Newcastle vs Nottingham Forest: Magpies issue rude welcome

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Newcastle United took some time to get on the scoresheet but left no question of superiority in a 2-0 defeat of newly-promoted Nottingham Forest at St. James’ Park on Saturday.

Fabian Schar and Callum Wilson scored as Newcastle held 63 percent of the ball and put 10 of its 23 shots on target to give Eddie Howe and his new contract an even brighter shine.

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Steve Cooper’s Forest goes back to the drawing board and will hope for better luck in Week 2 when it heads home to the City Ground next week.

Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson made seven saves for the Tricky Trees in the loss while Nick Pope did not need to make a save to keep his clean sheet, requiring just a single high claim of a cross amongst his 24 touches.

WATCH NEWCASTLE vs NOTTINGHAM FOREST FULL MATCH REPLAY


What we learned from Newcastle vs Nottingham Forest

Newcastle shows style and substance before finish

Newcastle was all over Nottingham Forest but just missing the finishing touch over the first 58 minutes at St. James’ Park, which was a powder keg as Bruno Guimares pulled the strings and Miguel Almiron ran his shorts off only to be flummoxed time again by Almiron’s hesitance to shoot and Dean Henderson’s collected nature between the sticks for Forest.

That changed when Fabian Schar was given time and space to unleash a combination of power and placement from 18 yards, sending the stadium where it wanted to go all morning.

Henderson, Worrall key to Forest’s resolve

Much was demanded of Forest captain Joe Worrall at the back and he mostly delivered the goods. But one defender can’t keep an entire attack at bay and Dean Henderson was well-positioned for much of the day and showed that his frustrations at being little-used at Manchester United were getting proper release.


Tactical focus

Newcastle controlled possession and chances in a way befitting of the club they hope to be once years of investment have taken place following to stingy Mike Ashley era, but they’ll have no plans to quit on their summer recruitment of a center forward to challenge Callum Wilson. Bruno Guimares, Joelinton, and Joe Willock will have more difficult days in the middle of the park as they exerted complete control with Guimares and Joelinton accounting for six of the trio’s seven key passes.

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It should’ve been the home team ahead before halftime as Nottingham Forest’s adjustment to the pace of the Premier League was… just not there. Dean Henderson was class between the posts and Forest boss Steve Cooper will be encouraged by the Manchester United loanee’s early heroics.


Stars of the show

Dean Henderson: Seven saves, four on shots from inside the box, hardly tells the story of how important the Man United man was to stopping an ugly number going up next to Forest’s name on the scoreboard. His leadership will be very important, too, because he’s been through this with Sheffield United.

Bruno Guimares: If the Newcastle experiment comes to success earlier than expected, Guimares’ signing will be the one viewed as the reason. Three more key passes while winning 10-of-14 duels and drawing four fouls? Too good.

Joelinton: It’s actually ridiculous how good of a center midfielder the center forward’s become under Eddie Howe’s vision and tutelage. Three shots, three key passes, an assist, three fouls drawn, and three-for-three on long passes.


What’s next?

Newcastle’s off to Brighton for another 10am ET Saturday kickoff, while Nottingham Forest welcomes Premier League football back to the City Ground when West Ham United pays the Tricky Trees a visit.