On the same day Newcastle’s leaky backline once again crumbled, former Magpies defender Florian Lejuene helped his Alaves side to a draw against Barcelona.

Interim boss Graeme Jones saw his side keep out the Champions League holders, Chelsea, until the 65th minute at St James’ Park.

But once Thomas Tuchel’s side broke the deadlock, Newcastle’s defence once again folded like a deck of cards and allowed the league leaders to score three times in the space of 16 minutes to put the game beyond doubt.

It extended our winless start to the campaign and meant we have now conceded 23 goals in 10 Premier League games.

Lejeune fares far better than Newcastle

(Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images)


Yesterday evening, Lejeune’s Alaves side travelled to the Nou Camp to face a Barcelona team who would be playing for the first time since the sacking of Ronald Koeman.

Memphis Depay gave the hosts the lead early in the second half with a stunning curling effort.

But Alaves equalised just three minutes later through Luis Rioja, who was played in by another former Toon player Joselu.

Barcelona pressed for a winner but they couldn’t break down a resolute Alaves defence that was led by Lejeune.

FC Barcelona v Deportivo Alaves - La Liga Santander
(Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)

The Frenchman finished last night’s clash with an astonishing 11 clearances as he swatted aside any balls into the penalty area.

The 30-year-old also made two tackles and four interceptions in a dominant defensive display (WhoScored).

He also had the most touches (48) in the Alaves side and even had one shot on target and completed one dribble.

FC Barcelona v Deportivo Alaves - LaLiga Santander
(Photo by Urbanandsport/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

After spending last season on loan at the La Liga side, Lejeune made a permanent move from Tyneside to Spain in the summer.

Lejeune was plagued with injuries during his time on the Toon and missed 59 games (Transfermarkt) across three seasons due to unavailability.

After six games out-of-favour of the Alaves side, Lejeune has returned in the last two games and helped his team to four points from those games. He did start the first three games of the La Liga season for manager Javi Calleja.

He looks to have overcome his injury struggles and is now playing a starring role in frustrating teams in the ilk of Barcelona, last season’s Copa del Rey winners, whilst Newcastle continue to be plagued with defensive errors.

Have something to tell us about this article?