Newcastle United delivered a stunning performance in their first Champions League home game in 20 years, defeating Paris Saint-Germain 4-1 on Wednesday night. The hosts scored three goals in the first 50 minutes, leaving the visitors shell-shocked and unable to cope with the intensity and passion of the Saudi-owned club.
Newcastle, who were bought by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund two years ago, had already impressed in their opening group game, drawing 0-0 with AC Milan at the San Siro. But they surpassed all expectations by beating PSG, one of the favourites to win the competition, in front of a raucous crowd at St. James’ Park.
The first goal came in the 17th minute, when PSG defender Marquinhos made a costly error by giving away the ball to Newcastle midfielder Bruno Guimaraes.
A pass from the Brazilian found Alexander Isak, who fired a shot that Gianluigi Donnarumma repelled, but Miguel Almiron pounced on the rebound and slotted it in.
The second goal was even more special for Newcastle, as Dan Burn, a lifelong fan of the club who used to watch from the stands as a kid, headed in from Guimaraes’ cross in the 39th minute. The 6-foot-7 defender beat Donnarumma to the ball and saw his header cross the line despite the goalkeeper’s desperate attempt to claw it out. The goal was checked by VAR for both handball and offside, but it stood.
The third goal came five minutes into the second half, when Kieran Trippier released Sean Longstaff with a brilliant pass. The academy graduate, another boyhood fan of the club, drilled a low shot past Donnarumma’s elbow and into the bottom corner.
PSG looked stunned and disorganised, and their star striker, Kylian Mbappe, was largely ineffective against Newcastle’s solid defense. The French champions managed to pull one back in the 56th minute when Lucas Hernandez ran forward from left back and glanced in a header from Warren Zaïre-Emery’s lofted pass.
But it was too little, too late for PSG, who failed to create any more clear chances and were punished again in stoppage time. Fabian Schär scored Newcastle’s fourth goal with a powerful header from Trippier’s corner, sending the home fans into ecstasy.
The result put Newcastle at the top of Group F with four points, ahead of PSG by three points. Borussia Dortmund and AC Milan are both on two points after playing out a goalless draw in Germany.