Newcastle claimed their first home win in almost four months on Sunday when the toon army put in arguably their best performance of the season when they beat second top Manchester United by one goal to nil, which is the first time they've beaten the red devils at home since their historic 3-0 victory over them back in January 2012.
Match (First Half)
In the first half of the match Manchester United had the majority of the shots. However Newcastle did have a great chance within the first five minutes of the match, following a Dwight Gayle free kick that deflected off the wall, Jonjo Shelvey tried to smash one into the top left corner. However, David De Gea was there to make a remarkable save to prevent Newcastle from taking an early lead.
The Newcastle defense had to be on their best performance to keep Manchester out, several clearances had to be made from everyone, especially Lejeune and Yedlin. But the best performer by far was debutant goalkeeper Martin Dubravka, who made several world class saves throughout; the first of which was a great low save from Jese Lingard's inside-the-box effort. The second was a fantastic one-on-one save in which the Slovakian had to retain his composure as Anthony Martial ran on to a great through ball by Matic and straight at goal away from Paul Dummett who attempted to catch up to the Frenchman. Dubravka had a quick enough reaction save the ball with his left leg and keep The Red Devils from going ahead in the match.
Right now it doesn't seem that a game goes by where match officials haven't been unjust towards the magpies, and this game was no exception as near the end of the first half, Chris Smalling clearly fouled Gayle inside the box, but the officials gave nothing despite shouts from the crowd and players. The worst part is, this wasn't even the worst decision of the game. That came late on in the second half...
Match (Second Half)
The first big moment of the second half was when Alexis Sanchez rounded Dubravka and didn't have a shot first time, and it was because of this error that Florian Lejeune was able to catch up to the Chilean and make a crucial block.
On the 65th minute, Newcastle finally got their goal following a free kick awarded the toon's way because Chris Smalling dived horribly in the middle of the field to try and get Jonjo Shelvey penalized. Hilariously, it was Shelvey who took the resulting free kick which eventually found it's way to an unmarked Matt Ritchie who happily placed the ball into the bottom corner before wheeling away to the subs in celebration.
Right after the goal, Paul Pogba was substituted for Michael Carrick after being bossed all game by Mo Diame. He actually began to tear up.
For the majority of the rest of the match it was all hands on deck for Newcastle, with the defense reacting remarkably when needed. A great example of this was in the 77th minute when Anthony Martial had two efforts cleared off the line by Gayle following a corner before Paul Dummett cleared the ball away.
And, in the five minutes of added time, the red devils put the pressure heavy on Newcastle, and they almost got a very late equalizer right at the end of the match when Juan Mata put in a low cross toward Michael Carrick in the box who stuck his foot out towards goal. Unbelievably, Dubravka was able to get low quick enough to parry the ball away before it ended up coming straight into his hands after Antonio Valencia's returning shot was deflected.
Our next game is away at Bournemouth, which is a very big change from Manchester United. On paper, you would think that if we can get three points against Man U, we should have no problem on Bournemouth. However this is Newcastle United we're talking about where nothing is certain and it could all go downhill at any given moment.
Personally, I still think we'll win as they've just lost 4-1 to Huddersfield which was The Terriers first win in nine league games, and I'm sure the fans and players will be very optimistic after last weekend's great win. So really, it's all for Newcastle's taking.