The Warm Down: It was not pretty, it was not clean, but it was a Newcastle win
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Miguel Almiron of Newcastle United celebrates after scoring their team's second goal during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Southampton at St. James Park on February 06, 2021 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Jason Cairnduff - Pool/Getty Images)

Newcastle United held on for a 3-2 victory over Southampton in the 15:00 kick-off.

Newcastle played 29 minutes with ten men after Jeff Hendrick was sent off following a second bookable offence. The worries got worse for Newcastle who lost Fabian Schär to injury and as the Swiss international had to be stretchered off.

By this time, Newcastle had already made all three substitutions due to Javier Manquillo and Callum Wilson having to come off in the first half with knocks picked up and Allan Saint-Maximin was taken off due to exhaustion.  This left the Magpies playing with nine men for 17 minutes. 

By this time it was 3-2, After three first-half goals by Newcastle with Miguel Almiron getting a brace and debutant Joe Willock reaching his first goal. In terms of first goals, Willock was not the only one as Takumi Minamino earned himself a goal with an emphatic finish at the near post. The bunch's pick was James Ward-Prowse's free kick in the second half to put the Saints at 3-2. 

Newcastle fans have been demanding effort from their side all season, and they truly got their full worth today. As the nine men, Newcastle defended for their lives and truly earned every Newcastle fan's respect.

Miguel Almiron's rebirth

Miguel Almiron has always been loved up on Tyneside, whether its the cheeky grin or the gut-busting runs Almiron has had one critique to his game end product. But since the Magpies formation change and high tempo running Almiron has shone as a real star in this side. With three goals in his last four and top of the list in the distance covered for each game. The new formation and ability for the Paraguayan to drift later into the area suits his game and has brought a smile to more. 

The question will now be, can he keep it up? 

Newcastles first problem sorted but second created. 

Some questioned the addition of Joe Willock into the Newcastle dressing room. Today, many were silenced as the England international was excellent in the first half bringing the ball out and linking up with Allan Saint-Maxmin in the wide areas. Willock also took his goal well. In the second half did his defensive duties and did not look frustrated at being asked to do this side of his game. 

With Willock, Issac Hayden and Jonjo Shelvey Newcastle have a balanced and productive midfield with a defensive unit an attacking one and playmaker who can make any pass required. 

This, however, creates a new problem for the Magpies. Defence with Fabian Schär now joining Jamal Lascelles, and Federico Fernandez on the treatment table. Ciaran Clark has just welcomed a new baby this leaves Newcastle a little short in the centre back position. The other problem for Newcastle this season has been goals. With Callum Wilson limping off it could be a while before we see this Newcastle team how it is meant to be designed. 

Bruce certainly has not lost the dressing room. 

It is not a secret when Newcastle go through a bad patch; they certainly know how to do it. Before the Leeds United performance, Steve Bruce's Newcastle career was on tenterhooks with reports the dressing room did not respect him, and significant players had fallen out with Bruce. 

The reports were dashed, and it was apparent that this Newcastle United team will sacrifice everything and play their hearts out for Bruce. 

Love or hate the current Newcastle head coach, the display seen at the Southampton game was nothing short of heroic and long may it continue. 

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