On Saturday Newcastle beat Wigan 3-1 at home to stay top of the league by one point. With Huddersfield losing 1-0 to Burton at the very death, Newcastle are 10 points ahead of Huddersfield but bear in mind that Huddersfield have a game in hand.
Newcastle fielded a side of Karl Darlow, Vurnon Anita, Jamaal Lascelles, Grant Hanley, and Paul Dummett making up the back five; Matt Ritchie, Jonjo Shelvey, Jack Colback, and Yoan Gouffran in midfield; with Mo Diame and Dwight Gayle up front. This team has two changes from the one that drew to Birmingham with Perez and Murphy being dropped for Diame and Gayle.
Wigan played a team of Matthew Gilks, Callum Connolly, Jake Buxton, Dan Burn, Jamie Hanson, Max Power, Shaun MacDonald, Stephen Warnock, Michael Jacobs, Sam Morsy and Omar Bogle.
The home side’s first attacking opportunity came when Ritchie struck and ambitious shot from outside of the box, the ball bounced off a Wigan player and rolled into the keeper’s arms. Shelvey got close to opening the scoring when he got his head onto a cross from Anita but couldn’t direct it goalwards. Gayle came close when his header bounced off the keeper to his feet but the ball didn’t quite fall to him right and the attack fizzled out. Another headed chance came and went when Lascelles put the ball over. The deadlock was finally broken when Diame found Gayle unmarked at the far post and the knocked the ball in.
Five minutes into the second half Wiglevelledled the scores when Jacobs dribbled into the box and knocked the ball over the keeper, Lascelles really should have done better. Not to be outdone, Ritchie hit a powerful shot at the keeper which was deflected but he headed the rebound in to put Newcastle in front. Ritchie almost got a second when he was played in by Atsu but couldn’t beat the keeper. Again Ritchie was on the attack when he burst into the box and was brought down. Stonewall penalty but not given. That was the last major moment of the match as Newcastle ran out 2-1 winners.
Feature image credit: Martin Le Roy