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Newcastle v Brighton - Review

Toothless Newcastle hit rock bottom in a defeat that could change this season.

Newcastle continued their dismal start to the season with a 0-1 defeat to Brighton at St James’ Park.

Beram Kayal diverted José Izquierdo’s strike to give the visitors the lead. Brighton did not threaten much throughout the game, however, Newcastle was very lackluster once again. Rafa Benitez’s side now sit bottom of the Premier League and remain without a win so far this season.

The Magpies are enduring their worst start to a season, and it showed no signs of improving against Brighton. Jonjo Shelvey stuck a frustrated figure with very little movement ahead of him, leading to the Englishman passing backward or sideways. When Newcastle went behind in the 29th minute, you wouldn’t have thought they were behind with the way were playing. The Magpies showed little creativity or urgency, the atmosphere inside St James’ Park reflected the flat performance.

Rafa Benitez should be very concerned with the way this season is turning out. Fans have a right to be frustrated with the owner, Mike Ashley, he has failed to invest properly once again. However, Benitez and the players need to take some responsibility as the performances have not been good enough. Benitez’s decision making in terms of substitutions have also been questionable. The former Liverpool manager decided to replace Yoshinori Muto with Joselu, this change was greeted with boos. Many in the St James’ Park felt Muto offered a lot more than Ayoze Perez, who has not got going at all this season.

Newcastle face a tough test at St Mary’s against Southampton next weekend, a ground where they have struggled in recent years. If Newcastle lose, they will be in a huge amount of trouble. It is difficult to see where Newcastle’s win will come from, with the way they are playing.

One characteristic of this Newcastle side in recent seasons has been their fight, however, this season we aren’t seeing any of that. Jamaal Lascelles has been known to come out and say it like it is, putting players in their place and giving them a reality check, that is desperately needed at the moment.

Benitez and his players must step up and be counted because the way things are going, they could be cut adrift before they know it. Something needs to change, Benitez needs to look at freshening things up, introducing Ki or Schar to the side. Both players were bought in the summer but haven’t been able to get much game time under Benitez.

Newcastle need to turn this around quickly, with talks of boycotts gathering momentum these are desperate times for the club. Mike Ashley has gone all in once again and lost.