Micah Richards and Jamie Carragher spoke about Newcastle United looking “nervous” during the Champions League music for the opening game against AC Milan at the San Siro on Tuesday night.
This was Newcastle’s first Champions League adventure in two decades, with many players experiencing the highest level of club football for the first time in their careers.
But former Manchester City right-back Micah Richards referred to Jacob Murphy, who started the game, and how he looked “nervous” when the Champions League music played.
Anfield legend Jamie Carragher, who won the Champions League with Liverpool, understood the situation because he believes it is “something different” to other club games and “gets something out of you”, as he said CBS Sports on Paramount+ (9/19/23 at 7:45 p.m.).
Ultimately, those initial nerves didn’t show on the pitch as Eddie Howe’s side started comfortably and cheerfully.
At this point, AC Milan, who had just lost 5-1 to rivals Inter at the weekend, turned the screws and put Newcastle’s defense under pressure – Nick Pope was praised as Man of the Match for his performance.
“AC Milan should have won that game, they had 24 shots on goal,” Carragher said. “They were absolutely dominant. PSG next for Newcastle at St James’ Park.”
Richards then added: “Were Newcastle a bit nervous during the Champions League music? I saw a photo of Murphy before the game. As soon as the anthem came out, he started smiling and acting like he was (nervous).”
Carragher replied: “When you go to the Champions League, we’ve all played there, it’s something different mentally. It’s a higher standard of football. Different referees.
“It’s not just physical but also mental, being at the highest level of football can take a lot out of you. Newcastle will be delighted to get something in place for the first game.”
Positive start for Newcastle
This is a very good point for Newcastle and a great opportunity to make their mark on the Champions League stage again.
Traveling to Europe is not easy, yes, AC Milan could have scored four or five goals. But the players showed resilience, fight and toughness needed to succeed in this fierce competition.
Besides, or so they hope, Newcastle will do their most damage at St James’ Park.
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