After 12 goals in the other Premier League games it was time for the main event, what a Saturday night! Two heavyweight going head to head that's right it was time for, erm... Newcastle United vs Burnley. Steve Bruce had come under fire for some pretty turgid performances of late. Brighton, Tottenham and Newport were all terrible displays by Newcastle. Luckily for Bruce and Newcastle, Allan Saint-Maximin was fit enough to return to the starting eleven. If anyone was unsure of just how important the Frenchman is to this Newcastle side, they didn't have to wait long to find out. Pace, power, trickery, you name it Saint-Maximin has it. It was the former Nice player who opened the scoring in the 14th minute. Despite having 5 Burnley players for company, Saint-Maximin spectacularly found the bottom corner from the edge of the box. The only plan Burnley had in stopping Saint-Maximin was to try and kick him off the pitch. Phil Bardsley somehow escaped a yellow card after chopping through the back of Newcastle's number 10. The Magpies enjoyed more of the ball than the visitors, however, the build up play was still slow and somewhat lacking. The game was starting to turn in to the Saint-Maximin show, Burnley just couldn't handle him. Newcastle deservedly led at half time. This was the chance for Bruce's side to really kick on in the second half. Newcastle took a long time to get out of the traps in the second period, Burnley were much the better side in the opening stages. Newcastle were made to pay for it as Burnley levelled in the 61st minute, thanks to a tidy finish from Ashley Westwood just inside the box. Burnley's equaliser seemed to spark Newcastle back into life again, as the Magpies looked to gain control of the game once again. Burnley led for just 4 minutes, the unplayable Saint-Maximin burst down the right and delivered a sumptuous cross for Callum Wilson, who couldn't miss. Newcastle regained their grip of the game, Saint-Maximin departed with his side 2-1 up, he was replaced by Ryan Fraser. Fraser pounced on some Newcastle-esque defending by Burnley as Nick Pope was caught at sea. Fraser got to the ball first before crashing into Pope, the bounced off the post but the referee pointed to the spot. Wilson stepped up and coolly dispatched his second penalty in 6 days. A striker who can score goals, who'd have thought it? 3-1 to Newcastle and that's exactly how the game finished. Newcastle climbed into the top 6 with this win, it looks far more rosy than it is. This performance was far better than the previous 3, it's something that Bruce and his team must build on. They have a real chance to build on this solid start to the season. The trouble with Newcastle is, you just never know which side will turn up. Will it be the side that beat West Ham and Burnley or the side that crumbled feebly against Brighton.
Newcastle head into the international break on 7 points and through to the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup. Make no mistake, Newcastle have shown just how fragile they can be at times so far this season. We can only hope the Newcastle side that does turn up for the rest of the season, isn't the one that faced Brighton.