sport news How Newcastle became masters of the dark arts - with Eddie Howe studying Diego ... trends now

sport news How Newcastle became masters of the dark arts - with Eddie Howe studying Diego ... trends now
sport news How Newcastle became masters of the dark arts - with Eddie Howe studying Diego ... trends now

sport news How Newcastle became masters of the dark arts - with Eddie Howe studying Diego ... trends now

During his 15 months out of the game, Eddie Howe spent time in Madrid. He did not return enthused by the artwork of Picasso, Dali and Goya. It was the dark arts of Diego Simeone he had noted.

For a nice guy who could not organise a backline — as was often levelled at him at Bournemouth — the Newcastle boss has built a pugnacious band of brothers whose defence is seldom breached. Nick Pope has kept 10 straight clean sheets.

There is, however, far more to that resistance than ‘the world’s best goalkeeper’, as team-mate Bruno Guimaraes labelled Pope this week.

Eddie Howe's Newcastle are using every wily tactic in the book to gatecrash the top four

Eddie Howe's Newcastle are using every wily tactic in the book to gatecrash the top four

Newcastle are clipping the wings of the established order and ruffling feathers as they do so

Newcastle are clipping the wings of the established order and ruffling feathers as they do so

It is also the wily, underhand practices made infamous by Simeone and Atletico Madrid that have turned Newcastle into the country’s most obdurate opponents.

They are clipping the wings of the established order and ruffling feathers while they are at it. As Howe himself said: ‘We’re not here to be popular, we are here to compete.’

If that was the manager allowing himself a rare bark, his players have backed it up with their bite. Joelinton has assumed the role of chief enforcer, and no player has more than his seven Premier League yellow cards this season. Captain Jamaal Lascelles has been booked twice — both for interference while warming up as a substitute. Talk about a 12th man.

Eddie Howe spent time in Spain where he studied Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone

Eddie Howe spent time in Spain where he studied Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone

Newcastle are the only team to take points off league leaders Arsenal at the Emirates this season, and they did so by running down the clock and winding up Mikel Arteta. They snarled and they smiled, depending on which would provoke the most irritation.

In the hours after

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