Never lost at home to Arsenal, never won away at St. James’ Park, well after Jose kept up one tradition he ended another, with Harry’s 200th and 201st goal at club level.
Jose fielded the same starting XI as the one that started against Arsenal in the previous game and there was a 4-4-2 element to it at the start but quickly went to a 4-3-3 before reverting the standard 4-2-3-1.
The plan seemed similar to the NLD in that Newcastle had the ball, they also had the chances. Spurs were sitting back and making them look like they weren’t managed by Steve Bruce. People talking about taking Jonjo Shelvey to The Lane. I don’t know, as if they haven’t had enough experience of Newcastle players getting a move to Spurs, following a display against Spurs. Jenas, Parker, Sissoko.
With no crowd this must have been just the second time Sissoko wasn’t booed at St. James’ Park. The previous time being the game which made Levy pay all that money for him.
If there had been a crowd, they would have been quietened 27 minutes in when Son scored the opener, which seemed to take everyone by surprise. After Newcastle had all the play in the opening minutes, the tackling machine, Moura won the ball in their half. Took it inside, off to Kane, who squared to Lo Celso,. The Argentinian looked to shoot but fighting off a defender fed it to Son who made that little bit of room for himself before beating the keeper at the near post.
It’s funny against Arsenal Aurier was getting the blame when his block went to an Arsenal player, which led to their goal, yet Winks attempt at a tackle went to a Newcastle player which led to their equaliser and nothing. Admittedly Aurier then played his part as his weak attempt at a clearance went straight to Ritchie who smacked it straight past Hugo, who had no chance.
Straight away Jose made a change, with Bergwijn replacing Moura. He had an immediate impact, putting a lovely cross right on Harry’s head, within minutes and Spurs were back ahead, With Kane’s 200th club goal.
Jose then replaced Lo Celso with Lamela. I didn’t get this one again but apparently he has an injury that’ll require treatment in the off season. So maybe that’s the thinking because there’s no other reason to take him off and leave Sissoko and Winks on.
Lamela and Kane teamed up for the third to seal the win on the 90th minute. Lamela picking up a lose Newcastle pass just outside the Spurs box, he played it forward to Harry who set off while Lamela jetted up to take the ball from Kane’s excellent pass. Into the box and Lamela was fighting off the defender, jinking this way and that but keeping the ball before taking his shot which the keeper saved for Harry to stoop and nod in his 201st.
Jose never before winning at Newcastle. Spurs wearing the cursed kit. Newcastle having more of the ball and by far more shots – 22 to 8 – Spurs having Winks and Sissoko – though to partially balance it up they had Bentaleb who stats wise was a like for like with Winks, no surprise there. Yet a 3-1 victory and Harry getting back on the score-sheet.
Again it ain’t pretty, fans might put up with it during the last few games of this restart, if it brings victories but I don’t know if they’ll go through a whole season cheering it on…