Newcastle 3-1 Southampton: Perez masterclass seals survival & sends NUFC up to 12th

A brilliant win on what could be Rafa Benitez’s penultimate home game as Newcastle manager, with hat-trick hero Ayoze Perez putting in another stunning performance at St James’ Park.

I had two thoughts before the game. Will we A) play with the shackles off after the big win at Leicester and put in a big effort in what could be Benitez’s penultimate home game at St James’ Park or B) have one eye on the beach and become complacent after the last week’s victory all but ended our fears of going down. Fortunately, it was the former that came true!

We were absolutely excellent in the first half, controlling the game, winning every first and second ball and making the most of our dominance with two well deserved goals – something we couldn’t do in the devastating 0-1 defeat against Palace in our last home game.

The win not only secures survival (although any relegation fears were all but over after our win at Leicester), but takes us up to 12th, with us leapfrogging Bournemouth and being just two points behind West Ham.

Perez was phenomenal. Not only did he show brilliant attacking instincts to score his first Premier League hat-trick, his all round play was outstanding, showing some incredible footwork, retaining possession impressively in tight areas and linking the play expertly.

Here’s all three of his goals today:

Honourable mentions must also go out to Dummett; who bailed us out at the back several times and Hayden; who was monstrous in the middle once again, while Ritchie and Almiron’s work rate was infectious once again, helping us get on the front foot immediately and setting the tone for what was another big win at St James’ Park.

Here’s how the bottom half of the table looks after today’s result:

Elsewhere today, Bournemouth lost at home against Fulham, Watford swept Huddersfield aside and West Ham were held to a 2-2 draw against Leicester – with us just two points behind the Hammers as a result.

Just THREE games left for us now, with an intriguing home clash against title-chasing Liverpool sandwiched between two winnable away trips to Brighton and Fulham:

  • Brighton (A)
  • Liverpool (H)
  • Fulham (A)

Wor Flags also played their part today, with this fantastic display in the Gallowgate reading “Things aren’t always black and white – United as One against prejudice.”

A brilliant effort today and another well deserved win at St James’ Park – our sixth home win in our last seven in the league!

(Fancy writing for us? Send any articles/ideas over to us at NUFCblogsubmissions@gmail.com & we’ll get back to you!)

About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

122 thoughts on “Newcastle 3-1 Southampton: Perez masterclass seals survival & sends NUFC up to 12th

  1. Brighton have had 3 shots on target in their last 5 games combined. They are going down next year (if they survive this year). Don’t go there Isaac.

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  2. Brighton have been woeful. Chris Hughton does great jobs but it also went wrong for him at Norwich too. Wonder what it is about him? Maybe the clubs he manages are small so their luck runs out?

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  3. Spurs are actually playing pretty crap. Does anybody want the CL places? Brighton just hoping for 0-0 and putting all of their eggs in a result against NUFC basket. Not sure if they will need more points and their GD is a lot better than Cardiff. Would be a bummer for Warnock if they go down on GD.

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  4. The 3 games against City might have sucked the life out of Spurs. They must be mentally exhausted but they should still beat Brighton.

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  5. We have Clive Allen commentating who I really like. However, I am not sure if I like players commentating on their ex-teams. The Neville’s and Carragher especially cannot hide their bias. How hard can it be to find a neutral?

    Clive isn’t too bad, but seriously, there about 18 million ex-footballers doing the pundit duties so just get a neutral.

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  6. Danny Rose is sh!t. Criteria for getting in England squad – you are English and play for Spurs.

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  7. And Trippier! Takes a good free kick. Was totally flattered by the fact that England played dross teams at the WC. Even Croatia were not that good.

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  8. Brighton remind me of us in the 1st 10 games. I would seriously rather play in The Championship than play like that. At least we have picked up in 2019. We are much easier on the eye since we switched to wing backs.

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  9. It’s a shame Almiron will miss the last 3 games, but it’s pleasing to hear his injury isn’t as bad as initially feared.
    But with him out, I think I’d like to see Rafa bring Muto in and have a look at him in the last 3 games. He doesn’t seem to be that no.9 forward, so that role behind Rondon that Almiron has been playing might actually suit him.

    We are safe now, so nothing is lost by putting him in – and he’s as good an option as Atsu or Kenedy imo.

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  10. Sharpy: I think it would be a bit daft to even have Kenedy on the bench. I would rather see an academy player than him because I think we are certain to send him back to Chelsea and he has done nothing in the games he has played anyway. He seemed promising last year but it just hasn’t worked out. Thank God we didn’t spend 15 million plus to buy him.

    I am not sure if it is his attitude or what. He has been making the wrong choices. He passes when he should take the man on and dribbles when he should pass. Either way, he loses the ball too much for a Rafa player.

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  11. Also, I doubt we will see Muto to start because Rafa will not want to make too many changes and Atsu deserves a start as much as Muto does. Hayden is carrying a knock so I think our midfield will be completely different with Shelvey getting a go because of the indifferent form of Ki. I reckon this will be the team, with Muto getting a run out later:

    Dubravka

    Manquillo Schar Lascelles Dummett Ritchie

    Shelvey Diame

    Perez Rondon Atsu

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  12. Here’s one for Stuart. Of Political Correctness gone mad. The FA have discontinued the practice of giving a case of Champagne to the Cup Final winners out of respect for players’ religious beliefs.

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  13. Well, I knew it was coming but I saw the first Manchester combined 11. Chris Sutton in The Mail thinks none of the Man U players would get in the City team. He might be right, but Man U do have some very talented players and most would get into OUR team.

    I don’t know what has happened to them. Even Smalling and Jones are not that bad. Maybe the pressure of Barcelona. Maybe a Mourinho hangover. Vertigo from sitting on their giant piles of cash?

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  14. BTW, because Man U were so bad against Everton I think pundits are going over the top in their criticism and I am loving it! That’s what they do though, in both directions. There are so many pundits and journos that they have to say something controversial, over the top or stupid to get noticed now.

    Jones and Smalling are not as bad as they are being painted. As I have said before though, I think I would take 2 of our centre backs over them. Lejeune, Schar and Dummett definitely. Maybe I have B&W glasses, I don’t know?

    There always seems to be this overreaction, both ways, with Man U. Perhaps it is because they have been media darlings for so long and so many of their ex-players are pundits or columnists? Anyway, let the hype begin. Whatever happens we wont be able to get away from it.

    I swear the Daily Mail devote half their sports section to Man U. The first “story” most days is Man U players pictured in their cars arriving at training FFS.

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  15. This is set up for redemption. I don’t think it will happen but stranger things have happened. NUFC beating MCFC for example. The mini-industry of journos, ex-players and giant TV touch screen warriors that now surrounds Man U have all written them off. And yet Arsenal and Chelsea have given them a Champions League lifeline, something to play for. They simply cannot be as bad as at Everton. Football has a strange way of defying expectations sometimes and even though I am loving Man U’s demise, a big part of me would like the media former suckups to end up with egg on their faces.

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  16. Eric Sykes:
    Here’s one for Stuart. Of Political Correctness gone mad. The FA have discontinued the practice of giving a case of Champagne to the Cup Final winners out of respect for players’ religious beliefs.

    More nonsense, Eric. The minorities are definitely catered for better than the majority now.

    Did you know in men’s cricket – international and domestic they no longer have man of the match. It’s player of the match. Even though women’s cricket is successful and popular, men aren’t allowed to be mentioned.

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  17. Stuart mate, it is absolute madness. If you carry their thinking through you would ban alcohol on airplanes because children and Muslims fly. The spraying of Champagne is just a celebratory event, it hardly has anything to do with the alcohol *and if it did, who cares, I don’t think you are offending anyone). The Yanks have gone the opposite. There is so much booze sprayed around in the locker rooms after a playoff win that they cover the furniture with plastic and hand out goggles to the players.

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  18. The Chronic are acting surprised that there would be a long queue for the NUFC Manager’s job, why?

    * 19th richest club in the world.

    * only 20 such jobs in the world and the best one’s are already taken.

    * Salary of up to 6 million a year (What Rafa gets).

    * 52,000 rabid fans every other week. Best away support in the league.

    * one club town.

    * able to bring in own support staff/coaches

    * complete control of football matters/no director of football.

    * can name the players you want or piggyback on Rafa’s selections for the 1st year.

    * Starting from a decent base, especially with the defense, the emergence of Hayden and Longstaff and the way Almiron has transformed the attack.

    * Charnley said budget is 50 million a year plus sales.

    Why wouldn’t there be a scramble for this job. Just because we have hired useless fckers in the past doesn’t mean it is not a good job.

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  19. Eric – £50m gets you nowt these days. Anderson cost £42m, Sigurdsson cost £46m and Richarlson was £45m. Our budget ain’t going to go that far is it?

    Also I have read somewhere that Fulham have refused away supporters tickets for the final game of the season. Can they do that?

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  20. Stuart: I looked it up on NUFC.com and my reading is that there is an away allocation. It is not totally clear, but it seems that NUFC fans have been buying tickets for other parts of the ground and that Fulham are cancelling any of those based on the post codes of the payments.

    Have a look on NUFC and see what you think.

    I am pretty sure that PL clubs have to make a certain number of tickets available to away supporters.

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  21. Think it will be a good game tonight. Fancy Man Utd might just might put a dent in City’s league chances. Although I also think we might do the same against Liverpool.

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  22. I don’t think anybody will fear Man U even next season. Part of Old Trafford was that you expected to lose and you knew the Refs were intimidated and against you. I think they went 6 years without a penalty there. There is a lot to fix and would you trust Ole, ex-Manager of Cardiff and Molde, to choose the right players? Or Ed Woodward. I didn’t realise he is a Chartered Accountant, you would never know it by how much they paid for players and the way they busted open their salary structure with Sanchez.

    They generate so much money that they will be around the top 4 but it looks like every year will be a struggle to get to the CL. That will mean they will continue to overpay for 2nd tier players.

    Pogba will do better in Madrid because 80% of the games are a stroll and that suits his style of play. He can Fancy Dan his way around the pitch and concentrate on twitter and Instagram.

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  23. And what the hell has happened to David De Gea. I never accepted the “best keeper in the world” rubbish. It was repeated so often by his pundit pals that some fans just assumed they were right. I am not sure if Ro Ferdinand has ever been right about anything !!!

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  24. I am also hearing excuses that De Gea and Rashford are playing crap because their contracts are not settled. What is not settled is that De Gea has been offered something like 250k and wants 350k a week and Rashford wants 200k instead of the 150k. Doesn’t seem to be much downside there. How could the inability to buy another Ferrari every month because of contract negotiations possibly distract them from football. I would say video games and Instagram might be more distracting.

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  25. Oh Crap. Mike Dean is the Ref on Saturday. Also, only 3% in Ed’s poll have us losing. Bad Omens, I will wait for Merse, Owen et al before making a prediction but it doesn’t look good. Whenever everybody expects one thing form NUFC we usually do the opposite.

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  26. Brighton are terrible though. They haven’t scored a goal in 7 games and will be sh!tting themselves and probably do what they did against Spurs and play for 0-0. That would probably see them safe because they have a much better GD than Cardiff.

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  27. The PFA player of the year is the most read football story in The Guardian. There are currently 513 comments all expressing amazement at Pogba’s inclusion and most suggesting other players more worthy.

    Apart from this vote everyone has turned on Pogba. Keane and Souness are treating him like a joke. There is no way he stays in this country past the summer.

    I saw a few point to the number of goals he scored as justification. But he has 7 that are non-penalties and one of those was putting in his own rebound from a missed penalty.

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  28. Allegedly Chelsea asking £30 million for Kenedy. Given his form this year would be too costly to take on a free

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  29. Ryder also made a joke in his prediction. He said it is Mike Dean’s world and we all just live in it. I don’t think I have EVER seen Wor Lee make a joke before.

    Not a very original joke but I will give him a D+ for trying.

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  30. He doesn’t deserve even a D Eric. He’s woeful.

    Here’s one for the summer budget – Josef Martinez from Atlanta, He’s a big mate with both Almiron and Rondon. Scores bucket loads of goals

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  31. Sorry to dwell on Pogba. Actually, no I am not as there aren’t that many other comments.

    When Man U first bought Pogba I said on here that he was vastly overrated and played 1 good game in 3. That proved overoptimistic as he doesn’t have the Juve defense to pick up after him in England. It has taken almost 3 years but now the pundits, who always vehemently defend anything Man U, and even the fans can see the Emperor has no clothes. He is not untalented, he just has no heart. Everybody is pointing out how he just jogs back now but he has done that all of his career. He is naturally slow and times a tackle worse than Amdy Faye in a wheel chair.

    It should be fun if he goes to Real Madrid. Bale is twice the player he is and they boo Gareth. Just wait until he has one of mid-day stroll games against Barca or Atletico and see what he gets. Stay tuned in Spain because this is going to be good.

    I wonder how many “fans” have unfollowed him on Instagram and twitter. I don’t know why they bothered in the first place, but then again I don’t understand following Donald Trump or Piers Morgan either.

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  32. And I am totally sick of these pundits justifying Pogba’s “brilliance” as Gary Neville puts it by his goalscoring achievements. He has scored 6 goals from open play FFS. The rest are penalties and he has actually missed 3. It is like saying Milojovic or Milner are deadly because of all the penalties they score.

    They tried Pogba as a number 10 against City and had to bring him back because he offered no threat at all. GNev still said today he is world class. He should hang out more with Keane and Souness and see the truth.

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  33. Yep. Michael Owen predicting a nil-nil. I don’t expect any of the pundits to go for a Brighton win, which worries me. I know it really shouldn’t have any bearing at all what pundits predict and I am not even superstitious or fatalistic but I always get a queasy feeling when they all stump for a similar outcome – in this case NOT a Brighton win.

    And how does Owen have a job on TV? I am pretty sure he predicts a draw for us every week. His predictions match his personality. Drab and boring come to mind whenever I see his face, and in my mind’s eye I see him in a mid-grey morning suit with a top hat at some race meet. I am not asking him to be Stan Collymore and write sh!te just to be noticed, but make some sort of effort to appear like you are enjoying your privileged existence and do a bit of homework on what you will be asked to talk about.

    Brighton haven’t scored in 7 games so I understand the nil-nil.

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  34. Thank God for that! Lawro goes 1-0 Brighton. Balances out Ed’s readers going only 3% for a Brighton win.

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  35. I did watch the game against Spurs and Brighton never looked like scoring. Commentators said they could be dangerous from set plays but they weren’t. Not sure if they had a shot on target. They should be very nervous and we should be relaxed. And we have played well recently, including against Palace. We should get a result… BUT… it is NUFC.

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  36. georgio:
    Eric – you have MLSdon’t you? What’s Martinez at Atlanta really like?

    geogio: Martinez is very good and worked really well with Almiron. I think he was top scorer in MLS. He is quick and a finisher. The MLS version of Aguero in style of play. If he ended up being 1/4 as good as Aguero he would be a bargain.

    I only saw him about 5 times because I don’t really watch that much MLS. I was watching the playoffs and to see how Rooney adapted. The 2 stand out players by far were Almiron and Martinez. They were head and shoulders above everybody else including Wayne (who was actually OK).

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