A clearing header from Danny Batth reached Lee Gregory and he found Sam Vokes
wide on the left flank. Under pressure from Isaac Hayden, he slipped a pass
infield to Sam Clucas, who accelerated away from Sean Longstaff and released
The midfielder in turn found the overlapping Tom Smith and as he reached the
right hand edge of the United box, he clipped a cross over the dawdling Javier
Manquillo towards the back post.
Having run the length of the field, Sam Clucas watched as the cross dropped over
DeAndre Yedlin before powering a header beyond the helpless Karl Darlow in the Gallowgate End goal. 0-1
Half time: Magpies 0 Potters 1
Full time: Magpies 0 Potters 1
Speaking after the game, Steve Bruce commented:
"The good part today is that we picked up no injuries.
"We have had a very difficult couple of weeks in terms of people who
we thought were going to be OK after lockdown, certainly havenít
recovered, people like Dummy (Paul Dummett) and Ciaran Clark.
"Weíve picked up injuries which
were unfortunate. Dwight (Gayle) got injured against Crewe
some 10 days ago, has an operation today, which will rule him out
for at least three or four months.
"So that has been a disappointment, all in all it has been a very
difficult couple of weeks and we canít deny that.
"However, we have got one or two
things working behind the scenes in terms of players coming in.
"I think it has been publicised and I think all the supporters are
eager to see it happen. We are close to one or two things, so let us
hope in the next 24 hours, 48 hours we can bring one or two in.
ďIt was a wonderful opportunity
for the young ones, (Jacob) Murphy and (Dan) Barlaser
in particular, they didnít do themselves any harm. Thereís always
"You canít really look into results at the minute, the results
and the real thing comes out next week, so I am pleased that nobody added to the injury list, we have got
far too many and a few on international duty.
"It was a patched up team to say the least, I think we could only
put out three or four subs.
Dwight (Gayle) is the immediate one. We know Fabian Schar dislocated
his shoulder, that was only three or four weeks ago, so he ain't
ďUnfortunately Paul Dummett and
Ciaran Clark, they arenít ready.
"Matt Ritchie picked up an injury only two days ago, so all in all
we arenít too serious but we havenít had time to recover in terms of
Clark and Dummett in particular. They are playing catch up a lot.
"More than ever we need two or
three people to walk through the door and give everybody a lift. We
are working as best we can to make that happen.
"Any dressing room needs to have
a spark of somebody coming in to the squad that can help us.
Certainly at the minute we need
a bit of help with the problems we have got, before we even start.
"We know what we are trying to
achieve in trying to get there and hopefully before the window
closes, we will have four or five in the door, which will certainly
"With that first Premier League
game a week away. things could look a little different? Iím sure it will be totally
different to the way we looked today.
"Jamaal (Lascelles) will
be available for a start and you know, it has been a difficult
couple of weeks, there is no denying that, but we will keep bashing
away, we are working tirelessly behind the scenes to make one or two
ďI am very confident that we can
get them over the line in the next few days."
"I was really pleased with a lot of what
we saw today against very good opposition. Our attitude to the game was
"We had to defend for periods in the game which we knew we would have
to, and I thought we did that extremely well. We also attacked at the
"We scored an excellent goal and had other chances where we could have
perhaps been a little bit more clinical, but equally we restricted the
opposition to very little to very few chances, so it was an extremely
ďI think what you have to recognise is that we have a
lot of players in our dressing room who have been in the Premier League at
one point or another in their career, so without being maybe disrespectful
to when we play League One teams for example, and the gameís a bit slower,
we donít seem to be at our best.
"Today the game was quick,
and it had to be quick because the opposition make you play quick. When we
play quickly we are a much better team. There is still a lot of work to do
"I thought we looked very
assured in the 3-5-2 formation today. I think with the players we have at
the club at this minute in time it suits us, so we will continue to work on
Pre-season pitch time (in minutes):
Murphy 45+29+70+90=234 +1 goal (pen)
Fernandez 45+61+30+90=226 +1 goal
Saint-Maximin 45+29+75+73=222 +1 goal
Carroll 45+61+30+73=209 +2 goals
Atsu 45+29+60+17=151 +1 goal
Dummett 45+61+30*+0=136* (*exact figure tbc but less than 30)
26 players featured in the four pre-season games, but that didn't
include senior players Martin Dubravka or Fabian Schar.
An under-strength Magpies side suffered a
second defeat of the week to a Championship side, beaten by the
Potters at St. James' Park on Saturday.
Once again playing behind closed doors, Newcastle debuted their
yellow change strip, with City clad in red and white.
The only goal of the game came on 19 minutes, when Sam Clucas headed
Tom Smith's centre beyond Karl Darlow in the Gallowgate End goal.
Online highlights later confirm. For Steve Bruce though, the main
objective and first item of business in his post-match comments were
that his injury list hadn't lengthened still further.
There were bench places for Joelinto and Yoshinori
Muto after they belatedly commenced pre-season training on Thursday, but
the game came too early for fellow returnee Fabian Schar.
Jeff Hendrick and Emil Krafth are both absent on international duty,
Jamaal Lascelles didn't feature following a red card against the Teessiders.
Martin Dubravka (foot) and Dwight
Gayle (knee) missed out while Jonjo Shelvey, Matty Longstaff, Ciaran
Clark, Paul Dummett, Florian Lejeune and Matt Ritchie were all absent due to assorted ailments.
Dismay at the outcome of this game was tempered not only by the
lengthy absentee list, but also growing optimism that genuine
breakthroughs in the transfer market were nearing, albeit just days
from the serious stuff starting.
That belated activity is predicted to bring in a trio of players
whose last employers suffered relegation, but at the risk of being
labelled xenophobic, we don't have a problem with that. After too
many years of seeing overseas players struggle with an alien league
and lifestyle after moving here, the tried and tested seems like a
sensible, if mundane, approach.
It appears that the recruitment plan sketched out by Bruce has found
favour with an owner whose main motivation remains to stay in this
division. Our genuine concern was that after retaining top flight
status with no real panic, the folly of 2012 (when only Vurnon Anita
arrived) would be repeated.
Perhaps the Gayle injury and the Boro drubbing will prove to have
been pivotal in making things happen; shaking us from a collective
stupor. Make no mistake, something needed to.
Of those already here, it remains to be seen whether favourable
comments from the Manager regarding Dan Barlaser and Jacob Murphy
translate into a place in our squad for the coming campaign.
If anything sums the up the folly of our pre-season though, it's
that fellow midfielder Henri Saivet ended up appearing in all four
kickabouts - despite his manager confirming that he has no prospect
of making what would be a first competitive appearance for this club
since January 2018.
It's tempting to blame the pandemic for our rushed preparations and
various other top-flight clubs have been slow to augment their
squads. However the experience of previous seasons indicates that
being a work-in-progress is Newcastle's default setting.
It's not only the ball that we struggle to get over the line: if
this collection of players doesn't look radically different by the
time the window shuts then we're in grave danger of a third demotion
during the Ashley era.
What won't change though is the absence of Martin Dubravka from the
side that begins the season. That last line of defence was crucial
last time round and Karl Darlow has sizeable shoes to fill.