Pitch invasion fears prove unfounded as Newcastle United cap extraordinary season with Burnley win
Newcastle United condemned Burnley to the Championship on a dramatic final day of the season.
Eddie Howe’s side won 2-1 at Turf Moor this afternoon thanks to two goals from Callum Wilson.
The result saw the club finish two points behind 10th-placed Wolverhampton Wanderers in 11th – and Leeds United stay up at Burnley’s expense.
United's win came at a cost, as Joelinton was stretchered off early in the game. Thankfully, there was no pitch invasion at the final whistle.
A few months ago, it was feared that Newcastle’s fate would be decided on the final day of the season. Howe even admitted that that was seen, at one point, as a best-case scenario given the plight of the club, which had just 11 points at the turn of the year.
Yet the club, thanks to an extraordinary late-season run of results, secured its top-flight status with two games to spare.
Howe had made two changes at Turf Moor. Kieran Trippier was handed his first start since mid-February against his former club, while Jamaal Lascelles replaced Fabian Schar – who suffered a concussion against Arsenal on Monday night – in the starting XI.
United, backed by 2,350 noisy fans, had to contend with an energetic start from Burnley. Howe also had to contend with the loss of Joelinton in the 11th minute. Joelinton needed lengthy treatment after landing awkwardly following an aerial challenge, and he was eventually replaced by Jacob Murphy after being stretchered off.
Newcastle’s breakthrough came from the penalty spot after Nathan Collins handled a corner. After a pitchside VAR check, referee Craig Pawson pointed to the spot – and Wilson, back from a long-term injury, calmly beat Nick Pope.
Burnley didn’t let their heads drop, and pressed for an equaliser as scorelines filtered through from elsewhere in the country, and most notably at the Etihad Stadium, where Manchester City went behind to Aston Villa.
United struggled to create chances of their own after taking the lead, though Allan Saint-Maximin did force a save before the break after a quick break forward down the left.
Wout Weghorst, Chris Wood’s replacement at Burnley, was sent on after the break by interim manager Mike Jackson.
Newcastle controlled the game better after the break. Burnley’s fans implored their team to attack, but the next goal would be in front of the away end after a counter-attack. Saint-Maximin broke down the left and rolled the ball to Wilson on the edge of the six-yard box. The striker tapped it home to talk his goal tally for the season to eight.
United couldn’t hold on to their two-goal advantage. Maxwel Cornet scored at the second attempt with a low shot after Martin Dubravka parried his first effort.
Howe responded by replacing Saint-Maximin with Wood, signed from Burnley in January for £25million. There were boos for Wood as he took to the field.
Newcastle found themselves under intense pressure, and Weghorst put a great chance wide. Matt Targett headed a goalbound shot from James Tarkowski off the line in the 82nd minute.
Burnley pushed until the final minute, but they couldn’t find the goal that would keep them in the Premier League.
Howe sent on Matt Ritchie, expected to leave this summer, for the last couple of minutes.