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Forgotten man shines and duo out of sorts…again – 3 good, 3 bad from Newcastle 1-0 Blackburn

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I’d rather win and go through than play well and go out as Blackburn Rovers did, yet it was perhaps a reminder that elements of this Newcastle United squad aren’t up to it or need to seriously improve to get into Steve Bruce’s side on a more regular basis.

It was another win, another clean sheet and another goal from a new boy on his debut last night, but it was a pretty dire watch.

Here’s my ‘3 good, 3 bad’ from last night’s win, starting with the positives: He hadn’t kicked a ball in competitive action since limping off at Arsenal in February, but he was brilliant throughout on his return.

It was also noticeable how vocal he was, suggesting he has no fear barking out instructions to his teammates.

Hopefully it serves as a warning to Steve Bruce that this squad still needs to be strengthened before the window shuts on October 5th, because we’re an injury to Wilson, Saint-Maximin or Almiron away from looking extremely ordinary.

The local lad made a few key saves, claimed several crosses calmly, showed good handling, was quick off his line the one time he needed to be and his distribution was also very handy, with him releasing a few balls quickly to set us away on the break.

In a four-man defence that included THREE right-backs, the Irish international barely put a foot wrong, getting himself in the right place at the right time on countless occasions and making several key blocks, interceptions or clearances just when Blackburn were breaking into our box.
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