Matt Ritchie has given a very honest appraisal of Newcastle’s main strength, as well as what appears to be their main faultline.
The Scottish international looked back at United’s 2-0 win over Wolves and said that ‘It would have been difficult, if Wolves had scored first again’.
All three games that Newcastle have gone behind in this season, they have gone on to lose, including Saturday’s first encounter with Wolves.
However, when Newcastle have taken the lead in any game this season, they have gone on to win, seven times!
Matt Ritchie saying about last night, ‘…when we scored the first goal we really took control of the game’.
Under Alan Pardew in particular, Newcastle were notorious for getting nothing from matches if ever falling behind, so is it the same case with Rafa.
I would suggest not, especially judging by the way he got the team to come back last season after falling behind to Liverpool, Manchester City and Sunderland.
With most opposition teams playing so defensively against Newcastle, Rafa still appears to be trying to find the perfect formula for unlocking packed defences.
Marr Ritchie is obviously key to that but maybe we will see even more from the winger, once Rafa hopefully puts more of an attacking emphasis on his team, particularly in home matches.
Matt Ritchie talking to NUFC TV:
“To be honest, I think the games (v Wolves) were very similar. On Saturday, they scored the first goal and I think again (in the Cup) it could have gone either way.
“In the first half, we were lucky enough to get the first goal and we didn’t look back. I think if that had been the case on Saturday, it could have been the same story. We had a few chances in the first half on Saturday and didn’t take them, and we got beat.
“But it was a very similar game, especially in the first half. It would have been difficult, if Wolves had scored first again, for us to get back in the game because they’re solid, organised and a tough team to play against, but when we scored the first goal we really took control of the game and the second one helped in quick succession.
“We have been working in training on getting people around the ball and in support, and Jack played a lovely ball in behind for me.
“Luckily enough, I stayed calm and tucked it in the corner so I was delighted with that. I’ve had a couple of chances – I still have sleepless nights about that one at Fulham – so it was good to get off the mark from open play and hopefully the goals will come.
“What a strike (by Gouffran).
“It was a fantastic strike against Derby and again (on Tuesday) – I think it was probably better (watch both goals HERE). Everyone knows Gouff’s been fantastic so far this season and long may it continue.
“Footballers love playing football. There’s not many footballers out there that I know who would want a rest and I’m certainly not one of them.
“We went into the game and we knew that we owed them one a little bit because we felt a little bit hard done by at the weekend.”