Newcastle Didn’t Turn Up At WBA – That’s What’s Depressing

After keeping his players locked in the dressing room for a full hour after this game, Chris Hughton, the very disappointed Newcastle manager, finally  came out and talked to the press.

Peter Lovenkrands – scored Newcastle goal in injury time

Chris wasn’t the only one both surprised and disappointed at the Newcastle performance, especially in the first half,  when we were simply dominated by West Brom, who had all the play.

This is one of the interviews Chris gave after today’s rather shattering result, and we’ll not even mention the pathetic display from our side:

“It was probably 35 minutes into that first half before we got a decent period of play where I thought we were good enough on the ball,” Hughton said.”We were able to restrict their goal-scoring opportunities but we added to our own downfall on all three goals.”

“West Brom play a system and they’ve got very good footballers and you know that there are going to be periods of the game where you are going to have to concede that they will have possession of the ball.”

“But you need to have a good enough shape that can cope with that and that means going through periods where you restrict the opportunities they have – but you then take your chances.”

“When we had chances, the game became an open game, we could have had goals but at that stage they had already scored two goals and had already had the lion’s share of possession, particularly in the first half.”

The up and down performances of Newcastle are now becoming a concern, and why is it that we keep our pathetic performances, like the one today, against Bolton, and against Blackburn for teams we should be beating?

That’s starting to lose us a lot of points, and we’ve picked up just 2 points from the last 15, with the next games against Liverpool at home and at Birmingham, not easy games by any means.

One thing that would help the side is to get Joey Barton and Kevin Nolan back for next Saturday, and their ability and experience could really help the side at the moment.

We were really surprised  at the way Sol Campbell played today, as he was hesitant and error prone – especially in that first half – when he looked very suspect.

Danny Guthrie just didn’t get the job done today, and in the absence of Nolan and Barton, then maybe our best attacking central midfielder could be young Haris Vuckic, tjhe 18 year-old Slovenian.

Haris could hardly have been as anonymous as Danny Guthrie was today, as West Brom completely dominated the center of midfield from the very first whistle.

It looked a mistake after the first 10 minutes to be playing 4-4-2, without Nolan or Barton in the side, because we simply couldn’t get the ball, and when we did we give it away.

We expect to see some interviews with the players tomorrow -and they’ll be promising all kinds of things – again – but we want them to produce in every single game this season – and they didn’t even turn up today.

We know we had some players missing today – Williamson, Coloccini, Nolan and Barton – but Newcastle fans expect the lads to give their all in every single game, and the players can hardly say that’s what they gave today.

That’s what was so disappointing about the performance today.

Comments welcome.

38 comments so far

  • tjshawsey

    Dec 5, 2010 at 8:11 PM

    Comment #1

    I think there needs to be drastic changes. I will always support this club, but even to stay in this league we need investment from MA. We need to sell the deadwood, Smith, Ameobi, Perch, Best etc…, and bring in 2 or 3 much higher quality players. My worry? who, of this high quality, would want to come to us?

  • BeeGuy

    Dec 5, 2010 at 8:23 PM

    Comment #2

    NUFC did too show up. The players did the bes they could. It was just that the players that could be in the gamer were not good enough to play against WBA.
    Unless he was/is hurt Guthrie is over his head. He can’t get forward and he can’t pass forward.
    WR gets the ball and then stops which negates his only asset which is speed.
    Sol & Taylor were OK, but they have not played together enough to make a working pair.
    Shola is not a player that can carry the game himself, and fell into depression as the game went on.
    CH in essence fielded only one half of a EPL team today. It was a miracle they scored, though WBA really took the foot of the gas at the end.

    What surprised me, was that NUFC has no attacking midfielder on the bench! Guthrie was third choice, but there must have been someone in the academy who could have been suited up. Then there were three strikers on the bench. Certainly did not need that many.

    I’ll hold my nose and hope until the injured and suspended get back. And pray that the healthy don’t get demoralized during the wait.

  • SL_toon

    Dec 5, 2010 at 8:35 PM

    Comment #3

    NUFC were crap today.
    But one very important fact: it is expected!

    We should get over the idea that we can challenge for any europa league spots, and constantly beat all teams that were inferior to us three seasons ago.

    We should also stop thinking we are going down again cos of this rough spell.

    What I think we are going through is what happens to most mid-to-lower table clubs: poor form combined with lack of depth.
    Poor form is expected with even to top clubs. Jus looka t chelsea!
    Lack of depth jus makes compounds the problems.

    In the end, we arent prime relagation candidates anymore like we were two months ago. So we’re advancing if anything. The victories at everton and arsenal were peaks in form, while the current losses are a dip in form, albeit a long one.

    We are no different to a typical mid table team going through a rough patch. The reason: cos we are a typical mid table team going through a rough patch!!!!



  • Turkish Magpie

    Dec 5, 2010 at 8:50 PM

    Comment #4

    With a fully fit team we can feild this side..



    –Ben Arfa———-Tiote——-Barton——-Jonas

    That team would strike fear into the hearts of every premier league team with no real MAJOR weak links (Like Guthrie and Ameobi proved today) However when injuries and suspensions hit us we are left struggling and we’ve seen this happen time and time again since the days of Sir Bobby and even though now we seem to have depth, the replacements simply aren’t good enough (Perch, Routledge, Guthrie, Smith, Best and Xisco)

    I would be happy to see all of those go but aslong as we get better players in return!

    This could be our downfall, but the fact we’re going through a really bad spell of form and in a really tight premier league taking 2 points from a possible 15, we remain in the top 10 of the Prem.

    and i think that says something

  • DarloGeordie

    Dec 5, 2010 at 8:51 PM

    Comment #5

    You have got to have faith in the team however being captain of a rugby team for many years you have to lead from the front…

    When ya captain is jogging round the pitch do jack all then what do you take from that, i was one who never criticised strolla but after today how can i not and watch the 1st goal how pathetic was Jonas and his attitude today. If you are not up for playing then tell the gaffa coz there is always someone willing to take your place..

    As for Guthrie he has had his chance and he is not good enough. Also Krul WTF absolutely week i feel sorry for Carroll n Tiote who actually put half a shift in today.

    Worst performance in a long time n cant be blamed on Hughton, over payed flops.. Not a bad thing to say bout Tiote though he is always grafting and puts 110% in everytime bring over the family i say haha all good…

    There i said my piece,

    over n out

  • alex84

    Dec 5, 2010 at 9:06 PM

    Comment #6

    SL_Toon agree with you mate!
    it was a bad performance today but we need to pick ourselves up and keep going!

  • Scotty

    Dec 5, 2010 at 9:13 PM

    Comment #7

    We’d certainly have a better chance of getting Keane and Bentley if we were playing like a premier league outfit.

    Today’s performance was reminiscent of our relegation season – it was that bad.

    Guthrie and Smith – these 2 need to be omitted from the first team asap. I’d rather have wor lass and her mates in midfield than these knackers……

  • jimiley

    Dec 5, 2010 at 9:23 PM

    Comment #8

    Three points out the last eighteen. Crap home form against fellow strugglers. Nothing to worry about because its just a blip. When we get our star players back like Wor ben and Joey and Colo and a few others, we will power up the league. Wor ben is guaranteed 10 goals and Joey normally gets about two a season. No worries. Bring on the Scousers. Rest easy Mr Ashley.

  • Turkish Magpie

    Dec 5, 2010 at 9:35 PM

    Comment #9

    nice to see Gosling back in training again, he could really fill the hole left by Guthrie and Smith’s dissapointing performances and Ben Arfa’s injury (he plays RM aswell)

  • Howay The Lads

    Dec 5, 2010 at 9:44 PM

    Comment #10

    We definitely need a striker in January.

    Also a good winger.

    CM is alright with Nolan, Tiote, Gosling and Barton & HBA if needs be, but up-front is so poor.

    Carroll is great, but we need more. As today proved, if he has an off-game, we have nothing.

    January – ST, WG

    If we get that I’ll be happy, but, will the fat man spend?

    I think yes, but not much :/

  • shaun83

    Dec 5, 2010 at 9:51 PM

    Comment #11

    ok we were appalling today, I hadn’t seen guthrie play this season until today and everything he touched was awful!

    Ameobi – I’ve always had time for as he was one of the few from the robson days but he has the worst touch possible of a pro footballer and without fail loses the ball when dribbling.

    We really need a striker with pace alongside caroll, it’s too one dimensional and we can’t get in behind defences, a new Bellamy type, maybe ranger can do it but i can’t work his pace out.

    We should also stop saying teams like blackburn, bolton, WBA etc we should be beating! based on what exactly, that’s the exact attitude that seems to be filtering to the players. Yeah we beat arsenal and held chelsea, both of those games we were quite fortunate and they didn’t play to their best. Aston villa shock result.

    I’m not saying we didn’t perform well but we need to perform to that level every game and even if we do we will not always beat the blackburn, bolton and WBA, our players are not the same players when were a top 4 side, we have just been promoted after an abysmal relegation, we need to fight and scrap and put bodies on the line in every game, the quicker we and the players realise that the better

  • Solaidback

    Dec 5, 2010 at 10:04 PM

    Comment #12

    Sorry but how can you say that they did the best they could when the same 11 players pulled off a draw against the current PL Champions last week but lose 3-1 to a fellow promoted side?? that sis complete & utter bo!!ocks, here’s my player ratings:

    Krul – did ok today, save the 3 goals which weren’t his fault!
    Simpson – not bad but was over run down the right!
    Saylor – probably one of four players who actually did turn up!
    Campbell – looked overwrought & frozen, stupid mistakes cost us severely today!
    Enrique – Another solid performance, lets hope he doesn’t leave or we’re fraked!
    Routy – ran into dead ends & lost to run of play!
    Gutherie – lost control of midfield & was over run!
    Tiote – Again was left to try & cover for Gutherie & defend midfield, best of the bunch!
    Jonas – Seriously weak today, never even attempted to run up the wing & cross the ball!
    Strola – another wasted week under his belt, no shock there!
    Carroll – Tried his best with what was given to him, should have scored yet again but WBA goalie on form!!

    Overall, another Sunday league performance!!

    Btw, what happened to Barton, thought he was supposed to be back for this match or was it too cold for him?? something needs to change or we’re going to start ending the wrong way in this table!!!

  • Thump

    Dec 5, 2010 at 10:05 PM

    Comment #13

    All I can see is the relegation attitude in the players. Where was the heart we saw against Man U? Where was the spirit we saw last season? Christ, even when we went down we still pushed for goals more often than we did today and tried to knock the ball around.

    We need to do one thing to throw other teams off – pass short. We go direct every single game and as a result our short passes are often under hit to where a player should be but never is. A short passing game demands movement from the squad as opposed to this rigid formation we’re playing right now. I’m all for keeping shape but if that’s not working try something new ffs!

  • shaun83

    Dec 5, 2010 at 10:17 PM

    Comment #14

    solaidback – not sure if that was aimed at my comment but i’m definately not saying they played the best they could, i’m saying they need to leave everything on that pitch every game no matter who we are playing which we certainly didn’t do today.

    I am however saying that thinking we SHOULD be beating x teams perpetuates complacency

  • awesome_fumaca

    Dec 5, 2010 at 10:18 PM

    Comment #15

    Yes we were rubbish. But we were missing key players. If any side loses three or four regulars from the team they tend to struggle- we’re seeing it with Chelsea at the moment who have been really below par without Lampard and Essien. Ok, so Nolan and Barton aren’t in the same class as those guys, but they’re important for NUFC. And of course we were also missing Ben Arfa, Coloccini, Williamson, Harper, (Gosling doesn’t count as he hasn’t played for us yet). I was very disapointed with the performance today, but I am 100% sure that when we’re at full strength (or near it) we will be a match for most teams and we will be safe. Keep the faith!

  • technonasty

    Dec 5, 2010 at 10:22 PM

    Comment #16

    in defence of the Routledge I thought he did his best to press the ball and put in a shift and he when he had the ball he was woefully isolated by Guthrie going hiding on him.

  • Toon XI

    Dec 5, 2010 at 11:01 PM

    Comment #17

    In an honest assessment of the table, and of the teams currently sitting below NUFC, I see the following five teams finishing in the bottom five at season’s end (in no particular order) – these are the relegation candidates…

    West Ham

    Of the teams currently below us, I see Villa, Fulham, Liverpool, Brum and Everton finishing above us.

    Bottom line…as long as we finish at least 17th I’ll take it.

  • Flop

    Dec 5, 2010 at 11:08 PM

    Comment #18

    Just really disappointed with the whole team performance. It was Carroll’s worst performance in a while, but it would be harsh to blame one player he was far from the worst.
    Thought Jonas put 2 good crosses one good run but that was it. Routeledge was back to heis poor form. I can’t bring myself to say anything about Guthrie…he was that bad. Tiote gave 110% only player who I thought put a performance in. Sol…and people critsized when Williamson played solidly haha. Taylor looked rusty at times but hopefully will improve. I still don’t think Shola is 100% fit, Lovenkrands aside from his goal was poor.
    We need Joey back and NOW!!! I’m even missing Nolan.

  • marshy

    Dec 5, 2010 at 11:12 PM

    Comment #19

    the main problem today was we gave WBA too much space in which to play.too many of their players were standing in yards of space and whenever their players got the ball they had loads of options.with strolla going off at half time I can only presume he was carrying an injury and if that was the case it was stupid to play him in the first place,also when guthrie was injured it was a great big mistake to put smith on as he is terrible.all in all a lousy performance.

  • Brutooon

    Dec 5, 2010 at 11:46 PM

    Comment #20

    Passing – our team can’t even make a consecutive 4-5 passing complete. compare it with WBA

    Tiote is a good player, but opponents now realise his weekness that is he keep the ball too long (thats why they try to disposses him)

    Lazy Ameobi is back

    Campbell may got the experience, but he is slow. If i am the opponents manager, i would ask my fastest player to always go through him

    Playing Guthrie and Tiote bring no creativity in the midfield. We missed Barton and Nolan so freaking bad

  • Sav

    Dec 6, 2010 at 12:58 AM

    Comment #21

    I have to disagree, Newcatle DID show up today. It has all been there to see in previous matches, even some of the ones we’ve scraped through.
    Di Matteo had our number and a lot of fullbacks now have Jonas taped.
    The most worrying thing was how effectively they dealt with ‘unplayable’ Andy Carroll. They played him like Grandad’s fiddle today. If other teams start to cotton on to us like this before Xmas, its going to be a long second half of the season.

    Seeing Smith come on and slap straight into a really crude, late lunge for which he was rightly carded just depressed me today. When Hoots says, “What these do, they play a system and they’ve got very good footballers in that system and you know that there are going to be periods of the game where you are going to have to concede that they will have possession of the ball.” WTF? West Brom are mostly journeymen footballers signed for peanuts and paid buttons. How about practicing some control and passing the ball on Monday, Chris? We are a very limited side and we were embarrassed.

  • Sav

    Dec 6, 2010 at 1:05 AM

    Comment #22

    I know we’ll be better when Joey replaces Guthrie but we have been shown how limited we are in the football we try to play. The lumping up to Carroll was shocking.

  • Sav

    Dec 6, 2010 at 1:12 AM

    Comment #23

    Anyone else suspect Guthrie injured no more than his pride when he scuffed the ground and fell over in the lead up to their goal? From the look on his face he wished the ground would swallow him up and in a way, it did.

  • RedMissionBells

    Dec 6, 2010 at 4:27 AM

    Comment #24

    In my opinion, 1 game does not make Guthrie a useless player. Shola Ameobi, Titus Bramble and Boumsong were given time to reflect their value. I still think Guthrie has potential.

    I do agree that the club is seriously on a decline at the moment. The objective for this season should only be survival. Very clearly, our players are not giving 100% effort when playing “smaller” teams. How is it that our boys can draw against Chelsea and win at Arsenal while losing to WBA and Bolton so badly ?

    It is very clear that Newcastle is very 1 dimensional. We do not have alternative strategies and our attacking game plan has been the same throughout the season.

    Also, lets not put too much faith in Gosling. He has not done anything in the pitch yet so lets not speak of him like he is as good as HBA.

  • Charlietoon

    Dec 6, 2010 at 4:35 AM

    Comment #25

    I think he caught his studs but he looked pretty happy to be out of there. It’s a shame we had no one to replace him with. The sooner we get Smith and Ameobi outta here the better. I dont think Guthrie is going to make the grade but the whole team was awful today not just him.

  • Magickit

    Dec 6, 2010 at 6:42 AM

    Comment #26

    Please see Alan Smith , Ameobi, Guthie in January and bring in some good legs

  • Ciaran Thomas

    Dec 6, 2010 at 7:38 AM

    Comment #27

    Im pretty sure that Newcastle Turn up at WBA,The players of Newcastle United didn’t turn up that’s for sure.Im sure that I saw an article last week,Chris Hughton saying hes going to attack WBA from the start to the finish but he went against his word,let them attack us.Rightly so we got nothing,Chris Hughton needs to stand up and tell his players they were SH!T.
    The Depressing part is that Our Fellow Geordie didnt not stop singing till the end,Im deadly proud of that.The 14 players who played yesterday,Should apologies to the faithful !.

  • albert27

    Dec 6, 2010 at 7:54 AM

    Comment #28

    We need to stop the “we’re good for Europe” idea as soon as we win, then ” we’re gannin doon” as soon as we lose….let’s be more balanced here: CH is without his best players – Collo, Barton, Nolan, Gosling, Ben A – and Carroll needs to play alongside a different type of striker; or Beardsley type player.

    Our defence is weakened because of suspensions and injuries as Sol is good for a home game but away – where the pressure really mounts – he is vulnerable. The first WBA goal we had the options to put the foot in but didn’t sadly and then after that it became like the Bolton defeat.

    Who thinks CH needs a co-assistant to guide his thoughts?

  • Dennis Twice

    Dec 6, 2010 at 8:00 AM

    Comment #29

    Attack! Spring is ours!! 17th!! is enough

  • Newcastle Rock

    Dec 6, 2010 at 8:17 AM

    Comment #30

    Sol looked slugies from the start , he is overweight and too slow , any player can turn and drible him so easily . His shud NOT a game from now .
    Guthier did OK as acted as DM and not MC , so we had two DM and no one going forward.
    I thought we gave West Brom too much respect that we were even ready to play counter attack .
    Speaking of Jonas , he has became ao week and can not run fast as he used to be .
    Routlegde , want to drible the entire team and thats his main aim on the pitch.
    S.Taylor , has not sined the contact hence not playing to his potential.
    Shola is SHIT and INCONSISTANT player I have ever seen , he think its nit his mistake if he cant run .
    CH has now no clue of which team to select as he does not have a team at first place. same same tacticts and noo thinking..

    Having said that all , I bet this Shit newcastle will win by an odd goal against Liverpool and the next game will loose 3 -0 . This is NEWCASTLE and it SUCKS BIG TIME. I am sorry but its HURTS.

  • Dude

    Dec 6, 2010 at 8:35 AM

    Comment #31

    Guthrie has been awful all season. Desperate Dan, must be dropped. Sol was poor, a liability. Play Kadar, Liverpool will shred Campbell. Those 2 have to be dropped. But what about the subs bench ? No attacking midfielder but 3 strikers ? How desperate would you be to put Lovenkrands, Ranger and Best on ? The only midfield option is the woeful Smith ? We have Donaldson, Vuckic, give them a spot on the bench at least. Are Best and Smith really better options ? Clueless on and off the park yesterday. Don’t know about Ameobi. Lovenkrands gets into better positions, but Desperate Dan has to find him. And Ranger for Routledge is a must. He’s surely finished as a Premiership prospect.

  • Rotonda heights

    Dec 6, 2010 at 8:56 AM

    Comment #32

    Yes we had some players missing, but that aside, the thing is the manager dictates the way you play and the personnel you draft in to cover the injuries.

    Hughton has us playing more long ball than Allardyce. It really is pathetically predictable and painful to watch week after week.

    We all knew Guthrie wasn’t up to it and when he allegedly got injured, who does CH put on when you’re looking for goals – brainless moron Smith !!!!! Surely we could have taken a punt on Vuksic starting.

    Similarly after Strolla, as usual, couldn’t be asked, CH puts on Lovenkrands instead of Ranger !!!!

    How Guttierez keeps his place is totally beyond me. He loses possession, seemingly nearly every time he has the ball. Again why not take a punt on Ferguson. He couldn’t be any less productive and probably way more motivated.

    Sol looked like old father time yesterday. Again could kadar have been much slower or immobile?

    This team can’t pass the ball or move in to space. They’re like a bunch of static,unfit zombies caught in the headlights. There’s nothing played on the deck at all now. No one has taught Carroll how to make runs behind the defence and we have no playmakers or Beardsley types to dribble through or play any through balls.

    CH is a good man manager, you can’t fault him there, but in my opinion, he is :-

    over cautious
    has his ”untouchables”
    plays way too much long ball
    won’t play youth
    has No plan B
    has made some poor signings
    is too nice and takes No hard line
    keeps Repeating previous mistakes.

  • hugenufcfan

    Dec 6, 2010 at 9:23 AM

    Comment #33

    Our main problem for the past several years has been our defense and yesterday was not an exception.
    This is my humble opinion of what went wrong. Sol Campbell is OLD and OVERWEIGHT and SLOW. I have the very highest respect for him. Yesterday was his 500th appearance but he looked so sloppy yesterday, stumbling on his own feet everytime. But to be fair Chris didnt have any other option other than Sol.
    Second we need more support for Andy Carrol. Amoebi is not good enough. Each and every time Andy gives his 200% and wins the header to flick the ball, and there’s no one to latch onto it. I fear if this continues we’ll loose him.
    Third, we need more quality players like tiote. Chris has been saying that there wont be any new players coming in Jan. Fact is we need more quality players. Not sure if we have the money for that 🙁

  • ytz

    Dec 6, 2010 at 10:42 AM

    Comment #34

    I think Lovenkrands played pretty well, with all his running at the back 4. At least he is pressuring the defense, unlike a certain Ameobi. However, there are no through passes to him! How do you expect him to poach when you are hurling long balls?

    Joey Barton would have loved to supply all the through-passes to Lovenkrands.

  • neblexa

    Dec 6, 2010 at 11:40 AM

    Comment #35

    I agree with you SL_toon, we are what we are. No doubt we will pick ourselves up and do a job on sat, and even if we dont, its expected.

    I didnt think id miss the sight of nolan so much but looking at Guthrie and Ameobi yest it was horrendous. We had no width, no support for Carroll and until they doubled up on thomas simpson was getting the same treatment he gave him last season. Guthrie is massively out of his depth and not good enough. I though hughton did all he could with the players at hand in the second half. He responded by taking ameobi out of a game that completely passed him by. He was too slow to get forward or back and offered nothing. He nullified thomas , to an extent, by having 2 on him. The problem then lay with those on the pitch. The lack of drive and battling ability was a concern. I can only assume CH told carroll to hang on the forward line cause he wasnt coming back and finding the ball as he normally does when he gets no service. A the lad is anything but work shy.

    Hopefully they will pick themselves up, barton and nolan will make a difference, i just hope we get a striker next month cause carroll cant do it all himself.

  • John

    Dec 6, 2010 at 1:07 PM

    Comment #36

    Jonas cant cross or shoot decision making dreadful , guthrie not at the races at all delivery was shite, shola dont strola, and coco the clown included they can all go .

  • Rotonda heights

    Dec 6, 2010 at 1:08 PM

    Comment #37

    comment 33

    he did have an option. he could have played KADAR !!!

  • Toon XI

    Dec 6, 2010 at 1:48 PM

    Comment #38

    Sadly, it is evident that CH doesn’t believe in anyone other than his favorite 12-13 players. End of story. Kadar was not an option in CH’s mind.


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