Newcastle United got back to winning ways in the Premier League with a stunning 3-2 comeback win against Everton at St James’s Park last Saturday.
Everton had lost 3 of their 5 matches, with defeats coming against Wolves, Manchester City, and Watford. Toffees though did manage to pull off a potentially title-deciding nil-nil draw against bitter rivals Liverpool.
Everton started strong with an 18th minute Dominic Calvert-Lewin goal. Things really got messy on the pitch in the 29th minute when Jordan Pickford took out Salomon Rondon while trying to punch the ball away. This was a golden chance for the Magpies to level the score. Ritchie hit the penalty low and hard but was brilliantly saved by Pickford. This was the Englishman’s 3rd penalty save of the season.
To make matters worse, Everton doubled their lead the very next minute, courtesy of a Richarlison goal. This meant Newcastle entered half time with a 2 goal deficit. Benitez took out skipper Lascelles and brought in Dummett to enforce an offensive approach in the second half.
20 minutes into the second half they managed to pull one goal when Rondon paired up with Ayoze Perez for a quick one-two. Then on the 81st minute, Perez got a goal for himself as well. Pickford saved Almiron’s initial shot but the ball fell to Perez who put the ball past the goalkeeper.
But Perez’s celebrations were cut short by his fellow teammate Isaac Hayden when he did this:
Hayden called his teammates back to the half line, asking them to concentrate on the game and try bag all the three points.
The fans loved his positive gesture. The 23-year-old English professional has been with the team for 3 seasons now after completing a move from Arsenal in 2016.
In 2013, Arsene Wenger had described Hayden as “a player whose key assets are concentration, intelligence, and strength”. He surely showed all of the above-mentioned traits in the match.
His actions did prove to be fruitful as just two minutes later when Perez scored again. This was the Spaniard’s 6th goal of the campaign.
With two goals and an assist, he did win the man of the match, but Hayden’s gestures won the fans’ hearts. These small actions are a sign of a good leader.
No wonder Benitez is trying his best to keep Isaac at the club after he submitted a transfer request in summer according to Sky Sports.