Newcastle United 1-1 Norwich City: Pukki volley denies 10-man Magpies a first win of the season
(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Newcastle United’s wait for a first win of the season goes on after they were held at home by fellow Premier League strugglers Norwich City.

The Magpies played the majority of the game with 10-men after Ciaran Clark was dismissed just nine minutes into the game after he pulled back a through on goal Teemu Pukki.

Despite that, the hosts broke the deadlock on 61 minutes when Callum Wilson converted a penalty after Billy Gilmour was deemed to have handled the ball in the area by VAR.

Dean Smith's side equalised 11 minutes before time to ensure they did not go home empty handed, thanks to a sensational volley from Pukki.

Story of the game

After their 2-0 defeat to Arsenal at the weekend, Eddie Howe made three changes to his Newcastle side, all in which were to the backline.

Javier ManquilloCiaran Clark and Jamal Lewis – facing his former club – coming in for Emil Krafth, and the suspended pair of Jamaal Lascelles and Matt Ritchie.

Dean Smith was forced into two changes of his own ahead of this game, with Lukas Rupp and Christos Tzolis drafted into the side to replace the injured duo of Mathias Normann and Milot Rashica.

Todd Cantwell – after being ousted to the reserves by former Canaries boss Daniel Farke – was expected to make a return to the Norwich team tonight in some capacity. But due to COVID-related issues, his stint on the sidelines had to continue.

It was imperative that Newcastle got off to a strong start, and that is what they attempted to do early on in this relegation six-pointer.

Five minutes in saw the first chance fall to the hosts, Allan Saint-Maximin cut in the from the left-hand side and teed up Jonjo Shelvey on the edge of the penalty area.

After being urged by the St James' Park crowd to shoot, he obliged, but his effort narrowly went over the woodwork.

It was apparent very early on that if The Magpies were going to win tonight, they were going to have to do it the hard way, after Ciaran Clark was sent off after just nine minutes.

The Irishman pulled Teemu Pukki's shirt back after he was unleashed through on goal, meaning Newcastle had to go the best part of the full match with just 10 men.

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Federico Fernandez – who hadn't been part of the Newcastle side for the last six games – was brought in to fill the gap left by Clark, meaning Ryan Fraser was sacrificed in his place.

Despite being a man down, Newcastle continued to push for the opener, but Norwich were buoyed by the man advantage and came very close to scoring.

Tzolis broke down the left-hand side and crossed low towards Josh Sargent at the back-post who was denied a goal by an excellent goal-line block from Lewis.

Just when it looked like The Canaries were starting to dominate, Newcastle came again when Joe Willock made a surging run down the wing before playing in Wilson, who turned and shot, but he skied his effort.

Tzolis was a nuisance again just before the interval, as he forced Toon goalkeeper Martin Dubravka into making a save low to his left.

Newcastle did have the last chance of the half, however, Joelinton's shot cannoned over the crossbar.

Pukki's volley silences St James' Park

Refereeing drama dominated the early parts of the second half, with Newcastle adamant they should've had a penalty after Joelinton was hauled down in the box.

Norwich may have felt they got away with one decision, but shortly after, Newcastle were awarded a spot-kick after a long VAR deliberation.

After a corner was whipped in and headed by Fernandez, the ball struck Billy Gilmour's raised arm.

Andy Madley did not give the penalty at first, but after being advised to go and check the monitor, the spot-kick was given.

Toon's top scorer Callum Wilson stepped up, and despite Tim Krul getting a hand to it, he found the back of the net to give the 10-men the lead.

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Shortly after The Magpies broke the deadlock, Smith brought on Adam Idah for Sargent, meaning it was him and Pukki leading the line.

Taking a midfielder off left Norwich with a few more gaps in-behind, and Saint-Maximin nearly made the most of that as he bursted through the backline before taking aim, but his effort went wide of Krul's goal.

But those two strikers paid off eventually, with The Canaries snatching an all-important equaliser 10 minutes later. 

A cross into the box from the left-hand side was tamely palmed away by Dubravka and the ball landed perfectly for Pukki, who unleashed a stunning volley into the top-left corner of the net.

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In a match that Newcastle saw as a must-win, the emphasis quickly turned to making sure they didn't lose the game.

Fabian Schar clumsily lost the ball in his own half in stoppage time, gifting substitute Pierre Lees-Melou the opportunity to take all the points back to East Anglia, but Dubravka denied him emphatically to ensure the spoils were shared.

Starting XI's

Newcastle: Dubravka; Manquillo, Schar, Clark, Lewis; Fraser, Shelvey, Willock, Joelinton; Saint-Maximin; Wilson. (4-4-1-1)

Norwich: Krul; Aarons, Hanley, Gibson, Williams; McLean, Rupp; Sargent, Gilmour, Tzolis; Pukki. (4-2-3-1)

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