Eddie Howe set to be unveiled at Newcastle United after Amanda Staveley talks
Eddie Howe saw Newcastle United make their worst start in history at the Amex Stadium this evening.
Howe, set to be appointed as the winless club’s new head coach, saw the team come from behind to draw 1-1 against Brighton and Hove Albion thanks to a goal from Isaac Hayden.
The 43-year-old watched the game with part-owner Amanda Staveley and Jason Tindall, his former assistant at Bournemouth, after further talks about the vacant post.
A formal announcement of Howe’s appointment is now expected ahead of the two-week international break.
“He didn’t have any input (into the preparation of the team),” said interim head coach Graeme Jones. “I’ve had no contact with him. Eddie’s a professional man. He will have realised that I was doing the game, and I’d planned it, and he left me alone to focus on it.
"I haven’t had anything. It was good to see him at the game, but we’ll have to wait and see what the outcome of that is still. I’ve just got on with things.”
Newcastle, backed by 3,100 fans, had hit rock bottom before the game following Norwich City’s win over Brentford, but Hayden’s strike saw them end the day in 19th place.
Jones had made three changes, recalling Jonjo Shelvey, Miguel Almiron and Jacob Murphy. Martin Dubravka, however, was again named on the bench.
The 51-yer-old had wanted his team to get more on the front foot following the previous weekend’s backs-to-the-wall performance against Chelsea, but a sluggish Newcastle went behind midway through the first half.
Referee David Coote pointed to the spot following a pitchside VAR check after Ciaran Clark kicked and pulled the shirt of Leandro Trossard, who stepped up and converted the penalty.
Newcastle were plodding and pedestrian with the ball, and rarely threatened the home side’s goal. At the back, they were nervous every time the home side got into the final third of the pitch.
United fans, damningly, chanted “attack, attack, attack” in the first half, and there were boos when Coote blew the half-time whistle. Things didn’t immediately improve after the break, and Brighton pushed for a second goal.
Then it happened. Matt Ritchie, in a rare break forward, delivered a deep cross which was headed down by Clark to Hayden, who swept the ball home to equaliser.
Jones – who has been given assurances over his future – sent on Joelinton in the 74th minute, and Brighton’s Roberto Sanchez was dismissed for bringing Callum Wilson down.
"I can see Callum Wilson going round the goalkeeper, and putting the ball in the empty net, but we were denied that,” said Jones.
United couldn’t test makeshift goalkeeper Lewis Dunk – Brighton had already made three substitutions – in added time, and the club has now gone 11 league games without a win for the first time in its history.
NEWCASTLE UNITED: Darlow, Murphy, Krafth (Gayle, 90), Lascelles, Clark, Ritchie, Hayden, Shelvey, Almiron (Joelinton, 74), Saint-Maximin, Wilson. Subs not used: Dubravka, Schar, Lewis, Manquillo, Fraser, Willock, S Longstaff.