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Rafa – It Was A Great Day For Almiron And Our Fans

Rafa Benitez was pleased with the overall performance and the commitment of his players in the 2-0 win at home to Huddersfield today.

Maybe the only thing we could have done better is to score more goals, but we hit the woodwork quite a few times.

The Terriers were reduced to 10 men after only 20 minutes when Tommy Smith was sent off for a rash tackle on Almiron.

Newcastle created a lot of chances today, and if we can get another good striker in over the summer, we will be a much better side next season.

The star players today were Sean Longstaff in the middle of the park and new boy Almiron who must have been pleased with his debut performance at St. James’ Park.

Rafa Benitez on the touchline today

This is some of what Rafa said after the game:

“We did well so I was pleased with the performance of the players.”

“It was difficult for them with 10 men but they still had chances. We had a lot of chances and we hit the post or bar three or four times.”

He (Almiron) did what we expected of him. He linked well with the other forwards. It was a great day for him and the fans.

“He’s very dynamic and he has good movement behind the defenders and between the lines.”

“It’s now important to settle down in the Premier League and understand the mentality of the PL.”

“If he can stay at the same level and score a goal, it will be better.”

“Longstaff did very well. He has the support of the players around him and the fans. He did very well.

“Everyone was expecting we could win but maybe not that we could play so well and create so many chances.”

“Now we must carry on. Every game is a final for us and we must play with the same intensity against Burnley.”

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Comments welcome.

142 comments so far

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:53 PM

    Comment #81

    Yeah, Rondon needs to be retained and another striker to push him. Kenedy too, if he can regain his form, which is very possible playing as we did today, and another top wingback. Our central defence, central midfield, and keepers look good as they are for next term.

  • Lascelles sells sea shells by the sea shore

    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:55 PM

    Comment #82

    Thanks lads… Munster, broom ale being thrown back for you as we speak lad… HWTL’s

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:57 PM

    Comment #83

    Nicky agree, i think with kennedy if he was actually ours hed be different. I think he needs to know his place. Feels like he should be ours.
    The squad is deffo starting to take shape.
    I love yedders and think ritchie is doing a superb job at lwb but additions is need there.
    Rondon signed. Another top striker. Lwb rwb . Think wed be sorted like.

  • Lascelles sells sea shells by the sea shore

    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:57 PM

    Comment #84

    Broon ffs lol… Had too many I think already!!! Lol

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:58 PM

    Comment #85

    And of course Rafa signed up!

  • chicousa

    Feb 23, 2019 at 9:59 PM

    Comment #86

    Aye, I’m crazy for sure! Nights like that last away match at Wolves and that kick in the groin equalizer sometimes make me wonder if Newcastle is under some evil curse!

    …but then a day like today comes along! Or the home win against City! It’s at those time when I know I have chosen the right club to “adopt”!

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:08 PM

    Comment #87

    Chico you follow MLS?

  • jane

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:09 PM

    Comment #88

    Ritchie has been subbed 11 times in his 24 league starts this season. sometimes in the past he has shown his unhappiness but now he seems to accept it like a horse that’s been broken in.

  • Nostradamus the Geordie

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:10 PM

    Comment #89

    The biggest thing I miss the most is the Newcastle Brown, I remember the first party I was at over here in the States and someone gave me a Bud Light.

    I asked if they wanted me to wash my car?

  • jane

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:11 PM

    Comment #90

    the match relevant to us tomorrow is Southampton away at Arsenal. Southampton currently fill the third relegation place and could be in trouble as they have a difficult run of games coming up.

  • lochinvar

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:11 PM

    Comment #91

    We need an upgrade on Joselu ?

    Is that what they call an understatement ?

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:14 PM

    Comment #92

    Na its called under investment

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:16 PM

    Comment #93

    Newcastle Utd is a thing of genuine beauty – the fans, the ground, the strip, the city, the history, the great number 9’s, the remarkable Northumberland coast and countryside, the Tyne-Wear derby, and the celebration in store when we finally win something. It is the greatest English club to support for anyone wanting to adopt a team and a blessing for those of us fortunate enough to be born Geordie, even if the owner is a knucklehead.

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:33 PM

    Comment #94

    I honestly think with a couple of quality players in the correct position and wed be in that 7 or 8th spot every year at least.
    Europa league run every year and a go at the cups.
    Aye id take that like.
    Well within the realms with Rafa at the helm.
    Proven with miggy, get the right component and the machine runs crisper.

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:42 PM

    Comment #95

    Anyway its been good chatting. Talked to a few that a dont usually get to converse with. Been good. Enjoyed. I work shifts so on the night shift if a get time ill pop the odd comment in.
    Good night all enjoy the win the day.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:43 PM

    Comment #96

    Totally agree. Rafa’s done superbly to build this group on zero net spend. We NEED to give him a couple of decent signings a window from here on in, and the assurances he’s looking for regarding upgrades to the training ground, Academy and scouting network; all very sound and eminently sustainable investments given what he’s achieved for us thus far.

  • jane

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:46 PM

    Comment #97

    maybe Genjikai is a doctor.

  • calvinho

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:47 PM

    Comment #98

    I think Diame will be gone at the end of the season. He’ll need to start games to get his contract extension. I think we need a midfielder to play with Longstaff. Someone with Hayden’s energy & mobility with Shelvey/Ki’s on the ball skills. Tielemans or Serri (if Fulham go down). A right back/RWB would be a good addition too.

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:48 PM

    Comment #99

    Exactly nicky. No more lies we have defo got money in bank. Survive this year and Rafa deserves to be given his choices.
    Ashley if your staying do the right thing back rafa, back the toon. Itll give your sporting empire more credibility.
    Anyway toons on motd , actually going to watch the neet.

  • chicousa

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:48 PM

    Comment #100

    Nicky @93
    Well said sir!

    Genjikai @87
    Not really. I watch the occasional MLS “soccer” match, but not really a fan of any club, though San Jose Earthquake is closest to my geographical location.

  • jane

    Feb 23, 2019 at 10:52 PM

    Comment #101

    tbf Joselu hasn’t done a bad job for us in the circumstances.
    last season 30 appearances including 19 starts, 4 goals
    this season 15 appearances including 5 starts, 2 goals
    always a good attitude.
    nice if he keeps coming on at the end when we are more than 1 goal up. 🙂

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:05 PM

    Comment #102

    Tbh jane ad prefer to see a youngster or a class second striker on instead of jose.
    Never mind needs must hes one of ours of course well cheer.
    Funnily enough im not a doctor but been thinking about it lately it, can’t be that much different from being a maintenance tech.
    Im good with electronics, can’t be that much different to wire up a brain…

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:06 PM

    Comment #103

    Aye was going to get on supporting a different team from a different league chico. Was going to ask for advise. Would pick atlanta but dont want to be a glory seeker.
    Any teams like the toon in the mls. I know naff all about it.

  • Genjikai

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:12 PM

    Comment #104

    Batshit looked good today for crystal palace. Remy like. Hed be a class option tbh.

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:32 PM

    Comment #105

    It’s actually frightening how good Longstaff is playing at the moment that cross for Rondon was excellent and his shot that hit the woodwork was great!

    Be good to see the battle between him and Rice next week

    Hayden and Longstaff compliment each other so well they have more mobility and are better in the air than our other midfielders which means they win their battles just can’t see how Shelvey or Diame get back in unless there are injuries or suspensions

    Some of our one touch link up play was deadly

  • Mister Tuff

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:36 PM

    Comment #106

    Good debut by Almiron.
    Wished there had been a few more “through balls” for him to chase.
    He’s got the trickery/pace/acceleration/skill to find the net.
    At least we’ve had a sample of what he’s about.

  • ronaldo aarons

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:40 PM

    Comment #107
  • Chancel My MBembaship

    Feb 23, 2019 at 11:52 PM

    Comment #108

    If Rafa stays (PLEASE STAY RAFA!!!) then I think Shelvey is a goner. Mitro got shipped out because of his temperament and Shelvey could be in the same position. I know he’s worked hard off the field to address his issues but he’s always liable to lose his head or put in a sly little kick here and there. With VAR coming in next season he won’t get away with things like that anymore.

    The only way I can see him staying is if Hayden gets his move away and Ashley refuses to give Diame a new contract.

  • Chancel My MBembaship

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:01 AM

    Comment #109

    Genjikai – I’m not a big MLS fan but I went to a couple of New England Revolution games when I was living in Massachusetts. The atmosphere wasn’t bad. I couldn’t tell you anything about the current squad or who the manager is, so I’m not in a position to recommend supporting them.

    Personally I’d keep an eye on Atlanta, if only to watch Almiron’s strike partner Martinez. He knows Almiron already (obviously) but he also knows Rondon because they play together at international level. I reckon they could both put in a good word for us about how brilliant it is to play for the Toon!

  • c-dog

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:15 AM

    Comment #110

    Hayden will have no shortage of suitors this summer. He’s been a gem.

  • Munster Mag

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:20 AM

    Comment #111

    A great day, and wales beat England too. Sorry chaps. Isn’t it nice how BBC call us Newcastle United. No abbreviation. Top day for almiron, Perez lejeune lobby, rafa. Htl.

  • Munster Mag

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:24 AM

    Comment #112

    Cardiff Fulham Huddersfield to go down. Hopefully Leicester will sod off and stop sniffing around rafa. They have a squad tailor made for him. Lovely crisp fast team. More pace merchants needed at nufc in the summer. Come on Mikey. 30-50mill cud make us very effective.

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:40 AM

    Comment #113

    It’ll not only be difficult for Shelvey to win his place back, I actually think it would upset the balance of the team. He has a habit this season of sitting deep and taking the ball off the defenders to launch long, which is unnecessary when Lejeune is on the field. His long-range passing has been awesome the last few games.

    If Shelvey came in, one of Lejeune’s most positive attributes would be nullified and we’d be missing a body further up the field, leaving less space for the attacking players. Someone needs to tell Shelvey that he has to get himself up the field or there’s no place for him in the team.

    I reckon we should stick with Lobby and Hayden for the time being. Give Hayden some love (and an improved contract offer) and he may even decide he can’t bring himself to leave. Lobby improves every game and his confidence in his own ability increases commensurately.

  • Tsunki

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:53 AM

    Comment #114

    Must admit I don’t gouge the net for every rumour going – but is Leicester really sniffing around for Rafa? Or is that just your hopeful punt Munster 😉

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:54 AM

    Comment #115

    Yeah, Shelvey needs to respond to the form of Hayden and Longstaff, as does Ki, but they are still our best two midfielders in possession, probably by some margin, I think. On balance it’s a tough call, but Shelvey and Ki are sublime passers of the ball and readers of the game, and with the added security of 3 center backs and more incisive counter-attacking play, I think one or both will likely regain their place in the side sometime over the remaining games.

  • Tsunki

    Feb 24, 2019 at 12:59 AM

    Comment #116

    Might be writing Shelvey off a bit quickly as being a one dimensional long ball merchant. He’s only been taking the ball from deep because most of the time our midfield didn’t really exist tbf. I can imagine that Almiron, Perez (now he has another player taking the crowd off him) and Rondon would benefit greatly from the very telling diagonal park splitting passes some seem ready to forget made all the difference last season. And there’s nothing stopping Lejeune and Schar making life complicated for opposition midfielders at the same time.

  • Tsunki

    Feb 24, 2019 at 1:02 AM

    Comment #117

    Anyway seeing as Catchys Stats are up the swannee atm, maybe he could scour his archives to see if today was the first time we’ve had a team with a Spanish-speaking wide front three all with an acute accent in their surnames?

    Off you go… 🙂

  • Nostradamus the Geordie

    Feb 24, 2019 at 1:09 AM

    Comment #118

    Did someone say Catchy, god I miss that guy, come on the Toon win all the remaining games. This way we don’t have to read anything from the only Norwegian Mackem.

  • manxpie

    Feb 24, 2019 at 1:14 AM

    Comment #119

    Amazing how MOTD didnt even mention longstaff!
    I’ve heard more about that chelsea youngster even tho hes played about 1% of wat longstaff has!

  • Chancel My MBembaship

    Feb 24, 2019 at 4:17 AM

    Comment #120

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