In a short interview after yesterday’s game a very deflated Danny Guthrie admitted that the players had let themselves down at Fulham.
Steven Stone and Alan Pardew – before the game yesterday
And Danny also said that things had been said in the dressing room after the game, and rightly so.
It was the proverbial game of two halves, as Newcastle dominated the first half and were rightly 1-0 ahead at half time, with a wonderful Danny Guthrie shot that flew into the net from his left foot.
Everything seemed to be going so well and we looked a good side, but for all their possession Newcastle should really have been more than 1-0 up at half time, with Shola Ameobi missing a couple of decent heading opportunities from good crosses from Yohan Cabaye.
But there was a warning of what was to come, when Andrew Johnson was clean through and he was brought down by Davide Santon, who really should have been sent off but the Italian only got a yellow cars.
That was only just before the half time whistle was blown, and it was Andrew’s pace that caused a lot of the trouble after he had been brought on for the injured Steve Sidwell.
And then Fulham manager Martin Jol replaced the ineffective Bryan Ruiz with Chris Baird at half time – and the game changed.
It was only seven minutes into the second half when rather sloppy penalty was given by referee Lee Mason for Fulham, when David Santon was adjudged to have pulled back Damien Duff, but it was outside the penalty box where the foul happened.
But Danny Murphy made no mistake from the penalty as he scored his 10th penalty out of 10, and in the next 17 minutes Newcastle went completely haywire as they seemed to switch off completely and conceded another three goals.
It was like the first 26 minutes against Arsenal and like the last 30 minutes of the season against West Brom, so it’s not really the first time it’s happened over the last year.
That first soft penalty was the turning point, and Alan Pardew had this to say immediately after the game:
“Certainly the first goal for them – the soft goal – seemed to affect us.” “I don’t know if we felt that was an injustice or something, that they were level.”
“But we switched off in a 15-20 minute period there and that’s unlike us.” “But it just goes to show you cannot do that at this level.”
It was simply a disaster and an embarrassment for this Newcastle side in the second half, and they’ll have to get themselves back together – and quickly too.
And we have to remember it’s only one game and only 3 points lost and we still have 16 games and 48 points to play for – but we must learn from what happened in that second half.
The loss didn’t affect the team too much in the league table, as Chelsea only drew at Norwich and Liverpool managed to lose 3-1 at Bolton Wanderers.
Next up for Newcastle is the 4th round of the FA Cup at Brighton next Saturday afternoon, which again is being televised worldwide, and then we visit Blackburn in the league on the following Wednesday evening.
On the following Sunday – February 5th – we have an early kick-off game against Aston Villa at St. James’ Park, so it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that Newcastle can win their next two league games and put this terrible capitulation behind us.
If we get 6 points over the next two league games we could again be sitting pretty in the league table.
That’s what we want to see – and there’s nothing much we can do now about the game yesterday.
Howay The Lads!!