Perhaps the most depressing of these top/worst five articles to write so far; let’s ruin any sense of excitement our summer signings have instilled in us by looking at our worst team performances of 13/14, which all take place in 2014.
4.43 – West Brom (a) – 01 Jan 14
The start of 2014 brought with it the beginning of the downfall (I don’t count the previous loss to Arsenal since we actually played well) thanks to a 1-0 loss to West Brom, who had been without a win in two months, and a lifeless display that would set the tone for the second half of the season.
The match opened with a boring, soggy first half with occasional flashes of danger coming from the more talented Amalfitano brother, while at the other end the fan favourite Williamson set-piece routine would result in our best chance of the match. Ben Arfa replaced Gouffran at half-time, but he may as well have stayed on the bench such was his performance, and around the hour mark things got worse; Debuchy was sent off for a reckless two footed lunge, then Coloccini suffered the injury that would rule him out for two months. From here West Brom pushed their advantage until 3 minutes from time when a through ball to Vydra carved open the Newcastle defence and Krul brought the attacker down. Berahino scored the penalty.
Despite Debuchy’s sending off and 2.93 rating, that wasn’t enough to win the mug of the match award, which instead went to Shola Ameobi for one of our worst five player performances of the season, as his inability to do anything of use leading the line resulted in a 2.28 rating and four fouls against him. Only Coloccini managed to break the 5.50 threshold, his 5.53 rating making him our man of the match.