Birmingham 0 Newcastle 0 – Saturday 18 Match 2017 3pm

After a really poor first half Newcastle did improve after the break.

However, even though Kuszczak made a few excellent saves to keep United out, it must still go down as a really disappointing waste of a chance to really pile the pressure on Huddersfield.

Wagner’s team losing 4-0 on Friday night had allowed Newcastle the chance to go nine points clear but now Huddersfield fans will still be thinking that winning their game in hand will put them only four points behind United.

Birmingham had only won two of their last 18 matches and hadn’t scored more than one goal at home since mid-December, rarely if ever did they look as though that was going to change.

Karl Darlow only had one save to make and as you can see from the stats below, Newcastle only managed three efforts on target themselves.

Despite dominating possession (65%) and shots (17 v 9), a second goalless draw in the last three matches is disappointing.

Many will wonder about the team selection and also wonder why it wasn’t worth keeping Murphy on when Gayle was introduced with just under half an hour left.

Shelvey may have been ill this week but surely if he could play the last 12 minutes he could have been introduced a little earlier.

Same with the more attacking Christian Atsu, who was only given eight minutes in place of Yoan Gouffran.

Newcastle fans will hope Brighton don’t win what looks their most difficult remaining game at Elland Road this teatime (5.30pm kick-off). The Championship table will look so much better if Newcastle can head into the international break still on top.

Not a disaster today but certainly two points that slipped away.

Full match report to follow.

Stats from BBC Sport:

Birmingham 0 Newcastle 0

Possession was Birmingham  35% Newcastle 65%

Total shots were  Birmingham 9 Newcastle 17

Shots on target were Birmingham 1 Newcastle 3

Corners were  Birmingham 3 Newcastle 5

Referee: Simon Hooper

Newcastle United:

Darlow, Anita, Lascelles, Hanley, Dummett, Ritchie, Diame, Colback, Gouffran (Atsu 82), Perez (Shelvey 78), Murphy (Gayle 63)

Unused Subs:

Elliot, Gamez, Mbemba, Mitrovic

Crowd: 19,796 (Newcastle 3,300)

Rafa Personalised Gifts  -

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    this is the type of game champions win

    • goggsy

      After 46 games the champions will be top of the league. If you don’t think that will be us,fair enough. Many would disagree.

  • Leicester Mag

    I will never understand why we show the level of respect we do to teams like Birmingham. They are a poor team and yet we are set up the same as would we were against Brighton / Huddersfield. Same 2-3 players awful. No doubt I should keep the faith but not easy after this. It’s like driving with the hand break on.

    • Munich Mag

      The toon can’t play any differently under Rafa, too many average one-paced players

      • Marveauxless

        Half of them he signed!

    • giimps

      im hoping we gain promotion with 2 or 3 games to go so we can try keeping the ball but making forward momentum from the whistle.
      it seems that were trying to keep the ball to stop the opposition,sometimes without offering much threat……i think that will change in the prem if we get there, not many prem teams will try and sit back and counter, theyl try and do what spurs did on the last home game of last season……..

  • Desree

    We are top of the league