Sat 6 Apr 2024, 19:48 · Ash Harrison

Bitter Fulham boss accuses Eddie Howe of gamesmanship after Newcastle goalkeeper picked up a knock

Bitter Fulham boss accuses Eddie Howe of gamesmanship after Newcastle goalkeeper picked up a knock
Getty Images
Share Tweet

Newcastle United picked up a reputation last season for employing the 'dark arts' of timewasting to see out games, and that accusation has reared its head again after the 0-1 win over Fulham.

Eddie Howe's side struggled to find their footing in a first half that was dominated by Fulham. Even when in possession, Newcastle never looked like doing anything with so many passes finding Fulham players rather than our own.

On around 21 minutes, Martin Dubravka went to ground holding his knee and had to be treated on the field, this gave Eddie Howe a perfect opportunity to address his players and fire a rake into them in the hopes that they'd get a grip on the game.

Dubravka then went down a second time later on in the half after colliding with Emil Krafth and the Slovakian looked visibly uncomfortable for the rest of the half, opting to throw rather than kick the ball.


Marco Silva accused Eddie Howe of telling Dubravka to go down

When a goalkeeper goes to ground for treatment, they, unlike outfield players, don't have to go off the pitch for 30 seconds, so Fulham boss Marco Silva has accused Dubravka of faking an injury to allow Howe to have his touchline dressing down. (via Newcastle World)

“Some moments Newcastle tried to break our momentum with the goalkeeper twice and players on the grass. They were struggling in some moments of the first-half.

“Yes, it was tactical. The first one is clear. They gave feedback for the goalkeeper to go down. When the goalkeeper is down the referee has to start the game, no way for the game to keep going. It was a tactical decision from them.

“It was the decision of Eddie. No comments on that.”

Eddie Howe responded to the accusation

Meanwhile, Eddie Howe has responded to the accusation saying it wasn't a deliberate ploy, but it he did take full advantage of the situation.

“No. Martin Dubravka was feeling something in his leg and we were saying to go down if you’re feeling something. But that gave us a chance to get the group in and that was much needed at that moment in the game.

“Martin’s injury allowed us to regroup and refocus, and sometimes the game can get away from you very quickly. But it was change of attitude that made the difference and some very good players.”

As we said in our post-match write-up, Fulham never really threatened our goal despite their domination, so maybe Silva should focus more on what his side were doing rather than worrying about what Eddie Howe was up to.