Newcastle United – Brighton & Hove Albion: Newcastle Press On Towards The Champions League (4-1)
On a Europa League night, two teams with dreams of qualifying for next season's Champions League faced off in the Premier League. Brighton's hopes were already very low at this point, and they were certainly killed for good as Newcastle United got to within touching distance of sealing a top four spot.
Tactical analysis and match report by Neel Shelat.
Newcastle United’s season has been better than they could have hoped for, yet the last few weeks feel decisive. Throughout the season, they have looked well on course to finish in the top four, but a couple of recent setbacks had slightly jeopardized their position. They started this match just a point ahead of fifth-placed Liverpool, although this was a game in hand for them. Still, winning here was quite important to maintain a secure position in the top four heading into the penultimate matchday.
Brighton have always been outsiders in the race for the top four, and their admirable run seemed to be coming to an end now. They were eight points behind their opponents at kick-off having played one fewer match than them, so their chances were very low anyway and anything but a win would surely spell the end of them for good. Nevertheless, qualification for any of the continental competitions would be a great success for them, and they certainly are in a good position for that.
Newcastle United named a full-strength eleven in their usual 4-3-3 formation. Nick Pope started in goal behind Kieran Trippier, Fabian Schär, Sven Botman and Dan Burn. Joe Willock, Bruno Guimarães and Joelinton made up the midfield, whilst Miguel Almirón, Callum Wilson and Alexander Isak . . .