Anthony Gordon scored a somewhat controversial goal to give Newcastle the three points in a huge game for Eddie Howe’s side at St James Park on Saturday.
Gordon’s goal survived three VAR checks before being awarded, settling a fierce battle in the North East between the two sides.
The Magpies have managed to deal with everything that has been thrown at them in the last few weeks. Injuries, Sando Tonali’s suspension and now Arsenal.
It was a gritty display where Howe’s side had to weather storms while causing Arsenal issues themselves throughout the 90 minutes with this statement win likely to give Gunners boss Mikel Arteta sleepless nights.
A spiky game saw Kai Havertz and Bruno Guimarães stay on the pitch despite cases for red cards going in their favour with Newcastle’s off-the-ball discipline a real highlight from this. Mix that with their hardworking attitude, it will take a lot to beat this side under Howe.
In fact, it was hard work and endeavour that gave Newcastle their controversial goal, with Joe Willock refusing to give up on a loose ball, before he delivered into the box. David Raye flapped at the cross before Joelinton outmuscled Gabriel for Gordon to slot home.
VAR checks on Willock’s ball recovery on the touchline in addition to a possible push on Gabriel and a handball went in Newcastle’s favour, giving them the three points.
Who stood out for Newcastle?
It was a game where almost every single player will come away with huge credit. Shape and discipline was the highlight for Newcastle with individuals excelling.
Toni Livramento impressed at right back after coming on in place of the injured Dan Burn, with Kieran Trippier excelling at left-back after moving over.
Fabian Schar caught the eye though, putting in a strong display at the centre of defence, dealing with everything Arsenal threw at him. Jamaal Lascelles won important headers, whilst making an excellent last-ditch tackle on Eddie Nketiah.
Sean Longstaff put in a typical, all-action display in the centre of midfield with his energy levels proving crucial alongside Joelinton.