Unfortunately at Old Trafford Manchester, penalties are rarely awarded against the home side – no matter how blatant and clear-cut they are.
Newcastle United have a tricky enough time picking up points at this particular venue due to an owner who won’t invest and a manager who, with little quality in depth at his disposal, tends to take an over-cautious approach.
And an early penalty which should have been given to United but wasn’t certainly contributed to the overall result of this game.
United were cruising in the first 20 minutes and looking to dominate the red devils. All was looking at least evenly balanced.
Unfortunately the referee Jones bottled it when he should have awarded a penalty.
Yoan Gouffran was steaming towards goal in the penalty area when he was clearly tripped by Mata.
What made matters worse was that it happened right in front of a referee, who decided not to stand up to the home crowd pressure and waived appeals away.
Goals do indeed change games, and you could sense the wind being visibly taken out of United’s sails after that particular injustice.
It was never the same game afterwards.
Memories of Yohan Cabaye and Cheick Tiote bossing Manchester’s midfield last season were long gone as both players were missing, one injured, the other long since cashed in on by the owner.
Jones did award us a penalty late in the game. However, by then it was 3-0 to the home side with United well beaten – so that was a much easier decision to make. He almost looked guilty, but not quite.
The problems remain for United however.
A shaky defence badly in need of recruitments, a 3rd choice keeper who is showing signs of improvement – but we badly need Tim Krul back behind the sticks. And a lightweight attack which just isn’t scoring sufficient goals to win games.
What do you think? As ever, we would welcome your comments, opinions and views below.
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