Newcastle came close to their first domestic cup final since 1999 with a 1-0 win against Southampton, whose woes were compounded as they were only ruled out by VAR and reduced to 10 men late on.
Joelinton was guilty of denying what looked like the best chance in the cage game when Miguel Almiron found himself behind, shooting aimlessly over the bar and the goalpost (53), before forgiving his initial mistake and substituting. Cross of Alexander Isak (73).
Che Adams squandered a good chance for Southampton before the game opened, coming off second in one game with Nick Pope (65) leading the way, before Adam Armstrong was disallowed after pushing the ball over the line, only on VAR. seeing a handball in the build-up – for the second time in three days the Saints have seen goals disallowed after a VAR review.
“We have been plagued by four VAR calls against us [recently],” Nathan Jones said after the game.
Magpies goalkeeper Papa has played 10 games and had 20 shots since his last goal, helping Newcastle keep more clean sheets in all competitions than any other side in Europe’s top five leagues.
“Nick made a great save today, especially against his opponent [Che] Adams – it was a big moment in the game. He stood up for us as long as he has all season. I can’t say enough about him,” manager Eddie Howe said.
The two sides will meet again on January 31 to decide who will take home the prize for the final at Wembley at the end of February against Nottingham Forest or Manchester United.
- Southampton: Nathan Jones gave full credit to Charly Alcarez and Mislav Orsic, while Moussa Djenepo was restored to the starting XI.
- Newcastle: Eddie Howe’s side were unchanged from the Magpies’ 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace.
How Newcastle put one foot in the final
Cup progress provided relief for under-fire boss Nathan Jones after three wins in less than a week in January saw Saints progress in the FA Cup, Carabao Cup and beat Everton in the Premier League.
Since then, Southampton have come back down to earth with a 1-0 defeat at Aston Villa – their fourth straight home defeat in the league – and a last-gasp comeback at the hands of Newcastle.
“The 1-0 line is delicate, nothing is decided,” said Howe Sky Sports later, but Newcastle will remain favorites to progress, Joelinton scored his third goal in eight games.
Saints, who had what they thought was the likes of Armstrong disallowed for handball by VAR, saw their frustrating night end when Duje Caleta-Car was sent off in the final – their first dismissal in any competition in more than 12 months.
The defender, who already had a yellow card when he collided with Allan Saint-Maximin in the 86th minute, will be ruled out of the replay in seven days.
Midfielder Joelinton also had a first-half goal ruled out by VAR, as did Armstrong, before missing the sitter but then capitalizing on Isak’s touch. The substitute rounded Caleta-Car and laid the ball on a plate for the Brazilian back, who fired into the net with Gavin Bazunu missing.
“The goal was pointless,” Jones concluded.
Howe urges caution Papa ‘special’
Newcastle manager Eddie Howe:
“It was a tough game. Both teams had a moment to be happy about the win but it was too late. We weren’t in the hospital until Joe’s goal. I can’t criticize the team in any way, it’s been a win. A good day for us.
“There’s a lot to play for in a tie, we needed Nick [Pope]. I’m really glad to see VAR intervene [to disallow Southampton’s goal].
“The two saves Nick made were big moments in the game. It was the biggest moment in the game, Nick stood up. He’s been a great player for us this year. He’s got a great defense in front of him but every time he needs to he creates our possession.”
Jones: I can’t celebrate because of VAR anymore
Southampton manager Nathan Jones:
“I’m really proud of how the game went. They’re a tough team to play against. I thought we were very good and to compete like we did shows we’ve come a long way. It went up and it just lacked a little bit of character.
“These days you can’t be happy about a goal because you don’t know what’s going to happen. You don’t know, we’ve been struggling with four VAR goals. [recently]. It is very disappointing. No problem with officials or anything, it was given in the VAR studio.
“I thought it was a fun game. We just went after them, we were brave and brave and strong. We know we need a little help, a little more skill, if we get that and stop scoring goals often. It’s going to be hard to beat. Then we’re going to be a good team.
“We need this window to recruit, you see [Charly] Alcaraz tonight, who I thought was amazing. “
Guimaraes: The best pope in the world
Newcastle midfielder Bruno Guimaraes:
“We played very well. We controlled the game but we missed some chances. We are happy to win the first game – 1-0 is important for us. I am proud of the team today.
“We can score more but we have one goal, the most important one. I want to say thank you for Nick Pope. He has been brilliant for us. I think he is the best player in the world right now.”
Opta stats: Saints’ first red card in over 12 months
- Southampton have lost four of their last five league games (W1), having lost one of the previous five (W1 D3).
- Newcastle won an away League Cup game against Premier League opposition for the first time since October 2014, when they beat Manchester City 2-0 (they lost 0-4 against Tottenham in December 2014 and drew 1-1 with Hull in November 2016).
- Duje Caleta-Car’s red card was Southampton’s first dismissal in any competition in over 12 months, since Yan Valery saw red against Swansea in the FA Cup on January 8, 2022.
- Joelinton has scored three goals in his last eight games in all competitions for Newcastle, a feat he has achieved in his previous 27 games.
Southampton return to the FA Cup on Saturday with a trip to Blackpool; from 3 pm.
Saints then meet Newcastle in the second minute of their Carabao Cup semi-final at St James’ Park on Tuesday, they remain Sky Sports; from 8 pm.
Newcastle they are already out of the FA Cup, meaning they have a free week. As a result, their next game is a tour of Southampton On Tuesday, where the final place in the Carabao Cup will be on the line.
The Magpies then return to Premier League action with a trip to West Ham Saturday February 4, continue Sky Sports; from 5.30pm.