Eddie Howe pays 'big compliment' to Kieran Trippier at Newcastle United amid injury lay-off fears
A first-half free-kick from Trippier gave the club a 1-0 win over Aston Villa yesterday.
Trippier, however, was forced off after the break after being “stamped on” by a visiting player – and there are fears that he’s facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a broken bone in his foot.
Referee Craig Pawson had originally pointed to the spot after Joe Willock was brought down by Callum Chambers, but a VAR check showed that the challenge had been made outside the box.
Trippier – who had scored against Everton with another set-piece four days earlier – squeezed the ball through a gap in the Villa wall after Chris Wood and Fabian Schar split.
Asked if a free-kick for Trippier was almost as good as a penalty, United’s head coach said: “Not sure if works quite like that!
"I was softened by the blow of not having the penalty when I saw Kieran over the ball. Just when you see the dynamics of the goal and the wall, you think ‘this is a chance, this’. There was a little bit of luck (with the deflection), it wasn’t as beautiful as the Everton one, but it was still equally effective. Big compliment to Kieran.”
Trippier was sent to hospital for an X-ray after the game.
Howe told NUFC TV said: “Kieran’s been huge for us. We don’t want him to be out. He’s gone for a scan on his foot.”
The club is yet to give a further update, though Trippier tweeted after the game: “That winning feeling! Delighted to score the winning goal today, brilliant performance by everyone!”
Newcastle have now won three successive games for the first time since November 2018.
“It shows we’re in a good place at the moment,” said Howe. “We’ve worked incredibly hard. In the last three games, I don’t think there’s been any secret to how we’ve won the games.
“I don’t think they’ve been fluent footballing performances where we’ve played from back to front, and all the things that we potentially want to do in the future, but it’s been very disciplined, hard working, a lot of energy, a lot of team-work, team spirit, togetherness that have made the difference for us.”