Newcastle 0 – 2 Arsenal – rezal404

Arsenal showed their mettle and came through a devilishly difficult fixture at Newcastle to keep the title race alive with a 2-0 win at St James’ Park.

In a compelling encounter played in a ferocious atmosphere, Arsenal stood firm and stuck to their principles with Martin Odegaard firing them in front from 30 yards on 14 minutes before a Fabian Schar own-goal wrapped it up in the second half.

Newcastle had won eight of their last nine games and suffered defeat just twice in their last 24 Premier League home games but couldn’t find a route to goal despite Jacob Murphy and Alexander Isak both striking the woodwork.

It leaves the Gunners a point behind Pep Guardiola’s side, who still have a game in hand. It might prove a chase in vein but Arsenal are staying hot on Manchester City’s heels as this fascinating title race rolls on.

player ratings

Newcastle: Pope (8), Trippier (6), Botman (6), Schar (6), Burn (6), Joelinton (6), Willock (5), Guimaraes (6), Murphy (6), Wilson (6), Isaac (7)

subs: Almiron (6), Anderson (6)

Arsenal: Ramsdale (8), White (7), Gabriel (7), Kiwior (7), Zinchenko (6), Xhaka (8), Jorginho (8), Saka (7), Odegaard (8), Martinelli (8), jesus (7)

subs: Nketiah (6), Partey (6), Nelson (6), Trossard (6)

Player of the game: Jorginho

For the Magpies, who saw an early penalty decision in their favor overturned, the result does leave them with work still to do to claim a top-four finish.

How Arsenal showed bottle in hotbed atmosphere…

Arsenal’s season came crashing down on Tyneside last year when a 2-0 defeat meant a top-four finish was out of their hands going into the final weekend – but this is a more resilient and battle-hardened group now.

That said, Newcastle started very brightly. Murphy was unfortunate to see a second-minute shot come back off the foot of a post and Arsenal were rocking and looked to be in trouble when referee Chris Kavanagh pointed to the spot after defender Jakub Kiwior appeared to block Bruno Guimaraes’ shot with his hand .

team news

  • Eddie Howe paired Alexander Isak and Callum Wilson in his attack for the first time in the Premier League as Anthony Gordon dropped to the bench.
  • Mikel Arteta made one change from the win over Chelsea with Gabriel Martinelli replacing Leandro Trossard in attack as Jorginho continued to keep Thomas Partey out of the side.

Arsenal were given a reprieve, though, as the official changed his mind after being advised to review the incident which showed the ball deflected off the defender’s knee.

Newcastle fans were still venting at the referee when Odegaard was given time and space on the edge of the box to fire a left-foot drive past the helpless Pope to give the visitors the lead against the run of play.

That moment of brilliance settled the away side into their stride as they took control of the game.

Pope had to save from Gabriel Martinelli and Odegaard in quick succession and then denied Bukayo Saka one-on-one after he had been played in by Granit Xhaka.

Aaron Ramsdale was called into serious action within four minutes of the restart when, after Isak’s header had hit a post, he clawed away Schar’s header from close range.

Martnelli then clipped an effort off the top of the crossbar as there was little break from the breathless pace of the game as play switched rapidly from end to end.

The next goal was going to be crucial and Arsenal got it 19 minutes from time when Martinelli’s driven cross ricocheted past Pope off Schar and into the net.

Gabriel Martinelli celebrates after his cross is turned into the Newcastle goal by Fabian Schar
Gabriel Martinelli celebrates after his cross is turned into the Newcastle goal by Fabian Schar

This was a victory to dispel any notion that this Arsenal team will not be able to sustain the charge. They are still fighting for this title.

Howe: Fine margins went against us

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Eddie Howe said he’ll rue some of the big chances his Newcastle side missed in their 2-0 defeat at Arsenal, but believes they’ll stay on track for the rest of the season.

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe, speaking to Sky Sports: “Fine margins for us today and we just came out on the wrong side of them. We missed some big chances in the game and it just wasn’t quite there for us. I am sure I will look back at some moments and rue some times we didn’t get quite right.

“If Jacob’s [Murphy] chance goes in early on, it is a totally different game. There are loads of things we will look back on and think it could have gone our way and didn’t. We have to take ownership of that. We are disappointed as I don’t think we defended as well as we have done for the majority of the season. But we gave everything. It was a high-level game and two teams going right at each other. That produced a good show.

“There were loads of chances there and we didn’t put the ball in the net. We have done in our previous run of games. We didn’t keep the ball well enough and were a bit loose in possession. When you give Arsenal transitions they are a very dangerous team and so it proved.

“The result would tell you they did [imposed their style on the game], but in truth I think neither were dominant. It was to that bit of quality to win it. It depends on big moments.

“We have four games remaining and need three results. Liverpool and other teams are coming. They are top level. We can only do what we can do and I believe in the character of the team to get it over the line.”

What’s next?

Newcastle continue their top-four challenge at Leeds on Saturday May 13. Kick-off 3pm.

Arsenal have just three league games remaining. They host Brighton on Saturday at 3pm before heading to Nottingham Forest on Saturday May 20, live on Sky Sportsbefore finishing their season at the Emirates against Wolves.

Newcastle’s remaining fixtures

May 13: leeds (A) – Premier League, 3pm kick off

May 18: Brighton (H) – Premier League, kick off 7.30pm

May 22: leicester (H) – Premier League, kick off 8pm

May 28: chelsea (A) – Premier League, kick off 4.30pm

Arsenal’s remaining fixtures

May 13: Brighton (H) – Premier League, 3pm kick off

May 20: Nottingham Forest (A) – Premier League, kick off 5.30pm, live on Sky Sports

May 28: wolves (H) – Premier League, kick off 4.30pm

Opta stats

  • Arsenal have 81 points from 35 Premier League games this season (W25 D6 L4); only in their unbeaten 2003-04 campaign have they ever hit 80+ points at an earlier stage in a league campaign in their history (33rd game).
  • Arsenal became only the third different side to beat Eddie Howe’s Newcastle in the Premier League at St James’ Park in his 31 home league matches in charge (W18 D9 L4), along with Liverpool (twice) and Man City.
  • Ramsdale became only the third different goalkeeper to record 10 away clean sheets in a single Premier League season, after Petr Cech (11 in 2004-05 & 10 in 2008-09) and Ederson (11 in 2018-19 & 10 in 2021-22). ).