What Kieran Trippier told Alexander Isak ahead of Newcastle United penalty v Nottingham Forest
Kieran Trippier assisted Alexander Isak for the second match running as Newcastle United beat Nottingham Forest 2-1 on Friday evening.
After crossing the ball for Isak to head in against Wolverhampton Wanderers last weekend, Trippier assisted the Swedish striker in a different way in the City Ground as he took the pressure off Newcastle’s stoppage-time penalty to win the game.
Isak had already cancelled out Emmanuel Dennis’ first half opener before The Magpies were handed a golden opportunity to secure a first away win in the league in 2023 after Forest defender Moussa Niakhate handled the ball inside the penalty area.
What followed was an extended wait for what was arguably one of the biggest kicks of Newcastle’s Premier League season so far. Given the pressure and the obvious mind-games attempted by the Forest players, Trippier responded by convincing almost everyone that he was going to take the penalty and in turn faced the brunt of the stick.
But just before the penalty was due to be taken, the Magpies skipper for the evening stepped aside to allow Isak to confidently dispatch the high-pressure spot-kick and hand Newcastle victory.
Explaining the key moment, Trippier told The Gazette: “Teams can put you off, get in your face. So I just said to Alex: 'Listen, I'll just hold the ball, you just zone-in, get in the moment, do your normal routine and I'll take all the pressure as if I'm taking the penalty. I want you to be as calm as possible.
"And little details like that can help and be a massive point and he put it away well.”
The win keeps Newcastle fifth heading into the international break and within touching distance of the Champions League places with two games in hand.
"It was a massive game,” Trippier added. “We knew it was huge going into this international break.
"It's not an easy place to come here at all. I don't think they've lost here since [September].
"But we've shown great character today when we went 1-0 down and then when the goal doesn't go in because it's offside or something. Mentally that can rock teams but we've shown great character and we kept on going and I think we deserved the three points.”
Trippier added: [Forest is a tough place to come] and we shouldn't underestimate how big a win this is because they are a tough side and results speak for themselves, how well they have performed at home this season.
"As always we leave everything on the pitch and, with no game for two weeks, there are no excuses. We had to run ourselves into the ground and just keep going and just keep believing, which we did to the end."
Trippier and Isak will now join up with their respective national sides – England and Sweden – for the upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers before returning to Newcastle for the return to Premier League action against Manchester United on April 2 (16:30pm kick-off). Martin Dubravka (Slovakia) and Jamal Lewis (Northern Ireland) will also be on international duty during the break.
The rest of the Newcastle squad have travelled to Dubai for a warm-weather training camp.