Blog creator

The Newcastle United Blog | Newcastle and Chelsea enter the break scoreless at St. James’ Park

Newcastle put up a solid performance in a tactically intriguing but scoreless first half against Chelsea. Half lacked firepower in the final third. Newcastle have yet to bother Edouard Mendy while Chelsea have only managed one shot.

Newcastle played in their 4-3-3 with Pope in goal behind a back four of Trippier, Schar, Botman and Burn. Bruno anchored the midfield with Willock and Longstaff pushing forward. Joelinton was on the left with Miggy on the right. Wood led the attack.

The first shot of the game did not come until the 15th minute. A cross in the box was cleared towards Almiron just inside the area. The in-form Paraguayan sent his volley over the crossbar.

Midway through the half and the game was running out of quality chances, or whatever. Newcastle were exceptional off the ball as they continually harassed the visitors. The Blues’ first effort didn’t come until the 28th minute when Armando Broja’s shot was easily saved by Pope.

Newcastle had a penalty shout as half time drew to a close. Burn placed a cross that hit Trevoh Chalobah’s swing arm as he slid in for the block. It wasn’t given and VAR didn’t seem very interested in checking.

The half ended with Newcastle having 58% possession and 5 shots, none of which were on target. Howe has options with Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin on the bench. I suspect they could each get 30 minutes in the second half.