Anybody who saw the game at Bolton will agree that Newcastle gave away far too many goals, with their very sloppy defending.
Sol Campbell – will probably get big chance in Coloccini’s absence
And even though we’ve praised the performances of Mike Williamson and Fab Coloccini this season, when things go bad at the back, as they have done in two of our last three games, and you have two top defenders in Steven Taylor and Sol Campbell waiting on the bench, isn’t it natural they be given their chance?
What does Chris Hughton do – play Williamson and Coloccini all season – and not give Steven Taylor and Sol Campbell a game?
The point is you bring them in if things are not going well – that’s the point of having a good squad – and of course Chris Hughton has no choice now since Fab Coloccini, who had a poor display on Saturday, is suspended for three games, following his sending off in the second half.
Chris Hughton was not happy with his side’s defending at Bolton, which is hardly surprising, and the Newcastle manager talked about that this morning:
“You are disappointed about every goal you concede. But there is no escaping we conceded very poor goals. If you do that against anyone it will be tough.”
“If you do it against a team in good form like Bolton, you are going to be in trouble. It is disappointing we have conceded the type of goals we did, but that is the division – you can’t get away with it.
“I have no arguments with the red card. With Coloccini it is worth stating that he is not a malicious player. It was frustrating afternoon for him. I think Elmander was going to do him for pace. I don’t think there’s maliciousness in it.
“I accept the red card. Bolton play what is very much a pressing game. They are a very good team. They play off the front two players to very good effect so consequently it was a frustrating afternoon for us defensively.”
We also have to remember that Bolton are a very good side this season, and as Owen Coyle said after the game, the Trotters played near their best against Newcastle, and punished the mistakes of a seemingly fragile Newcastle team.
The Magpies could have got away with some of those errors against lesser teams, and probably still been in the game, but no – we were punished for the mistakes by Bolton and punished heavily.
But we cannot get carried away on the negative side, because Chris has always said the aim of the club this season is simply to stay in England’s top league, as he tries to stabilize the club – and we shouldn’t think we are a top 10 club this season.
The fact that Chris has done so remarkably well this season, and we have beaten teams like Arsenal and Everton away and hammered Aston Villa and Sunderland at home, makes us sometimes think we are better than we are.
But let’s remember the old saying – we’re never as good as we think we are when we are winning, and never as bad as we think we are when we are getting beat.
You can’t go too far wrong with that one.
Roll on Chelsea!