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Season 2018-19
Brighton & Hove Albion (h) Premier League


Saturday 20th September 2018, 3.00pm

 St. James' Park

Conditions: Aghast



Newcastle United


0 - 1




29 mins Paul Dummett and Solly March (who as a youngster came for a trial at NUFC but was ill on the day and didn't kick a ball) challenged for a ball that had looped up and the only person in the ground that thought it had gone for a corner was unfortunately the lineman on the East Stand side. 

The flag-kick was headed across the box where Jose Izquierdo hit a fierce shot that flicked off Dummett and then took a bigger deflection that left Dubravka with no chance. The touch was deemed significant enough to credit Israel international Baram Kayal with the goal.

Half time: Magpies 0 Seagulls 1

Full time: Magpies 0 Seagulls 1

We Said


Rafa Benitez:

"We'll just carry on trying to win games and try to find three teams worse than us.
(Not a wind-up, he did actually say that).

"Sometimes, you lose games without creating too much or because the other team is too strong and you have to defend; today, we were in control, we had the chances, and they scored a goal from a corner that was not even a corner. 

"After, they were just wasting time.

ďI think after a game like this one, you have to say we did almost everything to win. ĎAlmostí, meaning we were not good enough in the final third and didnít take our chances but in terms of the effort of the players, you cannot ask for more.

"I am confident that if the team continues playing and working as hard as today then we will score goals.

"Everyone can see that the team tried everything. Sometimes, when you talk about games when you talk about us having to defend against some teams. 

"Today we had 27 attempts. We had control, they had a corner, which wasnít a corner, and they scored. 

"The last five minutes they had some chances when we were giving the ball away. Too many things, too much control, we have to be more clinical in the final third.

"Today, we were so much in control, we were making crosses. We put Ritchie on the left-hand side to be sure that we could deliver some crosses and then we put Joselu on.

"But we had control of the game, so they were not a threat at that time.

"Then to change something when you are in control, we did with a striker to have more presence in the box and after, we were conceding more things.

"But I will repeat, we were so much in control that it was better to carry on doing what we had to do.

"We knew it could be like that (playing long balls forward) because they were waiting and pressing and especially Jonjo (Shelvey), trying to stop him playing.

"Then when you cannot play easily, you have to find a solution and then strikers with mobility could be an option.

"But it's not just if you play long, if you play high or not, if you play long, on the floor, it could be fine. But at the same time, we knew it could be like that and we had to win the second ball.

"It's something that we were expecting, but again I will say we have to be more precise when we move the ball.

ďEverybody's a bit down now. We have lost a game we deserved to win or at least get something. It's difficult to explain when you have these situations.

ďI have said before it's difficult. It's still difficult. It's a long race. We have to keep going and we have to make sure we keep going at this level and score goals. 

"I'm still convinced
(we can avoid relegation)."

They Said


Chris Hughton said: 

"If you guarantee me we'd pick up enough points in a season to finish in a decent position and not do well away from home then I would settle for that.

"It's harder for teams like ourselves away from home. What pleased me most was the manner of how we did it.

"We had to run, get tackles in, graft. We needed a goalkeeper that played well and we neded two centre-halves who I thought were outstanding. We needed that type of performance to get the win.

"Glenn Murray is OK, heís been discharged from hospital. Heís had everything that he needs to have and heís fine. Itíll be a question of recovery.

"We were worried but we had no idea of any other detail. When you see the players as distressed as they were, it makes you concerned.

"We had to work really hard for it. With the way the game went we were always threatening on the break. We had arguably the best opportunities of the match. Our goalkeeper was outstanding.

"There have been spells like this before at Newcastle. What happened eventually was they turned it around. One thing is thatís obviously is they have got quality on the pitch. 

"Iíd be confident that Rafa will turn it around. Thereís a series of games against not the top six and not enough has been made of that - Iím sure they will be fine."


Seagulls @ St. James' - all time:

2018/19 lost 0-1
2017/18 drew 0-0
won 2-0 Lascelles, Shelvey
1991/92 lost 0-1
1990/91 drew 0-0
1989/90 won 2-0 Gallacher, Quinn
1985/86 lost 0-2 (FAC)
1983/84 won 3-1 Keegan, Waddle, Beardsley
1982/83 lost 0-1 (FAC)
1978/79 lost 1-3 Shoulder
1961/62 won 5-0 Leek 3, Tuohy, Hale
1929/30 won 3-0 Gallacher 3 (FAC)

Newcastle have now endured a nine game winless start to a Premier League season for the first time, today's outcome meaning we'd eclipsed the eight game barren opening to the 2015/16 campaign.

One has to go to 1898/99 to find a worse opening sequence of results, our maiden top-flight campaign beginning with six losses and four draws.

Nine games without a victory is by no means our worst run of form in the PL, Rafa's United enduring an identical run between October and December 2018. 

And 1999 was particularly bleak, with a 14 game winless run running from April until September. 

The Magpies also made it five successive league defeats at SJP, emulating a run in November and December 2017 which is their worst home PL run - one less than their longest of all-time, six losses between September and October 1953.

In terms of losing home league starts, five off the belt from the beginning of a season is a new low in our entire history.

We join Manchester United (1930/31), Portsmouth (2009/10) and Bolton Wanderers (2011/12) in starting off a top flight season with five home defeats. That trio of sides all then managed to win their sixth home game - but saw their season end in relegation.

The last time United turned around a half-time deficit in the Premier League was against Reading in December 2006 when we trailed 1-2 but won 3-2 thanks to a fabulous Emre strike.

United ended the day bottom of the table, the first time that they've been in 20th since October 2015 following a 1-6 loss at Manchester City.

Chris Hughton has now won twice against former club Newcastle as a manager - but this was his first victory on Tyneside in five visits: 

2012/13 Newcastle 1 Norwich 0
2012/13 Norwich 0 Newcastle 0
2013/14 Newcastle 2 Norwich 1
2013/14 Norwich 0 Newcastle 0
2016/17 Newcastle 2 Brighton 1
2016/17 Brighton 1 Newcastle 2
2017/18 Brighton 1 Newcastle 0
2017/18 Newcastle 0 Brighton 0
2018/19 Newcastle 0 Brighton 1

Brighton's third-ever away win in the Premier League was their first in 2018.


Newcastle's failing season took another turn for the worse on Saturday; a fifth successive home loss allied with Cardiff City's maiden win of the campaign leaving Rafa Benitez's side bottom of the table.

A typically ragged goal did the damage just before the half hour; Albion incorrectly awarded a corner that was headed back across the box and hit goalwards by Jose Izquierdo, deflecting off Paul Dummett and Beram Kayal before ending up in the back of the Magpies net.

Up to that point a promising opening by the hosts had seen Ayoze Perez denied from close range and seek to take the game to opposition. 

However that early momentum was halted by an early injury to visiting goalkeeper Mat Ryan and a more serious 16th minute stoppage after a clash of heads between Glenn Murray and Federico Fernandez.

The Newcastle defender was able to continue, but the Brighton attacker left on a stretcher and was taken to hospital for precautionary tests.

Falling behind on 29 minutes, United dominated the remainder of the second half and eight additional minutes, Jonjo Shelvey's effort saved, Yoshinori Muto heading over and a Kenedy shot clearing the bar. 

The second half would be a similar tale of wasted opportunities and meaningless possession, ultimately managing 27 scoring efforts but getting just six of those on target - Ryan notably equal to a Shelvey free kick but almost visibly smirking as efforts from Kenedy and Joselu went into orbit.

Having played second fiddle for the second half, Albion almost grabbed a second in added time, but substitute Yves Bissouma shot wide with the goal gaping. 

Few of those left in the ground would begrudge visiting manager Chris Hughton celebrating his first victory here in five attempts since he was shown the door by Mike Ashley almost eight years ago. 

Regardless of the misfortune surrounding Brighton's goal though, the fact remains that a second successive 0-0 draw here against the Seagulls would have been only marginally better than losing. 

Quite simply we needed to win: for the team, the fans, the manager, the club, even for the owner.

Our ongoing failure to score goals and the continued absence of the striker we've pinned our hopes on this season are rapidly undermining the efforts that brought us to tenth last season. Rondon was here today, "tentatively limping" past the press box in the words of one reporter.

That now looks like the starting point for our latest bout of self-inflicted peril - raising expectations and giving us delusions of adequacy and competitiveness that the owner has never shared. 

More crucially though, finishing tenth undermined the case for a genuine squad overhaul in the same way that Alan Pardew's fifth place finish in 2012 did - his sole reward the purchase of Vurnon Anita.

The problem cuts deeper than a lack of playing budget in the last window though; the sloth like movement of those responsible for doing the deals rendering pre-season almost useless in terms of actually preparing a settled side for combat. Remember also that the window shut early. 

While much is made of the outlay rivals have made compared to our net spend, a
lack of investment in academy facilities and staff is the real difference. Earlier today, United's U18s conceded seven at Everton for the second time in 2018 and have endured six and eight goal hidings in recent weeks.

Albion's team was as cosmopolitan as ours, but while they are upgrading their academy with new facilities, we are supposedly contemplating downsizing due to our failure to produce quality players. 

Benitez isn't blameless and the current shortcomings of the squad aren't purely down to the amount of money spent: £20m spent on Christian Atsu and Jacob Murphy but neither able to command a starting place, or concerning rumours over the suitability of Ki Sungyeung and Fabian Schar. 

Clearly the manager is struggling to coax a repeat of what looks like over-achievement from this squad last season and a failure to score a single goal against Cardiff, Palace and Brighton will haunt him - even if his side only conceded once in those three games. 

The oft-repeated line about facing all of the tough teams first is looking more flimsy as those mega clubs hit their stride though. If we played Manchester City or Arsenal next week then we'd predict more than a 1-2 defeat. We may have actually caught them, Spurs and Chelsea at a good time. 

Where do we go from here? With two points from a possible 27 after nine games, the answer is inevitable unless there's the most almighty reversal of fortune.

Yes, there'll be a trip to Brighton next April, but after that it'll be Birmingham, Blackburn, Bolton, Brentford and Bristol - which will do nothing to prevent the club's value diminishing still further. 

Cut your losses Mike, just sell up and **** off. 


Page last updated 22 October, 2018