BBC Pundit So Impressed With Benitez’ Newcastle Side – They Belong In Premier League

Martin Keown was full of praise for Newcastle last night on BBC’s Match of the Day 2.

Newcastle played extremely well and looked organized and “compact” and we had 18 shots on goal – the most this season so far.

The former England and Arsenal center-back also pointed out we are still a very young side.

In fact, the youngest in the Premier League so we should be able to improve a lot as the season progresses.

And Rafa will be bringing in new players in January and next summer to strengthen the squad further.

Martin Keown – full of praise for Newcastle

This is some of what Martin said on MOTD2 last night:

“Newcastle are a very young side but the spine of the side: Lascelles, Jonjo Shelvey, Isaac Hayden in there, every one of their players looks pretty comfortable.”

“They look like now they belong in the Premier League.”

“You couldn’t say that before about some of the Newcastle teams in the past, looked haphazard at times.”

“There is a structure to the way they play, Shelvey at the centre of everything.”

“Everybody wants the ball now in a Newcastle shirt. A threat going forward – Matt Ritchie, I think a lot more to come from him.”

“It really impressed me that they managed the ball really well: comfortable passing, linking up, control. “

“They are not out of their depth and they are probing all of the time – they have got lots of bodies in the final third.”

“The movement for the second goal, you are not watching Manchester City by the way, but you have Yedlin coming out with the ball from the back, then Shelvey – a punishing pass, right into the heart of the opposition.”

“Then they have willing runners, making the movement off the ball. Perez gets a little bit lucky, keeper should do better. Beautiful the way they played that.”

“And 18 shots on goal, their most this season.”

“Newcastle are making things happen, they now believe it.”

Let’s hope we can play as well (or better) next week at home to Crystal Palace and come away with a valuable 3 points.

That’s what we need.

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Comments welcome.

62 comments so far

  • Bambams

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:15 AM

    Comment #1

    Praise for once….

    The BBC will probably relegate him to Tennis commentary now

  • Shoulders knees

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:20 AM

    Comment #2


  • martoon

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:30 AM

    Comment #3

    The penalty was stupid as we all know. However the first goal bugged me the most – somehow we should have done better, – doubled up on him, should have saved it – just seemed soft to me!

  • Shot Bru

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:35 AM

    Comment #4

    Agree with Bianconeri from previous
    regardiing Elliot.
    Slow getting down for the first goal.
    Poor kicking at times.
    Flaps at crosses coming into a crowded box.
    You can see why Rafa wanted another keeper in the summer

  • Shoulders knees

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #5

    1st goal can’t allow him to get to byline and then cut back across area and not block shot.

  • Shot Bru

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:44 AM

    Comment #6

    That too shoulders knees

  • RUNAWAY777

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:46 AM

    Comment #7

    I’ll be waiting for merson coming on with his prediction for the weekend, palace had a good win so think they’ll beat newcastle get yourself a drink loser .

  • hibbit

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:52 AM

    Comment #8


    nice to see you back and in good form

  • Shoulders knees

    Oct 16, 2017 at 9:54 AM

    Comment #9

    I do wonder about these pundits ?

  • Jib

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:08 AM

    Comment #10

    With Gayle again disappointing
    perhaps time to recall one of
    Adam Armstrong
    Ivan Toney
    Alex Gilliead
    from their loan spell ?

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:13 AM

    Comment #11

    Some of our passing moves were quality in that 2nd half especially the move for the 2nd goal was really slick!

    What to do about Gayle though? He just doesn’t look the same player since last season doesn’t look fit or confident!

    We would be as well to recall Toney and Armstrong just now to give us extra bodies the way its going!

  • geordiesteve520

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:16 AM

    Comment #12

    At a stadium we notoriously fail at, against a team we rarely do well against a point is a great result. Yes, we could have won the game but there will be games, this season, where we will be battered and still come out with something.

  • toontaff2

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:17 AM

    Comment #13

    Aye, Runaway, just in time for the remnants of Ophelia – ‘the ex hurricane.’
    Gone bloody dark, here, like- storm clouds gathering! 😆

  • toontaff2

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:18 AM

    Comment #14

    Martin Keown’s on the Christmas card list!
    Maybe he could come on here during the match, to sort out the whiners! 💡

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:22 AM

    Comment #16

    LCBP…I get what you are saying but cannot see either Toney or Armstrong being the answer to our problems…

    …too big jump for any of them! Armstrong has a long way to go sadly!

    January is another window and another opportunity

  • Shoulders knees

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:24 AM

    Comment #17

    Very good, I have never really bothered with what pundits predict as if they were any good at predicting what’s going to happen they would be managers 😉

  • Jib

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:25 AM

    Comment #18

    Munster and Belfats will be getting the worst
    Schools in Republic shut today
    Probably the worst place to be is on an oil-rig
    off the N Wales coast.

  • RUNAWAY777

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:30 AM

    Comment #19

    Toonfaff2 left the sun behind for the place i love best the toon bro.

  • RUNAWAY777

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:33 AM

    Comment #20

    Hibbit bro got the st out today going to look for a heads up display unit so i can see everything on the windscreen

  • ilovetoon8788

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:44 AM

    Comment #21

    Imagine if we replaced ayoze and joselu with quality additions in January. With rafa, I think we might have outside chance of European qualifications.

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #22


    To be honest I would rather we didn’t have to bring a youngster in but we still have a fair few games to go before the window opens !

    Was good to see Hayden and Perez get goals though the 2 of them should be getting a lot more goals than they do but I guess that is what Rafa is trying to improve!

    See Abraham is finally starting to come good for Swansea? Took him a few games to look decent but seems to be getting better each game looks like Rafa knew best!!!haha

  • hibbit

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #23

    proper poser LOL

  • RUNAWAY777

    Oct 16, 2017 at 10:57 AM

    Comment #24

    Hibbit what can i say i like gadgets bro

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #25

    I take it you managed to watch the match then, personally I thought it was great game to watch, HWA claimed that they wanted it more than us, I couldn’t disagree more, we pushed for a winner right to the end, that would have got me caught watching in my room if that Lejuene header had of crossed the line.

  • Tsunki

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:34 AM

    Comment #26

    Yes that’s another learning point for Manquillo, should have kept gabbiadini tucked into the byline, let him arc round into the area. Rafa will definitely tutor that one out of him Lejeune got a lesson from a clever forward but i doubt he’ll do it again. Anyway he probably kept two out so all in a he had a decent game in from cold.

  • Tsunki

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:37 AM

    Comment #27

    I thought Southampton looked desperate for a result, nothing like teams we’ve faced there before, they look decidedly ordinary, that plastic Bertrand lad looks nothing like his previous hype, and they have some really ordinary players. We not for basically gifting them goals.

  • Tsunki

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #28

    Can’t be bothered to correct that. It would take far too much time and that’s a luxury i can I’ll afford right now.

  • Tsunki

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:39 AM

    Comment #29

    Ill afford. Though i really didn’t have time to clarify that by a long shot. Still never mind eh?

  • magpie6699

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:41 AM

    Comment #30

    I was at St Mary’s about 3 seasons ago when we lost 4-0 and were lucky to get 0! We were completely outplayed and beyond hopeless. I would have gladly taken a point before the game yesterday so I’m not too disappointed. I’m pleased for Perez because he gets some stick on here but he never stops running and a lot of the good stuff he does gets overlooked for the mistakes – for which he gets pummelled on this site. Someone yesterday suggested starting Merino as the number 10 instead, to be replaced by Perez later on. Don’t think that’s a bad option for some games.

  • jayphoto

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #31

    was at the game yesterday.. aside from the penalty, Lejeune looked class actually, really composed, strong, sprayed a couple decent passes around and wasn’t afraid to carry the ball out of defence. Considering it’s his first full premier league game he looks a prospect..
    Elliot had a bad game, probably being harsh but I felt a better keeper would have got down quicker to the first goal and his distribution would have cost us a goal on a couple of occasions against a better side.
    Thought Joselu worked hard but for me he was coming too deep and too wide…
    Not sure if this came across on TV but when murphy came on he looked like he was running in swamp..

  • jayphoto

    Oct 16, 2017 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #32

    One thing I took from yesterdays game seeing it live, what a horrible little player Ritchie is! I love it! Throughout the game he was constantly purposefully knocking into his marker, treading on toes, get in their face, talking in their ear off the ball, must be a right nightmare to play against, heavy into every challenge too, he really is a bit of a throwback

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #33


    I actually forgot Murphy came on !! He is going to take a fair bit of work I feel before we see him influencing games might even not be this season unfortunately!

    Is Aarons injured ? Just wondering why he hasn’t got a sniff since the cup game where he was excellent

  • jayphoto

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:02 PM

    Comment #34

    @Leecharnley – Id not consider recalling Armstrong, hes really not pulling any trees up at Bolton who have about the same amount of possession and create the same amount of chances as we do…
    Honestly think Mitro would have started a couple if it wasn’t for his stupidity against west ham.
    There was an interesting interview with azaar in Italian press that said Rafa told him he was a player for the premier league not the championship so never played him..Mitros performances for Serbia, for Anderlecht in champions league etc would suggest possibly he fell into the category too.
    Gayle looks like hes downed tools…lot of reports he wanted back south in the summer…

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:10 PM

    Comment #35


    Mitrovic reminds me of Dzeko both have similar skills but Mitrovic’s application at times lets him down and I think Rafa can see a player there but he cannot be trusted who knows how many extra points we could have had if Mitrovic had been available for those 3 games and then the last 2 where he has been kept out of the squad as a lesson?!

    Defo something up with Gayle but the more we play him and the worse he looks it might make getting a good fee for him in January difficult as we are bringing him on every game and he just doesn’t get involved at all just runs about doing nothing !

  • martoon

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:34 PM

    Comment #36

    For the short time Murphy was on I didn’t think he was that bad – I seem to remember him getting in a couple of decent crosses! Not sure when Gayle’s calf went but it obviously would inhibit him – I’ve not seen a replay but I’m sure Gayle had a decent shot that hit Shelvey – not sure if it was goal bound or not?

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:38 PM

    Comment #37

    Not forgetting the two opening losses last year where he would have made a huge difference against Fulham. If Gayle is crocked then he’ll have no choice but to at least put him on the bench against Palace. I wonder if Rafa would have allowed Murphy to go if he’d known that those upstairs weren’t going to keep to their side of the bargain.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:43 PM

    Comment #38

    He got a canny shot in as well which deflected for a corner. He’s been used to waltzing past lesser defenders and hopefully he will improve with experience. To see him being called worse than dog shit is one of the most disgraceful comments I’ve ever read on here. How benarfamagician can call him self a Newcastle fan is beyond me!

  • AncientC

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:52 PM

    Comment #39

    I noticed a few comments starting Mitrovic couldn’t have a difference in place of Joselu against Southampton, as there was no service. Did anybody notice Joselu was actually drifting out wide and was not making runs when Shelvey was looking for a pass. Shelvey played a lot more short passing football because there was nothing to aim at. Everybody in the PL knows by now that the Shelvey to Ritchie combination poses the most danger, so if nobody else is giving Shelvey options, it handicaps him.

    The way Joselu was drifting out wide reminded me of how Fernando Torres started doing the same thing after he lost his form & confidence. Worrying sign.

    Mitrovic would have made a world of difference. Even when Mitrovic is having a bad game, he anchors the ball higher up the pitch.

  • jayphoto

    Oct 16, 2017 at 12:56 PM

    Comment #40

    Lee Charnley – Gayle just makes me wonder if hes trying to drive down his fee? Talk was he told the club he wanted out around march but we all laughed at it when reported then as he was getting a goal a game…
    Id throw him into any deal for Cairney or Sessegnon if Fulham still want him and he wants there (sessegnon probably being a tad unrealistic)


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