A Longstaff and a long shot flatten bully boys.
Pub side Burnley were sent packing by a spirited Newcastle United performance meaning the Magpies leapfrogged the visitors and moved into 13th place in the Premier League table.
A wonder strike from Centre Half, turned goal scorer, Fabian Schär, rightly gained praise from all quarters, whilst another outstanding performance from local youngster Longstaff was this time capped off with a goal of his own.
Both goals came in the opening period, one that had seen the hosts largely on top. And whilst the second half was slightly more even in terms of chances, in truth even Burnley’s pub team, hoof ball approach didn’t rattle Rafa’s man.
A well deserved and accomplished display all round. And a moment in Schar’s goal that few who were there to see it will forget!
Rafa would make just the one change before the game with Manquillo coming in for Yedlin. The change seemed a deliberate ploy to add a little more physicality into the Newcastle ranks.
STARTING XI: Dubravka, Manquillo, Schar, Lascelles, Lejeune, Ritchie, Hayden, Longstaff (Diame, 85), Perez (Joselu, 87), Almirón (Dummett, 80), Rondon
Newcastle started the brighter of the two sides. Accomplished and controlled in possession. And whilst new boy Almiron didn’t have the same eye catching impact as against Huddersfield, his movement and workrate caused the visitors no end of problems.
The home side were struggling to cause clear cut chances however and what was needed was a mistake or a moment of brilliance. What the paying public and watching millions got was very definitely the latter. On 27 minutes the ball was played back as far as Schar who stepped forward and unleashed a wonder strike from 30 yards that left Heaton clutching at thin air as the ball hit the inside of the post and almost burst the net.
Give it another quarter of an hour and it was two nil Newcastle. A ball out to Almiron and his cross would then drop to Longstaff who stayed calm, took a touch and fired low past Heaton again.
For Longstaff, his second senior goal and first in the Premier League it was a wonderful moment. And he’d later be cheered off to ‘he’s one of our own’.
Just before half time Burnley had their one big chance. A flick on to an unmarked Tarkowski at the back post gave the number 5 a huge chance, unmarked, to smash home. Instead he blazed over the bar.
Burnley were at least a little better in the second period. Better in so much as they kicked, literally pushed and bullied their way back into the game. A style that a non-league team may have resorted to in order to get anything from the game.
No joy for Sean Dyche. All joy for the Toon Army.
Onwards and upwards.