Watford 2 Newcastle 1  – Saturday 5 May 3pm

We asked Jonathan Drape-Comyn to give us his match ratings after today’s game.

A disappointing one goal defeat, with Newcastle having a desperate first half that effectively settled the match.

Dubravka 8 – One of the few Newcastle players who started the game that can really hold their head up high after that one.

Couldn’t do anything for the first goal but did get caught under the ball for the second goal. That was followed by a terrific double penalty save.

Solid distribution, plus a few more big saves in the first half that stopped us being 5-0 down at half-time.

Manquillo 4 – Looked like he was on the beach.

Granted, it was a brilliant cross from him for Perez’s goal, but over the course of the game he was useless and we looked far more threatening when Yedlin came on the pitch.

Lascelles 3 – Looked like he was on the beach.

Bullied all day by Deeney and looked rattled at times. Not a great audition for Southgate’s England squad but I’d rather he didn’t go anyway. Defence was all over the place today, especially in the first half.

Lejeune 3 – Looked like he was on the beach. See above.

Equally as rubbish as Lascelles. I know he’s done alright since establishing his place ahead of Clark but a centre half would still be one of my first targets in the summer.

Dummett 5  Looked like he was on the beach.

The least worst out of the back four, which doesn’t mean he had a good game. Offered very little going forward.

Diame 4 – Looked like he was on the beach.

A slightly improved second half but the old Diame was definitely on show in the first. He can be forgiven though as I think over the past 3 defeats he’s still been our best player.

Shelvey 4 – Looked like he was on the beach.

I haven’t seen his stats but it feels like for every 10 long passes he attempts, only 1 of them every comes close to making its man.

Still don’t get the big hype around him getting in the England team on the back of 5 or 6 great games. Had this discussion with a guy at half time who said he’s still a good quarterback, but we don’t have quarterbacks in football? I’d rather he was a good central midfielder.

Murphy 2Looked like he was on the beach. It pains me to give him such a low rating but I can’t think of one thing that he did that was even ok. Looked like he had never passed a ball at times. Rightly hauled off after 50 minutes. Could do with a loan next year to regain confidence and get some playing time.

Perez 6 – Along with Dubravka, the only ones who can hold their head high after that display.

He was equally as useless in the first half as his teammates but was still the only one who was looking like he wanted to make something happen. A well-taken goal and a good second half display.

Kenedy 4 – Looked like he was on the beach. Gone off the boil as of late for me. It’s his last game on Wednesday so hopefully we will see a much better performance at Wembley.

Gayle 5Looked like he was on the beach. Non-existent at times.

Had a great chance to level the scores but dawled on the ball. Could have been a similar goal to Ba at Reading a few years back but Gayle looks like he’s lacking the confidence to even try that sort of thing.

I  don’t know when was the last time he started a game but he looked off the pace and very slow.

Touch wasn’t on point neither, but if he gets a decent run between now and the end of the season, I hope he finds his feet.


Ritchie 7 – Provided some fresh impetus when he came on. Should start again on Wednesday.

Yedlin 7 – I think he’s a massive miss when he doesn’t play. It’s so important to have at least one full back who can get himself beyond his winger. Different game when he is on the pitch.

Merino N/A (Not involved enough to judge)

Stats from BBC Sport:

Watford 2 Newcastle 1


Watford: Pereyra 2, Gray 28

Newcastle: Perez 55

Possession was Watford 39% Newcastle 61%

Total shots were Watford 11 Newcastle 9

Shots on target were Watford 8 Newcastle 1

Corners were Watford 2 Newcastle 5

Referee: Roger East

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Manquillo (Yedlin 67), Lascelles, Lejeune, Dummett, Murphy (Ritchie 53), Shelvey, Diame (Merino 84), Kenedy, Perez, Gayle

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Hayden, Joselu, Haidara

Crowd; 20,375 (2,000 Newcastle)

(At least Rafa’s half-time ‘chat’ woke NUFC up at Watford – Read HERE)

(Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Watford 2 Newcastle 1 – Read HERE)

You can follow the author on Twitter @JonathanComyn

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  • TheNutJob

    just think, we could have another 10 years of this

    • Leazes.

      Don’t worry Ashley will save us from Rafa.

      • Jezza

        Yes by next season we’ll have a new manager on a fifth of Rafa’s salary who will never complain about the lack of transfer funds.

        • Leazes.

          May as well give the job to bloody Charnley….he’s building the squad maybe he can work out what to do with them other than a bus, maybe he’ll turn out to be the new Jose Mourinho…. he’s certainly not a Chairman.

    • GC

      Don’t panic its all part of Rafa’s plan: “Right lads, we’re safe, so play like a bunch of half wits so that I can get some investment”

      • porciestreet

        And they all did as they were told.

    • porciestreet

      God Forbid.

  • robbersdog

    The run of wins that we chalked up seems to have satisfied our players. It’s like on a subliminal level they’re thinking job done.

    The problem is…they all know that there won’t be significant investment in new players over the Summer, so most of ’em are sure of their place in the squad. They owe the fans a lot better than a repeat of this sh*te over the next two games, or the season will end on a sour, downbeat note.

    • Jezza

      “they all know that there won’t be significant investment in new players
      over the Summer, so most of ’em are sure of their place in the squad.”

      Perfect analysis.

      • Desree

        They know Rafa is going too. Lets face it, the dip in form also coincided with Fatty and Sky upping the asking price and Rafa publicly talking about contract negotiations.

        If the lads have played out of their skins for rafa, and they know he is going then this is a taster of what to expect next season.

        Why would anyone give Ashley 100% when you know he will screw you over at any given moment.

        These lads aren’t at the beach, they are resigned to the same fat as fans. No growth, no progress, no chance of competing.

        Just going through the motions as Fatty rakes in the tv money.

        We should score each player 10 just for turning up to work.

  • Mrkgw

    Sadly, I didn’t see the game but based upon those ratings we must have been hopeless. Murphy is yet to show any justification for his over inflated price tag. And sadly, Gayle isn’t up to it in this division. How many games now since we saw him score? I’m going to the game vs Spurs at Wednesday -was looking forward to it a few weeks back but if we continue like this then we will be thumped by them. I guess the consolation prize now will be afternoon pre match beers in the capital. 😫🍻

    • porciestreet

      A trip to Wembley is always special. Just blot out what’s in front of you and enjoy.
      Beginning to think that we may after all have paid good money for the wrong twin.
      I fancied a while ago that we’d do well to get anything from the last few games and so it appears.
      Couldn’t find a stream anywhere yester day and even SSN was buffering so I gave up.
      Dificulty here in Greece as so much is blocked.
      Never mind eh…on wards and downwards….Fat man oot.

      • Mrkgw

        I tend to try FirstRow these days but not sure how it would work over in Greece (how lucky are you by the way!). But yes, which of the Murphy twins is the better is open to debate and there was even talk thst we would sign both. I’m quite glad in reflection that we didn’t albeit, both are young and there is room for improvement.

        On that other pressing note, agreed – ASHLEY OUT!

        • porciestreet

          My brother who lives near Four Lane Ends is Sissinghurst out a “Firestick” for me but not sure if it’s compatible over here
          .One can but try….
          I use”NTV” on Kodi which normally never let’s me down, just that the Toon doesn’t seem so important to Sky at this stage of the season.

          • Mrkgw

            Small world, my other halfs parents also live near Four Lane Ends. Alas, we are in Kent as a result of work. 😔

          • porciestreet

            Grew up in Gosforth, played for Gosforth asa Wing Forward in the days when the first team included. Colin White, Steve Gastard and skipper Roger Utley so competition was pretty hot.II also moved away for work to Cyprus then to Greece 6months ago.
            Had a cousin in Broadstairs.

          • Mrkgw

            Gosforth eh – I’m a Cramlington lad so not too far away.

            Broadstairs – one of my mates from work lives across there. Cyprus/Greece, great places. Visit Rhodes every year and the locals are always friendly enough. You can’t go too wrong really but the Greek economy is still obviously trying to recover. Given what is happening in Spain though, with protests about holiday makers I would never even contemplate following Rafa in joining his countrymen by spending my hard earned money there. All the best anyway, and enjoy the sunshine.

          • porciestreet

            We have some very serious issues coming up with the Turks at the moment so watch this space.
            Rohdes may even be a problem if Erdogan decides he wants the island so be carefully. BFN. …P

          • Mrkgw

            😬 yikes -need to get me holiday over first! All the best and take care out there!

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    C`mon John Lad, where`s this weeks 3 positives ?

    • Jonathan Drape-Comyn

      I’ve got a feeling I could put the Watford and Spurs ‘3 positives’ together and still struggle to come up with 3…

      • MichaelMaximusMoose

        Leazes will be disappointed

        • Leazes.

          The idea is ludicrous he was struggling the last time…. you can always fall back on ‘5 things we learned’ … that’s the way the chronicle usually deal with avoiding criticism.

          1. Everyone was at the beach.
          2. ehm….

          maybe not.

          • Desree

            Why rate players out of 10? How about a random number for each player.

          • Leazes.

            Because you need a constant point of reference.

          • Desree

            Thats exactly my point, which makes these ratings completely pointless.

            Players are assessed on how happy or annoyed the writer is. It would be far more fun if he just gave random numbers.

          • Kneebotherm8

            Zeroes and minuses?…

          • Leazes.

            I’ve done it myself….you win and everyone gets an 8…. and the stand out player gets one more……If you lose everyone gets a 5 and the worst culprit gets one less.

  • Rabid Dog

    For me. Their goals were well taken. And I might be poking a bear here, but I thought not starting Yedlin and Ritchie was the wrong decision. I don’t really understand why Rafa did that and I blame his team selection today. Yes certain players were wearing their flip flops and espedrills but I don’t think that was completely to blame.

    Also Watford pressed really well first half, shut us out altogether.

    • Clarko

      “I thought not starting Yedlin and Ritchie was the wrong decision. I don’t really understand why Rafa did that”

      So you didn’t watch the home game against Watford earlier in the season?

      • Billmag

        Yes Yedlin got murdered in the home game if I remember correctly.

        • Clarko

          Correct and Ritchie just watched it happen. Amazing how this “fan” can’t understand the change.


  • Rabid Dog

    Also in other news…. went to pick my Lass up from her sisters and my Makem brother in law has the Rochdale – Charlton game on.
    ME: what’s this? Thought you’d be watching the women’s FA cup (tongue in cheek)
    HIM: (And I promise these are his exact words) Were just watching some shyte league 1 game. It’s not the premiership, like…
    I got frog marched out the house by my Lass. Apparently pointing and laughing hysterically was not the right response

  • TheNutJob

    Jabba must go, or the Toons doomed

  • Billmag

    Sorry Jonathan your assessment of Dummett for me is wrong he was to blame for the two goals in my opinion, Manquillo was poor don’t know about the beach but he definitely looked like he was running in sand. Couldn’t believe what was happening in the first half they were all over the place even bumping into each other and falling over.

    • MadMag83

      Dummett was awful. Lord knows what he was doing passing the ball to a Watford player for the first goal. But Dubravka was to blame for the second goal, and the penalty against Dummett was pathetic, not even the Watford player appealed for it.

      I thought Shelvey was very lazy in the first half, no effort to get back when he should have been sprinting and putting pressure on the man in possession, just jogged back about 5 yards away.

      • Billmag

        Now before I go any further I’m not Dummett bashing, ok Dub got under the ball but Dummett should have been aware of what was behind him, as far as the penalty is concerned he got away with one against Leicester but didn’t get away with it yesterday wether people think it was or wasn’t a pen. Mind he wasn’t the only poor player on the pitch in that dreadful first half.

        • MadMag83

          Perhaps he expected Dubravka to get it and thus didn’t anticipate the need to react. I like Dummett as he gives his all, but

    • porciestreet

      Said it before. You can’t put studs on flip-flops.

      • Rich Lawson

        Darren Moore made the West Brom’ players stop wearing flip flops in the gym when he took over.Seems to be working.

  • Weyhhadaway

    I see our goal difference is worth three more places. 1.9 x 3. That’s 5.7m in the transfer kitty. Well 2.7m after we reward our players for such stellar performances.

  • Pelican

    I am not sure about these ratings, it seems like you are “on the beach.”

  • Desree

    I reckon the players know Rafa is off in the summer.

  • Wor Lass

    The only good thing about today is that I`ve just had the Mackem neighbours around for a free nosh. You have to balance out the fact that they were the last to go about two hours later than anyone else against the fact that it gave us two extra hours of taking the p*ss out of them with no distractions. All in all, not a bad deal!

    • Leazes.

      In the south of France?

      • TheNutJob

        somebody has to collect the bins

      • Wor Lass

        You couldn`t make it up, could you? The only other English people in the village. And they`re not even FROM Sunlun. Still, they keep the flies off the melon.

        • MadMag83

          “They keep the flies off the melon”. I’m using that 😂

    • Rich Lawson

      Probably hung about to fill a large carrier with the leftovers !

      • Wor Lass

        Ha ha -there`s no leftovers when the Mackems are around, Rich! Actually, they`re OK, just mentally challenged when it comes to football matters. I think they must have been dropped a lot when they were babies.

  • mentalman

    I dont see how gayle got a higher mark than murphy and yedlin did nothing to deserve a 7

  • TheFatController

    Ashley only has to look at Stoke to see what a Rafaless ship might sink like next season.

    They had all their money tied up in players not playing, and couldn’t rely this season on the established players like Crouch etc.

    You invest in the wrong players and get a few journeymen managers in, you’ll struggle.

    If Rafa goes, we’ll be in a worse position squad-wise than when McClaren took over. And we know we’ll get a rotten,just happy for the job, yes man coach in to steer the ship through the completely uninspired waters with its going through the motions relegation clause squad…

    Let’s have another season of ‘The Ashley Gamble’ with ‘only got it wrong twice in 11 seasons’ Mike

    • TheNutJob

      Newcastle are experts in investing in the wrong players & you are right if Rafa goes this squad is nowhere near as good as McClaren had

  • Aussie Bill

    Not too late to give a couple of the U23’s a run. They are on a bit of a high after lifting our only trophy. It gives them a chance to show if they are capable and we have nothing to lose.

    • TheNutJob

      the players on the bench aren`t good enough never mind the under 23`s

      • Aussie Bill

        That is the reason for my comment, nothing to lose by giving a couple of the better ones a bit of time off the bench.

  • Monkseaton Magpies

    That goal Perez scored was world class the third one in a row. Without Perez we would be in the Championship full stop. Rafa is making a political statement to the board that the squad is not good enough. Not very good for the travelling fans who pay good money for hotels trains so thanks a lot Rafa for that.