Bruno Guimaraes drops exciting hint at Newcastle United’s summer transfer window plans

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Newcastle United analysis from the 1-0 victory against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League.

Newcastle United are closing in on Premier League safety after seeing off Wolverhampton Wanderers at St James’ Park on Friday night.

In a tightly fought encounter, Chris Wood’s penalty kick, 18 minutes from the end, wrapped up a massive three points for Eddie Howe’s side.

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Ahead of the rest of the top-flight fixtures across Saturday and Sunday, the Magpies sit 10 points above the drop zone.

Here’s our writer Jordan Cronin’s key talking points from the win against Wolves:

Wor Flags deliver again - and Mehrdad Ghodoussi gets in on the act

There is something about the St James’ Park atmosphere that has hit differently since the takeover in October - and a lot of that is down to the excellent work of Wor Flags.

Spine-tingling after spine-tingling displays have been organised and Friday evening was no different with all four stands of the stadium covered in black and white flags.

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That included the directors’ box, with a flag left next to the seat of co-owner Mehrdad Ghodoussi. Did anyone doubt he’d ever get involved?

Of course he did, and he, like the other 50,000 Geordies, cheered his team onto a massive three points in a special atmosphere under the lights on Tyneside.

It was no wonder Howe and his players performed a lap of honour at full-time to thank the supporters.

Unity is a great thing and Ghodoussi, along with Amanda Staveley, have been an intergal part in restoring that.

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A low-quality game - but Newcastle won’t care

This was no vintage Newcastle performance by any stretch - but they simply won’t care in the slighest.

It was about three points and three points only and the Magpies delivered that against a well-organised Wolverhampton Wanderers team.

For all Bruno Lage’s side lacked in attack - their first meaningful chance came on 80 minutes through Fabio Silva - they were extremely hard to break down.

Their five across the back made it so difficult for United to find space, so it was perhaps no surprise the game was won via a Chris Wood penalty.

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There was same pressure heading into this game after Burnley’s 3-2 win over Everton on Wednesday cut United’s advantage over the drop zone to seven points.

Had United lost, with the Clarets playing Norwich City and Watford hosting Leeds this weekend, they ran the risk of seeing their lead cut to just four.

But instead, Howe’s side can (sort of) sit back and relax knowing they’re on the cusp of sealing Premier League safety.

Bruno Guimaraes is a special talent

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Guimaraes had to wait 10 weeks before making his first St James’ Park start but he made it worthwhile by running the show - yet further evidence of just how special he is.

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Are there many players in Europe calmer than the Brazilian in possession? Certainly, the 24-year-old’s desire to take the ball in tight spaces and carry the ball forward or seamlessly find a pass is elite-level stuff.

There was a lot of hype surrounding Guimaraes’ £35million January transfer from Lyon and it’s no wonder why as fans saw first-hand his incredible ability.

Naturally, after arriving from abroad, questions were asked if the midfielder could handle the pace and physicality of the Premier League. Well, that was answered with flying colours against Wolves.

He was at the heart of everything good for Newcastle. It was his link up with Miguel Almiron that looked to have given United the lead through Wood in the first-half before VAR adjudged the Brazilian to be offside in the build-up.

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But not only that, Guimaraes has endeared himself to the Geordie-faithful already and his actions during the goal celebration will only strengthen that as he lifted a ballboy into his arms.

He left the pitch to a standing ovation and the exciting thing for Newcastle is the club will recruit more Guimaraes-calibre players in the near future. The Brazilian is just the start.

Shoutout to Chris Wood

Chris Wood of Newcastle United celebrates after scoring their side's first goal as Jose Sa of Wolverhampton Wanderers looks dejected during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Wolverhampton Wanderers at St. James Park on April 08, 2022 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)Chris Wood of Newcastle United celebrates after scoring their side's first goal as Jose Sa of Wolverhampton Wanderers looks dejected during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Wolverhampton Wanderers at St. James Park on April 08, 2022 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Chris Wood of Newcastle United celebrates after scoring their side's first goal as Jose Sa of Wolverhampton Wanderers looks dejected during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Wolverhampton Wanderers at St. James Park on April 08, 2022 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

A well-timed run from Wood on the end of Joelinton’s through ball saw him wiped out by Wolves goalkeeper Jose Sa to win a penalty with 20 minutes to go.

And there was no shying away from the spot-kick duties as New Zealand’s all-time record goalscorer immediately placed the ball on the spot.

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A second VAR check of the evening for offside delayed the 30-year-old and could have quite easily put him off. But once the referee whistled, he emphatically buried the ball home.

While two goals in 12 appearances isn’t a great return for a £25m-rated striker on paper, you just have to look at Newcastle’s record since he joined. They’ve lost just three times, winning seven and drawing two.

His overall contribution since arriving from Burnley is something Howe has been keen to point out. A goal - his first at St James’ Park - is nothing less than the down-to-earth Kiwi deserved.

Closing in on Premier League safety

Newcastle moved up to 14th on 34 points following the victory and it’s likely they’ll require just one point from their remaining seven games to seal survival.

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A points tally of 35 has been enough to keep a team in the top-flight for nine out of the last 10 seasons, only once has 40 been needed, and that’s the year United were relegated under Rafa Benitez.

After three consecutive defeats, Howe & Co restored order. It’s been a remarkable turnaround with the United head coach guiding the club from the brink of disaster to surviving with games likely to spare.

Who’d have thought that after that 1-1 home draw with Watford in January?

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