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Match of The Day commentator notes ahead of Newcastle United v Manchester United and killer facts

10 months ago

Ahead of the game this afternoon, Match of The Day commentator Steve Wilson has been analysing the Newcastle United v Manchester United match.

The MOTD man looking forward to this ‘clash of the two Uniteds’ at St James Park.

However, that interest is not exactly universal these days…

Steve Wilson stating what we all know: ‘This fixture used to have the nation gripped; it was a platform for thrilling attacking play which the rest couldn’t even hope to emulate. It used to be so important. But that was then.’

What exactly this is now, is open to many interpretations.

For Newcastle it could be another step on the road to a disaster under Steve Bruce, a third Mike Ashley relegation in just 11 Premier League seasons.

Whilst for Man Utd it, a defeat could be another step towards the disaster of facing  life as a bottom half of the table team this season.

As for killer facts…

Manchester United are currently having their worst start to a season in 30 years, whilst Steve Bruce takes charge of his 400th Premier League match and has proved to be the very worst manager to have taken charge of 300+ PL games in their career, a feeble win ratio of only 27.8% and that percentage sinking ever lower now with Newcastle United.

On all available information then, this is surely going to be a classic…

Match of The Day commentator’s notes:

Steve Wilson:

“To St James Park today for the clash of the 2 Uniteds.

“Accentuate the positive’ goes the old crooners’ song. They won’t be playing it at St James Park.

“Meeting each other may only deepen the sense of collective melancholy for these two Uniteds.

“This fixture used to have the nation gripped; it was a platform for thrilling attacking play which the rest couldn’t even hope to emulate.

“It used to be so important. But that was then.

“Now Newcastle are wading in deep waters at the bottom of the table and, prior to the weekend, only goal difference is keeping Manchester United in the top half.

“Newcastle’s last home game attracted their lowest league attendance for eight years, and their last away game brought their heaviest defeat in four years.

“Meanwhile Manchester United failed to produce a shot on target against AZ Alkmaar and haven’t won away from Old Trafford since March.”

Killer Facts:

Newcastle United have claimed just six victories in 48 Premier League matches against Manchester United (D14, L28).

The Red Devils have won 13 Premier League games at Newcastle – they only have a better record away to Aston Villa and Everton (15 and 16 wins respectively).

Newcastle have lost this fixture 28 times in the Premier League – the only opponent they have lost to more often is Arsenal (29 defeats).

A league-low three Premier League goals have been scored at St James’ Park in 2019-20.

Steve Bruce will take charge of his 400th game as a Premier League manager (W111, D111, L177). His win ratio of 27.8% is the worst of managers with at least 300 games in the competition.

Bruce’s total of 21 matches against Manchester United without a victory is the longest winless run any manager has endured against a single opponent in Premier League history.

Newcastle’s 5-0 loss to Leicester was Bruce’s joint-heaviest as a Premier League boss, after a 7-2 defeat to Chelsea in 2010 and 5-0 loss to Manchester City in 2011 (both with Sunderland).

The Man Utd haul of nine points after seven games is their worst tally at this stage of a top-flight campaign since 1989.

The Reds have won 49 points from their 28 Premier League games under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – two fewer than they won in their final 28 matches under Jose Mourinho.

They could remain winless in eight consecutive top-flight away fixtures for the first time since a run of 11 from February to September 1989.


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