A good test against one of the top sides in Portugal and a special occasion for both sets of fans, with over 40,000 turning up to the Estadio do Dragao to celebrate the life of the great Sir Bobby Robson.
Before I talk about the game itself, here’s a clip of the scenes inside the stadium just before kick off:
The tribute to the great Sir Bobby Robson prior to kick off..
Amazing scenes for a truly amazing man ❤️
— Black&WhiteBarmy (@BlackWhiteBarmy) July 28, 2018
A brilliant tribute to a truly brilliant man.
Now to the game. It was one that Porto dominated from start to finish, but to come away with a 0-0 draw against such an impressive side shows just how well we defended.
We showed so little going forward, with them dominating the ball and putting pressure on our back four from start to finish, however it was the perfect run out for us with just two weeks left until our opening day encounter with Spurs.
Two players stood out – Martin Dubravka and Jamaal Lascelles – with the former being absolutely outstanding.
Safe hands are what. pic.twitter.com/sju5LuNH5r
— Lee (@BykerWall) July 28, 2018
We saw what he was capable of during his loan stint from Sparta Prague and tonight’s display showed just what an incredible bargain he looks set to be at just £4m.
He made a number of world class saves in the second half, constantly communicated with the back four and dealt with crosses into the box expertly as well. His reflexes and handling look second to none and with a poor goalkeeper, we’d have probably lost this one two or three zip.
Lascelles was impressive too. Aboubakar and Marega were a real handful up top for Porto but the skipper handled them very well. Cleared our lines on several occasions and made a few crucial last ditch interceptions – blocking one goal bound shot from Aboubakar superbly (see below).
— Total:NUFC (@Total_NUFC) July 28, 2018
I wouldn’t say he put in a particularly impressive display, but there were promising signs from Diame again, who lead by example in terms of his pressing and energy in midfield. It’s good to see given how contrasting his form was between the start and end of last season!
A hard fought draw and a brilliant test for us at this stage of pre-season – especially when it sounds like we best get used to defending without Florian Lejeune (Rafa confirmed cruciate knee ligament injury tonight!).
Braga next on Wednesday.
RIP Sir Bobby
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) July 28, 2018