Vile Bodies

 “We were frigging useless, absolute shite!”. I did think of just copying and pasting this over the whole page because, let’s face it, nothing has changed since Steve Bruce declared he was going to do it his way. But last night’s game against Aston Villa had echoes of other games under Ashley’s regime. Who can forget the 6-0 humping by Liverpool under Pardew when he told his players not to attack but just concentrate on keeping the ball in their own half to try to avoid an even heavier defeat. Or that dreadful afternoon under Carver at the King Power when a relegation-threatened Leicester City took us apart and our temporary manager all but accused his centre-half of deliberately getting himself sent off to avoid further embarrassment. I am sure that there were games under McClaren, but thankfully my brain’s self-defence mechanisms won’t allow me to remember them. So when people say this is the worst it’s ever been, they’re challenging a pretty high (or low) bar.

Of course it’s down to Ashley but Bruce looks like a man without any idea how to turn the current run of appalling performances and results around. Despite his penchant for stating he can’t do anything else with this group of players, I find it difficult to believe that a group which was difficult to beat under Rafa and which has been supplemented by £100m of players, mainly with PL experience, cannot be organised into an effective team. Other managers in this division seem to have the ability to do it. I dare say there are others outside the PL who could do a better job than our current Head Coach whose only plan seems to be to dust himself down, roll his sleeves up, and get back to work. Not a bad approach for a contract cleaner, but we need a bit more imagination from our man in the dugout. Both Fulham and West Brom are in better form than us. Hell, even Sheffield United are in better form than us. Something has to change or we will be relegated. Just adding a coach from Bournemouth won’t cut it. Bruce must go.

WALLACE WILSON – @WallaceHWilson 

Is this the end?

500 games Steve Bruce may have managed, but I reckon I have watched far more. He might see it as disrespectful that his position is under threat, I find it disrespectful that he continues to be manager of this football club. I watched the match today in the background whilst doing a Zoom call with friends. Not because I wanted us beat, not because I don’t care, but because it’s become a regular event that ruins my weekend. I knew we would lose when I saw the team. What does it mean when the manager says he wants to play 4-4-2 but can’t pick the formation repeatedly?

What does it mean when new coaches are being brought in after 20 months in? Is this to freshen things up as it has got stale? I have no doubt that the appointment of the coach had nothing to do with the manager. I also worry that we are now at such a stage that new ideas, unless they are consistent, will further confuse players who look lost, shorn of any confidence and in a state of regression that looks far worse to me than the 09 and 16 seasons.

For me the press conference on Friday was a middle finger to the fans and the man who said he doesn’t follow social media is clearly responding to views from it. Buying into the idea that we have expectations that are too high is becoming more laughable by the game. Is 16th supposed to be the height of our aims? I don’t demand a trophy every season, Champions League football or being “top 6”. What I do want are competent people in charge of the team … I’m still waiting.

STEPHEN ORD @smord84

What did you say?

He was encouraged. He saw enough. Sweet Jesus. Is the bar really set that low? Truly we have seen enough.

Amidst the more newsworthy quotes of the week, the real revelation from the Mighty Broosh was the centrality of Alain St Maximin to our “system”. Who knew all this time there was a system?

Eight changes for Arsenal, another four tonight, 4-4-2 became 5-3-2. No wonder the players look clueless and demoralised. So, what was the plan? Hendrick and Shelvey, slow and laboured, supposed to cover the whole middle of the park with Almiron free to run in space? Carroll in the hole behind Wilson? Now that is a false 10. No wonder we were overrun.

And then the substitutions. Fraser and St Maximin brought more directness and pace, and, for five minutes (five minutes!), we weren’t quite as totally desperately hopeless as we had been before. But Manquillo off and Hayden as some kind of wing back in a four? And then Gayle on and the complete collapse of all kind of structure. As if throwing attacking players on at random brings results. Just like Brentford, just like his very first game against Arsenal for that matter, as we chased the game like Barrack Road under-9s and with as little hope of success.

The second half was just like the second half against Arsenal. One team in complete control, not even having to try. Free to score as many as they wanted, if they could be bothered.

And now the media narrative is conveniently shifting to the players. Not good enough. Mediocre. The same outcome, no matter which manager. The same players who ground out the results, through sheer force of will, for which Bruce gained credit, now blamed when they’re uncoached, when they’re Bruced to destruction.

Goalless. Hopeless. Systemless.

MATTHEW PHILPOTTS – Mjp19731

Groundhog day

Well it’s Groundhog day… again! After enough hot air to fill a balloon amongst another “Shout out to my ex”, with Bruce pulling out more unhelpful & unnecessary comparisons to our previous manager who is light years ahead of him in managerial capabilities & pedigree, followed up with…another shite performance. Another 90 mins of utter nothingness from a side that looks completely bereft of everything. Passion, heart, creativity, energy & just any clue of what to do in a game of Premier league football. Newcastle don’t have a plan B, come to think about it they don’t have a plan A either!

Our utterly useless manager picked a team that was similar to one of your mates giving you a fair chance at Fifa by playing the shitest players he possibly can. The side lacked pace or any quality to compete against a Villa side that had everything we don’t. The North Shields ferry turns quicker than Carroll, Hendrick is just the most pointless footballer I’ve ever seen disgrace the black & white shirt &, as for Shelvey, I think the less said about this lazy waste of a shirt the better.

I watched this game with a Villa supporting mate over an online link and he said “We’ve never had an easier game than this all season”, as I watched Villa breeze through this game is 2nd gear. No wonder Grealish was pissed off coming off! What better side to get your assists & goals up against than this lot? The sad thing is we’ll no doubt be treated to the same apathetic performance completely devoid of any desire to win a game next time round against Leeds. It’s utterly depressing supporting this zombie club under this mediocre manager. I pray we get rid of him to have any kind of fighting chance of a result in the next game, but sadly my prayers will not be answered. The future is bleak!

CHRIS CURRIE – @wig82

 

Never in my lifetime have I seen a Newcastle United side not bothering to pressure the ball, letting the opposition play. Eleven behind the ball at all cost. Until the last 15 minutes of a game where we get a little bit adventurous and in the opposition half and actually cross a ball in to the box.

The amount of times we’ve “dusted ourselves down” this season, the cleaning staff at the training ground must have been made redundant. At least that’ll save money Mike a few quid. Mike, I’ll put it to you this way: in a commercial sense, surely Steve Bruce isn’t doing anything for the club merchandise since the day he walked in to the club, surely the sales of club tracksuits took a nose dive. Are parents of kids growing up really going to spend £50 to let them replicate the pile of shit that they’re currently seeing? How many free season tickets are you going to have to give away next year, when we’re finally free just to make the ground look half full? 15,000-20,000? Are you going to sell the club with this manager at the helm?

The players are done, the fans are done, the manager’s done &, by the looks of rumours, the coaching staff are done. Just get rid, do not make the same mistake as McClaren. If being in the Premier League is what you value as success for the club, DO IT NOW.

RICHARD WATSON 

So here we are again, same shit different team.  Another two hours of my life that I’ll never get back. 

My kids stopped watching halfway through last season. They don’t see the point. They know that we aren’t going to score. They know that we’re more likely to lose than win. There is no fun in it for them, and they need fun at the moment. I can’t remember when the fun stopped for me. Was it the day that it was confirmed that Rafa had left? Or was it the day PIF finally got bored of waiting for the Premier League to make a decision? I don’t know, I’m tired even thinking about it. In a game of 90-odd minutes I expect a gasp at some point, as a shot goes narrowly wide, or a pass is just out of reach of the striker sliding in at the far post. When did that last happen?

The fun has well and truly been hoovered up my Steve Bruce. I have no expectation leading in to a game. I’m resigned to defeat when I read the team sheet an hour before kick off.  It’s all so predictable now.

There is a Madness song called “Grey Day” and that’s what watching this club feels like, grey – really fucking grey. On to Leeds we go. We are currently 5-0 down with Bruce doing it his way. We all know what happened last time out v Leeds. What have you got lined up Steve? More rolling up of sleeves? Dusting down?  I’ve had enough of his bollocks, unfortunately the men who count haven’t. 

TIM WOOD – @WoodyLad8

January 1st 1992 – Southend 4 NUFC 0

I genuinely didn’t think I’d ever feel lower about NUFC than I did that day. Congratulations Steve Bruce, your version of NUFC has helped me reach a new ‘Pinnacle’. I’ve just had the displeasure of watching NUFC taken apart by an Aston Vile team that man for man ran more, tackled more, fought more and generally did the basics more. I can accept trying and not being good enough – but I can’t accept not being good enough and not trying.
It’s fucking Unacceptable. Is there a less motivated footballer in the Premier League than Jonjo Shelvey? I don’t ever remember seeing a central midfielder for ANY club look less interested in working for his team? It’s fucking Unacceptable.
The problem however is that it’s not just Shelvey. We have far too many players who miraculously become invisible when they step onto a football pitch – too many players who are only too willing to hide. Too willing to let someone else take responsibility. It’s fucking Unacceptable. I coach junior football, and one thing I’ve drilled into my lads is the importance of body language, letting the opposition know they’re in a game. Tonight, to quote Jamie Carragher, our body language and commitment was “Disgraceful”
It’s fucking Unacceptable. When you consider all of the above, the fault, whilst partly down to the players themselves, is primarily down to one man. Steve Bruce. Not being able to motivate your players to at least match the oppositions work rate, to want to put the hard yards in, to want the ball, to stand up and be counted, should tell you everything you need to know – you are done at Newcastle United.
Do the honourable thing. Walk.
Doing this might just allow you to retain  a little bit of creditability – however small that may be – in the eyes of the people you claim to be one of. One way or the other, just get out of my fucking club and let someone else try and get a tune out of a squad of players who clearly aren’t playing for you.
YOU are unacceptable.
LEE FORSTER @LeeDForster

With the condescending comments made towards Benitez on Friday, which turned the remaining 1% of the fan base against him, Bruce really, REALLY needed a result tonight. If he came away with nothing, he would look foolish, naive, in his words “shite”. 

Well you know what happened. He’s embarrassed himself even further than I could have conceived. Of course he’ll blame long Covid which somehow no other team in the world has. And of course he’ll blame VAR, despite it making the correct decision for the first goal. The only thing he will never blame are his own deficiencies. 

The fact this embarrassment happened against Aston Villa is even more poetic. Look at where his former employers are now, compared to where they were when he was mercifully relived of his duties in 2018 after spending a record amount in the Championship. 

I don’t get what’s in it for him now except financial gain. No one wants him here. Not a single person who even follow the club in a passing sense want this incompetent, arrogant, lying, out of touch idiot near Newcastle United. 

We now need 7 wins from 19 games. Good luck with that. 

The Mighty Rafa? The Shitey Steve. 

Keep a shred of dignity. Resign. 

JOHN LIDDELL @johnliddell1982