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Garth Crooks – Why Newcastle might save themselves quite a bit of money in January transfer market

2 months ago
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Garth Crooks has been talking about Newcastle United after their two goal defeat at Arsenal on Saturday.

The BBC Sport pundit choosing his Premier League best eleven players of the weekend that most impressed him.

Included in his top 11 are two players who turned out at the Emirates but unsurprisingly neither were wearing black and white.

No complaints with the identity of the Garth Crooks choices as he picked Saka and Tavares from the Arsenal team, but as well as his reasoning for picking the pair from the Gunners eleven, some on the money comments from Garth Crooks on the situation that now exists for Newcastle United.

Talking about Saka, Garth Crooks stating: ‘He gave Newcastle a bit of a fright in the game’s early exchanges but the Geordies survived. However it was only a matter of time before this brilliant young talent exposed Newcastle frailties down their right flank.’

No arguments from me, yet again Newcastle’s defensive ‘frailties’ exposed not only on our right…but the left and the middle! Fabian Schar was the only one of the back five to emerge with any credit, as Arsenal scored two very good goals BUT very bad ones from a Newcastle defending perspective. Ritchie badly at fault for the second, whilst Krafth the same for the opener, though Jamaal Lascelles has to also hold his hand up…as instead of coming across to help cover the danger that was developing for that first goal, the Newcastle captain instead stood with his…hand up, wanting an offside  that didn’t exist. The suspensions of Ritchie and Lascelles after each picked up their fifth bookings of the season, will hopefully allow a bit of a rebooting of the Newcastle defensive line for the better.

As for Garth Crooks, difficult to disagree when he points out…’it’s clear Eddie Howe has got an awful lot to do.’

On a brighter note though, the BBC Sport man commenting: ‘I couldn’t help but notice the new manager has invested some faith in Jonjo Shelvey, who had a decent game. If Howe can get Shelvey fit and focused for any length of time, Newcastle might save themselves quite a bit of money in the transfer market come January.’

Garth Crooks is spot on here.

I have been one of Shelvey’s biggest critics and rightfully so. Too many days off training under Steve Bruce and a less intensive regime, were a killer for somebody like Jonjo Shelvey. To me, he looks to be a player who has to have somebody on top of him, ensuring he is as fit as possible and driven.

In just two games and a couple of weeks Eddie Howe training, we have seen a much improved Jonjo Shelvey, to my amazement. As Garth Crooks indicates, he can / could be a massive asset and money saver for Eddie Howe and Newcastle United, if building on the promise of these performances against Brentford and Arsenal.

A proper training regime and a Head Coach with ideas and inspiration, look to have woken Jonjo Shelvey up. The same with Joelinton, if Howe can work with the likes of Almiron and a few others to bring similar improvement, the NUFC outlook could look far brighter in the not too distant future. Though a few January transfer window boosts are also clearly essential to properly move forward, both in the short and medium-term, especially in defence.

Garth Crooks explains why he picked these two Arsenal players in his Premier League team of the week as well as comments on and then the full eleven are listed below:

Nuno Tavares:

“This kid had passed me by, but he’s certainly on my radar now. I’ve always admired full-backs who are not afraid to try and have an impact on the game.

“If Tavares wasn’t running into the opposition’s half with the ball he was trying to put one of his team-mates through on goal. The assist for Bukayo Saka’s goal was quite brilliant.

“As for Newcastle, it’s clear Eddie Howe has got an awful lot to do.

“However, I couldn’t help but notice the new manager has invested some faith in Jonjo Shelvey, who had a decent game. If Howe can get Shelvey fit and focused for any length of time, Newcastle might save themselves quite a bit of money in the transfer market come January.

“Did you know? Arsenal have never lost a Premier League home game against the side starting the day bottom of the table.”

Bukayo Saka:

“From the moment the game kicked off Saka looked like a player who meant business.

“He gave Newcastle a bit of a fright in the game’s early exchanges but the Geordies survived.

“However it was only a matter of time before this brilliant young talent exposed Newcastle frailties down their right flank.

“Saka scored a fabulous goal, matched by a super display of commitment and effort. I’m looking forward to watching this lad take his next penalty, just to see how much he’s grown since the European Championships.

“Did you know? Saka has scored or assisted in each of his past three Premier League games against Newcastle.”

David de Gea (Man Utd)

Antonio Rudiger (Chelsea)

Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

Nuno Tavares (Arsenal)

Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

Thiago Alcantara (Liverpool)

James Maddison (Leicester City)

John McGinn (Aston Villa)

Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)

Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

Stats from BBC Sport:

Arsenal 2 Newcastle 0 – Saturday 27 November 12.30pm

Goals:

Arsenal:

Saka 56, Martinelli 66

Newcastle:

(In brackets the first half stats)

Possession was Arsenal 66% (79%) Newcastle 34% (21%)

Total shots were Arsenal 24 (12)  Newcastle 9 (4)

Shots on target were Arsenal 6 (2) Newcastle 5 (2)

Corners were Arsenal 4 (1) Newcastle 4 (2)

Referee: Stuart Attwell

Crowd: 59,886 (Newcastle 3,000)

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Fraser, Krafth, Schar, Lascelles, Ritchie (Almiron 67), Shelvey (Hayden 89), Willock, Saint-Maximin, Joelinton (Murphy 67), Wilson

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Hendrick, Lewis, Manquillo, Clark, Longstaff

(Two Newcastle United players pick up suspensions in 2-0 defeat at Arsenal – Read HERE)

(Alan Shearer half-time, full-time and penalty reactions to Arsenal 2 Newcastle 0 – Read HERE)

(Arsenal 2 Newcastle 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Saturday’s defeat – Read HERE)

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