The final live tv games have been announced for the final day of the Championship season and Newcastle don’t feature.
A NUFC and Brighton go to the last day separated by only one point, maybe surprisingly the TV bosses have decided to ignore the best two clubs in the second tier as they battle to be champions.
Villa host Brighton whilst Newcastle take on Barnsley at a sold out St James Park.
Instead the live tv games have been selected from those involved in the relegation battle, with Sky showing Forest v Ipswich and Brentford v Blackburn – all Championship matches kicking off at 12 noon next Sunday.
What is maybe more puzzling in the decision, is that with Sky only devoting two channels to the Championship final day (it is usually three for the Premier League finale), they might not even end up showing the club who actually gets relegated!
Rotherham and Wigan are well gone and only one relegation place remains, with three clubs fighting to stay up, the current 20th to 22nd places looking like this:
Points 50 Birmingham (GD -20)
Points 48 Forest (GD -13)
Points 48 Blackburn (GD -14)
If both Blackburn and Forest win whilst Birmingham (away at Bristol City) get a draw or lose, then Harry Redknapp will take the blues down, as they have an inferior goal difference.
Whilst you can understand it from Huddersfield’s point of view, the decision by David Wagner to play a reserve team (10 changes) against Birmingham at the weekend, was quite shocking when taking into account what was at stake at the bottom of the table – Redknapp’s team winning 2-0.
With only two channels to show matches, surely it should have been an easy decision to show Newcastle and Brighton?
So what it means is that there will be ‘only’ 18 live tv games for Newcastle this season in the Championship, from a possible 46.
In the 18 matches selected, there have been six at home and twelve away, Sky Sports obviously believing that there is more chance of an upset on the road.
Though Rafa’s players have confounded that by picking up 45 points at home but 46 away so far.
The results on TV have been –
Home – Played 6 Won 3 Drawn 2 Lost 1 GF 11 GA 5
Away – Played 12 Won 7 Drawn 1 Lost 4 GF 17 GA 9
Overall – Played 18 Won 10 Drawn 3 Lost 5 GF 28 GA 14
Live TV Games: 33 points from 54 possible – Average 1.83 points per game (1.83 average in both the home and away tv games)
Not on TV: 58 points from 81 possible – Average 2.17 points per game
So Sky Sports have had their fair share of success in terms of getting the upsets they were no doubt looking for, with six of the 14 TV matches seeing Newcastle fail to win.
A definite acceleration as the season has progressed as well, only four of the first 16 NUFC Championship matches were shown live and then 14 of the next 29 have been selected.
Newcastle United Live TV Games shown so far:
Friday 5 August Fulham 1 Newcastle 0
Saturday 27 August Newcastle 2 Brighton 0
Saturday 10 September Derby 0 Newcastle 2
Saturday 24 September Aston Villa 1 Newcastle 1
Sunday 20 November Leeds 0 Newcastle 2
Friday 2 December Forest 2 Newcastle 1
Wednesday 14 December Wigan 0 Newcastle 2
Monday 26 December Newcastle 0 Sheffield Wednesday 1
Monday 2 January Blackburn 1 Newcastle 0
Wednesday 1 February Newcastle 2 QPR 2
Saturday 11 February Wolves 0 Newcastle 1
Monday 20 February Newcastle 2 Aston Villa 0
Tuesday 28 February Brighton 1 Newcastle 2
Saturday 4 March Huddersfield 1 Newcastle 3
Saturday 8 April – Sheff Wed 2 Newcastle 1
Friday 14 April – Newcastle 1 Leeds 1
Monday 24 April – Newcastle 4 Preston 1
Friday 28 April – Cardiff 0 Newcastle 2