The Warm Down: Eddie Howe's reign at Newcastle starts with draw
Photo credit: George Wood/Getty Images

The Eddie Howe era started with a draw at St. James' Park with Newcastle United drawing 3-3 with Brentford.

Unfortunately, the new head coach was unable to be in the dugout as a result of a positive COVID test and he will have to wait for his first game in the home dugout at St. James' Park.

The game was seen by many as must win for United but defensive frailties prevented the Magpies from claiming their first Premier League win of the season.

Captain Jamaal Lascelles gave the hosts the lead but they led for less than a minute before Ivan Toney restored parity with a goal against his former employers.

Newcastle had to twice come from behind to claim a point with Joelinton and Allan Saint-Maximin cancelling out strikes from Rico Henry and a Lascelles own goal.

There were many talking points from Howe's first game as Toon head coach.

Big Improvement from Joelinton

It would be fair to say that United's £40m man has had a pretty dismal time since his transfer from Hoffenheim.

During his time in the North East, Joelinton has mostly been played out of position and at times has looked completely lost.

Yesterday was hands down the best performance Joelinton has had in a black and white shirt.

His fancy footwork, strength and direct nature was a joy to watch for Toon fans as he finally looked like a player worth the astronomical fee that Newcastle shelled out for him.

His well taken goal in the 39th minute was a great moment for the Brazilian and his maiden goal of the season was well deserved.

If only he had managed to keep his feet when bearing down on goal late on, he could have won the game for the Magpies.

Elsewhere, Allan Saint-Maximin put in an improved performance and Jonjo Shelvey also came in and showed that he has the ability to make a difference to the side.

Defensive shambles

When Newcastle won promotion back to the Premier League, their survival was built upon a solid defensive foundation.

Previous manager Rafa Benitez had built an organised backline that put United in good stead.

Things couldn't be much different now. Another three goals shipped takes the total to an extraordinary 27 for the season, no other side has conceded more.

The goals let in yesterday were avoidable and it was an all too familiar story.

How come Newcastle have allowed the once solid foundation to become so poor?

The personnel is the same, which is largely the problem. Typical of the Mike Ashley era Newcastle have taken the option of mediocrity rather than ambition. 

The players in question have aged and with a lack of guidance from the head coach, the regression has been clear to see.

If Newcastle can not improve their defensive record, there is no chance that they avoid the drop this season.

Results go against United

Newcastle failing to win yet another Premier League game was bad enough but fans will not have enjoyed checking the other scores in the league at full time.

Norwich City, Aston Villa,, Watford all won whilst Burnley picked up a point.

The gap remains at five points between United and 17th place but Leeds United can worsen United's league state if they pick up a result against Tottenham Hotspur in London.

Also, Norwich winning means that The Magpies have sunk to the bottom of the league.

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