Gary Megson took charge of West Bromwich Albion once again in their Premier League match against Newcastle United on Tuesday. The Baggies managed to share the spoils with Tottenham Hotspur over the weekend, which ended a run of four successive defeats. Newcastle United have also suffered their own share of miseries coming into this game. All the recent takeover talks behind the scenes have not helped their cause on the pitch as well.
Rafa Benitez made five changes to his line-up while Gary Megson took a more attacking approach and went with two strikers up front. His gamble paid off as the Baggies took the lead in the dying embers of the first half. A goal each from Hal Robson-Kanu and Sam Field on either side of half-time gave the Baggies a comfortable 2-0 advantage.
The Magpies refused to give up and soon struck back through a Ciaran Clark header in the 59th minute. The Tyneside club finally forced an equaliser when Jonny Evans scored an own goal in the 83rd minute. The match ended with both teams sharing the spoils in a tight encounter.
Let’s take a look at how each Newcastle United players fared on the night.
GK: Karl Darlow – 6/10
The 27-year-old made a surprising start for Newcastle United in place of Rob Elliot. However, he was unable to deny the West Brom attack and conceded two goals on the night.
RB: DeAndre Yedlin – 5/10
The American right-back did well to support and link up with the Magpies’ attack and played a significant role in the run-up to the Newcastle equaliser.
CB: Florian Lejeune – 6/10
The Frenchman struggled to keep things tight in defence and wasted a free-kick opportunity when his attempt hit the West Brom wall.
CB: Ciaran Clark – 8/10
The defender scored the first Newcastle goal that made the comeback possible. He headed home from a corner to give the Magpies some hope in the 59th minute. However, he struggled to keep the Baggies’ front two at bay.
LB: Chancel Mbemba – 6/10
The 23-year-old looked better while going forward than while defending. He made some good runs to join in with the Newcastle attackers but left space behind on way too many occasions.
CM: Isaac Hayden – 6/10
It was a strong defensive performance by the former Arsenal man. He played well in the Newcastle midfield but needs to stamp his authority more in the centre of the park.
CM: Mikel Merino – 7/10
The Spanish midfielder came back into the starting eleven and showed why the fans at Tyneside love him.
RM: Matt Ritchie – 9/10
The Scottish midfielder put in an outstanding performance on the night. He made an assist for the first Newcastle goal and was one of the key men who led the comeback.
CAM: Ayoze Perez – 7/10
The Spanish international pulled off his best performance of the season at the Hawthorns. He was clever, creative and had a point to prove. The 24-year-old acted as the bridge that linked the midfield with the attack and was superb in his role.
LM: Jacob Murphy – 7/10
The midfielder put in a spirited performance on the left side and was full of energy all throughout the match, which made him exciting to watch.
ST: Joselu – 5/10
Another forgettable display by the Spanish striker. He has been given chance after chance to stake a claim for his place in the first team. However, he failed to make any real impact and was caught ball-watching at times during the match.
LM: Rolando Aarons – 6/10
He came on for Jacob Murphy in the 65th minute and improved the Magpies while going forward by helping them level the match.
ST: Aleksandar Mitrović – 7/10
His physicality helped the Magpies go all out in search of the equaliser and the Serbian did hold the ball up well for his team-mates.
CM: Jonjo Shelvey – 5/10
He replaced Isaac Hayden at the centre of the park and did well to freshen up the Newcastle midfield.