Surely I’m not the only season ticket holder who can see that Jack Colback is an utter liability?

I was staggered to see Rafa bring him on in this game as we played to consolidate a 1-0 lead.

I understand Isaac Hayden being subbed as he is short of match fitness…but to prefer Colback over Diame was a serious mistake. Why not bring DeAndre Yedlin on at full-back, put Anita in the middle and Atsu on the wing for Ritchie?

How many times has Colback given away brainless free-kicks in dangerous positions? Far too many in my view and his stats show he is our weak link. Why then does Rafa persevere with him? Not quick, powerful or great at distribution, he’s just picked up where Tiote left off, a walking yellow card.

In terms of the result I thought it would be a draw so I’m not too disappointed, however the manner of the result concerns me. We will no doubt gain promotion, possibly by three or four points, but we should really be up by now.

Conspiracy theories aside i.e. Sky and FA contriving to keep us from being promoted through dodgy refereeing decisions, I will be so pleased to be out of this league as the standard of refereeing has been appalling throughout the season, both for, but mainly against, us in terms of decisions.

There is no logical reason for not using technology to enable accurate decision making and its absence of use plays into the hands of the UFO believers.

I’m expecting a 2-0 win at Ipswich with Murphy up front, he’s our only viable strike option now that Gayle looks out for the remaining games. Perez is too lightweight, another Bassedas etc, and Mitrovic is not consistent or mobile enough for me – better from the bench as in impact player.

Stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 1 Leeds 1


Newcastle: Lascelles 67

Leeds: Wood 90+5

Possession was Leeds 44% Newcastle 56%

Total shots were  Leeds 4 Newcastle 22

Shots on target were Leeds 2 Newcastle 4

Corners were  Leeds 0 Newcastle 19

Referee: Chris Kavanagh

Newcastle United:

Darlow, Anita, Lascelles, Mbemba, Dummett, Ritchie (Yedlin 84), Shelvey, Hayden (Colback 79), Gouffran, Perez (Diame 90), Mitrovic

Unused Subs:

Elliot, Hanley, Murphy, Atsu

Crowd: 52,301 (Leeds 3,200)

(To give us your player ratings go HERE)

(The instant fan/writer reaction from Friday night’s match HERE)

(All contributions from Newcastle fans welcome, send articles (as well as ideas/suggestions) to [email protected])

  • Steve Passmoor

    Failure to deal with the free kick, rather than the free kick itself was the problem.

    • Damon Horner

      agreed with the bit about the passage of play yesterday, that being said though, Colback still doesn’t look like he has the quality.

  • disqus_GFJ5SSXQ7o

    Diame is even worse, he has slowly irritated me throughout the season and has simply contributes nothing. He has to be sold in the summer, the difference to the team with Hayden in for him last night was obvious. Even in the little time he had left last night he annoyed me with his lack of touch and misplaced passing. As for Colback, he was free and is limited, we all know that from last season and also he needs to go.

    • anyobrien


  • anyobrien

    Yes Colback is poor and is targeted alot by home fans but imo he does at least put a shift in as for Diame dear god how has this mug escaped the wrath of the fans absolutly stealing a living as a player…lazy,poor touch and tactically inept.
    As for the subs on Friday all Raffas fault should of left it alone we were on top by miles.Any way we will scrape through and let the rebuild begin..KTF.

    • Leazes Ender

      By putting in a ‘shift’ you mean he runs around a lot kicking people..

    • Burt Humperdink

      To be fair Diame has scored goals and made them and is a physical presence he has been played out of position most the season.

  • anyobrien

    Lascells was to blame for goal no where near Wood the deadliest striker in the league.Do we not do are home work?

  • magpiefifer

    Colback,Diame and Gouffran have to be dispatched.
    Lascelles may have scored our goal but he went totally AWOL to give Wood the freedom of SJP!
    The sooner Clark is back the better.

    • Jezza

      Yet again Lascelles was caught ball watching allowing the opposition to get a cheap and easy goal.

  • Leicester Mag

    Several comments to the effect that the problem was not dealing with the free kick true but the free kick came because the Ginger maestro was hopelessly out of position and outpaced. I’m not questioning his effort and commitment that fact is he simply not good enough in any league

    • Jezza

      He is certainly not good enough for the Championship. Maybe a free transfer to a club like Carlisle or Hartlepool would enable him to find his level.

      • Rich Lawson

        Even as a free he’s overpriced !

  • Wor Lass

    For most of the 95 minutes the lads played well but switching off in defence cost us big time again. Lascelles had had a good game – and he did get our goal – but his lapses in concentration have cost us too many points this season. Good to see Mbemba back and showing that we have a player who can carry the ball out of defence. Perez looked like he was up for it for a change, Mitro was lively and Jonjo and Ritchie put in their usual shifts but MoM by a mile for me was Isaac Hayden. Straight back in like he`d never been away. We`ll do Ipswich and put a smile back on Rafa`s face.

    • Damon Horner

      Who after the free kick should we consider blameless? The whole team were a mess at that stage.

      • Wor Lass

        The only thing you can say is that at least they weren`t going around high-fiving each other!

    • MichaelMaximusMoose

      well you saved me doing a post, spot on

    • Belfast Ali

      I’m sure Hayden could have lasted another five minutes, because we weren’t the same team without him

  • nevfur

    Hayden was knackered and we have a game on Monday. We were leading the game late on so understandable in fact probably sensible sub. Choice between Anita moving which apart from changing our shape at the back would be putting him in a position he had hardly played all season if at all not to mention many on here claiming he’s ok as a full back but no way a defensive midfielder. Next choice Diame who has also rarely played there for us and was poor at Sheffield Wednesday last game or we go with Colback, limited yes but was also the player who deputised for Hayden most of the time he was injured including the “defining” games at Brighton, Huddersfield and Reading. He made the right move for me. Not Rafas fault the ref failed to give us a clear pen, conjured up a ridiculous amount of injury time or that the defenders switched off in the sixth minute of the five minutes of injury time.

    • Jezza

      You are right about the amount of injury time. It was diabolical. There should not have been any more than one or two minutes at the very most. Just the latest in a long series of disgraceful refereeing decisions that have cost us so many points this season.

      • Steve Passmoor

        Every sub adds 30 seconds to be added on, there were 6 subs used in the game, so 3 minutes. 2 minutes for the Yorkshire knacker from the Gallowgate and there you have it

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    On the goal, neither Diame or Anita who were both on the guy put in a challenge, he crossed it into acres of space and lascelles was caught flat footed

    • SH.ER

      and don’t forget !! it was Colback’s Free kick that led to this !!!
      arrrghhhh , pathetic .. :|

      • MichaelMaximusMoose

        i dont forget, but 2 on to 1 and he still got the cross in

  • Leazes Ender

    My heart sank when Benitez brought him on and sure enough…. foul from, behind …a free kick….

    …. you couldn’t script a better (or is it worse) scenario for that ending in a more ridiculous manner.

    • Jezza

      I had exactly the same feeling when Colback came on. If you want to blow a slender lead in a vital game, he is exactly the player to introduce.

  • Sean Lynch

    Tackles with his hands, fouls on every occasion and most of his fouls lead to opposition goals.
    Get rid asap, send back to the mackems and he can have them playing non league football before he retires.
    Thank God Hayden is back is all I can say.

  • Burt Humperdink

    I agree about Colbeck I’ve never rated him. Is this a bit of fan service in the manner of having a geordie in the team? Unlike Dummett who actually has good games and can be a solid squad player in the prem, Colbeck is a clear liability.

    I honestly wonder sometimes if he is wrong in the head or just plain stupid. He gets booked, warned by the ref, argues the toss and then charges in with another reckless challenge. It happens every time he is booked.

    In some ways I feel the job for Rafa is quite easy in weeding out the players not good enough to move the team forward. I would move on:

    Perez – good with ball at his feet, tries hard, but limited end product, if we can get money for him great.
    Gouffran- has been an asset in the championship and again tries hard but severely limited and also into his 30’s.
    Sels – has had some okay performances but also some wobblers and we have too many goalies.
    Colbeck – no pace, no obvious passing ability, dives in, argues with refs.

    Plus the obvious ones like Lazaar (what was that all about?) Gamez (same) Riviere, Ameobi.

  • MadMag83

    There’s a lot of dead wood in this team. A big difference between this season and the last promotion season is a lot of the dead wood left before the start of that campaign, whereas thus time around a few left for big fees but by and large it’s the same squad that’s struggled for the past few years.

    The likes of Colback and co who have never cut it for us need to go. Along with some of those purchased purely to gain promotion (Diame etc). Add to that those on loan that need to be moved on (De Jong, Saviet). Clear the decks and bring some better players in.

    • Burt Humperdink

      De Jong is a funny one he’s had a half decent season in Holland and his primary problem is injuries, he’s always looked like a half decent player.

  • dillon

    instead of colbeck coming on ,mabemba should have moved forward and hanley go into the back 4

  • Blackburn1066

    Put him on the in /out list