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Garth Crooks picks 2 Newcastle United players in PL team of the week – Obvious choices?

4 weeks ago
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Garth Crooks has picked his best 11 performers from the weekend’s action.

The Premier League team of the weekend that has most impressed him.

Included in his top 11 are two players from the game at Carrow Road.

Obvious choices? No prizes for guessing the identity of the pair that Garth Crooks has selected.

Crooks declaring ‘If Dean Smith thought for one second that Norwich had any chance of staying in the Premier League before their home game against Newcastle United then Joelinton must have made him think again.’

Garth Crooks rarely picks many players who didn’t score in their respective matches and with Joelinton getting two for Newcastle United in this Premier League match, the first time he has done so, the Brazilian was an easy selection for the BBC Sport man.

However, as we all know, it has been his all round game that has been a stand out and continues to be so, after Eddie Howe worked his magic on Joelinton on the training ground. Raising his levels of fitness, as he did with all of the players, then getting the former Hoffenheim player into a position where he has absolutely thrived under the Head Coach’s guidance.

As for his second Newcastle United choice, it is another goalscorer, Garth Crooks explaining ‘For the second consecutive week Guimaraes makes my team. The Brazilian was outstanding at home against Leicester but was a class apart against a Norwich side…’

Garth Crooks is preaching to the converted when it comes to Newcastle fans, as we very quickly saw the quality of Bruno Guimaraes and he has just been so good. Another brilliant Eddie Howe signing.

Two things I would take issue with, from the Garth Crooks comments.

Garth Crooks stating that ‘managers don’t win football matches – players do’, with him indicating that if only Norwich had signed the players Newcastle did in January, then they would have ended up safe now. Hmmm, I doubt it very much. Of course you need the best players possible available to you BUT to claim that ‘managers don’t win football matches’ is pure nonsense. Steve Bruce’s pundit and journalist mates were all claiming that it was an impossible job at Newcastle due to so many poor players. Yet Eddie Howe has came in and significantly improved pretty much every player that was already at the club, particularly Joelinton!!!

To suggest that Bruce, or absolutely anybody else, would / could have managed 10 wins in these last 14 Newcastle games with this group of players, is a total joke. Eddie Howe has performed minor miracles.

Garth Crooks also says that next season could prove to be the most exciting for Newcastle United since the days of Kevin Keegan. I certainly hope so, though Eddie Howe and his players will have to go some to already next season be outdoing the Sir Bobby Robson seasons of Champions League football and challenging in the top four.

However, my other disagreement is Garth Crooks saying Kevin Keegan did so well after taking a ‘little’ time to settle in at Newcastle United in the early 90s. Hmmm, KK arrived in February 1992 and in three months saved us from what had looked a certain drop into the third tier. Next season Newcastle promoted as champions and playing great football. Following season finishing third in the Premier League and playing even better football. I’m finding it a big difficult to spot any significant settling in time.

Garth Crooks explains why he picked Joelinton and Bruno Guimaraes in his Premier League team of the week and then the full eleven are listed below:

Bruno Guimaraes:

“For the second consecutive week Guimaraes makes my team.

“The Brazilian was outstanding at home against Leicester but was a class apart against a Norwich side who, from the opening day of the season, were never good enough to stay in the league.

“In fact, if Norwich had employed the same strategy as Newcastle then they may have found themselves out of this mess.

“The Canaries might have changed their manager but managers don’t win football matches – players do – and sadly too many of their players were not up to the job.

“Did you know?

“Despite only making his debut in February, only Allan Saint-Maximin (five) and Callum Wilson (six) have scored more Premier League goals for Newcastle this season than Guimaraes (four).”

Joelinton:

“If Dean Smith thought for one second that Norwich had any chance of staying in the Premier League before their home game against Newcastle United then Joelinton must have made him think again.

“Two first-half goals from the Brazilian merely cemented Newcastle’s emergence as a mid-table team no longer flirting with relegation and to be taken very seriously.

“If the Magpies continue to buy wisely and build on what they have created since the new owners have arrived then next season could be their most exciting season in the Premier League since the arrival of Kevin Keegan. It took him (a) little time to settle in but when he did what a chapter it was.

“What’s more, looking at the Newcastle fans at Norwich, the Geordie Army can sense it too. The club is in good hands.

“Did you know?

“Joelinton scored his first ever Premier League brace. The Brazilian became the fourth player to score in their 100th Premier League game for Newcastle, after Gary Speed, Andy O’Brien and Ayoze Perez.”

Garth Crooks Premier League team of the week:

Nick Pope (Burnley)

Trevoh Chalobah (Chelsea)

Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

Nathan Collins (Burnley)

James Ward-Prowse (Southampton)

Bruno Guimaraes (Newcastle)

Kevin de Bruyne (Man City)

Joelinton (Newcastle)

Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

Eddie Nketiah (Arsenal)

Gabriel Jesus (Man City)

Stats from BBC Sport:

Norwich 0 Newcastle 3 – Saturday 23 April 3pm

Goals:

Norwich:

Newcastle:

Joelinton 35, 41, Bruno G 49

(Half-time stats are in brackets)

Possession was Norwich 45% (44%) Newcastle 55% (56%)

Total shots were Norwich 5 (2) Newcastle 13 (6)

Shots on target were Norwich 2 (0) Newcastle 7 (2)

Corners were Norwich 2 (1) Newcastle 3 (2)

Referee: Chris Kavanagh

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Krafth, Lascelles, Burn, Targett, Longstaff, Guimaraes (Gayle 87), Willock, Joelinton (Almiron 67), Murphy (Ritchie 74), Saint-Maximin

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Schar, Shelvey, Manquillo, Fernandez, Wood

(Norwich 0 Newcastle 3 – Match ratings and comments on all the NUFC players – Read HERE)

(Norwich 0 Newcastle 3 – Instant NUFC fan / writer reaction to Saturday’s victory – Read HERE)

(Alan Shearer absolutely loving it – Saluting Newcastle United Brazilian three goal salvo – Read HERE)

(Just look at that Premier League table after Norwich 0 Newcastle 3…Read HERE)

(Norwich 0 Newcastle 3 – Eddie Howe’s black and white army! Read HERE)

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