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No club needs a player more than Newcastle United need Saint Maximin

January 20th, 2021 | 2 Comments |

Allan St.Maximin
Careful now, Allan, we really need you!
It’s no secret that Newcastle United are on a poor run of form, and many fans think that the main reason is the defensive style of Steve Bruce. Whatever the merits or otherwise of Steve Bruce’s method though, there is one thing Newcastle United have been missing since November which has had a bigger effect than anything else, Allan St Maximin and his marauding runs down the flank.

Before I continue though, I think that a little evidence is in order. In the table below, games where St.Maximin has started is compared with games where he was out, or only played a few minutes as a sub at the end of games. The data is taken from the beginning of last season when St.Maximin joined the club. As you can see below, as far as performances with him and performances without him are concerned, the difference is stunning, and a little scary. (more…)


Why do Newcastle United managers hate Dwight Gayle so much?

January 8th, 2021 | 190 Comments |

Dwight Gayle
Underrated?
Until Callum Wilson came along, Dwight Gayle was easily Newcastle United’s most successful finisher, and yet, apart from the odd cameo when Gayle would get a few minutes at the end, both Rafa Benitez and Steve Bruce have pretty much left him to decay on the sidelines. Despite excruciatingly bad performances week after week from other forwards, and despite a desparate lack of goals from Newcastle United over several seasons, Gayle has been left on the sidelines, but why?

To be fair, he is a rather injury prone player who has had several spells of injury since he signed for the Magpies in 2016, including the early part of this season. But there have also been many periods when he has been fit and ready to go, and has still found himself being overlooked in favour of strikers with the finishing skills of Diana Ross. (more…)


A Merry Christmas beckons for Newcastle United?

December 14th, 2020 | 20 Comments |

St James' Park at Christmas
A Merry Christmas beckons for Newcastle United?
With two victories against Crystal Palace and West Bromwich Albion already under their belts, the Christmas fixtures could be a very good period for Newcastle United if they can keep up the momentum in the run up to Christmas. All of their next three opponents, Leeds, Fulham and finally, Championship side, Brentford, in the League Cup Quarter Final are all below them in the league. Can Steve Bruce take the bull by the horns, silence the doubters and make the most of this opportunity? (more…)


Three Memorable Tyne-Wear Derbies from the Past Two Decades

December 9th, 2020 | No Comments |

Shola scores!
31/10/2010: Newcastle United 5, Sunderland 1
The Tyne-Wear derby is always one of the most fiercely contested fixtures on the sporting calendar, and although this much-anticipated match-up hasn’t been staged since March 2016, there have been many standout moments for Toon fans over the last 20 years.

With Sunderland currently languishing in League One, and having recently appointed their third manager in the space of two and a half years. (more…)


Newcastle make their best start since the Championship, but Bruce still gets no respect

December 8th, 2020 | 7 Comments |

Steve Bruce
Bruce: No respect at all.
He’s the Rodney Dangerfield of football, Rodney Dangerfield being the famous American comedian whose catchphrase was ‘I get no respect, no respect at all!’ But meanwhile, despite all the moaning, considering the resources at his disposal, Newcastle are actually doing as well as can be expected, at the least, they certainly aren’t doing badly.

In their first ten games, Newcastle have won 14 points with a 40% win percentage, not the greatest until you consider that in 2019/20 they’d only won 3 points, and before that, Benitez only won 3 too, though he equalled Bruce’s first ten game total in our first season after promotion. Bruce and Benitez have had similar league finishes, both have played a similar style, counterattacking football with a big target man up front which isn’t the most exciting to watch, and yet one was almost worshipped and the other is treated with disdain, but why? (more…)