Newcastle 1-1 Swansea: Sub Joselu rescues point for Magpies
By Michael Hincks
Last Updated: 13/01/18 6:06pm
Joselu came off the bench to deny bottom-club Swansea a much-needed victory and earn Newcastle a point from a 1-1 draw at St James' Park.
After Newcastle missed a number of chances to take the lead, Jordan Ayew headed Swansea in front on the hour-mark.
Joselu levelled for the Magpies in the 68th minute - just four minutes after replacing Dwight Gayle - although the Swans could have stolen all three points in injury-time when Wilfried Bony saw his shot cleared off the line by DeAndre Yedlin.
The draw leaves Swansea four points from safety, while Newcastle sit 14th in the Premier League table, three points above the drop zone, and now winless in their last seven league games at home.
Newcastle: Darlow (6), Yedlin (6), Clark (7), Lascelles (6), Dummett (7), Shelvey (6), Diame (6), Ritchie (7), Perez (6), Atsu (7), Gayle (7)
Subs: Joselu (6), Merino (n/a)
Swansea: Fabianski (6), Bartley (7), Van der Hoorn (6), Mawson (7), Olsson (7), Carroll (7), Clucas (6), Ki (6), Dyer (6), Ayew (6), McBurnie (5)
Subs: Roberts (6), Bony (6), Narsingh (n/a)
Man of the match: Kyle Bartley
Gayle twice came close to breaking the deadlock for Newcastle, but he directed a first header straight at Lukasz Fabianski in the Swansea goal before sending a second wide of the mark.
Newcastle continued to press for an opener, but Ayoze Perez squandered the best opportunity of the half when firing too close to Fabianski after Matt Ritchie's delightful ball over the top.
Swansea saw claims for a penalty turned down before half-time, with referee Graham Scott waving away protests despite Mo Diame appearing to block Mike van der Hoorn's attempt with his elbow.
Newcastle made four changes to the side that beat Luton 3-1 in the FA Cup, with Karl Darlow, DeAndre Yedlin, Mo Diame and Christian Atsu all returning to the XI.
Tammy Abraham (hip) and Renato Sanches (hamstring) were out for the visitors, while Ki Sung-Yeung returned as one of seven changes to the side that drew 0-0 with Wolves.
After the break, Gayle sent an effort wide of Fabianski's far post, and Newcastle were made to pay for their missed chances when Swansea struck with 60 minutes on the clock.
Ayew's initial header was superbly saved by Karl Darlow, but the rebound fell kindly for the Swansea forward, who made no mistake with his second header.
Rafael Benitez responded by replacing Gayle with Joselu, and the move paid off when the forward latched onto a rebound and rolled the ball into the far corner.
Swansea substitute Bony could have grabbed the headlines in the third minute of stoppage time, but his low effort was blocked by Yedlin on the line after Darlow had come out to deny Luciano Narsingh.
- Newcastle have failed to win any of their last seven home Premier League games (D2 L5) - their longest winless run since April 2009 under Joe Kinnear and also Alan Shearer (8 games).
- Indeed, it's Rafael Benitez's longest winless run on home soil in the Premier League as manager.
- Swansea have won four points in their two Premier League away games under Carlos Carvalhal - as many as they'd won in their previous nine in the top flight.
- The Swans have kept just one clean sheet in their last 10 Premier League games, conceding 20 goals in the process.
- All four of Joselu's Premier League goals for Newcastle have come on home soil.
Man of the match - Kyle Bartley
After picking up a yellow card 10 minutes into the match, Bartley looked somewhat cagey for the remainder of the first half, knowing he was one mistake away from an early bath.
However, the Swansea captain typified their resolute performance after the break, making a match-high eight clearances, as well as two tackles and one block to deny Newcastle on numerous occasions.
Rafael Benitez: "I think we had chances in the first half to score a couple of goals, and then everything could have been different in the second half.
"After we conceded, the reaction of the team was positive, and we pushed until the end - although they could have scored on the counter attack.
"It's more or less what has happened during the season. The team has to take their chances, not just the strikers. If we create, it doesn't matter if it's a winger or a midfielder, we have to be more clinical in front of goal."
Carlos Carvalhal [on failure to award first-half penalty]: "It's impossible from what I saw on the bench. I would not be honest if I said I saw from the bench. But of course, you know the technology these days, our assistant said it was a clear penalty.
"When I saw in the video, it was a clear penalty because the ball went towards the goal and he opened his arm, in my opinion, the arm is not in a natural positon.
"When he opened the arm, it's a clear penalty and red card also. We are unlucky."
Newcastle travel to Premier League leaders Manchester City in next Saturday's late Premier League kick-off, while Swansea host Wolves in their FA Cup third-round replay on Wednesday before welcoming Liverpool to the Liberty Stadium for Monday Night Football on January 22.