Newcastle United got off to winning ways at last with an absolutely thrilling 6-2 rout over Norwich, as Steve McClaren recorded his first win in the Magpies hotseat.
Though the win is unlikely to alleviate all pressure, with the crunch Tyne-Wear derby on the horizon, the Toon couldn’t have asked for better preparation.
Key to the stunning victory was the interplay of Newcastle’s new look front-line. The pace and power of Moussa Sissoko is complimented the guile of Ayoze Perez, presence of Aleksandar Mitrovic and energy of four goal hero Giorgino Wijnaldum.
The Dutchman excels breaking from deep, intelligently holding on to the ball and releasing the likes of Sissoko. The enigmatic Frenchman plays with such intensity when on form it’s hard to stop him. More centrally, Perez is as skilfull as you’d expect from a young Spanish starlet, who buzzes around the £13.5m Mitrovic – a traditional centre forward.
It’s hard not to get excited about this fluid front three after performances like today, with each of the quadrant playing a huge part in the goals scored. However, some thought has to be given to the eight previous match days, perhaps aside from Chelsea, of course.
Could McClaren posses one of the most varied attacks in the league? When it all clicks like the Norwich game, you would surely back the Toon to score against most sides in the league. No, let’s not proclaim the season is saved, but it’s hard to argue against them netting in any fixture when all on song.
The defence clearly rode their luck at times, with backs pinned – if not fused- to the wall early on in the second half. In fact, until Mitrovic widened the gap to 4-2, the visitors were made to look like Barcelona – just in a garish yellow kit.
The hyperbole cannot begin. Especially with Sunderland just a week away. And Big Sam.
But, positives can be taken from the last three games, aside from a 45 minute capitulation to Manchester City. The Toon can be entertaining, they can express themselves.
The season isn’t saved now, the season starts now.
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