Newcastle United 3-1 Luton Town: Newcastle avoid cup upset as they ease past testing Town

The scoreline at St James' Park certainly flattered to deceive Newcastle United as they eased into the fourth round of The FA Cup, as first-half goals from Ayoze Pérez and Jonjo Shelvey gave them a 3-1 win over a formidable Luton Town.

It was The Magpies that showed the difference between the two sides in the first period, as quick-fire goals from Pérez and Shelvey inside nine minutes all but secured their passage into the fourth round.

The second period did belong to the League Two side as they managed to get one back early on through Danny Hylton, the away side continued to go for it as the half went on with a disallowed goal from Hylton and great chances from Olly Lee but couldn't stop the Tyneside outfit progressing.

A quick-fire trio

The FA Cup has prided itself on providing many upsets down the years and considering the form of both sides many highlighted this clash as one of those possible underdog stories, however the home side showed the gulf in class between the Premier League and League Two outfits as they notched up three goals in nine minutes.

The first goal arrived bang on the half-hour mark as Dwight Gayle's free-kick proved too hot to handle for Marek Štěch as he failed to keep hold of the set-piece, and Pérez was waiting in the wings to prod home from close-range.

Pérez doubled his and Newcastle's tally six minutes later and it was a very similar finish to the first, Gayle looked to have doubled the home side's lead but his header was brilliantly kept out by Štěch but could do nothing to prevent Pérez pouncing again from close-range.

Wrapping things up

Rafael Benítez's side all but sealed their passage into the fourth round as they added their third three minutes later, Pérez and Gayle combined again as the Spaniard teed it up for Shelvey to sweep it home from just inside the area.

Giving the travelling fans a consolation

Nathan Jones' side came out for the second period full of spunk as they looked to give the 8,000 travelling to shout about, and managed to get one back four minutes after the restart. Freddie Woodman did well to clear under pressure but Glen Rea did well to put it straight back upfield, it came to Hylton who did well to round the goalkeeper and fire home.

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Opening things up

Luton are the second-highest scorers across the 92 clubs only behind Manchester City, and The Hatters looked to try and strike some fear into their Premier League hosts as they had some good opportunities to try get themselves back into the tie.

They thought they had a second goal to their name just before the hour mark as Hylton brilliantly curled his effort into the bottom corner, Hylton was in ecstasy as he continued his celebrations despite the flag being raised for offside.

It was familiar surroundings for Lee with his dad Rob having spent much of his career at St James' Park, and he came close to finding the net as his deflected free-kick went just wide of the bottom left-hand corner.

The Hatters couldn't have gone any closer when Lee lined up the free-kick 16 minutes from the end, the set-piece looked destined for the top corner but it cannoned off the crossbar.

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Going close at the end

Luton were throwing everything but the kitchen sink at The Magpies as the clock ticked down, Dan Potts got the ball to Andrew Shinnie on the edge of the area and it curls it towards goal from 20 yards but is well saved by Woodman.

The Magpies managed to find a late push as they looked to kill off their lower league opponents, Matt Ritchie received the ball on the left after Pérez and Gayle combined well but his effort was into the side-netting.

There was late drama in the last minute of extra-time as Luton broke after Štěch's excellent save from Gayle, Town countered through Elliot Lee who sent Luke Gambin through with his effort hitting the side-netting.