Almirón looked like the best player on the pitch for Newcastle throughout the first half, getting off two shots on goal within a five minute span (clipping the post once on a deft sequence). His pace and handle in tight spaces really stand out. He also drew a foul from Tommy Smith in the 20th minute that resulted in a red, giving Newcastle a man advantage.
Newcastle took advantage of said advantage in the opening seconds of the second half, as Salomón Rondón found the back of the net. Less than 10 minutes later it became a 2-0 lead off a Ayoze Pérez goal. By the 55th minute, Newcastle had fired off 18 shots, with 9 on target. This looks like a different team.
Almirón eventually came off at the 81st minute to loud applause from the Newcastle faithful.
Good for Newcastle and the MLS
Now, you could reasonably be saying to yourself, “Huddersfield Town tho…” and that’s understandable. But there’s no question that 1) Almirón looks like he belongs, 2) Newcastle isn’t regretting their record spend, and 3) this is a huge positive for the MLS.
If you’ve watched a lot of Newcastle matches this year then what is wrong with you you’ll notice how dynamic the attack now looks with Almirón. Regardless if they’re playing Huddersfield ThoTM, he appears to be a transformative piece that can help keep the Magpies stay out of the relegation zone. The win lifted Newcastle four points clear (for now) of Southampton from relegation.