Step up…

Well, that was another utterly mental week in the fucked-up world of the basket case of a football club that is Newcastle United.

Having collectively celebrated Toonai (howay man?) Emery’s appointment on Tuesday by taking in a Champions League fixture between a Spanish town that is smaller than Hartlepool and a group of Swiss Young Boys, we now need to refocus on the job in hand – supporting the men in black and white stripes in their attempts to secure our Premier League status with every part of our being.

As fans, that is our only job for the remaining 28 fixtures of the 2021-22 season – a season on which hopefully we will all fondly look back on in a few years as the one where it all began.

Be loud, be defiant, stand tall in the face of the shit that will be thrown at us by opposition no marks and create a siege mentality like never before – we’re going to need it.

Saturday see’s Graeme’s– or Eddie’s if you believe todays press – Mags head to The Amex as they attempt to do the one thing that they, and we, so desperately crave – to come away from a football match with three points. Something that has escaped Newcastle United so far this season, and shockingly in their last 8 games against Graeme Potters men.

Its not going to be easy, Brighton demonstrated last week how dangerous they are in coming from 0-2 down to secure what was a fully deserved point at Anfield in a game where the Seagulls had double the number of shots on target compared to their illustrious opponents.

My advice? Expect nothing, and anything we can come away with is a bonus.

That being said, should we have a new incumbent in the dugout by the time David Coote gets proceedings underway, we should hopefully see a reaction from a group of players who have massively underperformed so far this season.

For all Steve Bruce was a serial failure that undoubtedly impacted their preparedness and as a result their ability to perform on the park, the players now have to step up and accept their share of responsibility for our predicament – they simply have to begin to put performances that justify their obscene salaries.

The human shield that protected them from coming in for often justifiable criticism is no more, so its time to step up and impress your new gaffer – whoever that may be.

Over to you.

Dangerman: Maupay – looks more like a top-drawer Premier League centre forward with every passing game.

Prediction: A 1-2 defeat, but a much-improved performance from a team that is keen to impress.

Why I hate us playing the Seagulls..

So, lots of TF are going to Brighton away and I hope they have a fantastic day, I hope the scenes of Mo Diame’s heel and Perez firing in from a Matt Ritchie cross field pass are seen at the end of the game.

I hope Eddie Howe is in the stands smiling at seeing a vastly improved performance. I hope we manage to string together more than six or seven passes on a regular basis. I hope we see Martin Dubravka back between the sticks as if he’s fit, he deserves to play. No offence to Darlow, he’s a solid enough keeper, but Martin is miles better.

I hope Jamal Lascelles starts looking like the 2018 version of himself rather than this one. I hope Joe Willock is fit and can start to look more like a twenty-million-pound player.

However, we have not beaten Brighton in the top flight yet.

We have not even laid a glove on them really in the past few meetings. Neal Maupay seems to like playing against us and the one thing that troubled us last season was pace and movement off the ball.

We looked much more organised against Chelsea for the first hour or so, more of that please. Push the ball wide and make the players work around the shape of our team. Last season’s 3-0 defeat was a real low, I think most people thought we were down, but the squad showed it could cope and did so admirably afterwards.

This time we come here off the back of a dispiriting 3-0 defeat, and we need to see some action towards improvement, and it needs to happen now.

Stephen Ord      @smord84

Away the lads…

Newcastle United make the trip down to the Amex Stadium, home of Brighton and Hove Albion for the last round of Premier League fixtures before the international break. The away side are looking to bounce back after their disappointing performance against Chelsea last week and find their first W of the season whereas Brighton played a 2-2 draw against Liverpool and sit comfortably in the top half of the table in 8th position.

Brighton have already massed a respectable 16 points so far this season with 4wins, 4draws and 2losses out of their opening set of fixtures. Their two defeats so far in the season is their joint fewest in a top flight campaign.

When it comes to the head-to-head battles, Brighton are unbeaten in their last eight Premier League meetings with Newcastle United. Last season, the Seagulls won both of the meetings 3-0. When it comes to the Magpies, they have never had a longer winless start to the campaign…their last run without winning this number of matches goes back to 2007-08 season when they lost a total of 13 games between December and March.

Brighton Team News: The Seagulls will continue to cope without Danny Welbeck and Dan Burn who are on the long-term injury list along with Steven Alzate who is expected to be out until 2022 after having an operation to fix his ankle injury.

Newcastle United Team News: Freddie Woodman and Paul Dummett will miss out as they recover from their retrospective injuries. Callum Wilson is expected to start, and he will be hoping to add to his goal tally at the Amex. Martin Dubravka will be hoping to take that extra step back from recovery and regain his place between the sticks at the expense of Karl Darlow. Graeme Jones is expected to take the team in his 3rd game in charge as interim manager and many of the Newcastle United faithful will hope it’s his last. At the time of writing this (Thursday 4th November 2021),Eddie Howe is the current favourite for the position, and should he be appointed on Friday, he will more than likely watch his new team from the stands.

My Players to Watch:

Leandro Trossard (Brighton) – The striker impressed with his goal against Liverpool and is expected to lead the line against the Magpies.

Allan Saint-Maximin (Newcastle) – Although the French magician has had a dry spell of five games without a goal for the visitors, his pace and dribbling skill is enough to terrify the opposition.

Match Prediction: If Newcastle play the way they did in the second half against Chelsea, then it will be another defeat on the cards. The only way I see the Magpies getting their first win of the season is if the players are played in their proper positions and the defence is tightened up. I’m going to be realistic with my score prediction: Brighton 2 Newcastle 1

Match Officials: Referee: David Coote. Assistants: Nick Hopton, James Mainwaring. Fourth official: Keith Stroud. VAR: Craig Pawson. Assistant VAR: Sian Massey-Ellis.

Jack Sutton         @jsuttonwrites