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Dean Smith with damning verdict after Newcastle 1 Aston Villa 1

1 month ago
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Dean Smith wasn’t a happy man on Friday night.

The Villa boss seeing his side throw away the win just seconds before the final whistle.

Dean Smith not convinced his side deserved to win anyway and indeed, on the night neither team really did enough to say they should have won.

The Aston Villa boss declaring: ‘It wasn’t a game for the purists. It was a bit of an ugly game…’

Dean Smith adding: ‘Tonight was just a very scrappy game. There weren’t many big chances all game.’

Refreshing to hear an honest appraisal of a match, unlike what we get from the bloke who Smith took over from at Villa Park…

Steve Bruce tending to count getting over the halfway line as having created a great opportunity.

It was a shocking game overall, the ball repeatedly given away by both sides and a real lack of quality at the business end.

Players on both teams making the wrong choices and not many saves for the keepers to make, Villa with five on target whilst Bruce’s team only had two before Lascelles’ 94th minute equaliser.

It looked for many Newcastle fans a must win game in the circumstances, considering NUFC were at home against a Villa team missing Jack Grealish, the visitors only picking up one win now in the five games their talisman has been out for in recent weeks.

Newcastle United have a real tough schedule ahead of them and after playing away at Fulham in the final game in ten weeks time, will we know whether this was a valuable point gained, or a fatal two points not taken.

Yet again Steve Bruce frustrated fans with his team selection and formation, for a team that has so few goals in it, Bruce appearing to make it even more difficult to create and score goals with his set-up.

Andy Carroll was given 20 seconds at West Brom, this time it was the 88th minute when he was introduced and only then once Newcastle went behind.

You would almost think that Steve Bruce had found his mole

Dean Smith:

“When you are a goal up with four minutes to go, you are disappointed, naturally.

“It wasn’t a game for the purists.

“It was a bit of an ugly game with not many completed passes and not many clear-cut chances.

“They probably had the better chances.

“But when you score a goal like we did in the 86th minute or whatever, you should go and see it out.

“We were fortunate to score the goal but you certainly take them and we had the opportunity to finish the game off.

“We had an opportunity with four against three [when 1-0 up] but messed it up.

“Then we messed a few clearances up and they score with 10 seconds to go.

“To be fair to the boys, I can’t be too hard on them because they have done [see games out] for most of the season.

“It’s always a concern when you’re not creating chances.

“There haven’t been too many games where we haven’t created big chances.

“Tonight was just a very scrappy game.

“There weren’t many big chances all game.

“We played Sheffield United a couple of games ago and got beat having created the big chances in the game.

“We’ve got good enough players to go and score goals.

“We’ve got a few at the moment who are a bit short of confidence with no rhythm.

“That seems to be across the league at the moment.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 1 Aston  Villa 1 – Friday 12 March 8pm

Goals:

Newcastle:

Lascelles 90+4

Aston Villa:

Ciaran Clark (OG) 86

Possession was Villa 51% Newcastle 49%

Total shots were Villa 15 Newcastle 12

Shots on target were Villa 5 Newcastle 3

Corners were Villa 2 Newcastle 2

Referee: Paul Tierney

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Krafth (Manquillo 83), Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Willock, Hayden (Carroll 88), Shelvey, Gayle, Fraser (Murphy 79), Joelinton

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Ritchie, Lewis, Fernandez, Hendrick, S Longstaff

Crowd: 00,000

(Newcastle 1 Aston Villa 1 – Different game but same old problems – Read HERE)

(Steve Bruce 2 wins in 19 now “There is no question, managing Newcastle is always difficult” – Read HERE)

(Newcastle 1 Aston Villa 1 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Friday’s draw – Read HERE)

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