Newcastle beat Brighton to close in on Champions League

18 May 2023
Newcastle United v Brighton & Hove Albion

Magpies earn vital 4-1 win which leaves them three points from securing a top-four finish

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Newcastle United have one foot in the UEFA Champions League after a 4-1 home win over Brighton & Hove Albion took them four points clear of fifth-placed Liverpool in the top-four race.

The race for Europe

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
3 Manchester United MUN 38 +15 75
4 Newcastle United NEW 38 +35 71
5 Liverpool LIV 38 +28 67
6 Brighton & Hove Albion BHA 38 +19 62
7 Aston Villa AVL 38 +5 61
8 Tottenham Hotspur TOT 38 +7 60
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The Magpies were on the front foot from the start, penning the Seagulls inside their own half and taking a deserved lead in the 22nd minute.

Kieran Trippier’s inswinging corner from the left side forced an own goal from Brighton striker Deniz Undav, whose flicked header at the near post sailed over his goalkeeper Jason Steele.

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Newcastle then doubled their lead from another set-piece just before half-time.

Trippier, who has been shortlisted for the EA SPORTS Player of the Season award, delivered a free-kick from the right flank and Dan Burn headed in his first Premier League goal for Newcastle, doing so against his former club.

Newcastle nearly went 3-0 up early in the second half as Miguel Almiron was denied by Steele six yards out. Instead, it was 2-1 moments later as Undav cancelled out his own goal, latching on to a sublime pass from Billy Gilmour and scoring for the fourth time in five matches.

The nerves gradually increased around St James' Park, but Callum Wilson sent the home fans into delirium with a late goal and assist.

In the 89th minute he collected Almiron's through-ball and ran through to score his eighth goal in six matches. Then, two minutes later, he got in behind again and squared unselfishly to give Bruno Guimaraes a simple finish.

Eddie Howe, a nominee for the Barclays Manager of the Season, and his players would be guaranteed a top-four finish if Liverpool lose at home to Aston Villa on Saturday.

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And even if the Reds win, Newcastle can finish the job themselves on Monday with a home win over relegation-threatened Leicester City.

Brighton remain sixth with 58 points. They are just one point above Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa in the race for European qualification but have a match in hand on both teams.

See: How clubs qualify for Europe

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