Jonjo Shelvey summing up in this moment where Newcastle United now are
If there was a perfect passage of play to sum up the general malaise that our season is descending into, it was this moment in the first half of the defeat against Arsenal.
When Jonjo Shelvey sauntered over to take Newcastle United’s first corner (we only had two…) of the game.
As we all waited for him to take it, Sky Sports flashed up a statistic which showed that NUFC had only scored one goal from a corner all season.
The commentary team mused briefly about why that might be, considering that we have a relatively tall, physical side.
And then Jonjo Shelvey gave them their answer, as he struck one of the worst corners I have ever had the misfortune to witness, straight to the Arsenal defender at the front post.
Jonjo Shelvey then did exactly the same in the second half, with Newcastle’s second and final corner of the match, which eventually led to an Arsenal goal.
For a player of his dead ball ability, once is a mistake, twice is unforgivable.
It’s at such moments when I wonder what on earth is going on at the training ground every single day, because corners and set-pieces, are something that can be practised and worked on.
For a team that carries as little threat from open play as we do, then surely making the most of opportunities from dead ball situations should be paramount to whatever survival plan Steve Bruce is desperately trying to cook up, as we slip closer and closer to the relegation zone.
I’ve written about Jonjo Shelvey before on The Mag and his inability to get the most out of his undoubted talent, and his performance last night, truly summed up what a waste of space he has become.
At 28 years old he should be in the prime of his career, but instead he looks completely disinterested, lacking the necessary hunger to make the most of his ability.
Because regardless of the other aspects of his game, a dead ball is the one thing entirely in Shelvey’s control with practice on the training ground.
David Beckham, who was the best set-piece taker that I have seen in my lifetime, wasn’t a player with natural ability. He honed his craft with hours and hours of practice.
I know it was only a couple of bad corners but I think they really sum up the desperate situation that Newcastle United (and Jonjo Shelvey) now finds themselves in.
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to firstname.lastname@example.org