Newcastle 3-3 Brentford: Plenty positives but defensive woes deny Howe debut win

A six-goal thriller at St James’ Park and much improved display in many respects, however more poor defending has let us down once again.

We came back from losing positions twice, had over 20 shots, played some good attacking football and had the chance to win it late on, but it’s a real kick in the teeth to score three goals at home and come away without the victory we so badly need.

What’s even more frustrating is results elsewhere left us bottom of the table. Norwich won 2-1 against Southampton in their first game under Dean Smith, relegation rivals Watford thumped thumped Man Utd 4-1, Burnley and Palace shared a point in a 3-3 draw at Turf Moor and Aston Villa beat Brighton on Steven Gerrard’s debut.

Back to the game itself, Eddie Howe made three changes from the side who drew 1-1 at Brighton as he watched on from his hotel room, bringing in Fabian Schar, Joe Willock and Joelinton for Emil Kraftth, Isaac Hayden and Miguel Almiron; who hasn’t long returned from South America.

(STARTING 11: Darlow – Schar, Lascelles, Clark – Murphy, Shelvey, Willock, Ritchie – Joelinton, Saint-Maximin – Wilson)

The system wasn’t that much different, with us playing three centre-backs once again, however the approach was much more attacking, seeing Murphy and Ritchie often venturing forward and runners arriving into the box.

Jamaal Lascelles opened the scoring with a towering header, only for Ivan Toney to fire the Bees level with a low strike Karl Darlow had to do better with.

Rico Henry then arrived unmarked at the back post to make it 2-1 to the visitors on the half hour mark, but their lead didn’t last long as Joelinton fired into the bottom corner five minutes before the break. A confident finish from the big man and a goal his superb first half display thoroughly deserved.

The second half saw us concede yet another avoidable goal to edge Brentford back in front with 30 minutes to play. Murphy and Shelvey were weak in the challenge, the ball fell to Onyeka – who wasn’t closed down quick enough – and the midfielder’s shot was deflected in off Lascelles.

An unfortunate own goal for the skipper, but another one that felt avoidable.

Nevertheless, we battled on and were rewarded when a Ryan Fraser cross was bundled home at the back post by Allan Saint-Maximin. The Frenchman jumped into the Gallowgate to celebrate and there was a real feeling of belief around St James’ Park that we could go on to win this in the 15 minutes that remained.

The game was on a knife edge at this point, with us looking tired and Brentford also looking for a winner of their own, and it looked like we were about to win it when a brilliant run by Saint-Maximin set Joelinton through on goal.

The Brazilian latched onto his through ball and the stage was set, but just as 50,000 fans inside St James’ Park were off their seats and waiting for the net the bulge, he cut inside, lost his footing and the chance was gone.

A real shame for the big man, who deserved to be the match winner in what was a man of the match display from our £40m man.

So, a point it is. A much improved performance, filled with more action, attacking intent and exciting football that could soon equate in wins if we continue to build on what we watched today.

However, with results elsewhere going against us and defensive frailties letting us down again, it’s absolutely vital we pick up wins in upcoming home games against Norwich and Burnley – especially when you consider the frightening run of fixtures that await us over the festive period.

Back to the positives, I thought Shelvey looked much better, with his sweeping balls in behind causing Brentford’s back line problems all afternoon.

Joelinton put in his best display for the club, not only taking his goal well but showing for the ball, linking up nicely, imposing himself physically and putting in a real shift for the team.

Saint-Maximin also looked lethal in patches in a wide role and Ritchie seemed a little more like his old self, however the likes of Darlow, Clark, Lascelles, Schar and Longstaff didn’t do themselves many favours, with the latter struggling during his second half cameo.

Next up, a trip to Arsenal next Saturday, but as ever the final word must go to Wor Flags, who paid tribute to the absent Eddie Howe with another brilliant display.

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.

108 thoughts on “Newcastle 3-3 Brentford: Plenty positives but defensive woes deny Howe debut win

  1. Eric+Sykes:
    Alex Bruce has confirmed that Steve Bruce wants the Man U interim job. Please make it happen Glazers and Ed Woodward. Peter Schmeichel has even supported him. I watched them against Villerreal and they were shyte for75 minutes sitting back and hoping De Gea would save them – which he did. It was a real Bruce performance.

    Then I read The Guardian comments section from their fans and they were saying it was a tactical master class. If they think that, then they will embrace Bruce when he gets a nil-nil at Burnley.

    Eric – young Alex is certainly living his life through his dad like isn’t he?!

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  2. Thanksgiving tomorrow and Chicago is dead. This is the travel day so nobody is on the streets. Just waiting for all of the Covid news in 3 weeks time. Still only < 60% vaccinated which I find incredible. Dont they realise this is something they will pass on to others so it is not JUST a personal choice or about personal freedom. Whenever I consider what these morons are doing I think about smallpox and polio and how they do not exist anymore in the western world. People have become brainwashed by morons on the internet. Measles used to kill millions of people FFS and was irradicated by, yes, vaccines.

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  3. Eric+Sykes:
    Thanksgiving tomorrow and Chicago is dead. This is the travel day so nobody is on the streets. Just waiting for all of the Covid news in 3 weeks time. Still only < 60% vaccinated which I find incredible. Dont they realise this is something they will pass on to others so it is not JUST a personal choice or about personal freedom. Whenever I consider what these morons are doing I think about smallpox and polio and how they do not exist anymore in the western world. People have become brainwashed by morons on the internet. Measles used to kill millions of people FFS and was irradicated by, yes, vaccines.

    Eric – the vaccine doesn’t make a difference to the spread of the virus. It’s still spreading like wildfire over here. But the big difference is the impact it has if you get the virus.
    There are still people getting hospitalised & sadly dying of it – but considerably less – and I don’t think any deaths of those fully vaccinated.

    A lad I work with had it last moment. He had a cough & lost his taste. He was wiped out for about 3 days then back on his feet again – so much so that with his remaining 7 days isolation, he decorated his & his 2 kids bedrooms – scored himself some major brownie points with his missus who didn’t catch it & was going into work 😂

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  4. Sharpy17: Eric – the vaccine doesn’t make a difference to the spread of the virus.It’s still spreading like wildfire over here.But the big difference is the impact it has if you get the virus.
    There are still people getting hospitalised & sadly dying of it – but considerably less – and I don’t think any deaths of those fully vaccinated.

    A lad I work with had it last moment.He had a cough & lost his taste.He was wiped out for about 3 days then back on his feet again – so much so that with his remaining 7 days isolation, he decorated his & his 2 kids bedrooms – scored himself some major brownie points with his missus who didn’t catch it & was going into work

    Sharpy: Stewie on here got Covid after he was vaccinated and thankfully recovered. I just dont understand that when there is so much evidence that vaccines work that 40% of Americans dont get the Covid Vaccine. It makes no fcn sense.

    Stuart is a good lad, his politics are questionable but he is still OK 🙂

    I am 58. No underlying health conditions. Got the vaccine in May and travel all over and fly on airplanes. You can bet YOUR BOTTOM DOLLAR I am getting the booster as soon as it is available. Next Month, I think.

    I believe in science and not internet stupidity.

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  5. PremAndUp:
    Sorry Sharpy they are, Mate of mine fully vaccinated died in ICU last week.

    Prem: there are always outliers. You know this. You do Psychology.

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  6. True I also know as you do that vaccines reduce the impact on vaccinated people when they get the disease. However, the underlying immune system response is the main indicator. Those people, about 5% with great immune systems get little or no benefit from being vaccinated. Those with compromised immune systems have reactions to the vaccines but have reduced reactions to the virus itself. Unfortunately the more compromised the immune system the less the benefits and the more the side effects. We saw at the beginning many dying from vaccine reactions. Yes they would have died if the caught covid, but many including family members would have survived until they caught covid rather than dying from the vaccine. Again this is a generalisation which is based on scientific studies. Also the greater the % population vaccinated the quicker vaccine resistant variants mutate. It is not simply a vaccinate the world and we will defeat covid argument that many would like you to believe.

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  7. PremAndUp:
    Sorry Sharpy they are, Mate of mine fully vaccinated died in ICU last week.

    Prem – sorry to hear that mate. I certainly wasn’t speaking from a position of authority or absolute confidence.
    It just seems that the vaccines have made a big improvement, but there will always be extreme cases. There are still people dying from the flu after all.

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  8. Prem: the numbers are pretty clear. There has just been the biggest test of vaccines in the history of the world in the US and in the old Western Europe. It shows if you are double vaccinated for Covid you are much less likely to get sick or die. It also shows there were very few side effects in very few people. What else do we need to know?

    Get vaccinated, dont get sick or die!!!

    Dont get vaccinated, much more likely to get sick and die!!!

    Simple stuff, whatever the mutations may be.

    You know I live in the USA. It is like the gun control argument over here. They say you should be allowed to have guns and then complain that people shoot people with guns. Take them away and there would be less gun violence. Vaccinate people and there would be less Covid!

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  9. Eric I understand your passionate statement and the first paragraph is true. Those who are vaccinated are less likely to get seriously sick or die. I said that.

    What is equally true is that even if fully vaccinated it does not stop you getting it, it reduces your response to it. If you are with someone who has covid the chances of you contracting it are almost identical whether they are vaccinated or not and whether you are vaccinated or not.

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  10. Prem: you have much less chance of dieing or getting really sick and ending up in hospital if you are vaxed against Covid though.

    It is simple stuff. Measles killed millions. Measles vax saved millions from death.

    Polio doesnt exist in the US any more. That was/is because of polio vaccinations.

    Smallpox does not exist in the US, UK and Germany, That is because of vaccinations.

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  11. PremAndUp:
    Eric I understand your passionate statement and the first paragraph is true. Those who are vaccinated are less likely to get seriously sick or die. I said that.

    What is equally true is that even if fully vaccinated it does not stop you getting it, it reduces your response to it. If you are with someone who has covid the chances of you contracting it are almost identical whether they are vaccinated or not and whether you are vaccinated or not.

    That last paragraph is totally not true and goes against how vaccines work. You are a fcn moron if you think that. And I will never talk to you again.

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  12. Hells bells Eric man, I know you’ve apologised, but talk about an overreaction 🤦🏼‍♂️😂.

    I’m off for my booster this morning. The bairn said ‘I thought they were only giving boosters to old people dad’ – aye, thanks son 🙄😡.

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  13. No Probs Eric it is a passionate subject. I have lost my best friend, two family members and several other people I know, some to covid some to the vaccines themselves. That is why I have read the research papers and spoken to experts in the field rather than simply rely on Govt PR.

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  14. Watching the craic with Tracey Crouch review & the suggestion of regulatory bodies in football – and the fact the Saudi takeover would have been further scrutinised.
    Also saying that the review would be an ongoing process – not quite sure what that means though?!.

    You have Chelsea & City who have breached FFP but continue to go from strength to strength in their spending and trophy wins .. then you had Ashley who squeezed the life out of the club, had 2 relegations in his tenure & left the club on the brink of another – but the bank balance was level. Who would they see as fit & proper?!?!!!.

    They want to put tariffs on transfers to fund lower league clubs – good idea. But at the same time limit how much an owner of a club can spend – doesn’t that go against the plan?!.

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  15. noticed on GMB that Susanna was pushing for an answer as to whether or not the Saudi’s would be passed as fit owners under the new rules.

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  16. kimtoon:
    noticed on GMB that Susanna was pushing for an answer as to whether or not the Saudi’s would be passed as fit owners under the new rules.

    Kim – the reality is that they could change the rules to ensure they aren’t – but then they are faced with a dilemma they don’t want to admit to … these Countries have wealth beyond imagination, and they want to buy football clubs with it.
    If we say no to them, I can guarantee there will be other Countries that welcome them with open arms – Italy for one!! The history of their game shows they don’t mind a bit of corruption.

    So if they go to Italy instead of England, economically, this Country suffers massively – and that’s just a fact … plus, our government doesn’t mind doing business with these Countries – there is no fit & proper test there.

    Now, are they fit to run a football club? – well look at City now. Not just the club, which now also has a mini stadium for the women & youth teams, both the whole area around that part of Manchester – I’d say yeah, they are … and I envisage similar for Newcastle.

    Yes there are human rights issues – but there was with Ashley and his zero hours contracts & working conditions in his warehouses – I didn’t see anyone trying to oust him as NUFC owner?!?!!!

    It’s hypocrisy & BS and they need to move on now imo.

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  17. Sharpy17: Kim – the reality is that they could change the rules to ensure they aren’t – but then they are faced with a dilemma they don’t want to admit to … these Countries have wealth beyond imagination, and they want to buy football clubs with it.
    If we say no to them, I can guarantee there will be other Countries that welcome them with open arms – Italy for one!!The history of their game shows they don’t mind a bit of corruption.

    So if they go to Italy instead of England, economically, this Country suffers massively – and that’s just a fact … plus, our government doesn’t mind doing business with these Countries – there is no fit & proper test there.

    Now, are they fit to run a football club? – well look at City now.Not just the club, which now also has a mini stadium for the women & youth teams, both the whole area around that part of Manchester – I’d say yeah, they are … and I envisage similar for Newcastle.

    Yes there are human rights issues – but there was with Ashley and his zero hours contracts & working conditions in his warehouses – I didn’t see anyone trying to oust him as NUFC owner?!?!!!

    It’s hypocrisy & BS and they need to move on now imo.

    as normal mate you got that spot on,i was going to say get into politics but then again why become a crook 😉

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  18. Eric+Sykes:
    I was totally out of order Sharpy.

    It happens man mate, and you acknowledge it & Prem has responded so nowt doing mate.

    Hope you had a good thanks giving anyway 👍🏻

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  19. icedog: as normal mate you got that spot on,i was going to say get into politics but then again why become a crook 😉

    Nee chance mate. Bunch of parasites the lot of them.

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  20. I overslept for the Brentford game. I planned to go to the bar but got up at quarter to nine, for a 9 am Central Time US game. I watched it, but not in the bar.

    This weekend…

    The @rse game starts at 6.30 am.

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  21. Great news for Howe that he will get to take his place in the dugout at the weekend. Must have been a tough week not being able to do his job affectively – I know there is technology for zoom calls and stuff but from what we’ve seen so far he’s very hands on.

    I know Arsenal have found a bit of form recently but I’ve still not been overly impressed by them.

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  22. There are 2 players that need to be dropped from last week and I bet we can all agree who they are? Darlow and Clark. The rest of the defense didnt do that great but I cannot see Howe changing the whole team.

    I would like us to play a 4-3-3 but suspect we will stick with wingbacks. I would also like to see Lascelles dropped but do we really have a replacement? Fernandez has disappeared for whatever reason and Krafth really isnt a centre back. So, my preferred team, THAT WILL NOT BE PICKED is:

    Dubravka

    Manquillo Lascelles Schar Lewis

    Hayden Shelvey Willock

    Joelinton Wilson ASM

    Yes, I did include Joelinton. He deserves it after last week. The lad has hired a nutritionist and a phsychologist on his own money. It is strange that for all his faults and bad performances I get the feeling that all NUFC fans want him to do well and show him very little animosity.

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  23. So, Brucie didnt get the Man U interim job. But he is so nice and a mate (says Shearer). All of his Pundit Pals must be devastated. He did such a good job at NUFC and they told us every week as we played the dire 8-0-2 that none of them must have watched. I did. Every week, and it was mostly like having teeth filled with no anesthetic (I am old enough to remember when British dentists did not use anesthetic for fillings 🙂 ).

    The only people I heard put Bruce’s name forward for Man U were his son, and Scheimchel.

    Where were the Dannys? Rio? Simon Jordon? Chris Sutton. Shearer? Richard Keys?

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  24. Talking about Luke Edwards. Will he just fade off into the distance now that be doesnt have his best buddy Steve to feed him stories?

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