Brighton 1-1 Newcastle: Toon denied late win after much improved 2nd half display

The third game of our current interim period between Steve Bruce and a new manager was seemingly being proved to be our last one with Eddie Howe spotted attending the match with Amanda Staveley.

The most urgent and worrying thing about this match is that we started the evening, sitting dead bottom of the league with Norwich beating Brentford in their 3pm kick-off.

We were now the only club in the league to not win a game and we were faced with an up-hill battle to get one against a fantastic Brighton side.

There were a few changes from our Chelsea defeat with Almiron, Murphy and Shelvey coming in but concerns were raised amongst Newcastle fans with the likes of Dubravka, Fernandez, Willock and Schar continuing to miss out.

20 minutes in Clark gave away a penalty with a silly challenge on Trossard. The Brighton man definitely made a meal of it but Clark simply didn’t touch the ball in his tackle. Trossard made it look easy as we knocked the penalty down the middle and granted Brighton a 1-0 lead.

The commentator nails exactly the problem with our team, ten minutes after their goal, saying “I don’t know what Newcastle are doing.” The whole half hour was listless and pointless. There was also absolutely nothing to suggest that this would change at any point.

Half-time couldn’t come quickly enough as we looked exactly like our position in the table suggested. An absolutely dreadful half of football where we showed how bad and how shot of confidence we are. Everything was dreadful and this was an insult to the idea of this being “entertainment”.

An Isaac Hayden equaliser on 65th minute brought back some hope that all was not lost. It was a brilliantly worked free-kick and highly impressive. The ball was given to Saint-Maximin on the wing who bought some time for Ritchie to cross it in, have the ball knocked down by Ciaran Clark and blasted in by Hayden. A rare example of how good this team should be.

In the 90th minute, Wilson was sent through on goal from an excellent ball from Joelinton. Sanchez took Wilson out and was then sent off. The preference in all honesty would have been Wilson to not be fouled because he was definitely going to score.

That decision earned Brighton a point too as we were unable to get a shot on target afterwards. Why didn’t Shelvey shoot?!

All in all, a point was probably fair on the balance of the game but Sanchez’s blatant foul made this a case of three points lost instead of one point gained.

Eddie Howe has a hell of a job on his hands to put us on a more successful path but there is hope that things can be positively changed. If we can simply stop being so passive in matches then there is hope that we can hone the talent within the team.

214 thoughts on “Brighton 1-1 Newcastle: Toon denied late win after much improved 2nd half display

  1. The article in The Athletic that Olly posted says Howe has tageted areas where we need to improve and goes on to say they are defense, midfield and attack 🙂 No sh!t Sherlock! We also need more than the Bruce/Jones plan of give it to ASM with 3 men on him and see what he can do. The opposition worked that one out boys but you still stuck with it.

    25% possession against Palace should rule Jones out of ever getting another job in football. I keep waivering that he should get another chance but that game was criminal negligence. I dont care that Palace look a decent side now, they are still Palace and still have Benteke.

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  2. Of the players that are away who might start in Howe’s first game? The only ones I can think of are Schar and Lewis. Miggy is coming back from South America and Eddie has alternatives in his position – Fraser, Donkey and Murphy.

    Schar and Lewis are not shoo ins either, so we could end up with the whole team being who Howe has worked with in training during the break.

    I saw they were in training again today – a Saturday – Jonjo would probably have to rearrange his tee-time.

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  3. There’s been a bit of talk about Rabiot from Juve as well – and for as little as £10-15m.

    If there is any chance of that we HAVE to get him. Not only is he a real quality player, but only 25 so his best years ahead.
    But what a statement signing he would be. If he came then I think there would be little difficulty convincing other bigger signing to come join the party.

    Nathan Ake is another one I like. He’s a quality CB and again only 26. Him & Trakowski at CB would be a very decent pairing imo.

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  4. I cant believe I have survived about 5 years on here. Because of the football, not the people on here and certainly not Olly who I think does a great job.

    No, the football!!! I think I first started commenting at the back end of Pards’ tenure, when Troy Stavers was defending him 🙂 Then we had Ugly John and Schteve FFS. I cannot believe I held it together when they were Managers.

    And I dont care about the love-fest for Rafa on Ed’s site. He should have kept us up.

    So now to the Bruce – Jones years. We have been boring as shyte. Jones seemed like a glimmer of hope but that soon faded with 25% and 21% possession figures and picking a back 5 of Murphy -Lascelles-Krafth-Clark-Ritchie. What was he thinking?

    Now we have Howe who does look like a breath of fresh air. Contrary to to stuff Natasha said about Jones who was a waft of hot air. I am totally behind Howe after watching the documentary MINUS 17. He lost the first 2 games in the 4th division but that did not deter him and he kept B’mth up despite overwhelming odds.

    fck off Jones you Bruce apologist and gan on Eddie.

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  5. Eric+Sykes:
    I cant believe I have survived about 5 years on here. Because of the football, not the people on here and certainly not Olly who I think does a great job.

    No, the football!!! I think I first started commenting at the back end of Pards’ tenure, when Troy Stavers was defending him 🙂 Then we had Ugly John and Schteve FFS. I cannot believe I held it together when they were Managers.

    And I dont care about the love-fest for Rafa on Ed’s site. He should have kept us up.

    So now to the Bruce – Jones years. We have been boring as shyte. Jones seemed like a glimmer of hope but that soon faded with 25% and 21% possession figures and picking a back 5 of Murphy -Lascelles-Krafth-Clark-Ritchie. What was he thinking?

    Now we have Howe who does look like a breath of fresh air. Contrary to to stuff Natasha said about Jones who was a waft of hot air. I am totally behind Howe after watching the documentary MINUS 17. He lost the first 2 games in the 4th division but that did not deter him and he kept B’mth up despite overwhelming odds.

    fck off Jones you Bruce apologist and gan on Eddie.

    Eric – it’s funny you should mention that, I was trying to figure out how long I’ve been posting mate. I reckon it’s been around 14 years – the whole of Ashley’s era or most of it. I need a hobby 😂😂.

    It was Toonsy who had the site back then 😳

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  6. Shamrock and Aussie kept it going as well. me and Aus dont get along but that is because he is a big grump. Not like me 🙂 I have a reason to have been grumpy – Pards, Ugly John, Shteve, Rafa, Bruce, Jones… ultra defensive, boring football. 1 goal per game and 1 point per game whether it be Rafa, Shteve or Brucie. Points per Game with the big talker Jones were zero point 6.

    Hello Natasha!!!!

    Jones is a talker, not a do-er.

    #JONESOUT

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  7. The strangest thing has happened; I am actually looking forward to watching our next game. I do care if we win or lose but I think I can take it if we dont win as long as I can see some progress and above all else see us playing 10 yards farther up the pitch from kickoff. I am going to the pub to watch for the first time since Covid. The pub has been open but Bruce sucked all of the life out of it for me so I watched from home sitting on the couch. I did have a bit of a feeling that we may be better after Bruce was sacked until I saw the Jones teamsheet.

    I think this time will be different. I just cannot see him putting out a Bruce/Jones team or at the very least he will go with a different formation. C’mon Eddie dont let me down.

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  8. The Sun (I know, I know) are saying that Lingard could go to West Ham in January for as little as 10 mil. He is 29 in Dec and this is the last year of his contract. The Sun also say that Man U are hoping for NUFC to enter the race to ramp up the price. That is not the issue in my opinion though. West Ham are currently 3rd, why the hell would Man U sell them a player who did so well for them last year and possibly scupper their own CL hopes. Much better to sell to a team in relegation trouble.

    I think everybody agrees that 3 CL places will go to Chelsea, City and Liverpool. That leaves Man U to fight it out with WHam, Arsenal and maybe Leicester. I just dont see Spurs in that mix but Man U would have to be mad to sell Lingard to WHam.

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  9. Eric+Sykes:
    The Sun (I know, I know) are saying that Lingard could go to West Ham in January for as little as 10 mil. He is 29 in Dec and this is the last year of his contract. The Sun also say that Man U are hoping for NUFC to enter the race to ramp up the price. That is not the issue in my opinion though. West Ham are currently 3rd, why the hell would Man U sell them a player who did so well for them last year and possibly scupper their own CL hopes. Much better to sell to a team in relegation trouble.

    I think everybody agrees that 3CL places will go to Chelsea, City and Liverpool. That leaves Man U to fight it out with WHam, Arsenal and maybe Leicester. I just dont see Spurs in that mix but Man U would have to be mad to sell Lingard to WHam.

    Eric – I understand and agree with your logic if it was just down to Man Utd, but Lingard himself will have a big say.
    If he prefers WHU he can refuse to speak with us – then Man Utd are left with a choice. Sell him for £10m or lose him on a free in the summer.

    Being 29, Lingard will likely want that highly level football now.

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  10. There are a few who I like the link of and think they could come off – Trakowski, Ake, Trippier, Rabiot, Ramsey, Dembele and Henderson – but who knows.

    I’m more now thinking, if we are to bring in 4 in January – who creates that squad space?. We have 4 keepers on the books, so there’s at least 1 – but who else makes way?.

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  11. For me Ake is a left footed Centre Back who I think would play well alongside Schar. In the Interim we should be using Dummet if fit, or Fernandez if not. We could let Clark go.

    In CM bringing in Rabiot or similar to play alongside Willock would be goo. Meanwhile Hayden or possibly converting Almiron into a CM would work for me, although longstaff is available. So Hendrick and Shelvey become surplus.

    So there is four. Up front who is partnering Wilson, Joelinton, Gayle, Miggy or somebody new.

    That then leaves the flanks.

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  12. Or you could do what The Chronic comment section would say and “get rid of the whole bl00dy lot of ’em”. BFS is suggesting Origi but signing Liverpool reserves has not gone well for Howe in the past, although Solanke is doing well in the Championship. But that could be his level as a lot of people believe it is for Gayle, Shelvey and Lascelles. Great players against lower opposition but found out when there is more pace in the PL.

    I did read something a few years ago when Origi went on loan to France. The fans of the team that loaned him said he was a donkey. Not sure if this is true because he has looked OK when I have seen him but I havent paid much attention.

    Hasnt Dembele been injured just about the whole time he has been at Barca?

    Prem: i we get 2 centre halfs we afford to let 2 go. I would say Clark and Krafth. I would also sell Lascelles in the summer. We need a total overhaul at that position.

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  13. Eric I agree, re CB we desperately need a LCB but I still rate Schar. Dummett can fill in. Kraft is a defensive RB and should only be used there. Manquillo offers more going forward

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  14. It will be really interesting to see what, if anything, Howe does with Shelvey.

    There are 2 obvious things to do immediately: play 10 yards further up the pitch and do not back off every time the other team has the ball. All of our centre halfs that have played recently are doing this. Has Dummett been spotted in training? I would play him at CH, at least he can tackle.

    The other thing if we play with 3 CHs we have to play the wing backs as wing backs and not as a flat back 5 on our 18 yard line. Bruce and Jones both did the flat back 5 and look what we got – less than 35% possession and as low as 21% against Chelsea.

    Willock is training, so he plays. If he has to have a painkilling injection then so be it. I have seen American Footballers interviewed and they say if they didnt play through the pain or have painkilling injections every week they would never play. We desperately need Joe Willock. Even half fit he is better than Longstaff.

    Regarding Sean. I have seen stats saying he puts in a lot of tackles. I dont care!!! My eyes tell me he is ineffective. You certainly cannot have him and Jonjo on the pitch at the same time.

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  15. There are 3 Grand Prix left, all in the Mid East. I think I am right with the following of who owns which football teams. It seems like it is OK to do sportswashing in F1 and football except when NUFC are involved. The races, in order, and which teams they own are:

    Qatar – PSG
    Saudi Arabia – NUFC
    Abu Dhabi – Man City

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  16. PremAndUp:
    Eric I agree, re CB we desperately need a LCB but I still rate Schar. Dummett can fill in. Kraft is a defensive RB and should only be used there. Manquillo offers more going forward

    Prem – I agree. With a player of Akes quality alongside him, Schar could well some improvements himself.

    But (am I hate to say it) Dummett would be a gonna for me. I think his contract is almost up & his injury record is terrible. He’s my cult hero, but no time for sentiment.

    Krafth would also be gone for me and either Trippier or Max Aaron’s from Norwich in.

    LB – Ritchie out (I’ve appreciated his efforts too but times up) and Rico Henry from Brentford in.

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  17. How can there possibly be so many pundits giving so many (stupid and wrong) opinions? Some of them I have never heard of and some were not that good as players. I am thinking Frank McAvenie, Danny Mills etc. Some are just idiots like Paul Merson’s Giant Balloon Heed.

    It must be the internet as there hasnt been that much additional media added since I was a kid. There are still the same papers, Sky and talksport are the only real additions. But now there are podcasts and 24/7 access. It still doesnt really explain the exponential explosion of know-nothing pundits.

    Everybody seems to like Micah Richards but I have listened to him on the BBC Five Live Podcast and all he seems to do is laugh loud and hyena like at his own comments.

    I could go on, but there are just so many of them and most are morons, especially when they talk about NUFC. I dont know where their bias to us comes from but I know it exists.

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  18. Eric+Sykes:
    How can there possibly be so many pundits giving so many (stupid and wrong) opinions? Some of them I have never heard of and some were not that good as players. I am thinking Frank McAvenie, Danny Mills etc. Some are just idiots like Paul Merson’s Giant Balloon Heed.

    It must be the internet as there hasnt been that much additional media added since I was a kid. There are still the same papers, Sky and talksport are the only real additions. But now there are podcasts and 24/7 access. It still doesnt really explain the exponential explosion of know-nothing pundits.

    Everybody seems to like Micah Richards but I have listened to him on the BBC Five Live Podcast and all he seems to do is laugh loud and hyena like at his own comments.

    I could go on, but there are just so many of them and most are morons, especially when they talk about NUFC. I dont know where their bias to us comes from but I know it exists.

    Eric – you should see the new line up on Sky Sports Soccer Saturday. Merson still regularly features, but he’s joined by every other ex football that’s had an addiction or break down of some description.

    I think they sensationalise their thoughts & opinions in an attempt to stay relevant & they know there are so many click bait sites now that they end up half way across the internet & YouTube before the 3pm kick offs.

    I don’t mind Neville & Carra most of the time. I like that Keane & Scholes are capable of giving an honest assessment of Man Utd – but Peter Crouch is my favourite ex footballer.

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  19. Sharpy: Crouchy had that classic quote that I am sure you know, but I will repeat it anyway. He was asked:

    What would you be if you weren’t a footballer?

    Crouch – “a virgin”.

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  20. I like what Carra says but not the voice. Neville is stiil a bit of a homer for Man U but on any other topic is usually spot on. I dont even mind Keane. When he is not doing the hard man act he is quite funny. I dont even mind Souness. His vendetta against Pogba is quite funny as well.

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  21. Didn’t take Dean Smith long to get over the pain & heartache of being sacking by his boyhood club like did it?! – 8 days and he’s at Norwich.

    He must have one experience Chrimbo planned!!! 😂

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  22. This timing of the matches in this international break actually works out OK for us. Most matches finish today with only Miggy having a long flight. That means Howe will have a few days to evaluate the players who have been away and how they would fit in to whatever system he chooses.

    I think Miggy will be on the bench. The only one I see as having a more than 50% chance of starting is Dubravka. I reckon Schar and Lewis will be on the bench as well but have a chance for the game following Brentford. Depends on how the others do in that game.

    I wish we could have got Howe in before they gave Jones a crack, but this is the next best timing.

    Remember when Charnley and Carr dithered and didnt sack McClaren until after an international break? That was a catastrophe and we were relegated. I think Eddie has enough time to turn this around.

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  23. So now Paddy Kenny is weighing in on a possible NUFC transfer embargo by other PL clubs and on the appointment of a DoF. Who is this guy? I have never seen him comment on NUFC before. Was Leeds and QPR goalie.

    This is getting riduculous. The journos are just asking random ex-players to comment on NUFC. Players that have no connection whatsoever to the club. It is bad enough Danny Murphy, but at least he is on MotD and might at least see highlights.

    I think they are just putting ex-players’ cell phone numbers in a hat, pulling one out and asking them what they think of NUFC. Have they asked Jack Wilshere yet? He is not even retired but seems to be getting on the pundit train. But he is qualified by rights of a lot of Southern journos having his number 🙂

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  24. Mackems are 7th in League 1 and currently out of the playoff spots. They were wallowing in our misery but they forgot to look at their own team. Unless they go on a run it looks like it is probably playoffs at best. I thought this new owner would help them out but it looks like their problems run deep. And still they try to make fun of NUFC 🙂

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  25. 3 Steves down – Bruce, Agnew, Clemence – one to go (Nickson). I think it will be summer before we lose Graeme “I failed my audition” Jones. Maybe before, if the results dont go the right way. I think he might be helpful in the transition because he knows the location of the shed where the cones are kept, and some of Eddie’s staff have worked with him. But we are getting into too many cooks territory.

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  26. Dean Smith, Cabbage at Villa’s successor remember, got a PL job in 5 days. Have there been any calls to Brucie? Norwich, Villa, Watford and Spurs were all looking. Have we heard a peep from his Pundit Pals as to why Bruce was not considered for these jobs? 3 of these teams are in possible relegation trouble despite some early points. Villa are in a bit of a mess and Watford just dont have the squad. But Bruce as a relegation fighter would have been ideal you would have thought. His pundit pals all have platforms on Talksport/Podcasts/Newspaper columns, even Match of the Day (Shearer and Murphy) but not a d!ckiebird from any of them.

    I know I am stating the obvious because they were all being totally disingenious when they defended Bruce and they deep down knew he was shyte. They just wanted to have another go at their favourite punching bag – “delusional NUFC fans”.

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  27. As far as I know, Bruce wasnt even considered for Boro or Cardiff. How about a Mackems reboot? Do you think they would take him back? That would be pure comedy seeing Bruce relegate them to the 4th Division.

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  28. Olly: I will write an article if you want about my return to watch the Toon in Chicago after 20 months of exile because of Covid and Bruce. There is a loyal group in Chicago and it will be interesting to hear their views.

    Is there a word count you would want me to stick to? I will send it for midweek publication so you and the regulars can have your say first.

    This should be pretty good because of the way the fixtures fall. It shouldnt be too packed. I will explain, the game are:

    Villa/Brighton
    Burnley/Palace
    Norwich/S’ton
    Wolves/ Wham
    Watford/Man U

    Of these, there are really only Villa and West Ham who bring fans out in Chicago. Man U have their own bars so I never see any of them. So, should be able to watch in relative peace.

    Starts at 9am over here and I will probably be having 4 pints of Carlsberg for breakfast/lunch.

    The only problem is that the Red Bindippers play Arsenal 1/2 and hour after we finish. They are the most annoying fans in the world. They will be filing in as we still have plenty of time to go and will be asking for the table I am sitting at. If you go to the toilet they will try to sit in your seat. You’re trying to watch the match and have fun (hopefully) and these scousers are in your face the whole time.

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  29. Last time this happened, this is how it went. Half an hour to go in the NUFC game…

    Red bindipper: Ya leaving mate?

    Me: No, I am watching the game. I have a NUFC top on and a B&W scarf so you might guess who I support?

    Red Bindipper: how about that chair, is it taken. Yes. he’s at the toilet.

    10 minutes later, a different bindipper:

    Can we have your table?

    Me: No, I am watching the match.

    MATCH ENDS but I still have 1/2 a pint left and am listening to the postmatch and finishing up:

    Red Bindipper: you leaving mate?

    Me: WTF, I ‘ll let you fight over the table with the rest of your well mannered crew.

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  30. I think we have to win on Saturday or else all of the wind-up merchants will be out in fuller force than they are now. I could name so many but I can start with Keys, Jordan and Rio. There seems to be some sort of narrative that we missed a trick in not getting Gerrard. I dont know about that. I think Howe has the longer and perhaps better track record. Managing in the PL has to be a plus.

    But a lot of pundits ignore Eddie’s career up until the relegation on the last day of the season by 1 point. If Howe struggles at first you know these people will use Gerrard as a stick to beat us/Eddie with, whatever results he gets at Villa.

    They will say: I like Eddie, or Eddie is a good Manager, but… It is what comes after the “but” that tells you what they really think. Most of these pundits have an agenda against Newcastle and our fans. I have no idea why, but it is there. I even think their love of Bruce was a dig at NUFC fans.

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  31. OK, I am going to try to predict Howe’s team for Sat:

    Dubravka

    Manquillo Lascelles Schar Lewis

    Hayden Shelvey Willock

    Fraser Wilson ASM

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  32. You could be right Eric, personally I think he prefers 4-4-2 so on that basis

    Dubravka

    Manquillo, Schar, Dummett, Lewis

    Murphy, Longstaff, Willock, ASM

    Joelinton, Wilson

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  33. PremAndUp:
    You could be right Eric, personally I think he prefers 4-4-2 so on that basis

    Dubravka

    Manquillo, Schar, Dummett, Lewis

    Murphy, Longstaff, Willock, ASM

    Joelinton, Wilson

    Prem – swap Joe with ASM and I think you might be right with that one mate.

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  34. Graeme Jones’s formation for Sat in a 7-1-1-1:

    Joelinton

    Murphy Krafth Shelvey Lascelles Clark Steve Agnew Ritchie

    Longstaff

    ASM

    Wilson

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  35. I’ve watched both Wales games this week & Aaron Ramsey is such a good player – he’s a complete midfielder.
    I know his wages may be an issue – but if we can find a deal that works, we should definitely get him in imo.

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  36. Cancel Agnew’s [layeing contract and have Graeme Jones playing in midfield. Nobody seems to give a sh!t about how bad he was as a coach and manager this year and give him a free pass – have him as our left back!!! He was terrible a coach and manager. A Bruce apologist and a worse coach that Ugly John, even stats wise.

    But everybody seems to want to give him another go/ free pass / “He’s a coach not a Manager”!

    That was HIS narrative – “I’m a coach, not a Manager” – but the suckers believed it. He’s neither a good coach nor a good manager.

    HE WILL BE SACKED IN THE SUMMER.

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  37. Hoffman leaving the Premier League sort of confirms there is dirt there that they dont want to come out. It will though. I dont know what it is, but it is a conspiracy FACT rather than theory. It also confirms to me that Stavely and Co really were not expecting the approval when it happened which is why they didnt have all their ducks in line.

    I have seen some journos and even fans say they have been incompetent in the recruitment process, but I think we have to give them the benefit of the doubt because of the way this happened. They should have sacked Bruce immediately and not given him that 1,000th game though. I would have been much happier if the money hungry cnut was stuck on 999. I dont even blame them for the Bruce appeaser Jones. He has a decent reputation so how were they to know he was so useless and that Luton was not a one off?

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  38. The Athletic say Hoffman has left the PL. There is definately something fishy going on there.

    In MY ideal world we would avoid relegation and then the true facts about the takeover would come out. Not that it could really paint the corrupt 6 in a worse light than they are aleady after “Project Big Picture” and the European Super League money grabs were disclosed.

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  39. The thing is though, will all of those journos who have been on the Trash NUFC bandwagon say a word about the corruption in the upper reaches of the PL and their collusion with the Big 6 cartel. Will Martin Samuel say a word? He is happy to have the porn merchants at West Ham but not the Saudis at NUFC. But, but, but the Saudis are evil and porn is just a bit of harmless fun! Try telling that to the girls being traffiked to Amsterdam and living as virtual sex slaves!

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  40. icedog:
    ERIC/SHARPY just to say i enjoy your banter,cheers

    Ice: I think Sharpy is a good lad. I enjoy what he has to say. I think he knows a lot more about The Championship and the rest of European football than I do as it is mainly the PL over here in the US. A couple of German games a week and that’s about it.

    Anyway, 1st game at the Pub this Sat since Feb 2020. It wasnt really a Bruce boycott, because there was also Covid. But it sort of WAS a Bruce boycott, because I hated watching us under him. If I hadnt have been a fan for more than 40 years I would have stopped watching altogether.

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  41. Richard Keys is at it again:

    https://richardajkeys.com/index.php/blog/299-privileged-private-confidential

    He does the typical pundit thing of giving a little bit of praise to NUFC followed by 10 paragraphs of bile. He even says that Keegan was/is his mate 🙂

    He never mentions that his current emloyers fixed the World Cup with bribes and are as much in the stone age with human rights as the Saudis. But that’s OK, they still pay him and give him a platform for his anti-NUFC crusade.

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  42. Is OGS doing a Bruce and taunting the Man U board to sack him? If anybody watched the Man U/Liverpool/Man C games you would think he would have the players that were not away for internationals in for extra training. What did he do? He gave them the week off.

    I wonder if Ole went to the Trondheim Lowlands for some dried cod and aquavit (my A level in geography finally came in useful)?

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  43. There were 16 of the Man U sqaud who were not away so they could have trained. And anybody saying Manu did OK at Spurs forget that Levy was just about to sack Nuno and Spurs had given up. Man U have lost 4 of their last 6 games. So Ole gives them a week off 🙂

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  44. Still on Man U. Does anybody else find it funny that they are stuck with a choice of making a show pony the highest paid player in the world or letting that 90 million pound man leave for nothing for the second time in the summer. Not even NUFC could have dreamt this nighmare scenario up.

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  45. Actually, we could. We let Bruce have his 1,000th game so he and his pundit pals can go on about that for the rest of time, and we paid supposedly 8 million to get rid of him. That has to be worse than Pogba.

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  46. It would be good to get a Director of Football but I doubt we need one for January. The ex-Chelsea guy would be great for the long term, for finding hidden gems and the Academy but we are really not looking there in January.

    I think we will be looking at the finished article like, say, Lingard or Ramsey, or Rabiot or some of these central defenders at Inter. As such, we dont really need to be looking to the future to find the next Mo Salah. We need to survive and that means recruiting known quantities. It probably means giving Steve Nickson the boot as we cannot afford another Joelinton.

    Of course it would be good to get Emalano in as someone has to negotiate the deals and it shouldnt be left to Charnley who may or may not even be at the club.

    These players’ salaries are also pretty much set. We know what Lingard is paid and we know Ramsey is paid too much and would need to take a pay cut. I worry about his injury record as well. With where we stand we cannot be buying sicknotes. That goes for Bale and Dembele as well if we were even in for them.

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  47. It will be interesting to see Howe’s first team I think he’ll go for high energy. Maybe Murphy in midfield with Willock. There will be surprises.

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  48. When I look at the biggest regrets of my life, number one is that I didnt call Bruce out for the charlatan that he is until Christmas of his first year at NUFC – Olly and Stuart saw him for what he was from the start. I said then that he would relegate us the next year but then suddenly the Fat Man got Wilson, Fraser, Hendrick and Willock and it seemed even Bruce could not mess that up.

    But now, he could have scuppered us. I believe Howe can keep us up but he is faced with a Herculean task with the mess that Bruce and his cohorts (mainly Jones) have left us in.

    (Saying Bruce was the biggest regret of my life is actually just me messing around. Fcking that hooker in Prague in 1990 and getting VD is worse. Never happened, but I thought it would be funny to say it 🙂 )

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  49. icedog:
    i see M/U wage bill has rose by £1.3mil a week,god how much are there new players getting

    Ronaldo gets about half of that. I think he is on like 25 mil a year.

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  50. Eric+Sykes: Ronaldo gets about half of that. I think he is on like 25 mil a year.

    just silly money mate,times has changed love for a club just does not happen now

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  51. There have been some subtle and even not-so-subtle hints that Bruce was lazy and a bit crap. Schar and Wilson have already said they enjoy the more intense training. It was obvious what was going on. That the players just gave up and accepted they were going to defend for 85 minutes and hope St Max or Wilson could bail us out. When you play an 8-0-2 formation they are bound to get disenchanted if you are a forward, or even a winger. Then they see the saviour of the club come in (Jones) and for 2 weeks have a couple of new free kick routines and that’s about it. Then he cow-tows to Bruce. That’s why he got his coaching badges! Then he goes back to having Shelvey take his floaters, or refuse to test a centre half in goal. Or have Longstaff hit the 1st man at corners. Totally baffling and I think the players know it was just shyte “tactics” or no “tactics”.

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  52. Howe has talked up a few players and I think that is natural before his first game. He mentioned Joelinton, Wilson, Fraser and Shelvey. They might not all start but I have a suspicion Jonjo will. We lack midfielders so let’s see if Howe can get something from a player with undoubted talent. Just cannot play him and Longstaff in the same team.

    The formation should be interesting and I want to see Willock and Dubravka start. Willock has been in training and gives us something none of the other players offer – a goalscoring threat from midfield.

    It will be interesting to see how the team differs to the Bruce/Jones lineups. Let’s see how many Olly gets right 🙂

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  53. I think Brentford have lost their last 4 games. Hopefully we can extend that run. I have only watched the Chelsea game and one other, mainly to see Ivan Toney who I have to admit looked very good. It is hard for me to make a prediction given that I havent watched Brentford much and dont really know how we will look. I think I will hold off until I see the teamsheet.

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  54. Jason Tindall is supposedly a set-piece expert. It will be interesting to see who he picks to take them and how they are taken. It is no exaggeration to say we have been rubbish for a long time at all forms of set piece. We have Shelvey blasting his direct free kicks and sending over that floater corner. Or Ritchie and Longstaff hitting the 1st man at a corner or playing it too close to the goalie.

    But what do we do about it? First, as I have mentioned before, take Shelevy off all free kicks. I dont know who you replace him with but anything is better than blasting EVERY 25 yarder 15 feet over the bar. Maybe we should try a bit of innovation and not go for goal every time? How many actually come off? Ronaldo once went 60 direct free kicks without scoring.

    Then there are the corners. The “floaters” hardly ever work because the defenders and goalie have too much time. Usually it is the ones that are whipped in that seem to cause most trouble. Tindall should have them watching Ward-Prowse or Alexander Arnold in their free time. The problem usually at NUFC is that they are too often hit too close to the goalie or hit the first man. They should be working tirelessly in training to avoid this and maybe take a few short corners as well. It is not like we dont have any skill in the team – ASM, Wilson and Willock are all very tricky players.

    I havent looked at the stats but from my gut feeling we must be the worst team in the league at set pieces. There is one stat that is easy to see and extrapolate that we are crap in this area – goals scored! We are usually pretty near the bottom here which shows we are not taking good set pieces.

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  55. So many things to look out for this weekend –

    * team selection

    * goal kicks, do we try to play out from the back or continue with hoofball?

    * time wasting. We are surely not going to get Darlow booked for time wasting in the 20th minute 🙂

    * stamina. Will we play until the final whistle.

    * formation and front foot football. I cringe every time I hear Howe say front foot because it reminds me of what the cabbage would say before he went 8-0-2.

    * high press

    * playing 10 yards farther up the field

    So many questions. We also have to realise there is another team out there so it will be interesting to see Howe’s adjustments and subs.

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