Summer signing Florian Lejeune made his first start since the opening day of the season at Southampton yesterday, however his impressive display turned into a nightmare after the Frenchman bundled Shane Long over to give Southampton a penalty and ultimately a share of the spoils.
It was a game we should’ve went on to win given we took the lead twice, however we as fans must keep faith in Lejeune despite his costly error.
He barely put a foot wrong all game. If it wasn’t for his moment of madness, he would have been a real contender for man of the match and we must not forget that – as frustrating as his needless challenge was.
The £8.7m man was outstanding over pre-season, did not look out of place in his brief home debut against Spurs and looked a classy player in 99% of yesterday’s game (his first full game in the Premier League lets not forget).
As a defender, you can have an outstanding game for 89 minutes but still come out the villain with one mistake in the 90th minute. Lejeune must learn from this and he will.
It’s tough price to pay for a moment of bad decisioning, but I am not concerned. He looks comfortable on the ball, powerful aerially (in both boxes!), reads the game well and seems to know when to play out or put it in row Z.
Here’s what Rafa had to say about him after the game:
“I have not yet seen the replay but from the bench it looks as though it was a penalty,” Benitez conceded.
“Obviously he conceded the penalty that but then afterwards he was almost the hero with the header — that is football.
“He has not played since the opening game against Tottenham and he has been working very hard. During the international break he has been training with the team and I am happy because he is a good player who gives us more options at centre-back.”
Spot on from Rafa. If his header had snuck in at the death he’d have been our man of the match without a shadow of a doubt – and that is football for you.
I genuinely believe we have a good player in Lejeune. Keep the faith folks.
Let's not destroy Lejeune's confidence over this. He looks a decent player and will learn from this. #NUFC
— Bristol Magpie (@BristolMagpie) October 15, 2017
Decent point for #nufc. And fair result really. Thought Lejeune outstanding barring one horrendous error. That kind of game…
— Mark Douglas (@MsiDouglas) October 15, 2017
Clumsy challenge from Lejeune, but let's not forget the lad had a great game up until, and after the penalty incident.
He'll do for me.
— The Spectator's View (@thespectoview) October 15, 2017
— steve wraith (@stevewraith) October 15, 2017