Former Newcastle midfielder Jermaine Jenas has slammed current Magpies defender Jamaal Lascelles following the opening day defeat to Arsenal on Sunday.
The Magpies captain lost Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang just before the hour mark, with the Gabon international coolly slotting home to give the Gunners the win.
And Jenas, talking on Match of the Day 2, cited by Nothing But Newcastle, hit out at Lascelles, claiming the defender was scared of the prolific striker’s ability to run in behind.
These are the problems that Lascelles found himself in. He wanted to get close to Aubameyang but he’s scared about the run in behind.
He gives him a little bit to say ‘I’m going to go in behind’ and immediately Jamaal Lascelles drops off.
At this point, he’s at Aubameyang’s mercy because he can go anywhere he wants. Jamaal Lascelles doesn’t know where he is. It’s a great touch and a great strike at goal.
Many Newcastle fans were then quick to join the former midfielder in blasting Lascelles.
Twitter: Lascelles is an absolutely appalling defender the man just stands and follows the ball https://t.co/0yGmr4tULP (@GeorgeRelton)
Twitter: #nufc the goal is absolutely 100% Lascelles fault, again, he’s not good enough, put him on the bench with Darlow, h… https://t.co/StpdnAmYlg (@rafsgaff)
Twitter: Why on earth was Jamaal Lascelles run upto toward the ball player instead of keeping an eye on Aubameyang. Rookie d… https://t.co/fDdST29eDV (@PrimeDiame)
Read Newcastle verdict
Although Lascelles didn’t have the best of starts to the new campaign, his fellow defenders also failed to shine. The skipper’s mistake did prove costly, however, after becoming one of the club’s most consistent performers at St James’ Park, it would certainly be a harsh decision by Steve Bruce to drop the player after just one match.
Bruce has the likes of Federico Fernandez and Florian Lejeune in his defensive ranks and may also tinker with formations in the coming weeks.
However, even though he had a poor start to the season, Lascelles is still one of the club’s best defenders and everyone associated with the club should stick by him, instead of jumping down his neck at every given opportunity.