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Match Report: Newcastle United 1-0 Manchester United

by Mathew Cohen

A struggling Manchester United lost 1-0 to Newcastle United at St. James’ Park on Saturday night.

With Newcastle clearly looking to dominate in front of the home crowd, United found themselves on the back foot during the opening proceedings.

After three shots off target, the home side finally got a shot on target which Andre Onana comfortably caught before it was ruled out for offside anyway.

In the 11th minute, United got their first chance of the match when Bruno Fernandes threaded a well-timed through ball to Alejandro Garnacho.

When Garnacho managed to beat the offside trap, his low-struck shot toward the near post was saved by Newcastle keeper Nick Pope.

17 minutes in, the Magpies swarmed United’s box yet again, with Miguel Almiron taking a blistering left-footed strike from close range that Onana expertly parried.

With United’s fullbacks appearing to be asleep, Livramento cut into the centre in a dangerous possession to unleash a shot on goal which Harry Maguire fortunately blocked.

Barely a minute had passed when the home side embarked on another blistering counter-attack.

Aleksander Isak came within inches of scoring, with only another Maguire block putting the ball out of play.

Clearly, United would need to tighten up on the wings in order to prevent a dominant home side from finding the back of the net.

Following wave after wave of attacking motions by Newcastle, United finally appeared to wrestle back some control of the ball when they advanced into the home team’s half in the 29th minute.

United received a free kick on the left when Anthony Martial was brought down, however, Luke Shaw’s cross went straight into the gloves of the Newcastle keeper, bringing an end to a rare United attack.

With 10 minutes left in the half, the Magpies remained camped in United’s goalmouth.

Fortunately for Erik ten Hag’s men, the back four remained solid, preventing the home side from getting any shots away.

In the 37th minute, a foul by Maguire handed Newcastle a threatening free kick on the edge of the box.

Kieran Trippier fired in a sneaky shot that skimmed over the top of the wall, however, the crossbar denied him a goal, with Onana remaining rooted to the spot in what could have been a repeat of his poor outing against Galatasaray in the midweek.

As Newcastle lined up for a corner, Maguire came to the rescue yet again, jumping into Fabian Schar’s line of vision to block a blistering shot from the Magpies’ centre-back.

Remarkably, the match remained goalless as the referee blew the whistle for half time.

Ten Hag would clearly need to reorganise his team’s attacking game-plan should United look to have a chance at walking away with three points.

With the second half underway, the home side immediately resumed piling on the pressure, winning a couple of corner kicks against an unsettled United.

Even as United steadily began to build up some momentum, the Magpies continued to close them down, limiting Ten Hag’s side to a few passes before dispossessing them and breaking down any attacking momentum.

Nine minutes into the second half, the Magpies got their long-sought-after breakthrough when a well-weighted pass from Trippier found Anthony Gordon, who buried the ball into the net from close range.

While United held on for a surprisingly lengthy period of time, Newcastle’s breakthrough came as little surprise given their sheet dominance on the night.

61 minutes in, Rasmus Hojlund came on for Anthony Martial, providing the Danish striker with an opportunity to seek his first goal in the Premier League, while Marcus Rashford was replaced by Antony.

With 12 minutes left to play, the Magpies almost doubled their lead when Lewis Miley fired a shot at goal that was bravely blocked by Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

After 80 minutes, Kobbie Mainoo was replaced by Sofyan Amrabat while Sergio Reguilon came on for Wan-Bissaka.

With nine minutes to play, United got their best chance of the match when Reguilon thumped a thunderous long-range shot at the Newcastle goal which Schar dived to get in the way of.

In the 88th minute, it appeared as if Antony had scored a most unlikely goal for United to level the score line.

Unfortunately, celebrations were cut short as it was found that the ball hit Maguire, who was offside.

Still, with nine minutes of added time, United would have plenty of time to find an equaliser.

After a rare period of attacking dominance by United, Newcastle sparked a counter-attack when Trippier hoofed the ball up to Isak, who went one-on-one with Amrabat.

Despite being under pressure, Amrabat remained composed, tracking back with the Magpies’ striker before dispossessing him on the edge of the box.

Although the visitors finished strongly, it was not to be as United slumped to a second defeat on the trot in all competitions.

Starting XI: Onana, Maguire, Fernandes, Martial, Rashford, Garnacho, Dalot, Shaw, Wan-Bissaka, Mainoo, McTominay
Subs: Hojlund, Antony, Amrabat, Reguilon

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