Newcastle United got a surprise point off visiting Manchester United, but manager Eddie Howe will be lamenting the two points that got away from them in a very strong performance that ended 1-1 at St. James’ Park on Monday.
Man United, meanwhile, needed a rebound goal from Edinson Cavani and seven saves from David De Gea to escape the north with a point, as Ralf Rangnick will be left wondering where Cristiano Ronaldo, Mason Greenwood, and Marcus Rashford were in their starts.
The point is No. 11 for Newcastle, two back of 17th-place Watford. The Magpies have played three more matches than the Hornets.
Man United’s 28th point keeps them in seventh place, seven points off the top four with two fewer matches played than Arsenal.
Here’s everything you need to know from Newcastle vs Manchester United.
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Newcastle vs Manchester United final score, stats
Newcastle 1-1 Manchester United
Scorers: Saint-Maximin 7′, Cavani 71′
Shots: Newcastle 8-4 Manchester United
Shots on goal: Newcastle 13-13 Man United
Possession: Newcastle 30-70 Man United
WHAT A SAVE!
David De Gea EXTENDS to make the clutch save down the stretch!
— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) December 27, 2021
Three things we learned from Newcastle vs Manchester United
1. The draw that swings storylines: Few would’ve chalked this up as a likely draw, let alone a win for Newcastle United, but Eddie Howe’s men might’ve deserved all three points and will be okay with one heading into a reunion with Rafa Benitez later this week. Eddie Howe could’ve used a clean sheet, but this is Man United after all. Howe getting continued production out of Joelinton is a feather in his cap, and this point pops off the page not just to the relegation rivals but the transfer market, too.
Man United, meanwhile, fought a COVID outbreak but also would’ve benefited from some time off the pitch for their UEFA Champions League-taxed legs. You would’ve expected Cristiano Ronaldo to have benefited, too, but he was barely there. Edinson Cavani’s late equalizer will bring some relief to Ralf Rangnick and Jadon Sancho also had moments off the bench, but Arsenal, Spurs, and whoever else will not look at this and think United is the favorite to take fourth.
2. Better call Paul: He’s often hurt and occasionally lackadaisical, but Paul Pogba is M-I-S-S-I-N-G from the United lineup and he can’t get healthy fast enough (even if it’s just for United to bring in some money for him in January). As Man Utd fans dissect why Scott McTominay and Fred keep going out inside of a 4-2-2-2, they’re forgiven forgetting their injured superstar talent at center midfield would make service to their front four a whole lot more consistent, daring, and accurate.
3. Harry Maguire needs a month on the beach: He’s been good with the ball, but Maguire is not himself in defense and boy does the England star look tired. Maguire looked foolish — as many do — trying to deal with Allan Saint-Maximin. But you expect more given his pedigree and past showings. His petulant sliding challenge to take out ASM earned him a yellow but is a classic Maguire moment when he’s frustrated and there’s an argument for a red card (if we knew what a sliding challenge red card is anymore given recent Liverpool-Spurs and Liverpool-Leicester meetings). Maguire’s not finished or anything like that, but he’s not commanding the 18, either.
Man of the Match: David De Gea
It was a seven-save day for David De Gea, who saw one Newcastle strike hit the post and had no hope of getting to Allan Saint-Maximin’s goal. What could’ve been for Newcastle, who doubled the visitors’ shots on target. His 88th minute save was the stuff of dreams. For Newcastle, Joelinton and Jamaal Lascelles had encouraging and strong performances in the draw.
Allan Saint-Maximin is magic
Newcastle led 1-0 through their mystical playmaker and it could’ve been 2-0 had Callum Wilson not been offside when he collected Saint-Maximin’s would-be assist for 2-0 and beat David De Gea.
There was a rusty turnover from returning Raphael Varane, forced by Sean Longstaff, that got Saint-Maximin the ball in space.
That’s a big fear for most defenders, and Diogo Dalot and Harry Maguire did not know how to deal with ASM, showing the dribbler to his favored inside before Maguire’s shove — which would’ve been a penalty in most worlds had the ensuing shot been errant — perhaps only aided the goal.
He could’ve had a second goal early in the second half
El Matador keeps at it
The Red Devils needed to keep taking bites at the cherry, and Edinson Cavani having consecutive chances in the heart of the 18 rarely will end without a goal.
Cavani’s celebration shows that he wants more time and Rangnick may oblige him after Cristiano Ronaldo looked as interested in scowling as surging forward.
Considering that United has wrapped up a run of fixtures against Palace, Norwich, and Newcastle with three goals scored and one conceded — with only one from Ronaldo — it’s not crazy for Rangnick to try other things up top.