Schar double helps Newcastle to 3-1 win over Aston Villa

January 31, 2024 9:34 am

[Source: Reuters]

A pair of first-half goals from defender Fabian Schar set Newcastle United on course for a comfortable 3-1 win at Aston Villa and ended a run of five successive away defeats in the Premier League for the Magpies.

Swiss centre-back Schar broke the deadlock with a superb half-volley from a corner in the 32nd minute, and he added a second with a close-range finish four minutes later after an Anthony Gordon shot was deflected onto the crossbar.

The visitors suffered a blow just before the break as Swedish striker Alexander Isak had to be substituted due to an injury, with Miguel Almiron coming off the bench to replace him and winger Anthony Gordon moving up front.

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Villa midfielder John McGinn had a great chance just before the break as he out-muscled Newcastle teenager Lewis Miley, but his header from a corner flew harmlessly over the bar.

Newcastle’s third came seven minutes into the second half after an incisive attack down the left culminated in a brilliant ball from Miguel Almiron to Jacob Murphy, and his shot was bundled into his own net by Villa fullback Alex Moreno.

Keeper Martin Dubravka looked set to give Newcastle boss Eddie Howe another injury headache as he received treatment on a number of occasions, but the Slovakian stayed on the field to complete the game.

The introduction of Leon Bailey gave the Villa attack a much-needed shot in the arm, and it was from his cross that Ollie Watkins pulled a goal back for Villa in the 71st minute.

Watkins had another effort ruled out for offside two minutes later, but after that scare Newcastle held on comfortably to move up to seventh spot in the table on 32 points, while Villa remain fourth on 43.