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Newcastle Edge Towards Europe After Draw With Brighton

  • SPORT
  • 2 min read

Sean Longstaff’s equaliser in first-half stoppage time earned Newcastle United a 1-1 draw with Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday in the Magpies’ final home game of a see-saw Premier League season.

Chasing a place in next season’s Europa League or Conference League, Newcastle are sixth on 57 points, three ahead of both Chelsea and Manchester United, who they face at Old Trafford on Wednesday, with both clubs also having a game in hand over Eddie Howe’s team. Brighton are 10th on 48 points.

Having survived an early onslaught from the home side, Brighton defender Joel Veltman gave the visitors the lead in the 18th minute, reacting quickest to bundle Danny Wellbeck’s knockdown from a corner into the net.

Longstaff, who came close to scoring with a downward header in the 34th minute, drew the Magpies level just before the break when winger Anthony Gordon slid the ball down the line to Elliot Anderson, and he pulled it back for Longstaff to blast home deep into stoppage time.

The second half saw plenty of free-flowing football, with Alexander Isak creating chaos in the Brighton defence. He almost forced an own goal with a superb pass in the 58th minute that defender Tariq Lamptey had to stretch to intercept, forcing Brighton keeper Bart Verbruggen to tip it away for a corner.

The two sides continued to attack relentlessly and Gordon thought he had netted a late winner in the 85th minute, but substitute Miguel Almiron was found to be offside before teeing up Gordon, and the goal was chalked off to groans from the home fans.

Almiron went down in second-half stoppage time looking for a penalty but all he got was a yellow card for diving from referee Darren England, and a smattering of boos echoed around the ground at the final whistle.

“I don’t think we hit the heights we needed to win it but, if anyone was going to, I thought it would be us,” Newcastle boss Howe told the BBC, adding that he was delighted with the support shown to his team, despite the boos at the end.

“Even when Brighton scored they got right behind the team, but we just couldn’t find that winning goal. They have made this place a really difficult place to play. This season the crowd have taken it to another level.”

Reuters