Newcastle United edged past West Bromwich Albion at St James’ Park on Saturday afternoon to win their first game in 15 days.
The Magpies took an early lead after Miguel Almiron scored after just 20 seconds, but Slaven Bilic’s side hit back after the break with a goal from Darnell Furlong, before Dwight Gayle spared Steve Bruce from potential embarrassment with a fine finish on his first appearance of the season.
Bruce revealed he would be missing a “big chunk of players” before the Premier League game at home against West Brom on Saturday, with Martin Dubravka and Allan Saint-Maximin ruled out due to injury.
But that doesn’t excuse the shocking display by those who were trusted to start instead, although arguably none more so than former Norwich left-back Jamal Lewis, who has looked out-of-sorts ever since he signed on a five-year deal in the summer. His market value is estimated at £13.5m via Transfermarkt, though his latest display will have left a lot to be desired.
As per SofaScore, the 22-year-old was ranked as the worst player on the pitch with an abysmal grade of 6.2 out of ten – he lost possession 11 times, lost 100% of his duels, and failed to register a single tackle or complete a single dribble from three attempts.
ChronicleLive handed Lewis a miserable rating of 6/10 and claimed he ‘got in a tussle with Furlong and now needs to stay cool after booking’, whilst 90min were equally scathing in their assessment by giving him a grade below, insisting he ‘was at fault for the equaliser on 50 minutes and was shot for confidence after that.’
This kind of hot-headed attitude is the last thing Bruce needs to deal with at the moment as he battles a squad crises at the club.
It’s hardly surprising the full-back was taken off after 69′ minutes, although you do have to wonder why he even started in the first place, as he has arguably done very little to justify ten starts so far this season, especially when you consider the fact that Matt Ritchie was once again available for selection.