Jamal Lewis badly let Steve Bruce down against Leeds United on Wednesday night as the Newcastle United defender got torn apart by Raphinha in a 5-2 thrashing at Elland Road.
The Toon endured a frustrating first half in West Yorkshire with Marcelo Bielsa’s Whites dominating possession, leaving the Magpies to feed off scraps as the visitors struggled to connect yet returned to the dressing room at the break with the score miraculously level.
Yet a humbling was on the cards, and that was exactly what Newcastle were dealt when the floodgates opened in the second period, with Stuart Dallas, Ezgjan Alioski and Jack Harrison unleashing an 11-minute blitz on a helpless Karl Darlow.
Leeds ended the match with a mammoth 25 shots to their name with 10 on target compared to Newcastle’s toothless four directed on Illan Meslier’s net with five sailing wide of the post and one effort blocked, per SofaScore.
Raphinha brought the magic to Bielsa’s plans on Leeds’ right-flank with seven shots and two key balls, with the 24-year-old comfortably having Lewis’ number throughout the evening encounter at Elland Road.
Bruce had high hopes for what the future would have in store for Lewis when the 22-year-old joined from Norwich City in the summer in a £15million deal that could rise to £20m with add-ons but saw nothing of the sorts in West Yorkshire.
“Jamal is a very exciting prospect,” Bruce said, via The Shields Gazette. “He is only 22 and has a wonderful future ahead of him. I hope he’s a Newcastle United full-back for years to come.”
Lewis has now started 11 of his 12 Premier League appearances this season but was massively out of his comfort zone at Elland Road, where the Northern Ireland international completed just 12 of his 21 passes for a mere 57% completion rate.
The young full-back offered no attacking presence, either, with zero crosses attempted, no key balls recorded, zero shots on goal, just one successful dribble and only one of four long passes finding teammates, while losing possession 10 times.
Bruce rarely saw Lewis offer a hand defensively as Leeds wreaked havoc on a disjointed Newcastle line-up, with the Canaries product dribbled past once, making just one successful tackle, one interception and two clearances.
Lewis would leave the field at the full-time whistle having contended just three ground duels and two aerial contests, with his horrific performance only worth of a 5.8 out of 10 match rating from SofaScore, the lowest of any player who started for either side.