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Jamie Carragher told Sky Sports during their live coverage of Newcastle’s defeat at Aston Villa on Saturday that Karl Darlow’s actions during the opening goal were ‘very strange’.

The Sky commentator couldn’t understand why the Newcastle shot-stopper didn’t use his hands to try and punch the ball away as Watkins headed Villa into the lead.

Villa left-back Matt Targett put in a cross from the left-hand side, which Fabian Schar struggled to clear before Watkins pounced on the loose ariel ball and nodded home.

The Streets Won’t Forget XI

The Streets Won’t Forget XI

Carragher questioned the manner in which Darlow dealt with the ball as he felt that he acted like a defender and not a goalkeeper.

“It’s strange from the goalkeeper, he doesn’t put his hands up,” said Carragher. “It’s almost like he’s trying to go for a challenge like a defender with his head.

“I have just noticed that on the replay. Very strange for the goalkeeper. He made it far too easy for Ollie Watkins.

“I just wonder whether the touch [from Schar] puts him off in some ways? His hands are by his side and then it happens so quickly. Oh no, he almost pulls out of it as well. The striker is a lot braver.”

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For large parts of this season, Darlow has been one of Newcastle’s best players, but in recent weeks, he is also feeling the heat from the burning St James’ Park kitchen.

Newcastle’s woeful form isn’t helping anybody and it’s only resulting in one thing and that’s the club heading towards the drop.

Not only are Newcastle struggling at the back, but they aren’t scoring the goals either, which is only mounting even more pressure on the already under-fire Steve Bruce.

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