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Is Eddie Howe under pressure following FA cup exit?

Newcastle United’s season is pretty much over following their FA cup exit against Manchester City on Saturday.

Newcastle would have hoped to be fighting for top four again this season following the success of last season. However, this season has not been the one many fans would have hoped for as they currently sit tenth with European hopes looking slimmer each passing week.

The Dream Start

This season started well for the Magpies battering Aston Villa 5-1 at St James’ Park on the opening day of the season with new big money signing Sandro Tonali scoring of his debut.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND – AUGUST 12: Sandro Tonali of Newcastle United celebrates after scoring the team’s first goal during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Aston Villa at St. James Park on August 12, 2023 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

Then a few weeks later Eddie Howe’s men put eight past Sheffield United at Bramall Lane with eight different goal scorers the first time a team has done that in Premier League history.

Then not long after that on October 4, Newcastle fans witnessed one of the best nights in the club’s history beating Paris Saint-Germain 4-1 at St. James’ Park to shock the world however this turned out to be only win the Magpies would register in the Champions League.

The Sour Turn

On October 27, 2023 Newcastle were rocked by the news that star summer signing Sandro Tonali would be suspended for ten months due to illegal betting charges.

This is when the season started turning sour for Newcastle as the injuries started to creep up and leave Newcastle down to the bare bones so much that Eddie Howe had to name two goalkeepers on the bench plus several youth players to make the bench up.

This led to the Magpies league form dipping and exiting the Champions League and the Carabao Cup within two weeks of each other.

Newcastle are the club with the most days lost due to players being injured with a whopping 1,333 days and this contributed massively to Newcastle’s poor form having one of worst away records in the Premier League with only winning one game all season until January 2024.

Defensive Woes and Lack of Identity

You can’t just blame it all on the injuries. Newcastle defensively have been so poor this season conceding 48 goals in 28 league games this season compared to last season only conceding 33 goals in 38 league games last season.

Only Burnley, Sheffield United and Luton have conceded three or more goals in games this season with Newcastle conceding three or more goals on nine different occasions.

Now with players coming back from injury maybe Newcastle could get their season back on track and aim for Europe but since the end of January the Magpies have really struggled to gain any momentum and have just been inconsistent leading them to drop down the table.

Another difference from Newcastle last season to this season is they lack the identity, and they don’t look like they are playing with desire and at times it’s hard to watch such as the 4-1 defeat to Arsenal and the 3-2 defeat to Chelsea which all contained pretty daming stats for Newcastle fans to read.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 25: Miguel Almiron of Newcastle United looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League match between Newcastle United FC and Borussia Dortmund at St. James’ Park on October 25, 2023 in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England. (Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

Last season this team was fearless and would go and press and get in their opponents face but this season they seem to be more pragmatic and don’t look to be as intense as last season.

Fans are getting frustrated with Howe’s constantly picking players who are out of form and are a clear weakness in the team such as Dan Burn who is constantly targeted by the opposition. This was clear to see on the weekend against Manchester City when both goals came from his side.

Looking Forward

 Now with only ten games go sitting 10th  and only the Premier League to focus on. Newcastle have to find some sort of form if they want any chance of European football next season with the next game against fellow European contenders West Ham being a massive game.

The question is will Howe still be managing Newcastle at the start of next season?