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Opinion

Hibernian 1 Newcastle 3 – Far better with Joelinton scoring as first choice team show improvement

4 months ago
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Tuesday 30 July 2019 – Hibernian 1 Newcastle 3

Newcastle kicking off their fourth pre-season friendly on Tuesday night across the border, apart from the totally absent Dubravka (once again), this looks probably pretty much most fans’ idea of the best available team, with Lejeune and Yedlin still recovering from operations.

There were plenty of positives with Joelinton heading the list.

The Brazilian getting his first goal in black and white as he guided Manquillo’s excellent right win cross past the keeper with his left foot, he slid into the post after the ball hit the net but thankfully it proved less painful than it looked.

That was on 16 minutes and we’d already had plenty incident, Mallan’s strike from the edge of the box putting the hosts ahead on 10 minutes, whilst seconds later Aarons replaced an injured Matt Ritchie. A big worry ahead of the season.

Going with the strongest available players allowed Newcastle to control much of the game, although admittedly the opposition are probably a step down from Preston, Hibernian probably the equivalent of an average League One side in English money.

There was the odd half scare for Karl Darlow but most of the action was at the other end of the pitch.

Sean Longstaff has proved his ability to strike from distance when on loan at Blackpool (nine goals in 2017/19) and he rifled one in from outside the box on 33 minutes to give United the lead.

Manquillo was proving to be one of Newcastle’s stand out players as well, although he is always better when able to get forward, as like Yedline he isn’t the greatest defender.

Miguel Almiron missed a couple of chances but good to see him getting into positions and the quicker he scores a few in the Premier League the better, as confidence is vital for that type of player.

Captain Jamaal Lascelles rounded off the scoring on 73 minutes with a header from an Aarons cross. Fernandez could have added a fourth in the final seconds but his effort was cleared before it crossed the line.

An excellent following of around 3,000 Newcastle fans struck the right balance, backing the players but making their feelings clear about the owner.

Apart from the enforced Ritchie substitution it was after the hour mark when Steve Bruce chose to make another, as he clearly wanted this to be a morale booster for what looked more or less a first choice selection.

You never know how form in friendlies translates into proper games but a much better feeling about tonight than on Saturday at Preston.

What is obvious beyond doubt is that any number of signings are still needed, as pretty much every substitution weakened the team. Maybe the most glaring moment was when Murphy and Muto replaced Almiron and Joelinton.

There is no real squad strength and Mike Ashley has to realise that with only nine days until transfer deadline.

It will be beyond belief if at least one more striker isn’t signed, Joelinton still as it all to prove in the Premier League of course but he did show a lot of promise, the idea of him getting injured isn’t worth thinking about with the current alternatives that are available.

Hibernian 1 Newcastle 3

Goals

Newcastle United:

Joelinton 16, (S) Longstaff 33, Lascelles 73

Hibernian:

Mallan 10

Darlow, Manquillo (Sterry 78), Schar (Fernandez 78), Lascelles, Dummett (Clark 73), Ritchie (Aarons 11), Hayden, Shelvey (M Longstaff 78), (S) Longstaff (Ki 61), Amniron (Murphy 69), Joelinton (Muto 69)

Unused subs

Woodman

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