Jeff Hendrick a very happy man with goal and assist after only 14 goal involvements in 4 years
Callum Wilson and Ryan Fraser brought in to cure the lack of goal threat and Jeff Hendrick a solid squad addition.
At least that was the way fans read it when the transfer activity was going on at St James Park.
On the evidence so far, admittedly only 90 minutes, that may need to be revisited.
In four years at Burnley, Jeff Hendrick was directly involved in 14 Premier League goals, scoring nine and five assists.
On Saturday night it was two in his first 90 minutes in black and white, an assist for Callum Wilson and then a great striker for himself into the top corner.
A dream debut for Jeff Hendrick.
Premier League matches often come down to fine margins and the former Burnley player admits that both teams had chances, Soucek and Antonio wasting great chances in the first half, as well as two efforts hitting the woodwork.
Newcastle were threatening but not forcing Fabianski into a save and indeed by the final whistle he still hadn’t made a save.
The fine margins showed in the finishing as Newcastle scored with their only two efforts on target, Wilson sharp enough to get to Hendrick’s header before Fabianski, then the Irish international giving the West Ham keeper no chance with his strike late on.
Newcastle were far too reliant on set-pieces and defenders contributing to their meagre 38 PL goals last season, here’s hoping that Saturday night was a sign of things to come, with the front six all taking responsibility in creating and scoring goals.
Jeff Hendrick talking to the official club site:
“It was a longer wait than I would have liked [since his last match for Burnley six months ago] but the main thing was coming here, starting the season off well, getting three points and putting a solid performance in, which I think all the lads did.
“First of all (the plan) was to make it hard for them – the main priority in football is to work hard and give everything.
“I think that’s what everyone did, even the subs coming on, and then when you get chances try and take them – and thankfully we did.
“I think both teams had chances and in the first half, maybe going in 0-0 was right; they hit the crossbar but we created a few chances ourselves and on another day some of them would have gone in.
“But we said at half time, keep digging deep and we’ll get our chances. And we did, and we took them.
“We said at half time with me coming inside, Manqy’s on all day and it was a nice bit of work from him to get the cross away. (It took) a little deflection, and for me it was just trying to help it into the danger area and Callum was alive and put it away.
“I told you it’s something I’m working on and I want to keep doing. I was trying to get in the back post when I was on the other side, and get in and around the box, and I was calling Miggy for the ball. He heard me and picked me out, and it went in. On another day it maybe goes over the bar but I’m thankful it went in.
“I don’t want to big myself but I’ve scored a few nice ones [as well previously]!
“But I’m happy to get the win in the first game with the lads, and get a goal. It’s a brilliant feeling. Getting three points on the first day of the season is massive and it’s something we can build on.”
Stats from BBC Sport:
West Ham 0 Newcastle 2 – Saturday 12 September 8pm
Wilson 56, Hendrick 87
Possession was West Ham 58% Newcastle 42%
Total shots were West Ham 15 Newcastle 15
Shots on target were West Ham 3 Newcastle 2
Corners were West Ham 8 Newcastle 7
Referee: Stuart Attwell
Darlow, Manquillo, Fernandez, Lascelles, Lewis, Shelvey, Hayden, Hendrick, Saint-Maximin (Joelinton 75), Wilson (Almiron 85), Carroll (Sean Longstaff 88)
Gillespie, Ritchie, Krafth, Fraser
(‘This game was good, I defy anyone to say otherwise’ – West Ham 0 Newcastle 2 Match Report HERE)
(Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to West Ham 0 Newcastle 2 – Read HERE)
(David Moyes unhappy in defeat to Newcastle ‘Didn’t particularly think it was officiated well tonight…’ – Read HERE)
(Steve Bruce gives his reaction to the victory – Read HERE)
(West Ham 0 Newcastle 2 – Match ratings and comments on all NUFC players – Read HERE)
(West Ham 0 Newcastle 2 – Watch official match highlights HERE including 2 quality goals)
(Alan Shearer gives his reaction to Newcastle’s opening night victory – Read HERE)
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