Newcastle United Under-23s coach bemoans 'twitchy' late penalty call in Nottingham Forest defeat

Newcastle United Under-23s lacked ‘cutting edge’ in their 1-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest, according to academy coach Kevin Richardson.

The young Magpies suffered their first defeat in eight matches in all competitions as Will Swan’s first half strike proved to be the difference in the Premier League 2 fixture at Whitley Park.

Newcastle registered just one shot on target during the match but were denied a penalty in stoppage time as Niall Brookwell was bundled down inside the area.

Referee Michael Barlow appeared in two-minds before waving away the decision, much to the frustration of Richardson.

Newcastle United under-23s v Nottingham Forest under-23s

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"It was definitely a penalty,” he told The Gazette. “As it happened, I clocked the referee and he had one of those twitchy arms.

"He went to give it then stopped and put his arm back down. If a penalty was his first thought then that's his decision, give it.

"If it's not your decision, don't give it. You'd don't go half way to give it then change your mind.

"The game was getting frosty and there were a few digs here and there and that's when you want the referee to put authority on the game and calm it down.”

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It was a game of few chances but Forest took theirs when it came as in the 22nd minute as Alex Gibson-Hammond’s low ball across goal was poked in by Swan.

“I think the tactical side of things from Forest made it difficult for us and we didn't create many chances,” Richardson added.

“But you will come up against teams that will try and stop you when you've been on a good run like we have.

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"Forest had that game plan in their head coming up here and it worked for them. Second half we quickened the pace up and got in out wide and in behind but we just didn't have somebody to get onto the balls into the box and get a goal.

“I think a point would have been fair. We've been doing so well in the previous games and this one we just didn't have that cutting edge in the final third.”

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