And we wondered where the goals would come from – well it tells you what we know know about this stuff – but stand forward Leon Best – stand up and be counted for a terrific hat-trick – and when it really mattered too.
Leon Best opened his Newcastle account tonight in some style, with a tremendous hat-trick at St James’s Park, on his Premier league debut, as Newcastle annihilated West Ham 5-0
The Nottingham-born striker had gone almost a year without scoring for Newcastle, but to be fair, he’s had to overcome number of injuries and he showed tonight what he can do for Newcastle United.
And credit to Alan Pardew as well, for not only standing by him, but by giving him his chance tonight, and as a sub on Sunday, when he looked lively.
And while fans had already taken to best before tonight, because of his burning desire to do well at newcatsle, he got a standing ovation tonight for his three goals – a great display and great courage from the 24 year-old striker.
Two goals from Leon Best and the 9th goal of the season from captain Kevin Nolan gave Newcastle a comfortable 3-0 interval lead and then then Best completed his hat-trick.
And Peter Lovenkrands made it five with his 3rd goal of the season, and the rout was complete and adds to the 6-0 win against Aston Villa and the 5-1 win against Sunderland.
And the pleasing thing is again the lads kept a clean sheet – and for the second game in a row. 😀
West Ham were completely hammered – excuse the pun – but Steve Harper had almost nothing to do in the Newcastle goal, as Alan Pardew seems to have made a bright start to his Newcastle management career with 3 wins in the first 5 games in charge, and Newcastle now are on 28 points from 21 games.
The game kicked off and Newcastle made a good start and would you believe that Best had a couple of early chances, but didn’t get anywhere near to beating Robert Green in the West Ham goal.
Best opened the scoring in the 18th minute as Peter Lovenkrands lifted the ball high into the path of the 24-year-old, who coolly shot past Green and into the far corner of the net – an excellent finish from Leon for his first ever PL goal.
Great work between the two strikers with both Carroll and Ameobi out, but they were hardly missed tonight such was the play of the two strikers, and this Newcastle United side, who were buzzing tonight.
And then in the 39th minute, Best made it 2-0 after Lovenkrands had a shot only parried by Robert Green and Best was there, where he should have been, to put the ball home.
Again the two strikers had combined brilliantly for a Newcastle goal, and another great finish from Best, who steadied himself before rifling the ball home! It was fairy tale stuff at this point in the game, with the crowd going wild.
And just before the break captain Kevin Nolan made it 3-0 after a mistake by James Tomkins, and the Newcastle captain stroked the ball home from just 10 yards out and through a crowded penalty area and into the back of the net.
And a bit of a surprise but with the game presumably won, Pardew brought on Mike Williamson for Steven Taylor at center-back in the second half, while Avram Grant brought on Victor Obinna and Valon Behrami, to try to rescue the game.
After 59 minutes Best followed Andy Carroll and captain Kevin Nolan in getting a hat trick at St. James’ Park this season, and in his first ever PL start too (how much is this guy worth again?), when he calmly finished by stroking the ball home, after Kevin Nolan had found him open.
Peter Lovenkrands then added a 5th goal for Newcastle – which does the goal difference a power of good by the way – as the Danish International beat Green at the near post following a Barton cross from the right.
Pardew then did the right thing, as Leon Best was taken off to a tremendous standing ovation from the very grateful Geordie crowd.
Nile Ranger and Shane Ferguson were the subs, as Gutierrez was also taken off.
A worrying sight was when Cheick Tiote limped off the field and Newcastle completed the game with just 10 men, having used all three of their subs.
Newcastle are now up to 8th in the Premier League on 28 points, and we took the 6 points we wanted to see from the four holiday games, after losing the first two.
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This was a terrific performance from the Newcastle side, and they looked so much better than West Ham tonight, and it’s now two wins in a row with 6 goals scored and none conceded.
The players and Alan Pardew and the coaching staff deserve all the credit in the world for producing this display, when it really mattered.
They were simply magnificent tonight – and maybe Leon Best has a good career ahead of him on the Tyne!
Howay The Lads!!
Teams and stats:
Newcastle: Harper; Simpson, S Taylor (Williamson, 46), Coloccini, Enrique; Barton, Nolan, Tiote, Gutierrez (Ferguson, 66); Best (Ranger, 63), Lovenkrands,
Subs not used: Krul, Perch, Guthrie, Routledge.
West Ham: Green; Ben Haim, Tomkins, Upson, Gabbidon; Sears, Kovac (Obinna, 46), Parker, Noble (Hines, 70); Piquionne (Behrami, 46), Cole.
Subs not used: Reid, Berrera, Spector, Boffin.
Goals: Best 18, 39, 60, Nolan 45, Lovenkrands 63
Bookings: Kovac 13, Behrami 80, Ben Haim 83
Referee: Mike Dean (The Wirral)