Here are 5 things we reckon that most stood out during our 2-1 loss to Reading. Despite an impressive first-half performance, a lacklsutre second-half performance saw the Royals taking all three points. As you can imagine, the main sticking points were negative. Here we go:
1. Cabaye can take amazing free kicks
We have missed the Frenchman over the last few games, not only for his creativity but also his special free kicks. Set pieces this season have been dire, both in an attacking sense but also defensively
I was at the Man Utd home win last season when we first realised just how good a free kick taker he was, with a wonderful peachy hit straight in the top corner.
Fast forward just over a year to today, and Cabaye couldn’t have placed the free kick any better if he was in the training ground with no Keeper or wall.
2. Don’t play Shola on the Wing!!
When we don’t have Hatem Ben Arfa, we should be playing Obertan not Shola Ameobi. We all know how useless Obertan is at times but playing Shola on the wing is the extreme.
The squad is more than clearly not big enough, no strength in depth, we need players ASAP.
3. We need to shoot towards the Gallowgate in the 2nd half.
It might be a small thing but we have played the last two home games and changed ends before the game; we’ve lost them both 2-1. The gallowgate end is a massive pull for NUFC in the 2nd half, and it’s something as little as that is costing us points.
4. Need to get the 2nd goal to end the game as a contest.
The amount of chances we had in the 1st half to score was unbelievable; Papiss had three attempts on goal during the match, admittedly forcing good saves from the keeper. Nevertheless, we need to be more precise.
Reading had nothing going forward in the first half but yet again we got punished in the 2nd with woeful defending.
5. Pardew Out?
Need I say anything more than those two subs? Marveaux off for Perch and Cabaye off for Bigi, changed the game. Even though we’ve been restricted by the number of injuries we’ve had this season, when we have had the men, his tactical decisions have been a bit odd to say the least.
Comments welcome. Are you happy with Pardew’s leadership or would you like to see a management shake-up?
Written by Paul Milloy (@Milloy11)