Isak salvages point for Eddie Howe vs Bournemouth

Alexander Isak’s penalty salvaged a 1-1 draw for Newcastle against Bournemouth on a frustrating Saturday afternoon at St James’ Park for Eddie Howe against his former club.

Bournemouth took the lead through Philip Billing as the midfielder converted Jordan Zemura’s near-post cross, but Isak equalised with his first goal at home for Newcastle following a handball by Jefferson Lerma which was spotted by VAR.

Cherries interim head coach Gary O’Neil felt it was a harsh decision, saying: “I’m really disappointed with the penalty, I’ve seen it back a couple of times. I don’t know what Jefferson Lerma was meant to do really. There is no way he has meant to handball that or his hand is in an unnatural position.”

Newcastle’s Kieran Trippier and Joelinton both struck the post in the first half, before Bournemouth goalkeeper Neto denied the Brazilian and Ryan Fraser with two crucial saves just before the break.

Bournemouth, who missed a big chance with Marcus Tavernier early on, defended resolutely and deservedly took home a point to move up to 12th, level on eight points with the Magpies, who have not won in the league since the first day of the season.

“We are disappointed with our performance, there was just something missing from us today,” said Newcastle head coach Howe. “We weren’t quite our intense selves.”

Newcastle made a bright start and dominated possession in the first half, but the first big opportunity fell to Bournemouth as Tavernier failed to take advantage of Nick Pope being in no man’s land, heading Zemura’s floated cross a few yards wide.

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