the poor teams so we’ll be ok ? 🙂

    Too many players can’t hack the pressure of playing at SJP ….plus they’re just not good enough..

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  5. @mm

    I said we’d be there abouts the play offs. I’m doubting that now.
    Not panicking but we’re a team of alsorts and we still haven’t bedded some new players. Others are up and away….

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  6. We’ll win some of the next five but it’s all false dawns IMO. Atsu on now?!? Too late what’s the point!!! Reminds me of Houghton when he used to bring people on when it was too late. 😐

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  7. well what a messy game. We need to take the win as a lucky charm and move on and learn from it…
    Unbelievable result

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  8. Well they showed the mental grit to get back into it and pull the win out the bag. That should silence a few doubters. Even I was temporarily a doubter. Silly me. A few players still need to have a look at themselves, but that comeback is a massive declaration of intent and character. Well done lads. Oh and by the way, Mitro needs moving in. Had enough of him now.

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  9. Holy sheep ****!

    By the radio account, we could have been up 3-0 in the first half, so maybe that’s deserved after all.

    Me, oh, my… I hope Gayle gets some confidence and some improved accuracy out of that!

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  10. Missed a lot of the second half cause I was getting email alerts left right and centre from purple bricks with people booking viewings for the house. It may be cheaper online but you do a lot of the donkey work 👿

    Anyway 4.3, av that Norwich 😆

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  11. Shamrock:
    Those saying Gayle is ****e…..

    Is he not still near a goal a game ratio?

    I sense the Leon Best Syndrome will become The Gayle Force. He scores vital goals but is not respected because….. I’ve no idea, he isn’t a fancy dribbling type.

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  12. Shamrock:
    Well they showed the mental grit to get back into it and pull the win out the bag. That should silence a few doubters. Even I was temporarily a doubter. Silly me. A few players still need to have a look at themselves, but that comeback is a massive declaration of intent and character. Well done lads. Oh and by the way, Mitro needs moving in. Had enough of him now.

    Still reasons to doubt mate. We need to find some consistency. We could of be buried tonight and suffered with confidence. A huge come back for us

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  13. Years of Ashley seem to have made many ready to jump off the Newcastle express at the drop of a hat. Possibly that will start to change now?

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  14. funkyjesus: Is he not still near a goal a game ratio?

    I sense the Leon Best Syndrome will become The Gayle Force.He scores vital goals but is not respected because….. I’ve no idea, he isn’t a fancy dribbling type.

    Yeah no idea mate. He misses a few granted, but he’s getting in the right positions, he is hungry and he is scoring. Not only that, but he is a good free kick and penalty taker. His worth to the team is not in question. Mitro on the other hand….

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  15. The hope is still there for this season. A huge win for Rafa as the boo birds were starting to circle in for the feast.

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  16. We’ve got to stop eating our own mates. The middle of a match isn’t the time to decide you hate the club and how it’s run. Fess up those who do it fairly often on here.

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  17. Just a thought. It will be interesting to read the comments over the next few games. Are we a great side? Are we a horrible side? I would think we’re neither at this point but with some promise starting to show through.

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  18. See someone has shopped the lady who was doing the streaming from the back of the stand at NUFC to the club – bloody ******

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  19. I haven’t seen the stats, but based on the chances created that I remember we deserved the win today – but we made too much hard work of it for me.

    Maybe I’m just expecting too much, but I want to see us playing better than we are – and I’m well aware we sit 3rd in the league so can’t be doing too badly. But we are in the Championship FFS.

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  20. We deserved to win tonight so I don’t understand how it papered over the cracks. We could have been 4 up in 30 mins

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  21. From the highlights it looks like Mitro was actually very effective bringing high balls down and knocking them on. He actually assisted the winner. Colback was directly and indirectly responsible for 2 Norwich goals by standing off the attacker from too far away and doing nothing. Darlow should have saved their second. Shelvey was on fire with his passing.

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  22. Between that game and Purple bricks I have a stonking stress headache I can tell you.

    Bring on Rotherham anyway

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  23. Sharpy17: Kim – QPR will dine out on that one.That could well be the chop for JFH now – Steve Mc could be booking a taxi for London I reckon.

    poor ****ers

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  24. Sharpy17:
    I haven’t seen the stats, but based on the chances created that I remember we deserved the win today – but we made too much hard work of it for me.

    Maybe I’m just expecting too much, but I want to see us playing better than we are – and I’m well aware we sit 3rd in the league so can’t be doing too badly.But we are in the Championship FFS.

    we are in the championship mate, that’s the thing.. we dont have to be excellent..just a bit better than the rest.

    It could of went either way tonight even tho I was confident of a win to kick start our season, we could of messed up big time.

    We need to settle now and get back to keeping clean sheets. build from the back as we know we can score goals. Maybe less chopping and changing the team

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  25. I think we need a settled back 5. Not really a Darlow fan. Not a Selz fan either so far. Where is Elliott? And bring back Krul. After the International break is when my prophecy of us clicking into gear takes place.

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  26. Shamrock:
    From the highlights it looks like Mitro was actually very effective bringing high balls down and knocking them on. He actually assisted the winner. Colback was directly and indirectly responsible for 2 Norwich goals by standing off the attacker from too far away and doing nothing. Darlow should have saved their second. Shelvey was on fire with his passing.

    Sham – personally I’d like to move Diame back alongside Shelvey isn’t of Colback as I don’t see Diame as a no.10. Play Gayle up top with Mitrovic or Murphy.
    I’m not knocking Gayle coz he’s doing well but he’s only getting scraps on his own up there.

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  27. One tweet said, “Sels hasn’t conceded three in one game”. Um, 1. Sels has mainly played midtable teams (including Villa) 2. One was a deflection and one was a penalty. What was he supposed to do with those?! Save two pens in a row for us? 😆 Some people are just stupid, engage brain before tweeting!!!

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  28. Gashley: we are in the championship mate, that’s the thing.. we dont have to be excellent..just a bit better than the rest.

    It could of went either way tonight even tho I was confident of a win to kick start our season, we could of messed up big time.

    We need to settle now and get back to keeping clean sheets. build from the back as we know we can score goals. Maybe less chopping and changing the team

    Gash – I’m not having that though mate. We spent a fortune & have a strong squad & a world class manager working with them – we shouldn’t be just a little bit better.

    If we can’t beat the likes of Fulham, Wolves & Villa and are making such hard work against other Championship teams – what chance against PL teams?.
    Take the QPR game out and where have we played really well?.

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  29. Sharpy17: Sham – personally I’d like to move Diame back alongside Shelvey isn’t of Colback as I don’t see Diame as a no.10.Play Gayle up top with Mitrovic or Murphy.
    I’m not knocking Gayle coz he’s doing well but he’s only getting scraps on his own up there.

    Yes mate I’d prefer a 442 little and large set up as well. It made the difference at the end tonight. I’d drop both Colback and Diame and have Hayden next to Shelvey myself. Diame can be a direct impact player late on and Colback can err……..?… ..

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  30. Sharpy we are 10 games in with a completely new squad – just seen off our biggest promotion rivals and sit 3rd, only 3 points off first place and with the best goal difference in the league.

    Everybody has said how solid Norwich have been. They were on fire coming into this game and they pushed us hard. But despite a shaky half hour our lads dug in and pulled the result out the bag against the toughest side in the league. Forgetting the fact we let so many chances go and ended up 3-1 down, the fact is we were 3-1 down and had the talent and resolve to pull it back and win 4-3.

    The first few months were always going to be full of ups and downs – but we have come through it in a very strong position imo.

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  31. Shamrock: Yes mate I’d prefer a 442 little and large set up as well. It made the difference at the end tonight. I’d drop both Colback and Diame and have Hayden next to Shelvey myself. Diame can be a direct impact player late on and Colback can err……..?… ..

    Sham – I’d go with Hayden, been impressed with him since he’s came in. Nowt silly just kept things tidy which I like. Diame would be better making runs from deeper in midfield than that more advance role is all I’m meaning.

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  32. Oh dear Barnsley assistant coach gets suspended due to this scandal now. There will be a few worried people waiting for the bomb to.drop. they know who they are, they may as well let the cat out the bag on their own terms rather than wait for the paper to do it when it most benefits their own agenda.

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  33. Yeah I agree re; Diame mate. Hayden is one of my top 3 players so far this season – and he likes to maraude forward too. Way better than Colback and the ground he covers is phenomenal.

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  34. Just got back. The atmosphere was amazing tonight. We were so lucky mind, yes probably more possession, but despite the hat trick, defo need somebody up front to play alongside Gayle. Bloke beside me described Mitro as a bully, think he is right, needs to grow up big time. But on a positive note we got the win. Players almost did a lap of honor at the end, even Rafa out there with them. Lets hope we can kick on now.

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  35. Well that was a mental game… In Italy at the moment on business (Basano – stunning little town) and having dinner with a supplier… tried following on sky sports app but in the end, just had to Pepe involved and was sitting having dinner with my phone to my ear…. eventually all table just stopped and were looking at me… one of the guys is a Leeds fan, he said he could feel every moment of the match by just watching my expression… lol… I felt like an idiot but just had to follow it… omg what a see saw game that was and what an ending… chufffed to bits with that.

    We made it hard once again but well impressed with the way we came back from 3-1 down. Happy happy!

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  36. Simon it must have been immense to be in the crowd for those last few minutes. I hope no Toon fans had left early to beat the traffic! They would be gutted for a very long time.

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  37. 13 points from the toughest run of 6 fixtures we have is not bad at all! I’d take that before the Brighton game.

    We need to take more chances and if we do that we will be winning comfortably. We’re the class team in the league and time will tell.

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  38. Well both feet firmly on the ground for me. We’re totally unconvincing, up and down like a fiddler’s elbow and making hard work of this. 😛

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  39. Shamrock:
    Simon it must have been immense to be in the crowd for those last few minutes. I hope no Toon fans had left early to beat the traffic! They would be gutted for a very long time.

    Storey two guys drove all the way up from Swindon,left on 90 min to try a miss traffic they missed the comeback now that is real bummer

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  40. Sham, most of my row had gone, only about 5 of us left, but wow amazing. Everybody still in the ground stayed back to soak up the atmosphere and cheer the players as they went round, so when you talk about beating the traffic, queued for 20mins to get over the tyne bridge, gave up and went through the tunnel, but wouldnt have missed it for anything. The guy in front said only time he has been through something like that and the atmosphere was the Barca game. I was in Menorca watching it on TV that night, the Spanish were very quiet haha!

    Ice, saw that about the Swindon guys. Reminded me of the Arsenal 4-4 when loads left, but do have to feel fo them when have a drive like that, can understand why they left, but goes to show never should go early

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