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Opinion

Shameless Newcastle United fans join in with clowns calling for Martin Dubravka to be dropped

2 months ago
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Martin Dubravka was superb at Wolves last night.

Made a series of excellent saves as the home side had by far the best of the statistics, 22 shots to Newcastle’s nine and 12 corners to only the one for the visitors.

Then the final seconds…maybe he should have jumped earlier, maybe he should have elected to punch, but regardless of what he should and shouldn’t have done, Martin Dubravka was clearly fouled by Willy Boly who prevented the keeper from properly competing for the ball by wrapping his arms around Dubravka’s neck.

Even if you did decide, somehow, that the goal did deserve to stand after studying the replays, calling for Martin Dubravka to be dropped is about as stupid as saying that Salomon Rondon should be left out.

Rondon had a couple of decent half chances last night and should have done better but nobody is going to be calling for him to sit on the bench against Huddersfield in 11 days time.

A combination of pundits/experts trying to get attention and people on social media, including some Newcastle fans, trying to do the same (get attention), you get this kind of hysterical over-reaction.

I have noticed one national football website, that after every single game has a headline where Newcastle fans are calling for the player never to play for the club again after their performance. They simply go on social media and look for a handful of the most over the top comments on whichever player and make their story from that, pathetic. So the story ends up being ‘Newcastle fans call for……..to be sold/shot etc etc’. As it happens, after this Wolves match it wasn’t actually Martin Dubravka who this particular website actually targeted, instead it was DeAndre Yedlin, who was very definitely poor on the night. Though obviously not to the degree of never playing for NUFC ever again etc etc.

Which is kind of the point, Dubravka could have done better last night on that Boly goal and obviously the Spurs winner he held his hands up BUT it isn’t as though he is playing like Matz Sels. The Belgian keeper who WAS a bag of nerves every match he played in his short career for Newcastle, terrified to even come for crosses.

That isn’t Martin Dubravka. He has generally been playing very well and last night was no different, just the same as in the recent victories over Cardiff and Manchester City.

martin dubravka

Last night, the three centre-backs were all guilty of giving the ball away and through skill and pure luck, as a unit their teammates saved them, particularly Dubravka. As the last line of defence, nobody was there to save the goalkeeper once Graham Scott didn’t give the foul, the same referee who gave a penalty to Mo Salah when Paul Dummett touched him and the Liverpool striker dramatically collapsed on Boxing Day…how ironic.

The other part of the equation is just exactly who would replace Martin Dubravka.

Even if Rondon missed a hatful of chances, nobody would be saying lets give Joselu a go.

The Newcastle United goalkeeping alternatives are:

Rob Elliot – Just coming back from injury, Rafa says he is free to leave, and hasn’t played a first team game since 27 December 2017.

Karl Darlow – His last Premier League action was over a year ago (4 February 2018) and only one cup appearance (at Forest 29 August 2018, let in three in a 3-1 defeat). The Wolves game is the first he has been available for after injury ruled him out the past three months, didn’t even make the bench last night.

Freddie Woodman – Full of potential but anybody who has seen the 21 year old play in the cup matches knows he is nowhere near ready. Still has to fill out and get stronger, playing against Blackburn in the FA Cup they targeted the young keeper on set-pieces with some tough physical challenges. He has not played a minute in the Premier League and has only got four first team cup matches so far, conceding in all four games, six goals in total. Will hopefully be Newcastle’s first choice keeper some day but that day is not 23 February 2019 for a must win game against Huddersfield.

Martin Dubravka has been first choice since he arrived, making his debut a year and a day ago, 11 February 2018 against Man Utd, he has been consistently excellent.

Look at it this way as well, this is how the bottom six of the Premier League looks in terms of goals conceded:

27 points Burnley (47 goals conceded)

25 points Newcastle United (34 goals conceded)

25 points Cardiff (47 goals conceded)

24 points Southampton (44 goals conceded)

17 points Fulham (58 goals conceded)

11 points Huddersfield (48 goals conceded)

Only five clubs in the entire Premier League have conceded less goals than Newcastle/Martin Dubravka.

Actually, in his entire time at Newcastle, Dubravka has now played 38 PL games and only conceded 45 goals in total, so looking at the rest of that current bottom six above, only Southampton have conceded less in 26 games than the NUFC keeper has conceded in 12 matches more.

Without Martin Dubravka, Newcastle would now be in the relegation zone for sure, and if the fools calling for him to be dropped now do get their way, that that (the drop zone) is where we will end up.

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