Bournemouth 0-1 Newcastle United: Magpies steal precious three points as third-choice 'keeper Elliot stars

Newcastle United were indebted to back-up goalkeeper Rob Elliot as they managed their first away win in the Premier League since January against Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.

The home side, who had lost four of their last five games, laid seige to Elliot's goal throughout the first-half but the Magpies stole the lead against the run of play through Ayoze Perez's clinical finish on the counter-attack around the half-hour mark.

It was a similar story after the interval as third-choice 'keeper Elliot continued to frustrate the home fans with a number of excellent saves and Eddie Howe's side suffered from a lack of goalscoring quality, with the injured Callum Wilson watching on from the stands.

But despite a nervy finale, Newcastle dug in deep to protect the three points, taking only their second victory of the season, and only their second away from St James' Park in 2015, to lift themselves out of the bottom three.

Bournemouth the better side early on

Steve McClaren named an unchanged side from the team that drew 0-0 with Stoke City a week ago, whilst Bournemouth brought in  Joshua King and Junior Stanislas for Marc Pugh and Glenn Murray after their contributions off of the bench in their loss to Southampton last time out.

The home side's changes saw them start the side on the front foot and it took them only a few minutes to bring a strong save out of Elliot. Harry Arter found space down the right side before finding King at the near post, but the striker could only sting the palms of the Newcastle shot-stopper.

The Cherries continued to create opportunities, but they almost profited from a lapse in concentration in the visiting defence. Chancel Mbemba's hesitation allowed King to steal in and drive towards goal - but Elliot was on hand to rush off his line and thwart his view of goal.

Nevertheless, Eddie Howe's charges continued to surge forward as they maintained their positive start, but they were occasionally guilty of wasting their final ball as Matt Ritchie's cross narrowly evaded the head of King inside the area.

Elliot denied them again after 20 minutes, when the lively King jinked into space after beating two Newcastle defenders, but his close-range shot was straight at the goalkeeper.

Newcastle open the scoring on the break

Then, Newcastle opened the deadlock completely against the run of play. A quick counter-attack saw Georginio Wijnaldum pick out Ayoze Perez with a clipped through ball and the Spanish forward struck his left-footed shot early, meaning Adam Federici couldn't get a strong enough hand to prevent the ball creeping into the bottom corner.

But not to be disheartened from falling behind, the home side were still the better team and continued to attack in numbers, Elliot denying King again as he tipped his header round the post.

The 'keeper was left helpless only a few minutes later after a cleared corner dropped invitingly for Adam Smith on the edge of the area. He ran onto the loose ball and fired a thunderous strike towards goal, but the always-rising effort could only brush the top of the crossbar. 

They continued to come close, as Elliot somehow clawed away from Dan Gosling's header from pinpoint range - pushing it onto the post and wide of goal after the ex-Newcastle midfielder had risen high above his marker to meet a cross.

Ultimately, Bournemouth could not find the equaliser that their dominance had deserved as they retreated into the changing rooms at half-time bewildered at how they trailed 1-0.

Cherries struggle to find much-needed equaliser

But the Cherries came firing out of the blocks in similar fashion in the second-half and forced yet another fine reflex save from Elliot inside just 40 seconds after Ritchie had met a cross inside the box and powered a header goalwards, but the English custodian was able to palm it over his crossbar. 

As the rain continued to come down on the South Coast, Bournemouth barraged the Newcastle goal but to no avail. Wave after wave of attacks saw them dominate possession and pepper Elliot's goal - though Gosling's header from close-range was off-target just a few minutes into the second period. 

Under the pressure, Newcastle almost threw away the lead through their own doing as Daryl Janmaat's poor pass back to Elliot forced him into a rash clearance - however Fabricio Coloccini was on hand to block Ritchie's shot after the ball bounced around inside the box.

As the game approached the hour, little changed as Gosling and Stanislas both spurned opportunities from inside the box - the latter lashing a shot over the crossbar from 12-yards.

The constant pressure looked certain to tell on a Newcastle defence which had already conceded 22 goals in 11 games, but somehow Howe's side just couldn't get the ball in the back of the net before they desperately appealed for a penalty in the 66th minute.

Referee Lee Mason was however having nothing after Mbemba had blocked the run of Andrew Surman inside the area, leaving the 11,000-strong home crowd frustrated.

Newcastle hold on for huge win on the South Coast

Both sides made changes as Bournemouth desperately looked to bring themselves level and Newcastle attempted to gain a greater foothold in the game, but neither side's subs paid off as the hosts had all the build-up but no end product.

Having had only one shot all game, there was rare respite for the travelling fans as they won a free-kick in the final third with eight minutes remaining, but Coloccini's header flew over the bar in only their second attempt on goal all game. 

Six minutes of added time then provoked mixed reactions from the away and home sections of the crowd, but Newcastle held in and bizarrely, Bournemouth were left to rue a lack of clinical finishing and a fine performance from Rob Elliot, with none of their 20 attempts finding the back of the net.

McClaren's men emerged unscathed with a long-awaited away victory that lifts them out of the league's bottom three, leapfrogging their opponents in the process, and giving them a second successive clean sheet. 

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