Steve McClaren’s defence after the 5-1 defeat, had arguably more holes in it than we saw in the team’s performance at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea 5 Newcastle 1 – Actually Newcastle did deserve the one but Chelsea even more deserved far in excess of the five they actually did get.
McClaren in his defence said that ‘Rolando Aarons had to play at left-back’ but that was blatantly untrue as both Jamaal Lascelles and Jack Colback could have filled in there.
Aarons was taken apart by Aaron Lennon at Everton and just because he had nobody to mark and no pressure against West Brom last week, didn’t suddenly make him the best person to take on Willian, Costa and the rest of them.
Similarly, McClaren said that it was only Steven Taylor’s second competitive game in six months. Well why didn’t he play Lascelles who looked ok at Goodison Park, or indeed you have to ask why Taylor hasn’t played at all for the reserves to help get him up to speed?
As for Steve McClaren’s assertion that ‘you get one or two of these games a season’…well it feels like we are being really greedy and getting far more than our fair share!
The United boss also says that he just ‘wanted to make sure we scored a goal and stayed in the game’, so on that basis Newcastle had a 50% success rate tonight…
“We got exposed on quite a few occasions in terms of the defensive frailties.
“Rolando Aarons had to play at left-back and it was only Steven Taylor’s second game in six months.
“We caused our own problems. We knew Chelsea would come out quick – they wanted to win that game by half-time with the week they have ahead of them.
“You get one or two of these games a season. I have told the players – don’t let that derail us. It was damage limitation by half-time.
“I just wanted to make sure we scored a goal and stayed in the game.”
To read instant Newcastle fan/writer reaction go HERE.
For Mick Quinn’s savage take on the match go HERE.