At the end of a painful week for Steve Bruce, it was imperative that Newcastle find a way to stop the bleeding. For Bruce, who spent the last few days trying to douse the flames of a leaked training camp feud with Matt Ritchie, avoiding defeat may have been enough, but a goalless draw extended a woeful streak to two wins from his last 18 games. in all competitions. . For West Brom, who remains installed in the last three and eight points drifting from the last safe place, this represented a missed opportunity.
Bruce made three changes since last weekend’s draw at home to the Wolves, with Ryan Fraser and Jeff Hendrick replacing injured Allan Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almirón, while Paul Dummett was preferred to Jamal Lewis on the left back, the manager citing his experience as a valuable commodity in a game of this magnitude. Martin Dubravka continued in goal and Joelinton led the line, though he was often opened to allow Joe Willock to wander into center space.
With three league goals to his name, the last of which came in November, Joelinton was the top scorer in Newcastle’s lineup. Ritchie, who apologized for breaking into Bruce’s training, took his place among the substitutes.
Joelinton, to be fair, did a good game, but the forward was always more comfortable putting others into play than when he pounced on goal himself. He tested Sam Johnstone at his first post with 20 minutes remaining, but with a dozen minutes left, he would have presented the ball to Fraser for interception only for Kyle Bartley to expertly intercept. Joelinton fired up the afterburners to advance toward goal after Willock slipped him, but selflessly, and perhaps due to a lack of confidence, he tried to square the ball for Fraser. On the touchline, Bruce threw out his right arm in frustration.
Sam Allardyce spent the entire first half apparently protecting himself in the home dugout, cross-legged, arms crossed, and chewing vigorously. He saw Matheus Pereira turn down a half chance as the winger reached the penalty spot unmarked to deflect Conor Townsend’s center and the West Brom full-back was the source of much of the initiative from the hosts. Mbaye Diagne sent a volley after Bartley beat three Newcastle defenders to launch Darnell Furlong’s long shot, but in the second half nine minutes Matt Phillips passed arguably the best chance of the group, burning under pressure from Jamaal Lascelles. after finding the low of Townsend. Cross inside the box.
Newcastle will also feel that they could have delivered the victory, even if clear opportunities were slim. Jonjo Shelvey looked restrained and at times easily overlooked in midfield, but he sent a first shot to Johnstone from a short corner routine, through Phillips knee, and the West Brom goalkeeper then repelled a shot. of Willock from the angle. Dwight Gayle came in approaching the hour mark but had no serves and Andy Carroll replaced Fraser with seconds left, but Newcastle at least came out unscathed.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism