Shearer: Why didn’t Newcastle go for the cup?

Image for Shearer: Why didn’t Newcastle go for the cup?


It looks, at long long last, as if Newcastle United and their fans might be able to rest a little bit easier.

An impassioned 2-2 draw against Bournemouth on Saturday helped the Magpies go seven points clear of the relegation zone, and you would have to argue that, barring some kind of unprecedented capitulation, they are safe from the dreaded drop.

With every silver lining comes a cloud, however, and after an upturn in form since the turn of the year, many fans must be wondering why the club couldn’t have aimed their sights a little bit higher and a little bit further from the outset this season.

This is certainly a question that Alan Shearer is asking, and the Toon legend is baffled as to why his former club didn’t at least try and put together some kind of decent cup run.

Writing in his column for The Sun about Wolves’ Saturday evening victory over Manchester United, he said: “Let us also salute the brilliance of Wolves.

“They’ve shown great respect for the FA Cup and put out strong teams to try and win it when the likes of Newcastle, Leicester and Bournemouth did not.

“Why sides which are unlikely to get relegated do that I will never know.

“It sends out a bad message to the fans who want to experience the joy of winning silverware.

“Of course they want to stay in the Premier League but there is no substitute for a triumphant day out at Wembley, that is what makes for the best memories.”

Admittedly, things haven’t always been as rosy as they are on Tyneside right now. There were large spells of the season where survival didn’t look as nailed on as it does at the moment, and in those periods, you can see why Rafa Benitez might have prioritised the league one the cup.

But when all is said and done, we’re talking about a couple of extra matches, played on weekends when you would be in league action anyway, that could give supporters a glimpse of what winning a trophy feels like.

You can’t put a price on that, surely, especially when you consider that the Magpies were ousted from the FA Cup by a below strength Watford side.

That match was more than winnable, and the result, along with Shearer’s queries, will have fans demanding answers as to where priorities actually lie at St. James’ Park.

Share this article