It wasn’t pretty was it? However, a win is a win and Rafael Benitez and his players won’t care one jot if they rode their luck at times, on their way to their first three points of the season.
Watford will feel they were unlucky not to come away with at least a point at St James’ Park. Newcastle failed to register a single shot on target against Southampton last weekend, and struggled yet again to create clear cut opportunities against Watford, testing Ben Foster on just two occasions.
Salomon Rondon came in to make his first start since September 22nd, the Venezuelan cut an isolated figure up front. Benitez will have to get more out of Rondon if the Magpies are to push on this season. Fortunately for Newcastle, Watford were wasteful in front of goal, the Hornets laid siege to the home goal in the first half but only managed one shot on target over the course of 90 minutes.
A Ki Performance?
Ki Sung Yueng has had to wait a long time for his chance in this Newcastle side, boy did he make an impression. The South Korean was nothing short of outstanding after he was introduced early in the second half. Ki’s short and sharp passing allowed Newcastle to move forward with much needed creativity. Indeed, it was Ki who was influential in Newcastle’s first goal since their 2-1 defeat against Arsenal. The former Swansea man played a one-two with Kenedy, before being brought down on the edge of the box. Ki fired in a dangerous ball, with Ayoze Perez’s flicked header leaving Ben Foster with no chance.
Relief All Around St James’ Park
The atmosphere around the stadium when Perez opened the scoring was reminiscent of last season, when everyone was behind the team. This season, there has been a lot more focus on protests against owner, Mike Ashley, understandably so too. However, this has had an impact on the atmosphere this season. For the majority of the second half, it was telling just how important it is to have unity inside St James’ Park, the players were undeniably boosted by the atmosphere, which showed in their second half performance.
There have been calls for unity from various people connected with Newcastle United, that unity is vital for the Magpies’ survival chances. The club showed last season just how good they can be when everyone is pulling in the same direction. This has to continue, supporters are justified in their protests against the owner, however, this should be shown before or after the game. Once inside the ground, their should only be support for the manager and those players in black and white shirts.