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Brighton & Hove Albion 1, Newcastle United 0


There's one storyline in this one for me, and it's a familiar one: lack of finishing. It's not just that Newcastle had numerous chances that they couldn't put away, it's that the absence of any real threat meant that the wing backs were pushing further and further up the pitch. It was only a matter of time before Danny Simpson made a mistake, sending Will Buckley (who was a nuisance all game long) off to the races on a counterattack.

Yes, there was more to the game than that. I was particularly frustrated that the Albion defenders got away with increasingly violent tackles, and there was a handball toward the end, but ultimately you can't win games if you can't score goals, and until Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse arrive (please be ready for Blackburn...), the Magpies aren't going to be doing a lot of scoring.

The end result is that Newcastle have once again failed to get past the fourth round of the FA Cup, and while some are already characterizing the loss as an embarrassment, I'm more disappointed than anything. This is a good team, and we can't be too sure about how long these players are going to be able to stick together. I have no delusions of Premier League glory, but I felt that the cups were winnable if the cards fell right. Instead, it's just like any other year.