Newcastle 2-1 West Ham: Steve McClaren's side move out of bottom three with victory
By Oliver Yew
Last Updated: 16/01/16 7:51pm
Newcastle moved out of the bottom three of the Premier League after a 2-1 win against West Ham at St James' Park on Saturday.
Ayoze Perez and Georginio Wijnaldum struck inside the first 15 minutes as the hosts raced into the lead, with new £12m signing Jonjo Shelvey having a hand in both goals.
Hammers boss Slaven Bilic reacted by bringing Nikica Jelavic on at the break but though the striker handed his side hope in the 47th minute, it was Newcastle who held on to record their first win in six league outings.
Steve McClaren's side move up to 17th and two points clear of the relegation zone for now, with Swansea hosting Watford on Monday Night Football.
West Ham remain fifth, four points behind Tottenham following Spurs' 4-1 win over Sunderland earlier in the day.
Buoyed by both their midweek fightback against Manchester United and the arrivals of new signings Shelvey and Henri Saivet, Newcastle started brightly against the Hammers.
Perez, who had already seen Adrian save his early side-footed effort, fired the Magpies into a sixth-minute lead, curling the ball beyond the dive of Adrian after Wijnaldum had laid the ball off from Shelvey's pass.
It was the perfect start for Newcastle and their new £12m man, but in the 13th minute West Ham could have been back on level terms but for a crucial intervention from captain Fabricio Coloccini. Aaron Cresswell fired in a low cross from the left and with Michail Antonio poised at the back post, Coloccini got back to deny the winger.
It turned out to be a crucial intervention as two minutes later Shelvey, who was involved in a an off-the-ball incident with Enner Valencia not spotted by referee Neil Swarbrick, fired out a brilliant cross-field pass to Daryl Janmaat, who picked out Wijnaldum, and he smashed the ball home from close range to score his ninth goal of the season.
Newcastle continued to cause the visitors' defence problems with Aleksandar Mitrovic denied by Adrian, but they were given a warning just before the break when they needed Rob Elliot to keep out Cheikhou Kouyate's powerful strike.
Wijnaldum could have made it 3-0 within minutes of the restart but he scuffed his shot wide after good link-up play with Moussa Sissoko and Mitrovic.
That miss was to prove costly as West Ham hit back seconds later, Jelavic latching onto Chancel Mbemba's short back-pass before rounding the keeper to pull a goal back.
The visitors were buoyed yet dominated most of the second-half possession without ever really threatening the Newcastle goal.
Newcastle still looked the more likely to add a third with Mitrovic forcing two saves from Adrian and Shelvey, who impressed on his first outing for the club, as McClaren's men looked to hit their opponents on the break.
West Ham did have one final chance to grab an equaliser with Kouyate leaping highest to head Jelavic's cross goalwards, but Elliot produced an 89th-minute save to deny the visitors.
Charlie Nicholas' Soccer Saturday verdict
"The difference was Shelvey. He does try too many Hollywood passes, but when he gets it right it looks amazing. Players are looking at him and want to give it him.
"Magnificent three points for them. Steve McClaren will have a big smile on his face. They played with a high tempo, pass and move scenario that had an end product.
"West Ham are always intriguing, Payet was on the ball all the time but it never really happened for them today. Defensively there are concerns. They were a little bit all over the place."
Newcastle: Elliot (7), Janmaat (7), Mbemba (5), Coloccini (7), Dummett (6), Sissoko (7), Shelvey (8), Colback (7), Wijnaldum (8), Perez (8), Mitrovic (7).
Subs used: Lascelles (6), Gouffran (6), Saivet (6).
West Ham: Adrian (7), Tomkins (6), Collins (7), Ogbonna (6), Cresswell (6), Obiang (6), Noble (6), Kouyate (6), Antonio (5), Payet (6), Valencia (6).
Subs used: Jenkinson (5), Moses (5), Jelavic (6).
Man of the match: Jonjo Shelvey