Any Newcastle fan looking forward to Match of The Day on Sunday night would have been disappointed.

Unless that is you came in from the pub after recording it and only watched the match highlights, then fast forwarded through the embarrassing pundits.

I suppose there was an extra clue in it being Match of The Day 2 last night, as in second rate.

If it had been the A Team of Gary Lineker, Alan Shearer, and yes, even Ian Wright, I don’t think it would have plunged anywhere near the cringeworthy depths it did on Sunday night.

The fact that presenter Mark Chapman actually embraces his ‘Chappers’ nickname tells you everything, joined by former Mackem Kevin Kilbane and chief clown, Chris Sutton.

Sutton must surely be the very worst player turned pundit walking this earth, which is pretty impressive considering he is up against the likes of Merson, Owen, Savage, and the rest.

Actually Kilbane was the best of a bad bunch but that isn’t saying much, in fact, nothing at all.

You definitely feel at times that a script has been prepared and then something comes along like Newcastle United’s performance yesterday, putting big red lines through their entire pre-prepared patter.

I have little doubt the Match of The Day script was that Newcastle’s win over West Ham was going to be proved to have been a fluke, Swansea would put Newcastle in their place with a convincing home win, with then the main talk centring around how the returning Wilfried Bony had impressed, but mainly how loan wonder kid signing from Bayern Munich (cost them over £40m as a 19 year old and final figure could be over £70m based on hitting targets), Renato Sanches, had tormented the visitors with a classy performance far beyond anything that Newcastle could offer.

The end debate would then have been about how long Rafa Benitez will still be at Newcastle United with a rubbish team adding to his ongoing problems with Mike Ashley.

The reality though…£5m bargain buy Joselu proved to be easily the best striker on the pitch, a very good all round game and only denied a goal by a world class save from Fabianski…whilst there was a very talented young midfielder on loan from a German club who ran the game BUT his name was Mikel Merino!

After the highlights were shown, instead of concentrating on an excellent away performance where Newcastle had been easily the better team for all but the first 20 or so minutes, the presenter & pundits shifted their agenda to something quite different.

They only wanted to concentrate on the two big talking points, of their choosing!

These were Matt Ritchie’s high foot on Alfie Mawson and Mikel Merino’s dive.

These are incidents you see in every match that go without any great comment usually, yet they were done to death last night.

Yes Merino deserved a yellow card just like any other diver does but the pundits struggled to accept that even under the new rules, there could be no retrospective punishment, as Newcastle gained no advantage from the Spaniard’s dive, whereas if say they had got a penalty it would have been different.

There is still no excuse though for not giving Merino the credit his overall display deserved.

As for Matt Ritchie, yes his foot was high and came very close to the Swansea defender, but any contact was minimal whereas Sadio Mane’s boot put the Man City keeper out of the game.

The two incidents were not the same, similar up to a point, but not the same. I think Mane did make a calculated decision to risk making contact with the keeper, as if he had got the ball first he would have had an easy scoring chance with the keeper having left his goal. With Ritchie, it was just a normal middle of the pitch challenge where he was stupid to have gone in with his foot so high.

If Ritchie’s was a red card then you would have one pretty much every match and certainly anybody attempting an overhead kick would be instantly sent off, if anybody within striking distance.

One again though, yes cover these incidents but give Newcastle credit for the attacking display and great team performance.

Maybe it summed them up though when they did cover the very sly incident where Joselu jumped for a ball and on purpose, wonder kid Renato Sanches deliberately kicked him between the legs from behind, leaving the Spaniard writhing in pain. Presenter and pundits thought it was a right laugh!

Stats from BBC Sport:

Swansea 0 Newcastle 1

Goals:

Newcastle: Lascelles 76

Possession was Swansea 62% Newcastle 38%

Total shots were  Swansea 10 Newcastle 16

Shots on target were Swansea  4 Newcastle 8

Corners were  Swansea 7 Newcastle 5

Referee: Mike Jones

Newcastle United:

Elliot, Manquillo, Lascelles, Clark, Gamez, Ritchie, Hayden (Diame 69), Merino, Murphy (Atsu 59), Perez, Joselu (Gayle 78)

Unused Subs:

Woodman, Shelvey, Yedlin, Lejeune

Crowd: 20,872 (2,000 Newcastle)

(Garth Crooks picks Newcastle star in team of the week and adds some great words on Ashley/Rafa situation HERE)

(Read instant NUFC fan/writer reaction after final whistle HERE)

(Read Alan Shearer’s reaction to the Newcastle win HERE)

(Give us your Newcastle player ratings v Swansea HERE)

(Credit to Swansea boss Paul Clement for this post-match reaction HERE)

(Steve Claridge says Newcastle ‘Nicked it’)

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



  • Leazes Ender

    Dale…. you don’t need contact for ‘dangerous play’….. it just has to be deemed dangerous.

  • Trevor Reaveley

    Yup, fully agree. The only person who ever really says anything positive about Newcastle on there is Shearer – and don’t get me started on that tosser Alan Smith commentating on Sky yesterday. In all of the years I’ve hear him moaning on, he’s never been very complimentary to NUFC. The bloke’s a complete tit.

    And Leazes Ender – yes it was dangerous play and he shouldn’t have gone in that high, but as the report above mentions, and as all of the pundits failed to mention, there was extreme contact in the previous incident, and just a little arm scrape in the Ritchie one.

    Monday morning rant over – still a happy boy.

  • Jezza

    The BBC are an absolute disgrace and they hate NUFC, always have done, always will do, simply because of our geographical location and solid working class traditions.

    The worst thing is that you just know that after that programme last night, Ritchie is going to get a retrospective ban. Probably Merino too under the new diving rules.

    • Toonrobbybobson

      Merino cant. If ritchie gets a ban sanchez should has well and we should all pack up go home and say RIP football as the officials put it in thr ground.

    • ghostrider

      He won’t. He’s already been dealt with.

      • Jezza

        Yes but the Mitro elbow against West Ham had been dealt with too. The referee saw it and indicated he thought it was accidental. The football authorities hate NUFC and put the boot into us at any given opportunity. By tea time today Matt Ritchie will have been charged with violent conduct, just wait and see.

        • ghostrider

          I would’t rule it out but what I’m saying is, if they do, after a ref has already penalised Ritchie, then they open a massive can of worms that they cannot easily cover up for their darlings.

          • Martin Rooney

            Rule it out the sanction has been put in place, The referee with Mitro stated he seen a coming together of the players not an accidental elbow, therefore didn’t see it didn’t act on it. Ignore Jezza he just needs to type

          • Oooh bobbi fleckman

            That’s spot on, in fairness to Sky, Richie’s would not have been an issue without Mane’s incident. Mane’s was worse IMHO as it was forseeable if not intentional, Richie’s was just part of the game.

        • Dublintoon

          He must not have mentioned it in his report. If he had mitro would have been home free

    • Oooh bobbi fleckman

      I don’t like the way the BBC is run and paid for but it’s a bit chippy shoulder to blameour geographical location and solid working class traditions.

  • Steve Pearce

    Very good article indeed Dale – but I watched the match and knew we payed well and won the game. So who gives a flying Donald Duck what those inbred [email protected] had to say?

    • Alex

      I do, because those “inbred [email protected]” drive the constant negative agenda against us, and promote the feelings in other fans that we’re deluded and demand top 6 placing sand trophies every season.

      Any opportunity to highlight how idiotic these pundits are should be taken.

      • Steve Pearce

        I do as well – or I wouldn’t have written my comment. But the real conundrum is the presence of Alan Shearer in the midst of these Geordie haters. I’d love to see him completely lose his rag and stand up for his club, his city and its people. But that would mean falling off that southern gravy train and he wouldn’t want that would he?

        • Geordie-7676

          So Shearer is in the wrong for doing his job?

  • Toonrobbybobson

    Pundits were awful. Everyone of them was talking Swansea up like they were Chelsea last season and were going to roll NUFC over… well anyone with a brain (ex footy pundits tend to have none) will realise Swansea almost got relegated last season, have lost their 2 best players, one quite frankly an amazing one, and replaced them with an overweight overpaid has been who did nothing at stoke or city for years and a youngest deemed not good enough by Bayern theyve loaned him out.

    • Jezza

      To be fair I thought Swansea bought very well in the transfer window. Abraham and Bony are both top strikers and don’t forget that Rafa desperately wanted to sign Abraham for NUFC this summer. I also believe Sanches will be a great player for Swansea once he settles into English football.

      • Oooh bobbi fleckman

        Rafa wanted to sign Abraham until he found out the terms

        • Jezza

          Until Fatso refused to meet the financial terms you mean.

          • Oooh bobbi fleckman

            Would you have said that was a good deal?

          • Jezza

            A dynamic young striker of Tammy Abraham’s quality playing for Newcastle? I would have said it was a fantastic deal.

          • Oooh bobbi fleckman

            Yes, that’s lovely, pay him an extra million and buy him and his parents a house, all for a year loan?

          • Jezza

            It would have been worth it. I am a football supporter not an accountant. I just want to see my team do well and I am only concerned about what happens on the pitch. My interest in the financial side of football begins and ends with the 30 odd quid I fork out for a match ticket.

          • Oooh bobbi fleckman

            I disagree with the whole loan system, I also don’t think it’s the way to build a team where we just go to the player rental company pool to pick our players for the season.

          • Jezza

            I agree. I don’t like loans either but when Ashley wouldn’t make funds avalable for permanent signings Rafa had no choice but to look at loan deals.

  • Brian Standen

    For MOTD to highlight the NUFC negatives is just churlish, accomplished all round performance!
    Remember this is a team that had Lejuene, shelvey, mitrovic, Atsu, yedlin, Aarons, mbemba, etc who are all first team ( squad) out if the starting 11 for one reason or another – there is some strength in depth!
    Frustrating because if Ashley had let Rafa buy a couple more I would fancy us to be top half minimum!
    Potential is really there!

    • Ken Toon

      Yeah, where is Aarons? He was playing his socks off and certainly deserves to be in the team ahead of Murphy based on form. is he injured again?
      About the Richie incident, didn’t Mbemba get a bad kick in the face, leaving him with a gash and nothing was done about it? Could we have a couple of hundred play backs of that please?

      • nevfur

        No idea why Aaron’s not getting in but he’s supposed to be playing for the under 23 team along with Shelvey and Woodman tonight

    • ghostrider

      Let’s make our own superstars rather than pay sickening fees for over-rated one’s.

      • Jezza

        Yes let’s make our own superstars so Ashley can pocket “sickening fees” when he cashes in on them at the first opportunity.

        • ghostrider

          You know that’s not true.
          You know fine well that Ashley hasn’t sold players that didn’t want out.

          • Dublintoon

            Good to see woodman getting to make the step up.

          • glassjawsh-got-banned

            they “wanted out” because ashley brought them in on the idea that they’d eventually be sold on to top 6 sides…

          • ghostrider

            You have that massively wrong and you know it.
            But you can have that thought if you want to.
            How about players came to Newcastle and used Newcastle as a big stage stepping stone.
            Once those players create unrest and want out then this club will naturally sit and auction them rather than be mugged off.

            Having said that, the top 6 clubs can basically take anyone they please and unsettle anyone they please.
            There’s little loyalty in football from bottom to top; players to boardroom.

          • Jezza

            I know it is true. Andy Carroll didn’t want to leave but Fatso wanted the £35 million and that dictated everything. There has never been a single player at this club that Ashley has ever turned down a decent offer for.

          • ghostrider

            You’re twisting things.
            No owner is going to turn down offers like what we got offered when players decide to rock the boat or call the bluff.
            Sissoko and co rocked the boat but Carroll called the clubs bluff on a move to Liverpool. The club called it back and Carroll was gone.
            Carroll created his own exit, so Newcastle did what was best for Newcastle and made sure Liverpool were going to pay through the nose.
            You mentioning that Carroll didn’t want to leave is half correct but not in the context you’re making out.
            Carroll had not long signed a contract. the ink was barely dry.
            Liverpool offered a lot more wages.
            Carroll wanted to re-negotiate his contract with Newcastle. Newcastle called, no joy… so Carroll went ahead with his move.
            Remember one thing.
            The number 9 dream of yesteryear has been took over by the greed for money as it stands.

          • Jezza

            I’m not twisting anything.Those deals, Andy Carroll, James Milner, Yoan Cabaye etc etc were not good for Newcastle United they were just good for Mike Ashley. It was Ashley and not NUFC who benefitted financially from those transfers.

            If they genuinely were reluctant sales on the part of Ashley just let me ask you one thing? Why was none of the money from those transfers ever re-invested in new players for NUFC?

          • ghostrider

            Twisting it again.
            If you want to keep players but the players want out due to clubs unsettling them, then you have a choice to make.
            Of course the sales benefitted Ashley. They were big profit gains in terms of a few.
            And yes we suffered because of Cabaye’s exit and yes we made a mistake in not replacing him.
            The issue still stands though.
            All those players forced their moves.
            Ashley and co didn’t force their moves for them. They just made sure that the club wasn’t going to be the whipping boy for the big clubs to steal from for a pittance like we regularly done in the past under all other hierarchy.

            Did Ashley burgle your kip or something?

          • Jezza

            If they genuinely were reluctant sales on the part of AshleyI’ll tell you who Ashley burgled. Newcastle United Football Club.

            You didn’t answer my question. If they genuinely were reluctant sales on the part of Ashley why was none of the money from those transfers ever re-invested in new players for NUFC?

          • ghostrider

            The money was re-invested. It just wasn’t re-invested immediately, when, in Cabaye’s case it should have been.
            In Carroll’s case, there was not scope to honest, seeing as he did it at the last minute in January.
            Also, like I said before, there’s a few ways you can look at re-investment.
            If we’re talking about real investment then this club has done marvellous to get to where it is, with a few obvious hiccups along the way.

            What you need to ask yourself is tow genuine questions and answer ithem genuinely.
            The questions are: what constitutes a well run club?
            Have a serious think about it before you answer.

            And:
            What constitutes a badly run club?

          • Jezza

            The money was not re-invested at all. The whole lot disappeared into a big black hole. For example Andy Carroll was sold on the evening of 31st January 2011. Yes there was no time to re-invest any of that money before that window closed but there was plenty of opportunity to re-invest it all in the following summer window, with 5 months to scout players to spend the money on. Nevertheless in the summer transfer window of 2011 NUFC made a net spend of absoluterly ZERO. Paying out £12 million on new signings but also bringing in £12 from player sales. Where did the £35 million go?

            Anyway to answer your questions:

            what constitutes a well run club?

            Newcastle United under John Hall.

            What constitutes a badly run club?

            Newcastle United under Mike Ashley.

  • Martin Rooney

    No mention of Fer’s two feet off the ground scissor challenge or Sanches’ kick in the nads nowhere near the ball, well match ball anyway. Seriously red card for Fer and yellow for golden boy all day ref actually went to Sanches and had a joke and a lugh with him over what should have been a yellow card. Refs have it in for newcastle. I believe we’d have tonked spurs had keen been sent off and who knows what Huddersfield would have done without Mounie. in 2016 we had 11 games affected by ref decisions and only one in our favour. The only blessing is that if they hadn’t done that we’d still have McLaren.

    • Ken Toon

      What about the push in the back Sanches got away with also?

  • Horses Heed

    Because of Paul Clement’s previous they also want to big him up. Media darling in the making, just a small hiccup yesterday for the lad. He’ll have a seat on the punters couch next to the legend Alan Pardew soon ..

    • Geordie-7676

      Personally don’t see anything wrong in bigging Clement up.

      Up and coming English manager, with a good footballing education behind him – honest and humble in defeat, and an all round nice guy.

      I definitely can’t see why this would wind you up!

  • hetonmag

    The BBC is an awful institution and the license fee should be scrapped, anyway did anyone see the silver fox give his assessment on Ritchie saying it was worse than the Mane incident no wonder he is a pundit and not a top manager at a top club.

    • Damon Horner

      Catch why? Ritchie’s standing foot was off the ground. Mane’s feet were both 5 foot off the ground!

  • Grahame Johnson

    Boy have the toon been missed by puntits and the press, they all want us to fail and the fans to turn on our club, 20 games in Rafa gone and thousands boycotting is their ideal situation if we stay united I hope we shut them up

  • DaveH

    The BBC and Sky are as bad as each other.The pre match stuff on Sky was the Sanchez and Bony show.Yes, Ritchie was fortunate to avoid red,yet the day before Gary Neville deemed that the Mane challenge, which looked worse than Ritchies,was not a red. And the Sanchez kick on Joselos unmentionables,not a thing said.

    • csh

      It was mentioned, but incredibly they all had a good laugh about it. Unbelievable Jeff, as they say…

  • Stephen

    Bony looking like he’s won a pie eating competition
    Sanchez off the pace and lacking confidence, I would like to see the player I watched a couple of years ago.
    Did Swansea really pay £8mil loan fee for 1 season?

    • ghostrider

      It appears so, yeah.
      They’re on a hiding to nothing doing this.
      On the one hand, if they get the best out of him then they lose him.
      If he flops over the season, he’s cost them 8 million and they lose him for nothing.
      He looks good on the eye but is he going to be good for the TEAM and not just for HIMSELF.

      • Jezza

        Sanches was poor yesterday and didn’t live up to the hype but you must remember he’s a 20 year old kid playing his first match in English football. I still expect him to turn out to be an excellent accquisition for Swansea this season.

        • ghostrider

          Aye, but either way they still pay 8 million and lose him.

          • Jezza

            If he helps them avoid relegation or better still qualify for Europe it will have been money well spent.

          • ghostrider

            Qualify for Europe I agree with. Avoiding relegation I disagree with.

  • Geordiegiants

    Articles like this make us sound like we have a chip on our shoulders. Howare man lads just take it in our strides!

    • csh

      Perhaps we should become the new Wimbledon, everyone hates us but we don’t care..

      • Geordiegiants

        AFC Wimbledon, I’m up for that.

      • glassjawsh-got-banned

        I thought that was Millwall? there’s just so many sides to hate down there it’s hard to keep track of them all…

        • Geordiegiants

          AFC Wimbledon was formed by the fans as a result of Wimbledon FC being asset stripped and sold out by their owner, Sam Haman I think.

    • Oooh bobbi fleckman

      They do but I actually agree, forget we were involved, it was awful. I felt sorry for Kevin Kilbane, he actually has something to say with a bit of professional insight but Chapman and Sutton were banging on as if he wasn’t there.

    • Leazes Ender

      Why are we paying for the London Crossrail link when we also have to pay to go through the Tyne Tunnel?

      • Georgia Peter

        Porciestreet;
        Eh….!””’ ?

  • Steve Smith

    If it was mitrovic kicking Sanches it would have been another BBC led witch hunt and 3 match ban.

  • Haitchdee

    Watched it very disappointed with the tone. Maybe the Premier league and FA should take a look at what MOTD and Sky Sports leave out of their coverage. Sky have gall to be running a vote on if both tackles were red or yellow. Why!.The referee said yellow get over it To**ers.

  • Hughie

    The MOD highlights were unbalanced as shown by the OPTA stats. But the BBC often misrepresent a match in their cut and paste efforts– not just ours! A bit like anything that our modern overpowerful media attempt, a simplified version of reality is nearly always portrayed with individual comment or incidents highlighted and frequently taken out of context. Where they get it wrong apologies are rare and played down. I also wonder if there is an anti Ashley faction at the Beeb nationally– we know there has been locally for years? After the last two displays so called experts are already having to bite their tongues. So the answer is simply to ignore these overpaid idiots most of whom are as thick as bricks, and who are nearly always guided by leading questions from the presenter who sets a negative agenda to make “interesting” TV.

    On a completely different note we would have some team now if Cabaye and Townsend were still here. They must be incredibly peed off by the plight of Palace– ho ho ho!!

  • Jimblag23

    I hate “chappers” and his “I’m just a naive bloke down the pub” schtik.

    • Gallowgate Dave

      He called Mike Ashley “honest” on Radio 5 Live so I’m not sure it is a schtik, I think it’s genuine, stunning, earth shattering naivety!