Michael Owen enters Rafa Benitez tactics debate with surprising results
Michael Owen has been commenting on Newcastle’s trip to Manchester City.
Difficult to know where to start when approaching this match, in terms of just how many ways are the odds stacked in the home side’s favour.
The last time Newcastle got even a point from this away fixture, was back in the 2006/07 season, a goalless draw.
Since then we have ‘enjoyed’ nine straight Premier League defeats. There was a League Cup win in 2014, when goals from Aarons and Sissoko stunned the Man City supporters.
Maybe the scariest thing is that this Man City team and squad are better than any of those nine times they have beaten Newcastle United in the past 11 years.
No wonder the bookies make Newcastle a massive 28/1 to win this game.
The last five PL visits have seen Newcastle concede a shocking 22 goals
Maybe one very small positive is that at least in six of these nine defeats, Newcastle have scored a goal – including Jacob Murphy last season in that 3-1 defeat
In predicting a result, Michael Owen actually goes quite easy on Newcastle, forecasting a 3-0 defeat.
As for tactics though, he has an interesting and surprising take on what Rafa has done and is almost certain to do again on Saturday.
Owen points out that in the Chelsea game last weekend, Rafa’s team only lost to a dodgy penalty and a cruel own goal, the former Newcastle striker questioning whether there would be nearly as much made of the tactics, if the Magpies had got a point or better.
Michael Owen referring to ‘very small margins’ at play.
Last season, Newcastle went 2-0 down before Jacob Murphy scored an excellent goal, Man City only finishing things off in the 83rd minute when Aguero completed his hat-trick.
It would be nice to think that on Saturday, Newcastle are no worse than one goal down with seven minutes to play. Wolves have brought in some quality players but they did show some weaknesses in Man City that can be exploited, we live in hope.
Michael Owen talking to BetVictor:
“City were held by a very good Wolves side at Molineux last weekend, but I expect them to return to winning ways against Newcastle.
“United were roundly criticised for their ultra-cautious approach at home to Chelsea on Sunday, but they did only lose out to a contentious penalty and a late own goal.
“Would we be having the same debate if United had nicked a point against a very good Chelsea side?
“Very small margins.
“City hit the woodwork three times against Wolves and I can’t see them being as profligate against the Magpies.
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