Typical Newcastle. Once again failing to beat the small teams because of heaps of missed chances. Giving that Brighton have dismantled Reading 3-0, the Seagulls have returned to top spot, leading us by one point. When we could've collected 2 more yesterday..
Our start (whilst it was still 0-0) wasn't even as bad as I've seen when we HAVE gotten results, so I expected us to turnover Bristol but then the first goal came: a good delivery into the box followed by a powerful header by Aaron Wilbraham into the bottom corner, but from where I'm sitting it looked as offside as it can get, although I'm not entirely sure, It wouldn't surprise me if it was offside as the decisions from referee Christopher Kavanagh and assistants James Mainwaring and Nick Greenhalgh were appalling and seemed biased at points. For example: Goal kick decisions when they are clear corners and not picking up on clear time wasting.
From that point on we put on some pressure but most of the chances were squandered by poor crosses by Christian Atsu and/or Atsu trying to do skills.
All hope seemed to be lost when on the 21st minute, a complete defensive mess once again occurred when Karl Darlow came sprinting out of his box, only for an unsuspecting Paul Dummett to head the ball to him; thinking he was in his position. He wasn't, and it smacked of Karl Darlow's hand and fell to the feet of Cotterill who tapped it into an open net. These silly mistakes are constantly costing us vital points. The own goal against QPR should've been a one off. But we've done it twice more since (against Norwich and now Bristol City) and it's just not good enough.
Once half time came, St James' was filled with a sea of boo's. Something I haven't seen since we played Huddersfield in August. It was the most negative half time I've seen in a while.
Rafa Benitez must've given an Istanbul team talk at half time. As we were easily the dominant side in the second half. With chances that included a Ritchie long shot met by a great save by Fabian Giefer and a painfully close miss by Christian Atsu with a few yards distance.
Our first goal in the comeback came after the 59th minute after Jonjo Shelvey's shot hit off 2 defenders and bobbled into the net after Giefer tried to parry it off the line. Not the prettiest of goals but every Geordie on and off the pitch would definitely take it. Immediately afterward, the away side looked promising as a great free kick was met by a Darlow save and a Jamaal Lascelles clearance. Scary stuff in the second half.
But after almost half an hour of constant pressure and attacks. Our goal finally came in the 82nd minute as Ciaran Clark scored his 3rd goal of the season from a corner swung in by Matt Ritchie. Jonjo Shelvey almost made it 3 in the 93rd minute when his right footed shot from just outside the box just curls to the right of the goal.
More points dropped at home against a small(er) club and once again it's a game we should've won. Ultimately, these next 3 games will probably define our season. But this was not the way to go into those matches. Lets hope the lads make up for this on Tuesday as we play Brighton away at 7:45 PM. Match coverage is also being shown on Sky Sports.