Newcastle United's 2023 is wrapped up and after the highs of the first half of the year it has fizzled out spectacularly in December.
In what was possibly Newcastle's worst performance of the season, Chris Wood's Nottingham Forest tore the Magpies apart with the former Newcastle striker helping himself to a hat-trick at St James' Park. That's two more goals than he scored at the ground when he was on the books here.
Eddie Howe had his first-choice back four on the pitch from the start but you'd never have guessed it. Disjointed, slow, and disinterested none of them gave the Forest forwards anything to think about.
Martin Dubravka conceded three goals and was at fault for absolutely none of them. Left completely exposed by his defence with Kieran Trippier yet again playing a forward onside allowing them in to score.
Anthony Elanga had Dan Burn on toast all game until he was withdrawn early in the second half as Tino Livramento replaced him. In the same sub break, Howe hooked Miguel Almiron and threw on Callum Wilson, but to be honest, he could have not bothered sending on a replacement and Miggy's withdrawal still would have improved the side.
The Paraguayan is back to being the Miggy of old lately. All the running and no idea. He constantly made the wrong decision in the final third, his lack of ability to use his right foot is beyond a joke now and his only shot on target was the one he hit towards his own goal.
Lewis Miley once again can come away with his head held high, but he's about the only one.
Liverpool and Manchester City are up next in the league and I just can't see us picking up any points there either. I'm not going to lie, I'm absolutely terrified about the upcoming FA Cup clash with Sunderland.
I'm resisting the temptation to point the finger at Eddie Howe completely because it has been an unusual season and a huge learning experience for him, but the time to point fingers is getting ever nearer. Howe said after the game that this week he'll have them in for proper training for the first time in months and by God do they need it. I just don't think it will be enough.
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