Yes we know we don’t have enough cover for the first teamers at the moment and they have had to play two games a week, but the way we slump at the end of these games is alarming – and we wonder if our lads are fit enough. It was obvious once Arsenal scored their fourth goal that it took the heart out of the Newcastle side, and our players probably felt even more tired than they would have been if we had scored that fourth goal for instance.
Alan Pardew - fourth goal was a killer
So we think in part the collapse yesterday was caused by almost the waving of the white flag once their fourth goal went in - as Arsenal came to life and did what they love doing – scoring goals.
Alan Pardew has refused to put any blame onto his players, but he does concede we let in some really poor goals in the last 20 minutes and the last goal – scored by Theo Walcott – was it four or five of our players he beat in the penalty box before he slotted the ball home?
This is what Alan said in the Sunday Sun today:
“I thought at 3-3, we should have shut up shop and we couldn’t do that. The energy levels between the two teams was evident towards the end. Arsenal looked energized and our team looked really leggy.”
“The fourth goal knocked the wind out of our sails a little bit because we then conceded some bad goals. It’s why we ended up with the scoreline we did.” “It is hard to take. But we put in a real effort against Manchester United on a really sodden pitch, and that took its toll.”
“And the bench today really didn’t have enough on it.” “I didn’t put Remie Streete on there to make a point. He really was my only defender and he shouldn’t be anywhere near my bench – that’s the truth of it. We really were down to the bare bones.”
“At least Mike Williamson will come back on Wednesday and hopefully Vurnon Anita.” “We put the ball at risk too many times today and at the end showed too much naivety as we tried to get another goal. Maybe the fact we are scoring so freely has made us too open.”
“Even with the players we had available, it was important we attack the game, which we did.” “We had some great offensive performances today.” “Sylvain Marveaux had what was probably his best game for us and Demba Ba scored two goals.”
“But you need to defend as a team and we needed to show a little more nous in the last 20 minutes.” “If Arsenal had played on Boxing Day, we certainly wouldn’t have had the scoreline that we did.”
One good thing is the lads have an opportunity to put things right against Everton on Wednesday night at home – and we want to see an all out performance from our Newcastle players in that game – and please – no letting up in the last 20 minutes - especially against a side like Everton.
If we can do that we could even win the game.
What do you think?
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org