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3 Positives and 3 Negatives from Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0

8 months ago
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Sunday afternoon ended Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0.

A poor quality game in the first half with Newcastle as good/bad as the hosts.

Arsenal then lifting their game after the break and after scoring one, Newcastle swiftly allowed the game to go away from them

Ahead of each match we ask one of our writers to come up with 3 positives and 3 negatives following the game.

Jamie Smith once again has the honour…:

Getting hard to stick to the format these days but let’s have a blast:

POSITIVES

Good first half

Sat in a boozer expecting very little, I was pleasantly surprised by a first half in which we were probably the better team.

ASM was outstanding and the chances were being carved out but crucially not taken.

It could have been a textbook away performance if the attacking impetus had been stepped up second half but… well, see negatives.

Probably a write off

Arsenal away is not the kind of result that seasons are won and lost on and if everyone’s honest, this was probably an expected defeat.

However, this is not a typical top drawer Arsenal side who would have been an impossible proposition for pretty much the past 25 years.

This was a team on the same points as us, undergoing a transitional season, but I’m getting into negative territory again…

Nope

Sorry, I’ve been tenuous at best in getting two out there but I have to reluctantly agree with the internet bores who reply to every one of these articles with comments on the theme of “THEIR ARE NO POZITIVS AND NEVER WILL BE AS LONG AS FATTY OWNS THE CLUB”.

NEGATIVES

Going backwards

This season could very well be a polar opposite of its two immediate predecessors, where a stuttering start was flipped by a solid run of spring form as the team gelled towards the season run in.

This year it seems to be getting progressively hopeless and bereft of ideas.

The January additions have not given the squad the boost up front that was desperately needed and it’s hard to imagine us as anything other than a deep sitting eyesore that cannot produce coherent offensive football.

The reliance on ASM or Almiron to produce an effort out of nowhere with the entire team in their own half is just unsustainable.

Strike out

Joelinton is either not a striker or not a footballer, depending on who you talk to.

I’m unsure if he was unfortunate not to score with a snapshot from ASM’s mazy run, or if it was just an appalling miss, but I’d at least give him due for being in position at this stage.

Usually he’s miles away from the centre forward position. Whether this is well intentioned as a means of getting in amongst it, or just purely bad positional play, it doesn’t change the fact that the alleged number 9 and the ball are rarely in the box together.

It often isn’t the case in the opposition half. Relying on Carroll or Gayle to rescue this mess is utter desperation but it’s very much where we are.

Falling apart?

Stories emerging that after the game, some players were on the train home separate from the rest of the squad.

Rumours of a rift have been quickly dispelled but fans clashing with the players is a desperately bad sign heading into a period of winnable games.

Apparently some altercation took place in the wake of the shoddy second half performance, which is understandable to an extent, but never helpful. Relegation is still very much a possibility; there are no knackers to save our skin this year. No Fulham or Huddersfield guaranteeing that 30 odd points should slither you to safety in something-teenth place.

Someone is going to get sucked into the mess at the bottom and signs of unravelling now are very unwelcome.

Bruce’s bizarre, Pardew-esque excuses this time do not suggest he’s in control or capable of arresting this situation. Massive game next v fellow wobblers Palace.

Stats from BBC Sport:

Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0 – Sunday 16 February 2020 4.30pm

Goals:

Arsenal:

Aubameyang 54, Pepe 57, Ozil 90, Lacazette 90+5

Possession was  Arsenal 69%, Newcastle 31%

Total shots were Arsenal 15 Newcastle 10

Shots on target were Arsenal 7, Newcastle 2

Corners were Arsenal 5, Newcastle 6

Crowd: 60,188 (3,000 Newcastle)

Referee: Lee Mason

Newcastle team v Arsenal:

Dubravka, Lazaro (Hayden 74), Fernandez (Ritchie 75), Lascelles, Clark (Schar 83), Rose, Sean Longstaff, Bentaleb, Almiron, Saint-Maximin, Joelinton

Unused Subs

Darlow, Matty Longstaff, Lejeune, Atsu

(Latest Steve Bruce comments on Joelinton prove the disaster of Mike Ashley picking who Newcastle sign – Read HERE)

(Steve Bruce further exposed on Sunday – No other Premier League club would have entertained him – Read HERE)

(Mikel Arteta talks after gratefully accepting the gifts/goals Newcastle United presented to Arsenal – Read HERE)

(Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0 – Watch official match highlights here as NUFC collapse after decent first half – Watch HERE)

(Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0 – Match ratings and comments on all NUFC players – Read HERE)

(Steve Bruce desperate for positives after Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0 – Delighted with 2 players, pleased with Joelinton – Read HERE)

(Arsenal 4 Newcastle 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Sunday’s dismal defeat – Read HERE)

Follow Jamie on Twitter @Mr_Dolf

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