Newcastle United and Norwich City were wasteful with nearly every created chance in a 0-0 draw at St. James’ Park on Saturday.
While the Magpies’ Allan Saint-Maximin joined Norwich’s Emi Buendia in triying to lift the match, it proved too heavy.
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Newcastle sits 10th with 31 points, seven points clear of the drop zone and 13 points ahead of basement-dwelling Norwich City.
Three things we learned
1. Both sides wasteful, but Canaries will be furious: Norwich City has now claimed four of its 18 season points from Newcastle, and it could’ve been six if a lively Teemu Pukki brought his finishing boots. The Canaries may’ve lost their survival hope in not taking three points from the Magpies, who still could’ve scored.
2. Magpies midfield showed why Bruce chased Soumare: Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare would be Newcastle record-signing Boubakary Soumare had the player accepted the chance to join the Northeast side. Instead, Newcastle again got a servicable but unspectacular days from Isaac Hayden, while new boy Nabil Bentaleb was promising and Sean Longstaff barely improved from a rough few outings. Star power is lacking and Jonjo Shelvey‘s return to health would be big.
3. Newcastle’s defensive core decisive: Federico Fernandez and Ciaran Clark continue to lead the Magpies from the back. They can be brave with their challenges and chances because goalkeeper Martin Dubravka has been tremendous between the sticks. The backs are the reason fortunate Newcastle is 10th and not 18th.
It was Tim Krul’s turn, the ex-Newcastle man pushing aside a good Joelinton header and Almiron nodding the rebound wide of the yawning cage.
Pukki was denied a long dribble when Federico Fernandez made a fantastic diving intervention to block the Finnish star’s shot.
American right back DeAndre Yedlin had his best half in ages, winning a dangerous 43rd minute free kick.
A late stoppage-time charge from Newcastle ended with a wasted stoppage time corner.
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A slow start to the second half picked up when Duda caught Isaac Hayden five yards outside the box. Matt Ritchie sailed his effort over the frame.
A counter was wasted by Pukki.
Hanley gave away a free kick left center, as Newcastle got a third bite at the cherry. Sean Longstaff hit the wall, and Saint-Maximin forced Krul into a corner-conceding save.
Pukki could’ve had it in the goal when Jamaal Lascelles gave it away, but Dubravka saved it off Ciaran Clark. The Irish defender then cleared a possible own goal off the line before Duda lashed wide of the goal.
Krul had to tip a tame 84th-minute header over the bar, and collected the ensuing corner as the match looked destined for 0-0.
Newcastle new boys Valentino Lazaro and Danny Rose debuted off the bench.Follow @NicholasMendola