One of the main talking points after the latest weekend of Championship action, was whether it was a point gained or two lost.
Most of the argument revolved around the impact other games had on that draw at Birmingham, did the defeats for Brighton and Huddersfield turn the Newcastle outcome into a positive?
Former Newcastle number nine Mick Quinn is quite sure of where that result leaves Rafa Benitez and his players now.
The Championship table simply telling everybody that United have increased their lead over the other two contenders by one point.
Quinny says that with the pressure on, any extra advantage at this stage of the season is priceless.
As for the mediocre/poor display at St.Andrew’s, Mick Quinn believes that it is a case of ‘Points are all that count now, not performances’.
The team have maybe quite simply used up all their luck earlier on, with most of the 13 away victories achieved through solid disciplined defending and then taking a chance when it comes along, before then going on to squeeze the life out of the game and often adding another goal as the opposition are forced to come out and attack.
Reading and Birmingham saw Newcastle as the better team on both occasions, though not by much.
This Rafa Benitez team isn’t tearing the opposition apart but often winning matches throughout the campaign by small margins.
Mick Quinn says that ‘Back to back matches against Wigan and Burton offer Newcastle the perfect opportunity to get six points more on the board’ and that is the true test of course.
Two wins there, then make the draws against Birmingham and others into points definitely gained rather than lost.
If these two results are anything other than wins then maybe a few people will be revisiting as to exactly how good that goalless draw against struggling Birmingham actually was.
Let’s hope we don’t have to go there and the players will step it up again and put this season to bed.
Mick Quinn talking to the Chronicle:
‘I’ve heard a few people say Newcastle United’s 0-0 draw at Birmingham City was a disappointing result but I couldn’t disagree more.
You only have to look at Huddersfield and Brighton’s defeats to see that the pressure is really on the top few sides at the moment.
In the end, Newcastle actually extended their lead even though they couldn’t win.
Newcastle probably deserved to win at Birmingham…but in the end, they couldn’t get the victory, so what they did was make sure that they left with a point.
Stop looking at the Birmingham result as a negative, but instead see how positive it was given the context of Brighton and Huddersfield’s defeats.
Points are all that count now, not performances.’