The last time both Manchester United and Newcastle United met, the Red Devils overcame the Magpies 2-0 at Wembley Stadium to win their first major silverware in approximately six years. Since then, the team from the Red Half of Manchester had not been performing well in the English Premier League, and was thrashed by arch-rival Liverpool and held to a goalless draw by Southampton. The winless streak continued last night, after Erik ten Hag’s men travelled to St. James’ Park and defeated by a determined Eddie Howe side with a comfortable 2-0 score line. The victory allowed Newcastle to jump over Man United for the third spot of the Premier League.
The Red Devils Lacked Hunger
53-year-old Dutch coach ten Hag made only two replacements from his team that defeated Fulham 3-1 in the FA Cup Quarterfinal before the recent international break, while Eddie Howe named an unchanged line-up that edged past Nottingham Forest at City Ground. The favourite of this game Manchester United looked to be restless and could not find solid momentum throughout the 90 minutes plus added time; They only managed six shots against the home side, with only a single attempt was fired at the goal, as compared to Newcastle United’s 22 shots (Six on target).
Magpies almost broke the deadlock in the 16th minute, when Alexander Isak and Jacob Murphy took turns to challenge David de Gea. The Spaniard acrobatically performed a double-save to keep Eddie Howe’s men at bay. Then, seven minutes before the first added time was awarded, Sean Longstaff fired a long-range effort that went just wide, meaning both teams will be going into the second 45 minutes scoreless. Newcastle United’s efforts finally paid off in the 65th minute, after Bruno Guimarães’ delivery was headed back into the dangerous zone by Allan Saint-Maximin. The 26-year-old Frenchman’s pass was converted into the back of the net by Joe Willock, drawing the first blood for the first side.
Magpies almost extended their lead in the match, courtesy of Joelinton and Fabian Schär. The tall forward, who came on several minutes earlier, had a powerful header saved by de Gea, before Schär’s own shot was met by the bar. Eddie Howe’s men soon sealed the match’s victory, after set-piece specialist Kieran Trippier whipped in a delicious delivery for Callum Wilson to score. The England international’s eight goal of the season meant Newcastle United had secured only its first win over Manchester United in the Premier League in more than three years.
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First Premier League Victory Over the Devils in Close to Four Years
Ten Hag certainly was not happy with his team’s performance last night. He said: “I was surprised we couldn’t match the determination and passion and desire of the opponent. You know before, when you travel to St. James’ Park to Newcastle, what will be going on, especially after we won the [League] Cup. If you want to win big games, you have to be mature and I didn’t see that today on the pitch. We didn’t enter the opponent’s box and they could easily come into our box. What we did well was blocking shots from the chances they created but we have to do it much better.”
The winning-team manager Eddie Howe took the opportunity to compliment his ream, stating that “They fully deserved the win” and “Luck was not the reason why they won”. The head coach of the Magpies also added, “We knocked at the door the whole game, I think statistically we were very strong today. So I’m really pleased with the players. That was my words after the game. We’ve got three games in six days, we have to be focused on West Ham. But we’re in a good vein of form. Three wins in a row is difficult to do in the Premier League, so we’ll look forward to those games.”
Manchester United will face Brentford mid-week for the next Premier League clash, while Newcastle United is set to travel to the London Stadium to encounter David Moyes’ West Ham United. Elsewhere in another league match-up, Manchester City humiliated Liverpool with a 4-1 score line at the Etihad Stadium, and kept its pressure on leader Arsenal going.