Newcastle United have a No9 scoring goals in the Premier League, another win, and by the time Mike Ashley had stopped clapping the team's players off the pitch, had risen to 14th in the table. Turmoil, for a couple of weeks at least, will have to find another football club.
Salomon Rondon is the player who split the United board in the summer, age and the price of his deal ruling out a permanent contract, so in the end Dwight Gayle was sacrificed and an unfit striker arrived in the north east from West Brom, on loan.
The number nine shirt is not myth. Newcastle fans love their centre forwards to be swashbuckling men who can carry the city.
Rondon has a mile to go, but his two first half goals yesterday gave his side victory and did much more than that, the first was the first time a Newcastle player has scored with his feet at St James’ Park this season, and the second even got Malcolm Macdonald’s stamp of approval at half-time, a proper throwback goal, all power and aggression to send a header crashing past Asmir Begovic.
Bournemouth replied deep in first half injury-time, through Jefferson Lerma, but despite peppering the Newcastle goal in the second half with dangerous corners, could not find their way past the excellent Martin Dubravka.
Newcastle’ opener, in the seventh minute lead, was a fine goal. Matt Ritchie laid the ball back to Mo Diame and his clever chip down the right found the overlapping DeAndre Yedlin.
The American right back crossed low and Rondon’s first time shot was superbly saved by Asmir Begovic, but the rebound went straight back to the on-loan striker and he smashed the ball into the Bournemouth goal.
In doing so Rondon became the first Newcastle player to score with his feet at St James’ Park this season, the pickings really have been that slim.
It did not deter the flow of Eddie Howe’s side, with the excellent Federico Fernandez twice making saving tackles, most notably to deny a fine chance for Jordan Ibe.
Matt Ritchie had crashed a dip[ping overly over the crossbar of his former side and then, in the 40th minute, Newcastle doubled their lead with a fine goal.
Ki Sung-Yeung stroked the ball wide, to his left and Kenedy took a touch and then sent over an inviting, outswinging cross with his left foot that was perfect for Rondon, who left Nathan Ake on the floor as he powered his header in to the top corner of Begovic’s goal.
The goalkeeper then stood tall to deny Kenedy from close range, after fine interplay with Ayoze Perez, and the save’s significance would be delivered soon after. With six minutes of injury-time played, after Adam Smith had been stretchered off with what appeared a knee problem, Ryan Fraser sent over his corner from eh left and Jefferson Lerma outmuscled Ki and glanced his header into the far corner of Martin Dubravka’s goal.
Perez spurned the chance to restore the two-goal advantage moments after, shooting wide on the angle when put through.
It meant the second half was a incredibly open. Bournemouth continued to look dangerous at corner, the former Newcastle midfielder Dan Gosling heading wide with the goal at his mercy in the 55th minute.
Rondon glanced a header wide from a Ritchie cross after a flowing move and just past the hour mark Ritchie himself squeezed a shot narrowly wide of the Bournemouth post.
There would be a big miss for Howe’s men when Ibe, played through by Gosling, cracked his shot over the crossbar, with just Dubravka to beat.
Begovic excelled to deny the substitute Christian Atsu’s curling shot, with a flying save to his right.
It was a fraught finish, Begovic denied Rondon his hat-trick, and Dan Gosling had a goal ruled out for offside after a brilliant Dubravka save, but Newcastle held on.
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies