Newcastle 2-0 Arsenal: Five-star Mags sign off in style on special night at SJP

What a fitting end to a simply incredible few months on Tyneside.

The final home game of the 2021/22 season and a five-star performance from all involved, as a Ben White own goal – set up brilliant by Joelinton – and Bruno Guimaraes strike saw us beat Arsenal 2-0 in front of a packed out St James’ Park.

We looked like the side battling for a place in the top four – not Arsenal – and we dominated from start to finish, creating enough chances to win by four or five, winning the midfield battle by a landslide, defending superbly and enjoying almost 70% possession in the first half.

It was our most complete performance under Eddie Howe, a win that keeps our top 10 hopes alive – we are now up to 12th on 46 points – and the perfect end to a rollercoaster season that’s ended in style, whetting our appetite for what’s ahead.

The atmosphere inside the ground was breathtaking as the players came out, with Wor Flags delivering their biggest and best display yet as all four sides of the stadium were filled with flags, tributes and black and white banners galore.

We responded to that with a fast start, seeing Callum Wilson looking razor sharp in the opening stages. OK, he was caught offside a few too many times, but his constant runs in behind were stretching an Arsenal defence who were struggling to cope with his pace and power.

Joelinton – the newly crowned player of the season – was bang at it, Bruno Guimaraes was showing Arteta what he was missing out on alongside him and Sean Longstaff was also playing at a much higher tempo after a lacklustre outing at Man City last weekend.

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We’d dominated the first 20 minutes, having 65% of the ball and long periods of pressure, but didn’t have a goal to show for it; even if all the signs suggested we had Arsenal on the ropes.

Saint-Maximin had the beating of Tomiyasu and was causing havoc when we got him on the ball. His final ball into the box was mixed, but he was clearly in the mood – linking up well with teammates, forcing the opposition to commit fouls and going close to scoring the opening goal after cutting in from the right and unleashing a stinging low show that Ramsdale did well to tip wide.

The one criticism was we hadn’t tested their goalkeeper enough or made the most of our early dominance, but we were on top heading into a second half at the Gallowgate.

Arsenal were going to lose this and ruin their top four hopes if they didn’t improve. They came out with a little more urgency in the second half, but the biggest blow they landed was on Fabian Schar – who has out cold for a spell after a heavy collision with Eddie Nketiah.

The Swiss centre-back couldn’t continue and was taken off as a precaution, seeing Jamaal Lascelles come on and take the captains armband.

Then, after some brilliant play down the left between ASM and Joelinton, our player of the season burst clear down the left and delivered the perfect low ball across the box. Wilson got in between the two centre-backs and Ben White’s late lunge saw him bundle into his own net!

Newcastle v Arsenal: Premier League – live! | Premier League - Damrea

1-0 Newcastle and a goal our display and overall control of the game thoroughly deserved. A shame to see Wilson not credited with the goal, but it was his movement in the box that made all the difference.

Saying that, our fit-again number nine came so close to make it 2-0 on two separate occasions after that, lashing one volley just over before White blocked a 72nd minute effort that almost looped into the far corner.

Howe then made his second and third change of the night with 15 minutes remaining, as Ryan Fraser and Jacob Murphy came on for a much improved Allan Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almiron.

I wonder if that’ll be the last time we see the Paraguayan at St James’ Park? If it is, he ended his time on Tyneside with a typically energetic display and deserved the ovation he received. His quality on the final third may be lacking at times, but there’s few players in the Premier League who work as hard.

Arsenal had to throw bodies forward to get their Champions League hopes back on track – Tottenham would go into the final day in 4th if the Gunners didn’t score twice without reply – but it was us who almost made it 2-0.

Murphy burst clear and we had a two on one. He played a one-two with Fraser and, after a period of indecision, didn’t get a hold of his shot. A missed opportunity to kill the game, yet we almost saw one of the goals of the season seconds later when Wilson took down a long ball just a few yards into the Arsenal half and almost lobbed a scrambling Ramsdale with an incredible first time effort!

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In the end, those misses didn’t matter as Bruno Guimaraes scored at the Gallowgate to double our lead with just five minutes remaining.

Longstaff – who was having one of his best games since the Benitez era – did brilliantly to pick out Wilson, whose effort was smothered by an onrushing Ramsdale, but the ball fell to our blonde-haired Brazilian and he made no mistake!

Because Schar’s withdrawal was a concussion substitution, we were able to make our fourth change of the night in stoppage time, seeing Dwight Gayle replace the brilliant Callum Wilson. He was sensational tonight and deserved a goal for setting the tone up top from the off.

Also nice to see Howe give Gayle one last ovation, with it widely accepted that he will leave the club this summer after falling way down the pecking order of late.

The full-time whistle went and the celebrations continued both on an off the field at St James’ Park, seeing fans lap it up from the stands and the players share hugs all round as new director Majed Al Sorour and co-owner Amanda Staveley also came onto the pitch. Heck, even Dec came onto the field to wave a big black and white flag about!

On our final home game of the season, the last word must be on Wor Flags – a group of unpaid volunteers who knocked it out of the park at St James’ Park yet again tonight!

A trip to Burnley awaits on the last day of the 2021/22 season next Sunday, but we can’t wait to see what lies ahead – both on and off the field – over the coming months. HWTL.

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!

108 thoughts on “Newcastle 2-0 Arsenal: Five-star Mags sign off in style on special night at SJP

  1. I dont think John Gibson is going senile but being a journo he should have at least mentioned that Eddie Howe used to manage Burnley and will have mixed feelings whatever the result. He went there with them mid-table and left with them in a similar position. He left for personal reasons because his Mam, who had brought him up on her own, was dying.

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  2. Oh crap, Blue Bindippers down 1-0 after 20 mins. They must have the worst defense in the PL which is confirmed by the fact that Pickford is their player of the season. They have decent attackers but I really want this to go to the last day.

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  3. Would love be Everton to go down after their fans takes down about us and expected a walk over earlier this season – calling is a small club.

    Hope Leeds manage to pull off the Great escape because my Dad was a Leeds fan so they are like a 2nd club for me.

    Eric I agree re; Sunderland. I’d like them to get to the PL so we can have a Derby again. They’ll always play 2nd fiddle to us now, but still be good to have the occasion in the PL.

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  4. Well that was a cracking comeback. Fair play Toffees.

    Bad news for Burnley having to play us. Hope Leeds stay up.

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  5. Silver lining to the Everton survival is that we wont get Calvert-Lewin. He is too similar to Wilson anyway. There is no way we could play him and Wilson in the same team and you might want the option of 2 strikers if you are chasing a game.

    I wonder if Super-Frank’s pundit pals will start a petition to add him to Manager of the Season nominations, which have already been announced 🙂 Clive Tyldsley will probably compare this comeback to “that night in Barcelona” as well.

    I am not bitter. I just wanted them to go down because of the arrogance of their supporters and preferential treatment by the PL. They are going nowhere anyway with that defense and they cant spend money on it because of FFP.

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  6. Will Everton get fined for the DURING GAME pitch invasion? There were about 100 fans on the pitch after their 2nd goal. I dont mind about after the final whistle. There is something dodgy with Everton and the PL. They never said anything with the links to Usmanov and the Covid cost of 170 mil they are claiming vastly surpasses teams like NUFC who say they lost 40 mil. Would be interesting to see what Wolves or Villa claim.

    Leeds are most likely to go down but we can do them a big favour. Brentford away is not the worst game you could have if you are looking to survive. They have done well since Erikson came in and Toney came back, but are still beatable.

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  7. You know what? I will be happy if we sign Nunez, Paqueta and Targett. That will address our gaping holes. We are not Man City (YET) so I will be OK if every position is not filled by a world beater. There are better players than Targett but he has done a great job and will get us top 6. Krafth will be a good backup at RB. In an ideal world, I would also like Sharpy’s Joe Gomez but I doubt Klopp would sell him to us.

    I have said this before, but most league champion teams in the past have had gaps in their squads (think of Leicester). But the most obvious examples are the Fergie teams where he won the League with some very average players playing a lot of games. Just a few examples, but there are a lot more:

    Darren Gibson
    Phil Jones
    John O’Shea
    Nicky Butt
    Phil Neville
    Tom Cleverly
    Wes Brown

    I still think we will spend 150 mil and that the fans that want just top 8 or “steady progress” are not seeing the ambition there is at NUFC now. I want CL qualification next year but would SETTLE for the players I named above (obviously not the ex-Man U ones 🙂 )

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  8. Shamrock:
    Well that was a cracking comeback. Fair play Toffees.

    Bad news for Burnley having to play us. Hope Leeds stay up.

    Sham – I can’t say I really like any of the 3 clubs battling it out, but I work with a lad who supports Everton and he’s a good bloke so pleased for him.
    It’s now do we do Burnley or Leeds a favour on Sunday 🤷🏼‍♂️.

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  9. I have to say though, as pleased as I am for my mate, I would have happily seen the rest of the Everton fans down in the Championship – I think they’ve been a disgrace this season.

    Death threats towards Rafa, protests against a board that has invested 100s millions – this sense of entitlement, flares on the pitch, pitch invasions … and I’m no fan of Frank Lampard either – pleased we didn’t get him!!.

    If our fans invaded the pitch like that, that’s all Howe would have been asked in the post match interview – and when Lampard was told Viera clashed with fans on the pitch – he laughed!!.
    Billy Sharp was assaulted by a fan invading the pitch this week and when Lampard was told a fan went for Viera – he laughed!!. Not is he ok or I don’t condone fans approaching the opposition – he laughed .. as did his ar$e kissing journo mates.

    I truly hope Viera has no comeback from defending himself last night – and that Everton are fined for the pitch invasion – but I won’t hold my breath.

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  10. Eric Sykes:
    You know what? I will be happy if we sign Nunez, Paqueta and Targett. That will address our gaping holes. We are not Man City (YET) so I will be OK if every position is not filled by a world beater. There are better players than Targett but he has done a great job and will get us top 6. Krafth will be a good backup at RB. In an ideal world, I would also like Sharpy’s Joe Gomez but I doubt Klopp would sell him to us.

    I have said this before, but most league champion teams in the past have had gaps in their squads (think of Leicester). But the most obvious examples are the Fergie teams where he won the League with some very average players playing a lot of games. Just a few examples, but there are a lot more:

    Darren Gibson
    Phil Jones
    John O’Shea
    Nicky Butt
    Phil Neville
    Tom Cleverly
    Wes Brown

    I still think we will spend 150 mil and that the fans that want just top 8 or “steady progress” are not seeing the ambition there is at NUFC now. I want CL qualification next year but would SETTLE for the players I named above (obviously not the ex-Man U ones 🙂 )

    Eric – I get your point, and I agree but would kind of go the other way a little bit. I think with the interest around Nunez his fee will be closer to £80m – but even if it’s £60m – we save that fee by signing Eddie Nketiah for free, or half it by signing Toney.
    I know it’s not as Hollywood as Nunez, but both are better than Gayle, both are likely to score more than Wood – so both improve our squad & with the right other improvements, both help us climb the league.

    I think I have my heart set on Paqueta – but even if it’s someone similar, if we improve with a player that creates more chances and chips in with more goals – I think that player is more important than a forward that can bang in 15-20 goals a season – for where we are right now.

    Targett I agree with – we HAVE to sign the lad. With him left & Trips right we have good full backs.
    We have Krafth & Manq that can cover & Dummett signed a new contract – if fit he can play LB & if push came to shove Burn can play LB – so it’s not urgent for the summer.

    Loan Henderson from Man Utd & I’d go for Dreynar on a free, but I could see Howe opting for Tarkowski.

    That would be 4 new players in – 3 or 4 short of what I think we need to have 2 good options in every position, but 4 really good players & as importantly 4 good characters in the dressing room.

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  11. I keep hearing that Howe wants more of an attacking threat than Targett offers. I really like the lad but I can understand that.

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  12. georgio:
    I keep hearing that Howe wants more of an attacking threat than Targett offers. I really like the lad but I can understand that.

    Georgio – ASM doesn’t track back. That’s the issue down the left mate.
    Trippier & Krafth can get further forward because Miggy, Fraser or Murph track back to help Trips out.

    There has to be balance too. Targett allowed Grealish to do his thing at Villa & it’s been the same with Maxi for us. A bit like Beresford with Ginola back in the day.

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  13. Been looking at Burnley forums and a lot of comments from fans in their 60’s reckon Tarkowski is the best CB they have ever had at the club. If we swap him for Lascelles I’d be happy with that

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  14. Shamrock:
    Been looking at Burnley forums and a lot of comments from fans in their 60’s reckon Tarkowski is the best CB they have ever had at the club. If we swap him for Lascelles I’d be happy with that

    Sham – maybe I’m being harsh but I don’t see it. I don’t think he’s a bad player but I don’t think he’s as good as suggested.
    He’s very comfortable at Burnley – not too much is expected of him & he looks alot better with Ben Mee alongside him.

    Take him out his comfort club alongside Mee who he has that understanding with & I’m not so sure.

    I guess the example I use – is Varane. Took out of RM alongside Ramos and he hasn’t looked as good at MU – different players & expectations I know, but you get my point.

    I don’t think he’s any better than Lascelles – who I think has gone through a bit of a rough patch this season. I don’t think Lascelles is good enough long term, I just mean I don’t see the point in swapping him with Trakowski who’s of a similar age and ability

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  15. I reckon it will be Lascelles for Schar and the rest will be unchanged.

    Eddie doesnt give much away about transfer budget/targets in his press conferences. All he said today was we were looking and it would intensify after the season ends. He said we would upgrade some positions but that is stating the obvious.

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  16. You could see what the coaches had been working on with ASM against Arsenal. More short passes, going down the outside with the ball and on the overlap without the ball, as well as looking for Target or Big Joe to overlap. You do not want to take away the dribbling from his game because that scares teams and if he does not have 3 men on him he will complete even more.

    You look at City and everyone thinks it is all just the quick passing and pretty triangles. It is not. Pep has at least 3 players who will take people on – Sterling, Mahrez and Grealish. There is room for a dribbler even in Pep teams and his Barcelona had Messi who would take on enybody. Didnt he also have Robben and Ribery at Bayern as well?

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  17. There is something dodgy going on with Everton and the PL and I am glad that Burnley and Leeds are calling them out on it. You know nothing will happen though. There is the Cartel and then there is Everton who the PL seem to want to protect at all cost. At least the BBC article from GoWest talks a little bit about the links to sanctioned Russian Oligarch Osmanov but that has mainly been swept under the rug. But most of the media seem more concerned with NUFC having a green and white 3rd kit!!!

    Then there is the pitch invasion. I am more concerned about the 100 or more getting on the pitch after a goal. That disrupted an ongoing game. We saw ourselves when that lad taped himself to a goalpost how it can throw off a team’s game. I am convinced that we would have won without that. It completely altered the flow of the game.

    Then there are the flares. There were dozens of them. How did they get them all into the ground? You have to remember that the PL were looking at what action to take against Richarlison after he threw one back in the crowd. How weren’t the Stewards more vigilant.

    I could list many more things that show the PL are either crooks or incompetent but I will wait until it gets super-quiet on here when the season ends.

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  18. I read a reply from Everton about FFP and how they are working with the PL. They basically said that their accountants had made the recommendations and signed off on it. Sorry, but they are cooking the books. Their claim for Covid losses is 170 million whereas at NUFC it is 40 mil. Arsenal, a much bigger club had 76 million.

    They said the losses were due to reduced matchday revenue and loss of marketing and sponsor money. It is total BS when you look at other clubs. But here’s the kicker, they also said that Covid had restricted their ability to sell players and the price they could get. In that case, everybody can say that and just write off some arbitrary number.

    If the PL accept Everton’s rationale then we should do the same thing. The Pif have the cash to spend, it was always about keeping within certain limits. If Everton can scam the system and it is accepted, then why cant we?

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  19. I will keep on with my Everton bashing. Many journos and most pundits seem to feel that the mass pitch invasion was a good thing. Have they not heard of Heysel which led directly to fans being fenced in? I see there being 2 possible solutions:

    1. Forfeit the game and hand the points to the other team.

    2. Have the next game played with no home fans. Allow the away fans in though.

    If there are consequences, the idiot fans will police themselves. I am not talking 1 or 2 running on the pitch, I am talking 100 plus, then a mass invasion like at Everton.

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  20. Eric, they should at least be fined heavily for that pitch invasion and then there are the flares being let off as well, that’s not allowed either.
    Not sure why they were not fined or docked points over FFP as £170m loss seems excessive to me and not in line with much bigger clubs covid losses.

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  21. Kimtoon: Everton are cooking the books. There is a bit in that Guardian article saying that they didnt just claim the 170 mil Covid loss but said that it impacted their ability to sell players. It didnt say whether that arbitrary number was included in the 170 mil but it certainly means that was part of the argument made to the PL that they were within FFP rules.

    If they can do this and the PL accept it then the PL will set a precedent that FFP doesnt matter. It is obvious they are playing favourites with Everton.

    I know it might seem I am banging on about Everton too much, but this affects us in the precedent it sets allowing us more room to skirt the so-called rules.

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  22. Eric Sykes:
    Kimtoon: Everton are cooking the books. There is a bit in that Guardian article saying that they didnt just claim the 170 mil Covid loss but said that it impacted their ability to sell players. It didnt say whether that arbitrary number was included in the 170 mil but it certainly means that was part of the argument made to the PL that they were within FFP rules.

    If they can do this and the PL accept it then the PL will set a precedent that FFP doesnt matter. It is obvious they are playing favourites with Everton.

    I know it might seem I am banging on about Everton too much, but this affects us in the precedent it sets allowing us more room to skirt the so-called rules.

    Eric – it didn’t stop them signing players though did it???.
    How bothered were they about sticking to FFP when they signed 4 players in January … oh and didn’t they sell Digne in January 🤔🤥.

    My initial thought was Burnley & Leeds asking the question now is clutching at straws a bit. But the truth is – they shouldn’t even need to be asking the question!!!.

    If there is a points deduction it will be applied next season so they have as much time as possible to give to make it up – some punishment 🙄.

    They may get a transfer ban for a season at best.

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  23. KIM update on Ashworth,his club has stopped him starting toon job in Sept,thing a didnt know is
    he very keen to get started because there is still quite a few hangers on of jabba people working in the back ground at the club and he is going to have a right clean out,this right from horses mouth,how do i know icepup has been talking to his best friend,icepup wife has taken over a hotel/bar in Chester,loads of footballers living in this area cheapest house in this area is 2mill upwards so might get gen in the future hopefully

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  24. Everybody is acting like there is no chance of a Leeds win at Brentford. That is not that tough of a game despite a recent pick up in form and the fact it is away. I think our game for Burnley is tougher but I still cannot predict who will go down. Everybody, and I mean everybody, is assuming it will be Leeds.

    Stranger things have happened. Jonas scoring against WHam to keep us up. Didnt we have to win at Leicester on the last day when Keegan was Manager to keep us in the old 2nd division.

    If we beat Burnley, Leeds only need a draw.

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  25. So, the cheesy chip brigade win 2-0 and are back up to the championship… oh dear 😂😂😬. They played better than Wycombe though!

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  26. icedog:
    KIM update on Ashworth,his club has stopped him starting toon job in Sept,thing a didnt know ishevery keen to get started because there is still quite a few hangers on of jabba people working in the back ground at the club and he is going to have a right clean out,this right from horses mouth,how do i know icepup has been talking to his best friend,icepup wife has taken over a hotel/bar in Chester,loads of footballers living in this area cheapest house in this area is 2mill upwards so might get gen in the future hopefully

    Thanks Ice, can’t believe he isn’t allowed to start until after sept like. Yeah be nice if she can get some tit bits in future.

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  27. Ice – has Pup moved down Chester now?, he was come back the Durham wasn’t he?.

    Regarding Ashworth – I assume it’s still up to us to pay the £5m to buy him out his contract. If we wanted him before Sept we could make it happen 🤷🏼‍♂️.

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