Even after watching this listless showing, Hughton played down the need for a Chris Hughton was as diplomatic as ever following Newcastle’s 2-1 defeat at Ibrox yesterday afternoon.
Hughton – some positives came out of the defeat
While Newcastle played some nice looking football yesterday, there was hardly any cutting edge in attack, until Peter Lovenkrands came on after 70 minutes and scored within 60 seconds, with his very first touch of the game – against his former club.
We thought Newcastle looked better with two up front, but we doubt that Chris will start two strikers against the Red Devils a week tomorrow, and will probably start the same side that started yesterday, in a defensive 4-5-1 formation.
There are rumors Newcastle are about to sign Ben Arfa on loan for the season, but a report this morning says that Liverpool may be after the player in a permanent move.
But Ben Arfa seems the type of player who could definitely provide more creativity to the Newcastle attack – and hopefully we can get him in on loan.
Hughton said after the game:
“We are aware of the rumours. But I’m not going to talk about them. We are always looking for new players.”
“It is not nice to lose, especially so close to the start of the season. But there were more positives than negatives.”
And Rangers manager Walter Smith, who used to manage in the Premier League with Everton from 1998 until 2002, seemed to think Newcastle will survive next season, as he said:
”Newcastle are a good team. They have had similar financial restrictions to ourselves, but they will be OK.”
Newcastle still have a number of their players unavailable for the Red Devils game in eight days time, and they include central defender Sol Campbell, who is still trying to get fit, and there are also long term injuries to Steven Taylor, Danny Simpson and new signing Dan Gosling.
Newcastle did not play well enough in midfield yesterday with Wayne Routledge, Joey Barton, Danny Guthrie, Kevin Nolan and Jonas Gutierrez largely ineffectual for the majority of the game.
No doubt the game will provide Chris Hughton with lots to think over, but one thing that’s obvious is that Newcastle still need strengthen before the end of August – there’s no doubt about that.