Thoughts on NUFC Against Fulham
Dont get me wrong, I hate saying negative stuff about Newcastle first off but sometimes things need saying as hiding from reality suits no man no purpose.
Fulham were the best team to come up here this season in my opinion and their tactics were a joy to watch in reality. Whilst simple, it still needed players that would press and move to look for the ball which they did. That Sessegnon looked in no way 16 and will be some player as his movement in this game was right up there. He's a player to watch whilst that Cairney lad that we've been linked with hoyed in a decent shift and was better than all our midfielders by a mile.
Having said that, it was a game of few chances with the amount scored quite flattering when you think of it even though there could and should have been more.
They were well up for it whilst most of ours hid plus we got the Swansea version of Shelvey in the second half as his frustration just seemed to make him think that he could just jog around although he picked up a bit later.
Dummett had a mare, Colback must have some sort of sensor in him that makes him instantly pick a pass towards our own goal when he gets the ball like a magnet does when it's aimed towards metal. You can literally see him think when he gets it and even then, you just know he still hasn't thought it through properly.
Lascelles seems to be struggling with the pressure although he did do a lone clap of honour at the end when everyone else was either away or shuffling down the exit routes to his credit and he doesn't seem to shy away from criticism.
Darlow just isn't good enough for me as he could have saved the first Fulham goal I thought and the times he punches the ball weakly instead of catching is getting more regular. His kicking under pressure is like a drunk on the ice wearing flip flops.
Diame must be related to Moussa Sissoko through some long lost cousin or something because he's another that is flattering to deceive and for all Sissoko's faults, he would at least make one decent run per game whilst im struggling to think of more than one from Diame all season.
Gayle was isolated and not given decent service but when Murphy came on, it showed that they could be a decent pairing.
Ritchie was ok to an extent and Atsu was so deep he was anonymous whilst Anita is no Yedlin and proved it. Clark had a quiet game but was no worse than anyone else.
Criticism doesn't stop there and I blame the tactics we use for the first time this season at home because it's putting too much unnecessary pressure on us. This is of course Rafa's fault as I feel he's too safe at home although I understand why he does it as he's found a formation which he feels needs stuck to.
Rafa's reluctance to change tactics at home could also show his lack of trust with the players in the belief that they cant learn more than one trick although it doesn't excuse the players for not doing their jobs but at half time you could see the formation was never going to work and too much respect is given to teams coming up.
Having said all that it was a game where a defeat can do just as much good as it will have to spark some sort of reaction whether that be by different tactics adopted at home or a refocused effort to get this bunch over the line.