After 25 games played last season Newcastle had 6 wins, 6 draws and as 13 defeats and a goal difference of -12 and 24 points.
That’s exactly the same as this season – the only difference is that last year we had scored two more goals but also conceded two more goals.
You couldn’t get much closer than that and remember we finished 10th last season.
Our 25th game last season was a 1-1 home draw against Burnley, and we hope to do better than that when the same fixture comes up at the end of this month.
And this season with players like Schar, Longstaff, Lejeune, Ki, and Rondon playing more regularly in the second half of the season, we are a better team than in those first 10 games.
We also will have Ki, Jonjo Shelvey, Mo Diame, and Paul Dummett coming back from injury so there will be some competition for a first-team place.
And Rafa has to introduce new signings Miguel Almiron as probably the number 10 and Antonio Barreca who can play left-back, left-wing-back or left-wing.
Rafa Benitez walks off the field talking with new boy Antonio Barreca alongside Fabian Schar
From what Rafa’s said about Antonio that he’s an offensive player he can play left wing-back when Newcastle play five at the back – like today and last Tuesday night.
That will allow Matt Ritchie to switch back to his more natural position on the wing – probably to the exclusion of Christian Atsu.
We may see that formation a week on Monday at Wolves.
From a Newcastle viewpoint, it’s a pity Cardiff City beat Bournemouth at home in the late kickoff game today, but to be fair, that’s an excellent win for them.
Now we are just 2 points above the drop zone – 3 if you include goal difference.
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