Forest 1 Newcastle 2: Last Gasp Isak penalty keeps Thun in Champions League race
ALEXANDER ISAK has kept his cool amidst the mayhem, breathing new life into Newcastle’s Champions League dream.
The Swede had captain Kieran Trippier pretend to serve his team’s injury-time penalty after Moussa Diacate recklessly used a raised arm to block Isak’s header in the box. I forgave.
but, of forest Experienced keeper Keylor Navas and his mates did their best to slow and unnerve Trippier with the ball, and Isaac Foxed Forrest.
Once the fuss subsided, the ice-cold Swede stepped forward and, like any good magpie, snatched the ball from the skipper.
And the coolest man on the City Ground kept his cool, sweeping a spot kick past Navas and wreaking havoc among the Toon Army.
was not more than newcastle No surprise after bossing through most of this electrical incident to end Forest’s nine-game unbeaten home run run.
Geordies thought they had taken three points when sub Elliott Anderson headed past Navas, but his first senior goal was ruled out after a controversial VAR offside decision.
However, Eddie Howe’s men got on their nerves to resume the Champions League bid.
This was a match that meant a lot on both ends of the table and showed both sides trading hammers and tongs against each other from the first minute to the last minute.
Newcastle were hit hard before the match when Miguel Almiron, who suffered a thigh injury in training, scored 11 goals.
By contrast, Forrest’s golden boy Brennan Johnson was a surprise and very welcome to join Steve Cooper’s ranks after shrugging off a groin injury.
While Newcastle were early invaders territorially, Forrest was the physical invader, highlighting why the City Ground has become such a feared destination this season.
André Ayew made his first Premier League start in almost five years, but crashed Fabian Schär early on with a tackle from behind, leaving the Swiss defender writhing on the grass.
The Magpies unexpectedly pushed forward with a typically frantic start and there could have been two goals before Forest came out of first gear.
Forrest’s first escape came six minutes later, when Trippier sent Isak out on the right flank and the Swede’s cross picked off Joe Willock, who flared wide from five yards under pressure from Yates and Aurier.
Six minutes later, Howe’s players came even closer with a free-kick head-on. Dutch Practice field!
Near Forest’s defensive wall, they nearly made Wout Weghorst’s memorable World Cup goal against Argentina when Trippier laid the ball off to Isak.
The striker’s shot bounced off Johnson, then Aurier, and was sprinting towards goal when Renan Lodi stuck out his thigh and the ball flew over the underside of the crossbar and out.
When Nick Pope pulled Johnson’s wandering shot out of the air, it was an amazing let-off that the home team took nearly 20 minutes to get their shot.
Referee Paul Tierney enraged Forest fans when Emmanuel Dennis fouled Trippier when he clearly played the ball.
But the forwards responded in spectacular fashion thanks to a crazy defense from Sven Botman, giving Forest the lead with a sensational opener.
The Dutchman panicked under pressure from Ayew and played a blind passback that failed to find Nick Pope.
Dennis sprints to the rogue ball and, unsurprisingly, Pope has thought twice about trying out on his own box after several recent high-profile incidents.
Still, Dennis still had all the work to do as he spun and clipped a perfectly flown chip over the giant keeper, Botman and Trippier on the goal line and brilliantly found the back of the net.
It was the ex-Watford player’s sensational skill that scored his second goal of the season.
Newcastle were upset and Dunburn was cautioned for disputing the throw-in before Woodwork rescued Forest again.
Sean Longstaff’s shot was deflected by Felipe to beat Navas but bounced off the bar.
But Newcastle equalized just as Forest looked set to take the lead at half-time.
Aurier couldn’t put his head on Willock’s cross at full strength and Isaac brilliantly improvised and sent a volley over Navas with his right shin!
The Swede added to the winning goal against Wolves last week and stunned Forrest with an acrobatic finish on a ball that had fallen behind him.
Eddie Howe brought in kid midfielder Elliot Anderson for misfiring Alain Saint-Maximin at half-time, and the 20-year-old made a big impact in progress.
He nearly scored within four minutes when his first volley was brilliantly overturned by Navas.
Jonjo Shelvey then came close to scoring against his former club when a volley was blocked by Isak and his second attempt from the rebound whistled slightly louder.
However, the game devolved into controversy beyond the hour mark when Anderson was denied a dream first senior goal.
Forrest’s defence, Longstaff cut the ball back to Isaac, and when Isaac left the ground and crossed it to the back post, Anderson soared above Aurier and powered up a header past Navas, Forrest’s 12-point lead. ‘s defense was fixed.
The Scottish U-21 boys went berserk as they celebrated their first goal at Newcastle.
But his heart sank when VAR’s Peter Banks encouraged referee Tierney to take another look.
To Newcastle’s horror, officials ruled that Longstaff were in an offside position when they touched the ball.
Talk about stealing candy from babies!
Forrest waited patiently, but Aurier denied late winner Isak with a goal-line clearance.
Setting up a late smash-and-grab act on his part while Pope denies Johnson by stretching his boots.
Here’s how the action unfolds…