Eddie Howe explains Lewis Hall substitution & Paul Dummett penalty for Newcastle United v Everton

Newcastle United 1-1 Everton: Eddie Howe could have no complaints about the late penalty his side conceded at St James' Park.
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Newcastle United were on course for their first consecutive Premier League wins of 2024 before conceding a late penalty in the 1-1 draw with Everton at St James' Park.

The Magpies took the lead through Alexander Isak in the first half and had opportunities to extend their advantage with Dan Burn having a goal ruled out for offside and Isak denied a second by a goalline clearance.

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The second goal ultimately didn't come for the hosts as Everton won a late penalty after substitute Paul Dummett dragged Ashley Young to the ground. Dominic Calvert-Lewin stepped up to make it 1-1 in the 88th minute.

"Definitely frustrated, I thought we needed that second goal," head coach Eddie Howe said afterwards. "I thought we'd got it on more than one occasion.

"The VAR [offside call] was really, really tight and then Alex's chance as well was a key moment in the game. At 1-0 Everton were never out of it, they hit the post themselves."

Reflecting on the penalty Dummett conceded moments after coming on, Howe added: "When you look at it back, both players are grappling each other initially but it's just the height of Paul's arm around Ashley's neck that swings it against us. If the boot was on the other foot I'd be wanting a penalty for that.

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"It's always difficult when you come on late in games and you're winning. Being a defender myself, they're always difficult moments because you want to keep your concentration and you want to help the team.

"Paul has been first class since I've been here, he's a real genuine, honest lad. It's one of those moments that has gone against us but I can't fault the players because I thought generally we were really comitted and put in a really good performance for the majority of the game."

Dummett replaced Lewis Hall in the closing stages of the match after the 19-year-old appeared to be struggling. Explaining the reason behind substituting Hall, Howe added: "[It was] just a bit of fatigue."

A failure to take chances in the second half ultimately came back to haunt The Magpies as they missed the chance to climb back into the top seven.

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"I thought we should have won the game based on the chances we had which was why the second goal was so important," Howe told The Gazette. "They were always one kick away or a set-play away from hurting you.

"I thought we did that part of our game really, really when when you consider the youth of our team. We stood up physically led by Dan [Burn] and Fabby [Schar] who both had really good games.

"It's that clinical edge and scoring that second goal is what we needed."

Newcastle currently sit eighth in the Premier League table with eight games left to play. Their current position could be enough to secure Europa Conference League football this season depending on results in other competitions.

Next up for Howe's side is a trip to Craven Cottage to face Fulham on Saturday (3pm kick-off).