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Are Joelinton and Miguel Almiron really the biggest problem? Just watch this from Norwich game…

4 weeks ago
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After Saturday’s match, a lot of focus was directed at the front two, Miguel Almiron and especially Joelinton.

Yes Newcastle failed to threaten the Norwich goal until Jonjo Shelvey scored just before the final whistle.

Yes Joelinton missed a sitter when the score was still 0-0, somehow putting a free header from seven yards just wide of the post.

However, even the best strikers miss clear chances and it is always going to be a tough when that is likely to be the only chance created for you, as was the case on Saturday.

What I think after watching on at Carrow Road and watching that shambles unfold, is that anybody who is looking to just point the finger at Joelinton is taking the very lazy route.

The shortcomings I saw on Saturday were far more worrying than a striker missing the one chance that came his way.

Even Steve Bruce (eventually) admitted that there were serious fundamental issues against Norwich.

At first after the final whistle, the head coach claimed that despite the result/performance he couldn’t fault the effort and desire of the players.

However, that quickly then turned to Bruce cancelling Sunday’s day off and declaring: ‘I can’t forgive a performance where, basically, you don’t put your boots on.’

I think this video clip from Saturday that has been put out by Norwich City, perfectly illustrates the deep-rooted problems that were apparent.

The Canaries have put the clip up to highlight hat-trick hero Pukki running the length of the pitch to dispossess Joelinton when Newcastle counter-attack.

However, just watch it from a Newcastle United perspective.

Norwich are attacking and Miguel Almiron latches onto the ball when it breaks loose on the edge of his own box.

Sprinting away with the ball a number of Norwich players are converging on the Paraguayan, so he uses his only outlet, sending a long ball up to Joelinton who has two markers. The Brazilian actually does really well as he spins away in possession after the Norwich defender loses possession under pressure, if you look you then have Almiron sprinting up to make it a dangerous two on two situation, only for Pukki to do really well and take the ball off Joelinton.

Now have a look back at the start of the clip once again, when Almiron seizes onto the loose ball and starts running, just look at the rest of the Newcastle team, none of them even breaking into a jog as the Paraguayan runs at pace and releases the ball.

Even worse, fully 15 seconds after Almiron got possession, look at the end of the clip as to what is behind Joelinton and Miguel Almiron.

I count at least nine Norwich players in that half of the pitch but not a single Newcastle player has even made it over the halfway line, fully 15 seconds after the home side lost possession outside the NUFC box.

If that is not a worry then I don’t know what is and this was repeated throughout the game, the front two given so little support throughout.

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