3 Positives and 3 Negatives from Chelsea 2 Newcastle 0
Monday night’s match ended Chelsea 2 Newcastle 0.
Ahead of each match we ask one of our writers to come up with 3 positives and 3 negatives following the game.
Chelsea totally dominating the first-half and strolling to a two goal lead at half-time, which could have been four or five.
The hosts then sitting back a bit more allowing Newcastle to have a little more of the game and a couple of chances, though Chelsea looked capable of stepping back out of first gear at any time, if needed.
This time it is Billy Miller:
Probably shouldn’t ever be a positive but there was little else to take from this game.
When you’ve seen three players limp off the pitch and another get stretchered, in the previous match, it feels like a result to finish the game with no additions to the injury list.
Although the substitutions had limited positive impact on the game, it was a relief to see ASM and Gayle rested in a match we were unlikely to retrieve anything from.
Our Recent Form
With Fulham picking up a win on Sunday and us having Manchester United next, those two wins against Everton and Southampton could prove vital.
Had we had picked up four points (or less) from those two games, Fulham would be five points (or less) behind us now.
With their next two matches being away at Burnley and home to Sheffield United, there would be a possibility that we could have been in the relegation zone as early as next weekend. Those victories were so important and now we’ll praying that Burnley do a job on Fulham this Wednesday to keep that gap healthy.
No Starts For The Donkey Duo
Gayle must be the man to come in for Wilson as he’s the only natural goalscorer we’ve got left.
I wouldn’t have been surprised to see Joelinton or Carroll to start and was delighted it was Gayle. Unfortunately, he was deployed in completely the wrong position. He was ineffectual on the right hand side of a front three. He is a goal sniffer. He needs to be in the middle, feeding off through balls or darting around the box trying to turn in scraps.
I’m sure Bruce’s buddies will praise his ambition in playing a 4-3-3 or a 4-3-1-2 or whatever it was meant to be. However, I saw little threat or invention in the way we lined up.
To get the best out of our attacking players, I think we need to play ASM and Fraser as out and out wingers, Almiron in the hole and Gayle leading the line. Then Hayden and one of Shelvey, Willock or a Longstaff in the centre. And no, I haven’t forgotten about Hendrick.
My fear is that Gayle will play the two tricky games away to Champions League chasing teams and then we’ll see Joelinton or Carroll take over when we get into the winnable matches.
The Scourge Of The Stats
Giroud is a player we’ve been linked with multiple times, going back as far as his Montpelier days nearly a decade ago.
When Abraham picked up his injury the camera panned to Giroud and the commentary team started producing stats that would have unnerved those of a Newcastle persuasion.
Eight goals in six appearances for Arsenal against us. Second most goals as a sub in the Premier League. His twenty at start of play only bettered by Defoe’s record of twenty-four.
When he entered the field of play with seventy minutes to go, I couldn’t help but feel he’d have ample time to chip away at that record. He didn’t need seventy minutes; it took him about ten.
Hell Hath No Fury Like A German Scorned
Jamal Lewis did fantastically to get back and stop Werner racing clear of our defence on the break. However, a stray hand caressed Werner’s face and a fingernail must have scratched his lip. Werner spent a few minutes remonstrating to anyone and everyone as a globule of blood dripped delicately from his bottom lip.
If we drew first blood, he retaliated with a massacre. He was instrumental in the opening goal which came within seconds of him coming back onto the pitch. After the medical staff dabbed his lip dry, he came sprinting on, tore past Krafth and put the ball into a dangerous area. It eventually broke to Giroud who easily converted.
He then added a second, as he scuffed the ball over the line, unmarked, from about three yards out. Lewis, who had incited the bloodlust, let Werner run off him and he had plenty of space to apply the shabbiest of finishes.
Where’s The Next Goal Going To Come From?
Might be a touch melodramatic as we’d scored in our previous four matches before tonight but I do worry about when we’re going to score next.
In the three games before we beat Southampton, Wilson had assisted two and scored two of our four goals. We all know Wilson’s stats this season. Ten goals scored and a further five assists, meaning he’s played a part in a whopping 60% of our goals this season.
We’re going to need to see the likes of Almiron and ASM really step up and take responsibility for creating and taking chances whilst our lucky number 13 is out of contention.
An extra time comment (decide for yourself if it’s positive or negative)
I had this article finished and was giving it a final read through as the post-match analysis was going on.
Sky was showing famous braces, including Papiss Cisse’s against Chelsea and Laurent Robert’s against Tottenham. They also showed Robbie Fowler bagging a brace against Man United.
In the footage Neville gets done by Fowler before the ball is lifted over Schmeichel.
Carragher then chimes in with, “You always blame Steve Bruce for this don’t ya? It’s the only time you ever blamed Steve Bruce in your life.” It made me smile as it is so true and captures what we’ve been dealing with from so many pundits for the last two seasons. It is never Steve Bruce’s fault!
Stats from BBC Sport:
Chelsea 2 Newcastle 0 – Monday 15 February 8pm
Giroud 31, Werner 39
(Half-time stats in brackets)
Possession was Chelsea 66% (68%) Newcastle 34% (32%)
Total shots were Chelsea 18 (12) Newcastle 10 (2)
Shots on target were Chelsea 5 (3) Newcastle 4 (0)
Corners were Chelsea 10 (7) Newcastle 5 (2)
Referee: Peter Bankes
Darlow, Krafth, Lascelles, Clark, Lewis, Willock (Carroll 79), Hayden, Shelvey, Saint-Maximin (Fraser 72), Almiron, Gayle (Joelinton 64)
Dubravka, Dummett, Matty Longstaff, Ritchie, Murphy, Sean Longstaff
(Top journalist points out obvious with Steve Bruce’s Newcastle after Chelsea – What colleagues refuse to do – Read HERE)
(Thomas Tuchel disappointed that referee refused to look at his iPad as Chelsea beat Newcastle – Read HERE)
(Steve Bruce truly comical and delusional as he talks after Chelsea 2 Newcastle 0 – Read HERE)
(Chelsea 2 Newcastle 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Monday night’s defeat – Read HERE)
You can follow the author on Twitter @billymerlin
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]