Newcastle United closed on Premier League survival after winning a five-goal thriller with West Ham at St James’ Park – and dented the visitors’ hopes of playing in the Champions League next season.
The pivotal moment came shortly after the half hour. Issa Diop bundled into his own net after good work from Allan Saint-Maximin, with Craig Dawson then sent off for a second yellow card after committing a foul in the build-up.
Five minutes later it was 2-0. Lukasz Fabianski made a mess of catching the ball from a corner, it slipped through his fingers and landed at the feet of Joelinton, who made no mistake and tapped home.
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In the second half, West Ham forced Newcastle back and eventually grabbed a goal through Diop, who latched on to a Jarrod Bowen clipped cross and headed the ball past Martin Dubravka.
The game then took another twist as Ciaran Clark gave away a penalty, after a lengthy VAR and on-field check by Kevin Friend. Up stepped Jesse Lingard, who smashed the ball into the back of the net.
But the Hammers could not hold onto the point as substitute Joe Willock proved his worth, heading in to send the Magpies nine points clear of the relegation zone.
Next up for Steve Bruce’s is a tough away trip to Liverpool while David Moyes’ team make the trip from east to west London to take on Chelsea, who are also vying for a Champions League spot.
TALKING POINT – Leaky Hammers finally lose
In the past three games West Ham have conceded seven goals and still managed to collect seven points out of a possible nine. But it finally caught up with them today, costly errors from two of their most experienced players Dawson and Fabianski meant they ended the first half two goals down and with only ten men. Despite a spirited fight back in the second half the Hammers couldn’t hold on to grab a valuable point in their quest for Champions League football. At the end of the season David Moyes may well look back to this game with regret as his side simply didn’t do enough when they dominated possession.
More to follow….
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