Joe Willock scores in seventh straight game to help Newcastle past Fulham

The 21-year-old has helped consolidate Newcastle’s status in the Premier League with eight goals
Joe Willock scores in seventh straight game to help Newcastle past Fulham

By Sonia Twigg, PA

Joe Willock became the first player since Alan Shearer to score in seven consecutive Premier League games for Newcastle as they beat Fulham 2-0 at Craven Cottage.

The 21-year-old, who joined the Magpies on transfer deadline day, has helped consolidate Newcastle’s status in the Premier League with eight goals, including seven in seven matches.

Fabian Schar secured all three points with a 88th-minute spot-kick.

Fulham broke a record, having scored the fewest of any team in a Premier League season with nine goals at Craven Cottage this season.

It could be Willock’s final appearance for Newcastle, but it was enough to ensure that Newcastle left west London with victory and a 13th-place finish.

With fans welcomed back into Craven Cottage for the first time since December, Fulham were unable to find the breakthrough goal which would ensure they finished the season on a positive.

The club had struggled so often in the final third, scoring just 27 goals during the 38-game league campaign, despite often dominating possession and having more chances.

It was the visitors who had the first opening of the match as Allan Saint-Maximin drove into the box but his shot was just wide of Marek Rodak’s goal.

Ademola Lookman, on what was likely to be his final Fulham game, did the same at the other end after he cut in from the left but his strike went past Martin Dubravka’s post.

The game lacked many clear-cut chances, however, Ivan Cavaleiro – who scored just three goals to his season – looked to add to his tally with a curled strike from distance but it was wide of the goal.

Willock broke the deadlock in the 23rd minute thanks to his driving run through the midfield. The Fulham defence thought they had stopped the Newcastle man but the ball fell in Willock’s path again and he drilled the ball past Rodak.

Cavaleiro came close for a second time when his shot curled just over the crossbar, with his effort skimming the top of the net.

Fulham had a good opportunity to level the score when teenager Fabio Carvalho played in Cavaleiro in a one-on-one, only for the 27-year-old to fire the ball over the bar – to the dismay of the home fans behind the goal.

Carvalho, who scored his first Premier League goal at Southampton last weekend, looked to equalise from distance but his attempt went wide.

Minutes after coming on, Dwight Gayle headed over the bar from a Matt Ritchie free-kick in the 67th minute with Newcastle’s first significant chance of the second half.

After coming on for Lookman, Josh Maja fired high over the crossbar after being sent through by Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

With two minutes remaining, referee Chris Kavanagh pointed to the spot after Ritchie was brought down by Kenny Tete in the area. Schar send Rodak the wrong way to double his side’s lead and secure the win for the visitors.

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