The club’s record signing went off injured after 67 minutes with £10m-man Muto coming on for the final 23 minutes. The 27-year-old was completely ineffective, though, and according to stats site WyScout he only touched the ball five times in 23 minutes, making four passes – all successful.
Talking to the Chronicle after the game Muto said, “It was really hard. I felt isolated and I was always surrounded by three or four opponents. As a forward that was very tough. As a team we struggled overall.”
Muto moved to Newcastle from Mainz for £9.6m last summer and hasn’t seen much success at St James’ Park. He’s only scored once in 19 games and didn’t look like threatening against Norwich last Saturday.
However, it was hard not to have sympathy for him at Carrow Road and for Joelinto before him, with both strikers struggling for service.
Bruce won’t be best pleased with Muto’s comments at a time when he’s struggling to hear anything positive from the fans. One supporter said he was surprised things had fallen apart so quickly. Another wondered whether Muto would ever play again.
Here are the best reactions from Newcastle fans on Twitter:
— Clinton Forde (@FordeHaveMercy) August 19, 2019
— Jordan Morris (@JordNufcmorris) August 19, 2019
You tell 'em Yoshi. #NUFC
— Daniel (@danjpeg) August 19, 2019
Wow bit early in SB career for players to be questioning the team and how they were set up……isn't?
— Pasty Guy (@Joeeeeeee_96) August 20, 2019
@NUFC Plastic Geordie Bruce should realise he hasn’t got a clue
Good on him coming out and saying how it is unlike others.
— Graeme Smith (@GraemeS36013244) August 20, 2019
Never saw this under Rafa. Another terminal sign sl very early.
Never thought it would fall apart this quickly.. does Muto know that he isn't following the company line? He should be coming out saying how great everything is
— Callum Vass (@CallumVass) August 20, 2019
Bruce will be gone by Christmas
— Andrew Caine (@AndrewCainePT) August 20, 2019
Criticism of the regime will not be tolerated.
Interesting to see if he ever plays again ..
— Phil Adamson (@PhilAdamson1) August 20, 2019