Morecambe 0 Newcastle United 7
- Darren Drysdale
Newcastle United produced a ruthless display to see off Morecambe and set up a Carabao Cup Fourth Round clash against another League Two side, Newport County.
The Magpies struck seven times at the Mazuma Stadium and could easily have had more, the beleaguered Shrimps already four goals down by the time midfielder Toumani Diagouraga saw red for a reckless challenge on Sean Longstaff shortly after the half-hour mark.
Joelinton – yet to start for United in the Premier League this term – helped himself to a brace, setting the tone for the evening with a straightforward finish five minutes in. Miguel Almirón and Jacob Murphy both struck in between the Brazilian’s two goals, with Isaac Hayden’s deflected strike making it five before the break.
Skipper Jamaal Lascelles continued the onslaught early into the second half, and just as Morecambe looked like they would escape without sustaining further damage, defender Sam Lavelle put the ball through his own net in the dying embers.
Steve Bruce’s side were taken to replays by both Rochdale and Oxford United in the FA Cup last term, but any hopes the Shrimps harboured of creating a similarly uncomfortable encounter for the Magpies were extinguished early on.
Wide-man Murphy was the liveliest player on the pitch throughout, and it was the former Sheffield Wednesday loanee’s enterprising run which led to Joelinton’s first. Murphy cleverly fed the ball back for Emil Krafth, who drove into the area before finding Almirón. He, in turn, found Joelinton at the far post, and the Magpies’ No. 9 made no mistake.
He should have added a second not long after, opting against applying a touch to Murphy’s hanging cross, which ended up clipping the far post. Murphy then fizzed one wide before playing Almirón in on goal, and the Paraguayan confidently rounded ‘keeper Mark Halstead before finding the roof of the net.
Murphy didn’t have long to wait to get the goal his performance merited. Defender Stephen Hendrie shirked a challenge just inside the Shrimps’ half, allowing the winger a chance to roam forward. The finish was excellent, though – a curling, left-footed effort into the far corner from just outside the box.
Five minutes later, Joelinton produced an even more eye-catching strike, swivelling wide on the left before bending the ball past a helpless Halstead from all of 25 yards.
Diagouraga – who had registered Morecambe’s only effort of note around ten minutes earlier – then made the Magpies’ task even simpler, needlessly lunging in on Longstaff near the halfway line before being given his marching orders. It got worse for Derek Adams’ side before the interval, Hayden getting off the mark for the campaign after seeing his rasping shot from range take a nick en route to goal.
Coming out for the second half, United quickly picked up where they left off. Matt Ritchie delivered a corner from the right and Lascelles was allowed to rise unchallenged, meeting the ball at the front post and guiding a downward header into the net.
After a relatively subdued spell, another Ritchie corner almost led to a first ever Magpies goal for Krafth, who saw a close-range strike cleared off the line after Lascelles had helped the ball into his path. Andy Carroll spurned a glorious chance to add his own name to the scoresheet after 84 minutes, heading wide from a Murphy cross. Like Carroll, Ryan Fraser had also been introduced from the bench, and the Scot nodded the ball against the woodwork from a central position just moments later; the architect, again, was Murphy.
Ritchie looked to have landed the final punch after getting on the end of Dan Barlaser’s through pass seconds into injury time, but the goal was ultimately credited to Lavelle – the former Bolton and Blackburn youngster diverting the ball past his own ‘keeper at the near post.