- Magpies get first win
- Watford allows first goal in 3 matches
- Subs Ki, Perez combine for winner
Ayoze Perez’s second half goal was enough for Newcastle United to win its first Premier League match of the season and emerge from the drop zone with a 1-0 defeat of Watford at St. James’ Park on Saturday.
The Magpies now have six points, while Watford has 19 and sits eighth.
The win avoids the worst start in Newcastle history.
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The opening 10 minutes belonged to Newcastle, but the Magpies couldn’t maneuver inside the final third.
At the other end, Watford then won a series of corners but found Newcastle very willing to block shots and clog lanes.
Newcastle’s Mo Diame dribbled into space and ripped a shot that Ben Foster parried, and Watford dealt with his rebound cross.
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The Hornets dealt with two Newcastle chances off a 46th minute free kick, and Matt Ritchie‘s ensuing free kick was blocked only to see the Magpies keep possession.
Roberto Pereyra hit the bar at the other end before Dubravka stopped his rebound effort.
The Magpies, however, broke through off a set piece, Perez nodding a Ki Sung-Yueng free kick past Ben Foster. The under-fire Spaniard plugged his ears in celebration, and it was 1-0 to Newcastle.
Newcastle came close to making it 2-0, but instead nearly lost their lead on a counter attack thanks to a poor pass from left back Paul Dummett.