A devastating afternoon. We may have made mistakes and did shoot ourselves in the foot in the end, but Mike Dean missing a clear elbow on Ayoze Perez has changed a game we could and should have won.
If he sees this Willy Boly red card – which would’ve made it 10-men apiece and handed us a penalty to go 2-1 up – it would have been a VERY different story today.
How on earth is this not a red card?
— Black&WhiteBarmy (@BlackWhiteBarmy) December 9, 2018
Rafa was as angry as I’ve ever seen him in his post-match interview, with him demanding that VAR is introduced. Can you blame him when decisions like today have cost us as they have done?
We were in control and in a good position to win after Perez’s equaliser sent us into half time on the up. Although two errors from Lascelles for their goals and a big mistake from Yedlin leading up to the red card have cost us, it’s hard to accept defeat today after such big decision
This was a huge game for several reasons, so a defeat of this nature is so tough to take. It was a chance to respond at St James’ Park after being hammered by West Ham in our last home outing and an opportunity to pull six points clear of the drop zone – which was perhaps the most important thing given our Premier League security will play a huge part in convincing potential new buyers to seal a deal before the new year.
On a positive note (little consolation I know), Rondon was superb – holding up the ball well, running himself into the ground and having a huge hand in the goal – Perez responded from his horror show against West Ham and Atsu and Ki did well, but it’s a costly day, with Yedlin suspended, Fernandez picking up an injury and Lascelles having arguably his worst performance since we got promoted.
Huddersfield and Fulham in our next two will be absolutely massive key given we face a VERY tough run after Christmas (see upcoming fixtures below):
- Huddersfield (A)
- Fulham (H)
- Liverpool (A)
- Watford (A)
- Man Utd (H)
- Chelsea (A)
- Cardiff (H)
- Man City (A)
- Tottenham (A)
Two huge games now await between now and Christmas and we now MUST respond against Huddersfield on Saturday – for reasons both on and off the pitch.