Eddie Howe shows class with Ciaran Clark comments and acknowledges ‘magnificent’ Fernandez
You have got to feel for Eddie Howe.
With Newcastle United for only three weeks and so far he’s already contracted covid, watched his first match from a hotel room, trained the players from his hotel room with the help of modern technology, saw poor defending cost two points against Brentford, denied a clear penalty at Arsenal at 0-0…
…and now on Tuesday night Ciaran Clark makes a shocking error after only nine minutes when trying to clear the ball, then compounded that error by pulling the Norwich player back and picking up a red card.
At that point, what had been a ‘must win’ match, immediately became a ‘must not lose’ game against a relegation rival.
In the light of that red card, even though Callum Wilson gave Newcastle the lead, you still have to see this as a point won and not two lost when you have ten men for over 80 minutes of the game.
Eddie Howe very restrained and not willing tp throw any player(s) under a bus, like a certain previous head coach was always happy to do…
Ciaran Clark sending off after nine minutes:
“I think in the cold light of day, Ciaran would probably make a different decision, but I think in that moment, probably an impulse has just made him stop the striker.
“It probably is a red card but these things happen in the game.
“My immediate reaction was not really to focus on that.
“It was to figure out very quickly what we had to do and try to find a solution to the problem.
“The last thing I wanted to do was take Ryan Fraser off the pitch but I felt I had to do that for the team.”
Wins to come:
“I think there’s wins in the team…I really believe so.
“We needed to improve our defensive resilience and performance and I thought tonight we did.
“I thought we showed an improvement, although there’s more improvement to come.
“Obviously, the attacking side of the team suffered tonight with the red card, but I do believe we have goals in the team.
“I believe we can do it.
“I still believe that it’s in our own hands, but obviously with every game that we don’t win, it becomes harder.”
Federico Fernandez back on the pitch:
“Fede came in and I thought he was absolutely magnificent,
“He came in and made a big difference to the team.
“He has been the ultimate professional.
“He is a real leader of the group, a respected figure, and I think he proved today that he’s still an outstanding player.
“I thought he defended magnificently.”
Stats from BBC Sport:
Newcastle 1 Norwich 1 – Tuesday 30 November 7.30pm
Clark 9 red card, Wilson 61 pen
Possession was Norwich 69% Newcastle 31%
Total shots were Norwich 16 Newcastle 9
Shots on target were Norwich 6 Newcastle 1
Corners were Norwich 5 Newcastle 2
Referee: Andy Madley
Crowd: 50,757 (Norwich 1,000)
Dubravka, Manquillo, Schar, Clark, Lewis, Fraser (Fernandez 11), Shelvey, Willock (Hayden 73), Saint-Maximin (Almiron 77), Joelinton, Wilson
Darlow, Hendrick, Krafth, Longstaff, Gayle, Murphy
(Newcastle 1 Norwich 1 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Tuesday’s draw – Read HERE)
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