Newcastle United are gradually proving the bookmakers wrong by stunning Paris St Germain (PSG) in a 4-1 Champions League encounter of Wednesday night to go top of Group F.
The English side is now proving bookmakers wrong to top a group that include AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund and PSG with four points from two matches after picking a point against AC Milan and thrashing PSG.
Goals from Fabian Schar, Dan Burn, Sean Longstaff and Miguel Almiron helped to silence PSG on the night that Champions League football returned to Tyneside.
Achraf Hakimi was relieved to see Almiron fire over from distance after intercepting his loose pass seconds later, but Newcastle went ahead with 17 minutes gone after the Frenchmen once again shot themselves in the foot.
Bruno Guimaraes got his head to Marquinhos’ poor clearance after Donnarumma made a superb reaction save after Isak had spun and fired towards goal, Almiron pounced on the rebound to open the scoring.
PSG responded in determined fashion and Goncalo Ramos saw his effort deflected out for a corner seconds after Schar had whipped a first-time shot inches wide of Donnarumma’s left post from Kieran Trippier’s intelligent corner.
Isak was left bloodied after a clash of heads with Hernandez, but was able to carry on after having the wound bandaged and a change of shirt, and his side’s fortunes took a significant turn for the better six minutes before the break.
PSG defence failed to deal with Trippier’s free-kick and Donnarumma clawed the ball out of his top corner and then saved at his near post as shots rained in, but although the keeper also managed to get a hand to Burn’s header after he climbed high to meet the excellent Guimaraes’ cross, the ball was adjudged to have crossed the line after a lengthy VAR review.
PSG returned after the break hoping to better their lot, but they fell further behind within five minutes when Almiron’s pace and the precision of Trippier’s pass to Longstaff allowed the midfielder to drill a shot towards Donnarumma’s near post, where the Italian could only help the ball into his own net.
They grabbed a lifeline with 56 minutes gone when Hernandez timed his run to pick out Zaire-Emery’s lofted ball beyond Pope and instantly looked a more dangerous proposition with Mbappe, Dembele and substitutes Bradley Barcola and Vitinha injecting much-needed vigour.
However, they lacked the precision to hurt their hosts and when they did create meaningful openings, as they did when Dembele fired towards goal with 13 minutes remaining, they found Pope in indomitable form.
Mbappe fired wide with five minutes remaining to the delight of the home crowd, who were on their feet once again in stoppage time after Schar had thumped a shot high past Donnarumma and into the top corner.