Newcastle United and their spirited escape from the prospect of relegation


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It took Newcastle United just under four months for them to earn their first win of the season in all competitions, but they now look to be safe in the top flight of English football.

A Premier League victory at home to fellow strugglers Burnley saw them collect their first three points of the season in 15 attempts, a win that saw them finally climb off the bottom spot.

Results beforehand were nothing short of woeful for the Magpies and soon enough Steve Bruce left the club as manager by mutual consent shortly after they were taken over by their new owners, with the Saudi Arabian group Public Investment Fund becoming the majority shareholder.

Former Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe was announced as the man to take over from Bruce and after a slow start at the helm, he guided his new side to their first win of the season. It is now clear to see both he and the Newcastle players appear settled in the club’s new era as they have experienced a recent rise up the Premier League table.

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Magpies’ mighty efforts earn mid-table positioning

Since their opening game of 2022, in which they suffered a shock loss to Cambridge United in the third round of the FA Cup, Newcastle have only tasted defeat three times in 15 games. Only Chelsea, Everton and Tottenham Hotspur have got the better of them this calendar year.

Howe and his staff have managed to change the fortunes of a side who were teasing relegation to the Championship once again at the beginning of the season, with the Magpies now sitting ninth and in the top half of the table.

It is a superb feat for the club to achieve, and they are set to become the first ever Premier League club to avoid relegation after failing to win their opening 14 games. Their triumph against Crystal Palace last Wednesday has also seen them win six straight league games at home since 2004.

Such victories earlier in the year mean that not only are they close to another season in the Premier League, but their next three games against Liverpool, Manchester City and Arsenal are not as daunting as they may have been at the end of the campaign had they maintained their start-of-season form.

After their FA Cup loss at St. James’ Park against their League One opposition, Howe’s side went on a run of eight games unbeaten in the league, with six wins and two draws to their name.

A three match run of defeats against the aforementioned Blues, Toffees and Spurs started to emerge as a stumbling block for the Magpies as they approached the latter stages of the season, but they soon overcame such an obstacle thanks to their hard fought home win against Wolves.

Subsequent wins against Leicester, Palace and Norwich mean they now have 43 points on the table, just two off the total they reached last season. Whilst the relegation battlers at the bottom end of the league continue to struggle to find form, Newcastle have broken away and seemingly diverted themselves from danger.

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January signings prove to be worthwhile investments

Upon their takeover back in October, Newcastle soon found themselves with fresh funds to spend in the January transfer window in the hopes of securing their Premier League safety. They spent a total of around £92 million on new signings with Kieran Trippier, Chris Wood, Bruno Guimaraes and Dan Burn all making the move to the north-east of England.

Guimaraes has been their most notable addition, with the Brazilian making a somewhat shock move from Ligue 1 side Lyon to the Magpies. His first five games saw him only feature for a total of 41 minutes, but he scored on his first start for the club in their away win against Southampton, a sumptuous finish from the 24-year-old.

However he has really shone for the Magpies in their previous three fixtures as he has racked up three goals and an assist for his new side, with one of his strikes being a 95th minute winner at home to Leicester. He has very quickly become a fan favourite for the Toon, with his patience proving worthwhile.

Burn has also been an influential figure in the side, with the former Brighton man producing some solid performances in their backline. He has kept five clean sheets in his 12 appearances so far, with him only failing to keep two more as a result of late winners from both Chelsea and Everton.

Trippier’s start to life at Newcastle was emphatic, with the right-back making the move from the reigning La Liga Champions Atletico Madrid to score two goals in his opening five games in black and white, with both strikes being free-kicks. However, a metatarsal fracture in the win against Aston Villa means he has failed to feature again this season whilst he recovers on the sidelines.

Finally, Wood made the move from Burnley to Newcastle in order to provide more strike-force in their attack, particularly when Callum Wilson has been out of action since the turn of the year with a calf injury. He has had limited impact so far with just the two goals to his name, but his most recent strike proved to be crucial as they sneaked victory at home to Wolves.

A huge summer awaits for the Magpies as they will have the chance to further improve what is already a hearty and driven squad. Player performances in recent weeks, coupled with the management of Howe, have proven that they can produce quality.

It may still be a while before Newcastle make their return towards the top of English football, but for the time being many of their fans can be safe in the knowledge that relegation may now no longer be a possibility.

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