A tepid 3-0 defeat on Thursday night against Everton notwithstanding, Newcastle have had a reasonable enough season under Eddie Howe.
The Magpies have had to deal with their fair share of injuries, but the depth of their squad has been evident.
It’s true that the club still have a way to go if they want to acquire the sort of squad that wins you championships, but under Howe and the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF), they are going about things the right way.
Almost without question, the players appear to have bought into whatever it is that the manager and his backroom staff want to achieve.
Indeed, this current Newcastle set up is one that’s very much in Howe’s own image.
By and large they dominate their opponents by swarming all over them in a high and relentless press that’s brilliant to watch. No wonder St. James’ Park is full to the rafters these days.
It isn’t just pouring forward where Newcastle are at their best, however.
Just 17 goals conceded is the joint second best in the English top-flight along with Man City, and only Liverpool and Arsenal have a better defensive record at this stage.
Key to their solidity is the form of Fabian Schar, an ever-present this season and for whom a new deal is in the offing according to Football Insider.
The outlet note that despite interest from across Europe, Newcastle are hopeful of tying the 31-year-old down to an extension on his current deal, which runs out at the end of the season.Read on caughtoffside.com