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Opinion

3 Positives and 3 Negatives from West Brom 0 Newcastle 0

1 month ago
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Sunday night ended West Brom 0 Newcastle 0.

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 David Punton.

POSITIVES (*Note – positives were / are in short supply)

Keeping it clean

At least we managed a shutout.

The clean sheet has to be something to build on.

In this era of some pretty thin gruel the players need to keep it tight at the back if we’re to have any chance of surviving.

The return of a familiar face

Paul Dummett is something of an unsung hero at the club and he’s a very underrated defender.

We need him and it’s great to see him back in the side.

He’s got bags of experience and spirit.

Heads above water

The point has moved us above Brighton.

It’s not much to cling to but can NUFC go on from here and get the win over Villa?

Would be a big step.

The players have to throw all they’ve got at that game.

NEGATIVES

Rotten

Yet another match where the football was pretty rotten.

It was an awful game and under Bruce the team lacks any real firm identity or tactical intelligence.

It’s rubbish to watch and it seems everyone but the supporters can’t (won’t?) see how bad it really is.

Team selection

The main talking point before kick off was the decision to go with Joelinton, leaving Dwight Gayle on the bench. Surely the situation warrants giving Gayle a try, he’s more likely to score than our Brazilian buy.

Jeff Hendrick’s name on the team sheet sent a shudder too. What on earth has happened to the Longstaffs, or handing a chance to Elliot Anderson? Matty Longstaff signed a new contract, after much wrangling, yet he seems miles away from selection. Fans are right to ask what the hell is going on there.

SB and Red misery

The club may not like it but a major negative after today is that Steve Bruce remains the manager of Newcastle United.

Two wins from 18 games is unacceptable.

We have thrown away a ten point gap to the bottom three. The buck stops with Steve Bruce. He is accountable for this slide towards oblivion.

And it all came in a week where he’s been involved in tetchy exchanges with the print media, blaming all his woes on the fact there’s a mole in the camp who reported claims of an astonishing bust up with Matt Ritchie at training.

Meanwhile, we see Scott Parker’s Fulham winning away at Liverpool to close right up, with a better goal difference. That result has blown our little safety net to bits and we still have to go and play away games at Fulham and Brighton. A genuinely scary situation under this manager.

The big worry is that the next few months go down in history as the demise of Newcastle United as a top flight club – for a very very long time.

Stats from BBC Sport:

West Brom 0 Newcastle 0 – Sunday 7 March 12pm

Goals:

Newcastle:

West Brom:

(Half-time stats in brackets)

Possession was West Brom 53% (52%) Newcastle 47% (48%)

Total shots were West Brom 13 (5) Newcastle 9 (4)

Shots on target were West Brom 3 (3) Newcastle 5 (2)

Corners were West Brom 9 (3) Newcastle 7 (4)

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Krafth, Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Willock, Hayden, Shelvey, Hendrick (Gayle 57), Fraser (Carroll 90+3), Joelinton

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Ritchie, Lewis, Fernandez, Manquillo, Murphy, S Longstaff

Crowd: 00,000

(BBC Sport comments from neutrals about Steve Bruce and Newcastle after West Brom – Says it all – Read HERE)

(Disastrous Fulham win at Liverpool exposes Steve Bruce negativity at West Brom – Read HERE)

(Steve Bruce ‘delighted’ as Newcastle United make it 2 wins in last 18 matches – Read HERE)

(Seismic shift in Premier League relegation odds – Newcastle now favourites to go down – Read HERE)

(West Brom 0 Newcastle 0 – Match ratings and comments on all the NUFC players – Read HERE)

(West Brom 0 Newcastle 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Sunday’s draw – Read HERE)

(I had zero expectations of a decent game and Steve Bruce took us below that – Read HERE)

You can follow the author on Twitter @DavePunton

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