Life at the upper echelons of football is marked by its cutthroat competitiveness. Newcastle United’s ambitions are extremely high these days, given their desire to challenge the established elite in the sport. This necessitates setting rigorous standards, which most players on the team are already accustomed to. However, one player, Lewis Hall, who may not have been familiar with these demands previously, certainly is now.
Alan Shearer recently conducted an analysis of the 19-year-old’s performance at Chelsea in the past season, in an article titled “How Not To Score: Alan Shearer’s guide to missing chances” on The Athletic. Shearer’s critique of Hall’s involvement was notably harsh. He dissected a particular opportunity Chelsea had in a match against Manchester United, a game that Chelsea ultimately lost 4-1 in May.
The scenario unfolded with the score tied at 0-0 at Old Trafford. Hall made a run down the left wing and delivered a pass to Mykhailo Mudryk, who had a clear opportunity to score but failed to connect with the ball when faced only with the goalkeeper. Shearer’s analysis of the play was critical, noting that the pass from Lewis Hall could have been better. He pointed out that a more accurate pass would have allowed Mudryk to maintain his momentum and potentially score. The ensuing confusion and missed chance, according to Shearer, was primarily Mudryk’s responsibility.
It’s important to acknowledge that Chelsea endured a turbulent season and had difficulties scoring goals in general, so solely blaming Hall for their struggles would be an exaggeration. At the age of 19, Hall is still in the early stages of his career, with plenty to learn. The fact that he hasn’t been immediately thrust into the Newcastle first-team despite his £28 million permanent move next summer provides him with the opportunity to refine his skills.
Eddie Howe’s track record of developing players on the coaching front is promising, which bodes well for Hall’s growth as a footballer.