Newcastle breeze past Sunderland in Cup derby, Bournemouth hit back

January 7, 2024 6:36 am

[Source: Reuters]

Newcastle United made light work of north-east rivals Sunderland as Alexander Isak’s double secured a 3-0 win and a place in the FA Cup fourth round at the Stadium of Light this morning.

Second-tier Sunderland might have fancied their chances with Newcastle on a run of five defeats in their last six Premier League games but were no match for Eddie Howe’s side.

Premier League Bournemouth found themselves 2-0 down at second-tier Queens Park Rangers but hit back to win 3-2 at Loftus Road while there were also wins for top-flight sides Brighton and Hove Albion and Sheffield United.

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Later on Saturday, Middlesbrough welcome Premier League high-flyers Aston Villa while Chelsea are at home to Preston North End. Arsenal host Liverpool on Sunday.

Sunderland’s first clash with fierce rivals Newcastle since 2016 looked the pick of Saturday’s ties, but failed to deliver any fireworks as Howe’s side avoided a slip-up.

“It feels great to win,” Howe, whose side’s season has stalled of late, told ITV. “I never worried about the draw I always thought it was a great draw — as long as we won it.

“We handled the occasion well, were brave with the ball and were very composed. We didn’t let the crowd take over and we handled everything really well in the first half.”

Sean Longstaff had already wasted two good opportunities as the visitors dominated by the time Dan Ballard turned Joelinton’s cross into his own goal in the 35th minute.

Sweden striker Isak then capitalised on a sloppy defensive error by Pierre Ekwah immediately after the break to put Newcastle in charge.