Saturday finished Newcastle 0 Leicester 2.
The current situation at NUFC is a cause for alarm.
The culmination of a shocking summer in the transfer window is playing out in a league where there really is no hiding place.
The Editor asked me beforehand to write about 3 positives and 3 negatives from the Leicester game, so here goes…
The biggest problem at the moment, among many, is the goal scoring department.
We all want Joselu to do well but the £5m who was plucked from the reserve side at Stoke City really struggled to make an impact against Leicester.
With Gayle loaned out, and the new number nine now nursing a thigh strain, it’s a bit of an underfunded mess.
Pérez is having one of those spells where he’s not at the races and Muto needs time to adapt to it all.
The atmosphere among fans feels like it’s at a low ebb.
The protests against the owner are back with a bang, and rightly so, and the mood about the whole club and city feels flat and hopeless.
This is rubbing off on players already low on confidence.
This type of slide is akin to the farce on Wearside that has ultimately led them to League One football.
Then we have the manager.
Dealt a shocking hand by the owner, yes.
Asked to work a miracle in a league where others spend decent amounts of money.
These are vital points to note.
But…no manager, no matter who they are, is beyond criticism. Rafa seems stuck for a plan at the moment and the way he’s setting the team up, for me, at the present time, is a far too negative approach. He deserves time to turn it around though, because any replacement will more than likely make the club an even bigger joke than it already is.
Capable of better.
I’m struggling to find any positives. I was asked to come up with three but it’s hard to see anything good at our football club these days. What we do know is that this group of players are capable of doing way better and the hope is that form will return before it’s too late.
The protests against the owner have at least gained more traction in the media.
More and more commentators are starting to realise the shambles that has been foisted on NUFC by Mike Ashley.
Just this week the BBC focused on the generation of fans who have only ever known this cackhanded regime.
The hope is that publicity can help to alert new investors.
And finally that brings me on to the latest takeover claims.
Peter Kenyon backed by international financiers was the story doing the rounds on Saturday on Sky News.
Many will judge this to be Mike Ashley spin, although the reporter who broke it was the business editor at Sky News, not the usual suspects at Sky Sports who Keith Bishop has in his contacts book.
Where is the positive here? It is pretty flimsy, I have to admit, but maybe this does show that there are people out there who know that buying Newcastle Utd is fantastic opportunity.
Stats from BBC Sport:
Newcastle 0 Leicester 2
Leicester: Vardy 30, Maguire 73
Possession was Leicester 59% Newcastle 41%
Total shots were Leicester 12 Newcastle 6
Shots on target were Leicester 5 Newcastle 1
Corners were Leicester 9 Newcastle 5
Referee: Simon Hooper
Dubravka, Yedlin (Manquillo 80), Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Ritchie (Murphy 65), Shelvey, Diame, Atsu, Perez (Muto 69), Joselu
Darlow, Schar, Longstaff, Hayden
Crowd: 51,523 (3,000 Leicester approx)
(Video – Absolute disgrace as Mike Ashley sends in his people to take down Rafa Benitez and Kevin Keegan banners – Watch here)
(To read instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to the Leicester defeat go HERE)
(To read the Newcastle player match ratings go HERE)
(Disgraceful lies as newspaper headlines claim ‘Newcastle fans turn on Rafa Benitez after Leicester’ – Read HERE)
(Paul Merson has his say on the Leicester match, Mike Ashley and Newcastle United HERE)
(Read our Newcastle 0 Leicester 2 match report HERE)
You can follow the author on Twitter @DavePunton