I’m living down on Merseyside at the minute through work.
Not complaining like, as over the ears I have had some cracking trips here with Newcastle and regularly stayed over.
The scousers I work with have a lot of time for Rafa Benitez, even the blue ones have a grudging respect.
Still getting up for the home matches and I’ve been to a few aways this season but tonight is a bonus one.
It is Liverpool v Newcastle (reserve teams), at Prenton Park, home of Tranmere.
I’m going along with a couple of lads from down here and looking at the game, I fancy a canny few goals.
Maybe another seven goal thriller…? Well, I think it is more than possible, though I have my doubts on Newcastle getting one, never mind three, this time.
A very disciplined Rafa Benitez display saw the first team just about deserve a point at St James Park, Coutinho looked as though he had opened the floodgates but the defence held firm and Joselu somehow managed to be credited with the equaliser after totally messing up after being sent clear.
At these lower levels though it reminds you of just how seriously Newcastle are in a mess after years of neglect by Mike Ashley and the dopes he employed.
Newcastle are second bottom of the second division of the reserve league set-up, Liverpool reserves are top of the first division.
The NUFC second string lost 6-0 at Aston Villa and 4-1 at Oldham in their last two games, Liverpool won 7-0 against Bristol City in their last one – with supposed Newcastle target Danny Ings getting four of the goals.
Newcastle reserves have won just one of the 10 matches (all competitions) since August and that was their previous game in this International Cup, beating Slavia Prague reserves 2-1.
(The Newcastle United Academy Under 18s are sadly doing little better, last weekend they won their first game in the 10th match of the season)
The likes of Peter Beardsley (Reserves) and Dave Watson (Under 18s) must surely be feeling the pressure as the teams repeatedly struggle.
The Premier League International Cup sees 12 of England’s best academy sides compete against 12 of the top development squads from across the rest of Europe.
Six four-team groups have been drawn featuring two English sides and two of their European counterparts, with the winners and the two best runners-up set to make the quarter-finals.
It is a 7pm kick-off and admission is by paying at the gate, adults £4 and concessions £1, so any other Newcastle fans in the area get yourself along and see a few goals…
The Group A Fixtures:
24 October 2017 Newcastle 2-1 Sparta Prague B
10 November 2017 Liverpool v Newcastle
28 November.2017 Liverpool v Sparta Prague B
30 November 2017 PSV V Sparta Prague B
12 December 2017 Newcastle v PSV
19 December 2017 Liverpool v PSV