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Here’s Newcastle’s Record Compared To Last Season – Extremely Strange

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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Comments welcome.

60 comments so far

  • AncientC

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:10 PM

    Comment #1

    Shows just how methodical Benitez is…

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:10 PM

    Comment #2

    Just a fan, just before SJH rode to our rescue, I think it was the 1990/91 season and attendances throughout the country were down, our average attendance was only about 16k, with the lowest being against Oxford, a fraction over 10k. Pretty sure we had a cup game with less than that but my memory ain’t great. I’m pretty sure I remember being in a crowd of under 10k.
    Before SJH came in we were in danger of going out of business with talk of liquidation being bandied about. We were a proper mess. Great gallows humour though.
    I remember when we got relegated from the first division in 87/88 if my crap memory serves me here. We played Manure last game of the season and were already down regardless of the score.
    About 3k of us went down anyway and were singing ‘we’re so shyt it’s unbelievable’ and “we’re going down, we’re going down, your not, your not’. Finished up with a resounding version of” we’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when’ with the Stretford End giving us a standing ovation. 🙂 Never stopped singing once. 🙂 Crazy days following the Toon.
    Did you go to Millwall the season we got relegated and they got promoted to Div 2? 77/78? God my memory for dates is shocking. First game of the season, red hot day in August. I could write a book about that day lmfao! 🙂

  • Jib

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:11 PM

    Comment #3

    Wolves are flying unfortunately

  • Jail for Ashley

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:13 PM

    Comment #4

    Does anyone think that the Mig might make his debut against Wolves or will we see him given half an hour?

  • Munster Mag

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:17 PM

    Comment #5

    Jail unless he shows rafa that he understands compact and press he won’t.

  • beermonkey

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:18 PM

    Comment #6


    20 mins i think and a start a udders
    but it all depends on how fit he has kept himself

  • Munster Mag

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:20 PM

    Comment #7

    . Bobby I remember watching the toon v Liverpool away. Losing about 4-0….’we’ve got more fans than you, Liverpool, Liverpool’. Class, i was so proud 🙂

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:21 PM

    Comment #8

    Ed’s just said pretty much what I said the other day, about the new wing back releasing Ritchie to revert to right wing, which allowed Murphy to go out on loan.
    We’ve now got some serious competition in midfield which can only push players to greater heights.
    The way I see it now is we need another two wingers and cover for Rondon and we can push right up the table next season if Rafa stays on. This will mean safety when the cup games come round and we can field a strong side for them. I think next season he’ll target the cups for serious, whether the knacka wants to or not. We won’t have a relegation battle to concentrate on, we’ll be safely above mid table and well capable of a good cup run.

  • Just a fan

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:21 PM

    Comment #9

    We never had ten thousand in it livetimesurely

  • Just a fan

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:22 PM

    Comment #10

    PS I’m getting pister

  • Jail for Ashley

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:22 PM

    Comment #11

    Like we said the other night, he’s going to be way short of match practice, do you think that this Barreca might take the wing back slot letting Ritchie take Atsu’s slot, is this the way we’re going to play from now on with five at the back?

  • Just a fan

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:23 PM

    Comment #12

    In my life time

  • Jail for Ashley

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:24 PM

    Comment #13

    If this Barreca does well does this mean a change in formation, who’s actually been playing on the right wing if Atsu’s been on the left?

  • Just a fan

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:25 PM

    Comment #14

    Bobby bee
    Sorry I talk some rubish

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:26 PM

    Comment #15

    Munster, aye, I was there that night. We were up in the seats, near the halfway line. We had all that side and the Anfield road end was crammed. At least 15k of us, probably more. That was the night Keegan realised his days playing were finished. 🙁 We got battered 4-0 but outsang the Kop all night.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:28 PM

    Comment #16

    The criticism of Rafa can only be the tactics, and even then it’s highly contentious, considering the players we have. We are really well drilled and very well prepared to play the way he wants us to. If these two new lads are of the type he wants, and they appear to be, we might well start to see some masterclasses in counter-attacking football. Perhaps we are a few more signings away from that in reality, but fingers crossed.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:34 PM

    Comment #17

    I think we’ve settled on five at the back, with Ritchie is now looked upon primarily as a left wing back, and I think Dummett has become primarily left sided CB cover, although I’m often wrong. 🙂

  • Lascelles sells sea shells by the sea shore

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:42 PM

    Comment #18

    Almiron has the potential to be the mercurial talent that we need to take the pressure from the backline by having teams think twice about overcommitting when attacking… It’s been a while since we have had a precocious talent to give opposition a rethink!

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:44 PM

    Comment #19

    Just a fan, sadly we did mate. Wasn’t just us though, crowds had dropped all across the country. Football hooliganism had driven the crowds away in general and there was Hillsborough and Bradford. Football was, dying tbh. We very nearly went into liquidation and still McKeag wouldn’t sell up. He was worse than Ashley. Forced SJH to really pay through the nose for control.
    I honestly believe if SJH hadn’t arrived we would’ve gone out of business. Those were hard times to stick with the team but we did. Harder than now by a distance.
    That’s when the FA had that big report done and all seater stadiums came in. Let’s be honest, they treated football fans like animals back then and the fans behaved like them. It was a two way thing..
    Much better now innit? Families can go safely without fear.
    I’d like safe standing areas, for the singing section though. I think that’ll bring back the real atmosphere. I believe it will happen soon.
    Not for me though! 🙂 I can’t stand up all game anymore, but I do get those around me singing even at my age. I just love Newcastle and football in general. I honestly couldn’t Imagine life without going to SJP. 🙂

  • beermonkey

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:45 PM

    Comment #20


    i thought we bought that berraca in as squad filler so i was surprised he gave him 10 mins so it looks like rafa wants to use him
    cant see rafa dropping ritchie he will drop atsu

    never been a diame fan seems to take him to long find his form really happy the way bith longstaff and hayden have come in and done well
    its a shame hayden want out for what ever reasons but we will get a good fee for him in the summer
    maybe we can get another loan and buy a replacement

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:52 PM

    Comment #21

    I think he’ll drop both Ritchie and Atsu in his preferred line up. Something like


    We’ve been playing this way for a while, and I don’t see a place for Ritchie in it other than left wing back, and Atsu will be hard pressed to get the nod ahead of Almiron or Perez in that set up.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:55 PM

    Comment #22

    Hayden could keep the DM shirt. He’s been good and that would of course encourage him to stay and hopefully he’d then continue to improve and become a top notch player.

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:58 PM

    Comment #23

    Nicky, I think Barecca has been brought in for that Job mate. He’s primarily a left wingback.
    I see it like this.


    Schar Fernandez/Lascelles Lejuene
    Yeddlin. Barecca

    Ritchie Longstaff. Shelvey



  • Just a fan

    Feb 2, 2019 at 9:58 PM

    Comment #24

    Bobby bee yes you have have worn me down where is jib when i need him
    Oh I forgot I’m jib a new Jane

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:00 PM

    Comment #25

    Diame may have tumbled down the pecking order. Maybe becomes surplus if Hayden can be convinced to stay. To me Longstaff looks a Carrick type, he certainly knows how to hold his defensive shape, and he can pass and run around. Is he actually better suited to DM, and so do we have enough in Hayden, Longstaff, Ki and Shelvey, all better on the ball than Diame.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:02 PM

    Comment #26

    I’d actually be shocked if Perez isn’t in Rafa’s preferred 11 Bobby. I think Rafa really likes him, and I think Perez, Almiron and Rondon is a proper counter-attacking front three.

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:02 PM

    Comment #27

    That’s not how I set it out, but you can work it out with Yeddlin and Barecca wingbacks

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:04 PM

    Comment #28

    But yeah, I see where you’re coming from.

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:08 PM

    Comment #29

    You’d normally call a loss a bad result, but it can’t be when you’re playing away at the team third in the League. In that case it’s only a bad result if you lose by a few. We didn’t, we kept it tight and only lost to an uncharacteristic mistake from one of our most dependable players. Shame.

    That said, I am a little disappointed, there feels like a number of ‘what ifs’ left out on the field today. What if Rondon’s header had not hit the post? What if Perez’s shot had been a little further away from the keeper? What if Dubs hadn’t taken his eye off the ball? On such fine margins are a match (and possibly an entire season) decided.

    We’ve gone into a difficult week with matches against two of the best teams in the country expecting nothing and we’ve come out of the other side with three points. On top of that we’ve made a couple of signings which could improve our team for a number of years.

    I think I’ll take that.

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:12 PM

    Comment #30

    I think Almiron will replace Perez as a starter. Perez has scored a couple of goals or won penalties coming on as sub this season against tired defenders. He may be suited to a supersub role but will he be happy in it?

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:15 PM

    Comment #31

    Nicky, Rafa’s been wanting a new No10 for ages. Tbh if you really watch Perez – I’ve made a thing of it – he, does very little but looks, busy all the time. He jogs around in empty space and rarely puts a tackle in. Just watch next game.
    His goal return for a No 10 is piss poor really. I expect Rafa to put Almiron in as a straight swap. I struggle to find a place he can play, especially if Rafa, gets what he wants in the summer.
    Not saying I’m right of course, Rafa’s bingo can restart and be great fun. 🙂
    If I had my way I’d go more 442, with Almiron playing off Rondon. Whatever happens, he adds a completely new dimension to the team with his pace and dribbling skills.


    Yedders. Fernandez Lejuene Dummett

    Ritchie Longstaff Shelvey. Atsu/Kenedy

    Almiron Rondon.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:19 PM

    Comment #32

    Ritchie doesn’t have the pace of Almiron, nor the skill of Perez, but he’s a dog of war for sure, and he has a good delivery. It’s gonna be interesting to see who Rafa goes with, but I think it’ll be Perez in behind Rondon on the right, and Almiron in behind him on the left, because you’ve got the workrate, pace and the class there.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:23 PM

    Comment #33

    Yeah, I take a very different view of Perez. I think he has great technical ability and has worked really hard and well at a thankless task and now that we have Almiron we’ll see more reward for his attacking qualities.

  • Bobbybee

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:25 PM

    Comment #34

    The thing is now, Rafa has so many more options and knowing how he is, he’ll probably surprise us all! 🙂 Whatever happens, I can see us attacking more because Almiron can keep the, ball.
    Honestly, I’m so excited to see him play. I’m well prepared to give him time to adapt as well, I’m not expecting instant success. He won’t get as, much time on the ball as in the MLS, but he’ll be so direct with his runs he’ll frighten defenders to death.
    So many options now. I think we’ll see a different direction completely..
    Anyway, these meds are making typing difficult and thinking even harder. 🙂
    Catch you all tomorrow I hope. Onwards and upwards lads. Believe in Rafa, he is the man.

  • geordie157

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:33 PM

    Comment #35

    Thought Perez did quite well today, some great skill at times and if he’d have not cut back on his right foot and taken a shot with the left he may have scored.

    Barreca will need some time to adjust but can see him being a decent loan addition.

    Hopefully the signing of him and Almiron will give Kenedy the kick up the arse he needs and he can rediscover the form of last season.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:39 PM

    Comment #36

    Yeah, I’m off too, but it is good that we do finally have the players to go 541, 3421 or 442 etc depending on the circumstances and always have 11 decent players on the pitch.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:41 PM

    Comment #37

    ……if Rondon stays fit. Still a big worry.

  • Belfast

    Feb 2, 2019 at 10:59 PM

    Comment #38

    I still can’t believe he didn’t save that like.
    What the ferk was he doing ? It’s just a bog standard shot. Pish!

  • Belfast

    Feb 2, 2019 at 11:02 PM

    Comment #39

    So bloody frustrating to put in a performance like that and lose due a crappy avoidable mistake.

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 2, 2019 at 11:05 PM

    Comment #40

    It’s getting to the point where we can say with relative confidence that Hudds and Fulham are down, barring an extreme change of fortune. Hudds cannot score, cannot defend, Fulham are inconsistent going forward and poor at the back.

    So, one place to be decided, with 6 teams separated by only 5 points.

    There’s a definite feel of deja vu about this season, with a similar congestion at the bottom of the table last February too. Last time round, we pulled off a win vs Man U and went on a great run which saw us safe by the end of March / beginning of April. Can we do the same this time round? I think we probably can.


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