If nothing else, Saturday’s defeat at the hands of Southampton showed one thing, that John Carver should not be given the Newcastle United job on a permanent basis.
As a number two, he shows unquestionable passion for his beloved club and occasionally provides a bit of useful advice. However, in the main role with nobody to hide behind, his tactical incapability is coming to the fore.
Sticking in my mind are two decisions made by John Carver in his brief spell as caretaker boss, one of which was at the weekend. Both coincidentally are centred around the use of young striker Adam Armstrong.
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Casting your mind back to the 3-3 draw at home to Burnley, Armstrong came on for Emmanuel Riviere. The French striker was possibly having his best game in a black and white shirt, providing a useful aerial threat in addition to holding the ball up and linking play.
After an hour he was replaced by Armstrong and the game changed. This of course is not the young lad’s fault, if you are told you’re going on then you don’t question the decision. A different type of player, Armstrong isn’t as physical and couldn’t provide an aerial threat. Ultimately it cost the Magpies the win.
Moving on to the weekend just gone, yet another defeat and perhaps slightly unfortunate, but you don’t get every decision from referees. You just have to do your best and use the resources you have at your disposal.
By this, I mean not bringing on a centre-back after eighty minutes when you desperately need a goal. Yes he may have a height advantage but his goal scoring record speaks for itself- one goal in his entire Newcastle career.
Admittedly, Armstrong hasn’t yet scored himself in his limited first team opportunities, but he does possess a very good record in youth football and could certainly have caused the opposing defence a few problems.
In these two instances John Carver’s lack of managerial experience definitely told, subsequently proving that the club’s hierarchy must look elsewhere for Alan Pardew’s successor.