Newcastle start the New Year with quite a dismal afternoon. They were forced to play with ten men due to having four players come off with injuries. Not only did we fail to threaten Leicester, but our defense continued to give gifts to the opposition with unforced errors.
This is the lineup Steve Bruce selected for the brutal 3-0 defeat against Leicester, including the three substitutions.
Here are our individual player ratings for the match.
Martin Dubravka – 7
- It’s a good thing Martin was ready from the start today. He was called into action in the first few minutes, making a superb save on a header from Jonny Evans. He did spill an early Youri Tielemans shot back in front of goal, but Fernandez was just able to clear it away from a charging Ayoze Perez. Martin also kept it at just 2-0 before the half with a great reaction save from a close range Kelechi Iheanacho effort. In the second half, his double save on a Leicester counter from Iheahacho and Perez was heroic. Dubravka has made the most saves in the Premier League this season. He was in top form again today.
Javier Manquillo – 6
- Javier Manquillo was risked today after missing out against Everton. He went down with a hamstring injury late in the first half. There was absolutely no reason to risk Javier with DeAndre Yedlin or Emil Krafth available. Manquillo was solid while on the pitch.
Fabian Schar – 5
- Fabian Schar had a hamstring problem after Everton but was risked anyway. He was forced off in the second half after aggravating the injury further despite trying to soldier on. Schar was decent but not spectacular while on the pitch. He was left exposed when Florian Lejeune’s pass across the box didn’t quite reach him. He didn’t do enough to hamper Ayoze Perez from scoring Leicester’s first goal. However, he did hinder Iheanacho from getting a better shot off late in the first half that Martin Dubravka was able to save. Whether it’s fatigue or something else, Schar just looks out of sorts since returning from his earlier injury.
Fede Fernandez – 6
- Federico took the armband after the half when Jonjo Shelvey was forced off with an injury. He did very well to react to Dubravka’s spilled save on Tieleman’s first-half shot, clearing the ball just before Perez could reach it. He also had some crucial clearances and blocks. Lost his head a bit late in the game probably through the mounting frustration of the past week.
Florian Lejeune – 3
- Against Everton, Florian was exposed as he was just physically incapable of keeping with their agile attackers. Today, Florian compounded his fatigue with two mental mistakes that resulted in a 2-0 lead for the visitors. Lejeune is just a better player than he has shown over the last two matches. He probably should not have been on the pitch today but showed resilience to recover after his two errors.
Jetro Willems – 5
- Jetro was a player we were worried about. He’s struggling with fitness and could have done with being rested today or last weekend. However, Bruce went with the Dutchman, and he’s suffered a groin injury. Willems again was poor defensively, not offering Florian Lejeune near enough protection. Had one threatening cross just before Leicester’s second goal. He was replaced just before halftime with his injury.
Jonjo Shelvey – 6
- Shelvey was one of our best players until having to be replaced at half-time. His through ball to Joelinton was a thing of beauty. He tried to push the team forward when the opportunity arose. He’s another player to succumb to the heavy schedule who hasn’t quite returned to the form he had before the Burnley match which he missed with a calf injury.
Isaac Hayden – 5
- Hayden, like Schar, looks a little bit off to us. There’s just something missing in his performances from the start of the season. He’s still playing hard but just not offering enough at the moment.
Miguel Almiron – 6
- Almiron defended like mad in the second-half at left wing-back. It wasn’t always pretty, but he was determined to keep the Foxes from getting chances. Unfortunately, he didn’t do much in the attacking third to threaten Leicester at all. Miguel hasn’t pushed on after scoring his debut goal like we had hoped.
Yoshinori Muto – 6
- Muto just can’t catch a break this season. In both of his starts, we’ve gone down to ten men. This time he couldn’t be substituted as there were none left. Muto has nothing to be ashamed of as he put in a performance full of running and desire. However, he offered very little in the final third but showed enough to warrant a place in the team ahead of Dwight Gayle. And Joelinton if were really honest.
Joelinton – 3
- Joelinton, who had shown signs in the last two matches, was pretty awful today. He had two decent chances but didn’t do much with either of them. We would play him against Rochdale since a goal, even against a League One side, could help his confidence. However, Muto should start with Andy Carroll at Wolves the following weekend.
DeAndre Yedlin – 5
- DeAndre came on for Jetro Willems late in the first half but eventually made his way to right wing-back. Yedlin provided some energy down the right flank early in the second half. However, his final ball offered very little threat to Leicester. Newcastle resorted to damage control for the last 25 minutes, which forced Yedlin to sit deep. He did a commendable job defending in what was a lost cause.
Emil Krafth – 6
- Emil came on for Javier Manquillo just before the first-half whistle. He got his first significant game time since our 5-0 defeat at Leicester City. It must have been like deja-vu for the Swede. However, Krafth tried his best and defended well enough on the left side of the back three.
Sean Longstaff – 5
- Sean came on for Jonjo Shelvey to start the second half. However, just minutes in Fabian Schar had to come off, so we were down to ten men. Longstaff chased the ball around in the second half, but as we had practically no possession, he didn’t have much of an impact.
Who Was Newcastle's Best Player In 3-0 Defeat To Leicester City?
- Martin Dubravka (66%, 1,073 )
- Miguel Almiron (10%, 169 )
- Federico Fernandez (4%, 72 )
- Yoshinori Muto (4%, 58 )
- Jonjo Shelvey (3%, 51 )
- Joelinton (3%, 43 )
- Florian Lejeune (2%, 37 )
- Javier Manquillo (2%, 27 )
- Isaac Hayden (1%, 23 )
- Sean Longstaff (1%, 21 )
- Emil Krafth (1%, 19 )
- Fabian Schar (1%, 16 )
- DeAndre Yedlin (1%, 11 )
- Jetro Willems (0%, 6 )
Total Voters: 1,626