Newcastle fans know more than most that Paul Merson is a pretty awful pundit, but his comments about NUFC during his prediction for Sunday’s game with Arsenal are quite laughable.
Jumping straight to it, here’s the first line of his prediction piece for Sky Sports ahead of our game against his forget club this weekend:
“Newcastle have been alright recently. They will give you chances but they will have a go while Arsenal will have had a long trip to Russia on Thursday.”
Now, for a pundit probably being paid top dollar by Sky Sports, there’s a few bits of this that are just inexcusable, biased and as if he’s never seen us play since our mid-season struggle:
“Newcastle have been alright recently”
What a way to describe the side who are 5th in the Premier League form table since the turn of the year. Since mid-December 2017, only Man City and Liverpool have beaten us in the league. We’ve won three straight home games (and kept clean sheets in all of them), beaten Man Utd at home and climbed to 10th in league after our latest win away at Leicester. But yeh, we’ve been ‘alright’ recently.
“They will give you chances”
Again, a comment that proves he just doesn’t have a clue. Only six teams have conceded less goals than us this season. We’ve kept clean sheets in our last three home games. We’ve limited Leicester, Huddersfield and Southampton to a total of just three shots on goal in our last three games. The list could go on as to why Rafa Benitez’s team just don’t ‘give you chances’.
For a man that has bold opinions and is quick to criticise or write players/teams/managers off, this ‘assessment’ of NUFC and a side that’s worked wonders in recent weeks really is poor.
For what it’s worth, he’s actually backed us to get a 2-2 draw on Sunday, but I can’t get over what a bad bit of punditry this is – not that it should come as any surprise!
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About Olly Hawkins
Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.