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Opinion

3 Positives and 3 Negatives from Brighton 0 Newcastle 0

4 months ago
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Wednesday night ended Brighton 0 Newcastle 0.

A match where very little happened.

Only four efforts on target the entire game and a feeble one of them came from Newcastle United.

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

This time it is Billy Miller:

POSITIVES

Ritchie Got Away With One

Was he trying to be too clever or was it a miss-kick?

Either way, Matt Ritchie appeared to mistake thin air for a corner flag and inexplicably launched his left boot into the ether, letting the ball disappear behind him. He then collapsed in theatrical style landing on Maupay’s calves. Maupay was a bit too honest and good on him for that. He tried to keep running but stumbled a second after the contact which may be why the referee let it go.

For me it was a penalty and if we’d been playing Man Utd I have no doubt it would have been given.

The Fans Have Saved A Trip

I felt robbed walking downstairs and watching this in my living room so travelling to Brighton would have been a kick in the knackers.

Fortunately, the only Newcastle fans to travel all the way and sit through the entirety of this bore draw were Matty Longstaff and Kell Watts.

A Clean Sheet

Dubravka made a couple of smart saves and the defence wasn’t terrible considering it consisted of two right backs, a centre back and a left back.

NEGATIVES

Give The Man A Rest

How is it that after every game it’s announced that Allan Saint-Maximin has an injury but by the next game he’s passed fit to play?

There is nothing left to play for, let a couple of players rest every now and then. He looked off the pace today and lacking his usual spark. He had a couple of half-decent moments but didn’t play anywhere near as well as we’ve come to expect of him.

Loanees over home-grownees

Bentapleb (not a typo) picked once again over Matty Longstaff. I’ve seen nothing from the loan midfielder to suggest he deserves as much pitch time as he’s been getting.

When you’ve got a young lad that you’re trying to convince to sign a new contract why not give him a reason to?

Right now, Matty must be thinking, ‘they won’t pay me (market rates), they won’t play me, why would I stay?’

I’m still on the fence with whether Matty will make it long term but it’s impossible to find out if he never plays.

Maybe Steve Bruce is trying to save his pal Ashley the £20 appearance fee Matty would have earned.

The Ego Games of Bruce

This links in with both of the above.

We’ve been confirmed safe now for the last couple of games. However, we’re not giving players like Longstaff a match. The academy players that are turning up on the bench aren’t getting any game time. Some players practically limp onto the pitch at kick-off.

There was an article not long ago claiming that Steve Bruce is risking next season because of his obsession with exceeding Rafa’s point tally of last season. I have to agree with this sentiment.

Why would you keep taking risks on players if not?

Bruce said after the game tonight that they don’t have the ability to rotate and be effective. But why does he need results so badly, if not to try and surpass Rafa’s points tally?

We’ve seen several players pick up injuries in recent weeks, some of whom won’t be back when the new season kicks off. Give Miggy and ASM a rest every now and then.

We’re down to the bare bones in our defence so why not let Watts start a game and give Fernandez a rest?

With Schar and Lascelles unlikely to be fit to start next season and no definitive return date for Lejeune and Clark, we could really do with finishing this campaign with one fit centre back (asides from Dummett who hasn’t played any competitive football since January).

Stats from BBC Sport:

Brighton 0 Newcastle 0 – Monday 20 July 6pm

Goals:

Newcastle United:

Brighton:

(Half-time stats in brackets)

Possession was Brighton 62% (69%) Newcastle 38% (31%)

Total shots were Brighton 11 (7) Newcastle 11 (5)

Shots on target were Brighton 3 (2) Newcastle 1 (1)

Corners were Brighton 9 (5) Newcastle 7 (2)

Referee: Simon Hooper

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Manquillo, Krafth, Fernandez, Rose, Shelvey, Bentaleb, Almiron (Lazaro 86), Ritchie, Gayle (Carroll), Saint-Maximin (Joelinton 74)

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Muto, Atsu, Yedlin, M Longstaff, Watts

Crowd: 00,000

(Brighton 0 Newcastle 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Monday’s dire goalless draw – Read HERE)

You can follow the author on Twitter @billymerlin

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