Arsenal 1 Newcastle 0  – Saturday 16 December 2017 3pm

Elliot 5 – Made one good save. Ozil’s goal was fantastic but could the keeper not have come for the first ball? I’m sure someone who saw a replay would tell me better. Distribution was poor all afternoon too. Looks like a goalkeeper will be one of the first priorities in January.

Yedlin 7 – One of the few players who can hold his head high after today’s performance.

Lejeune 5 – Haven’t been impressed with him at all since he came back into the side following injury. Needs to show much more than just his ability to pass the ball. Looks a little all over the place defensively.

Lascelles 7 – We look much better defensively with Lascelles in the side, that is without a doubt. Adds an extra presence to the back and played really well. Looked a threat at the attacking end too.

Manquillo 6 – Doing his best and looks ok defensively! Going forward he refuses to use his left foot which is a major hindrance.

Atsu 5 – Not made for days like this when we are up against it. Struggled to make an impact and spent more time closer to his own goal than Arsenal’s.

Merino 5 – Poor and generally quiet. Overran by the Arsenal midfield and didn’t provide enough defensive cover alongside Hayden. Did try his best to unlock the defence going forward but wasn’t good enough on the day. We really shouldn’t be relying on a 21 year old player to be our main guy.

Murphy 4 – Yet to be impressed by this guy. I know he’s young and needs more time but he was poor today and I think he’s been poor ever since signing. In need of some confidence, and I think going out on loan in January would do that…providing cover is brought in.

Hayden 6 – I thought he did really well and got about the pitch. Was one of the few players out there who wasn’t afraid to get stuck in.

Perez 5 – Another poor display. Not blaming him at all for their goal but it was typical that he was the one who gave the ball away in the middle of the park when all he had to do was put his foot on the ball. Too weak, too lightweight. Doesn’t work hard enough for me. Not getting away with the journos who claim he works hard.

Joselu 7 – I thought he did really well today! Won his fair share of headers and held the ball up well at times. More of that would see him in the line up more often (at least until January).


Ritchie 7 – Looked like he had a point to prove when he came on and Newcastle were slightly livened up. Had a few chances too.

Gayle – N/A (Not on long enough)

Diame – N/A (Not on long enough)

Stats from BBC Sport:

Arsenal 1 Newcastle 0


Arsenal: Ozil 23

Possession was Arsenal 71% Newcastle 29%

Total shots were  Arsenal 23 Newcastle 10

Shots on target were Arsenal 5 Newcastle 2

Corners were  Arsenal 7 Newcastle 5

Referee: Stuart Attwell

Newcastle United:

Elliot, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Manquillo, Murphy (Gayle 67), Hayden, Merino (Diame 82), Atsu (Ritchie 54), Perez, Joselu

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Clark, Dummett, Aarons

Crowd: 59,379 (Newcastle 3,000)

(Method in the madness of Rafa’s team selection – Read HERE)

(To read the instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to today’s match, go HERE)

(Newcastle in bottom three after Saturday results, read HERE)

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    I must have been watching a different game
    Perez, Hoss, Lejeune & Manquillo need to be benched Asap, Mattt needs to start now he`s had a rest

    • Leicester Mag

      Benched or birched?

      • MichaelMaximusMoose


      • Peter Stabler

        No one has ever been birched twice.

  • ash1001

    Watching a different game here as well, thought the defence tried there best, but sort of over-run so not going to be too critical of them as a unit, for me Merino was one of the better performers for the Toon, got through some work and well as getting stuck in, but when you look whats in front of him, it sort of ends there, unfortunately. We know from seasons past that Perez is not the answer, Atsu could hardly get a game at any of his previous loan clubs until we came along, suckers. Joselu slower than slower in both movement and thinking.
    Then lurking in the shadows is Diame so wheres there’s hope that’s one on the bench we can discount, back at Benton we have the likes of Mbemba and Mitrovic clicking their heels, maybe its time we gave a rating to the Manager for his team selection, last weeks Lascelles, fit so we were told, sits on the bench all game and the same today with Dummett. So for me today Rafa gets 2, and do not go on about the squad not been good enough, think we all know the answer to that, but think on this, first nine games 14 points, second nine games 1 point with the same squad.

    • hetonmag

      What the hell difference is Dummett going to make, the same people who were slagging him off on this forum now want him back you couldn’t make it up.

      • Kneebotherm8

        You’re right,but he is the best/only left back at the club.
        Best of a bad bunch I would say.
        Dummett should be back up to a proper left back,and he can play centre back if required.

  • Mrkgw

    Have to share the view that Murphy has been massively unimpressive since joining and looks very much to be a waste of £12m. Wonder who is responsible for that clanger?

    • Phil Yare

      hes awful. i don’t see any potential there. if you threw a yts player in at least they cost nowt. economics are different now but 3m more would have got shearer – frightening!

    • hetonmag

      Don’t know if you were watching him but loads of reports said he had a decent game, are you ready to write a young player off already i despair sometimes call yourselves supporter’s.

      • Mrkgw

        I’m a supporter, make no mistake about that. But, will I stand by and watch our club be dragged further and further into the mire? Absolutely not. Happy clap if you wish – but don’t question my allegance just because I question the fact that we are being taken for mugs by being served up sub standard entertainment.

        • Mike Adam

          Absolutely, the blind apologists try to say we don’t support the club because we question things, complete rubbish, they need to open their eyes!

  • Leazes Ender

    I wonder what five things the boys at the chronicle have learned today.

  • mentalman

    Merino gets good reports including from arsenal fans

  • Wor Lass

    Thus “speaks” the man who says that Fat Sam has never saved any club from relegation!

  • zidangus

    Another game another defeat. How long can this go ?

  • Martin

    35 years in my experience.

  • Martin

    But there is not another club in the entire world that I would wish to support than Newcastle United. Our day will come.

    • Hughie_Gallacher

      There is no other. I understood that at the age of eight.

  • TheNutJob

    Fatty`s cornered now, open the safe or lose a £100m

  • Tomb

    A 5 rating for Elliott is laughable he kept us in the game and had no chance with the goal if rafa hadn’t dropped him we would have got draws against Leicester and Everton