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Newcastle reach EFL Cup final


Newcastle reach EFL Cup final

Sean Longstaff scored twice as Newcastle United booked their EFL Cup final place after wrapping up a 3-1 aggregate victory over Southampton. Magpies academy graduate Longstaff was the local hero at St James' Park, where his boyhood club were 2-1 winners in the second leg to seal a first cup final appearance since 1999. The midfielder's first-half brace – and his first home goals in nearly four years – sent Eddie Howe's side to Wembley, though they finished the contest with 10 men after Bruno Guimaraes' late red card. Che Adams scored a brilliant consolation for Southampton, who were denied a third final appearance in the competition.

Newcastle United reached their first cup final since 1999 by overcoming Southampton in the EFL Cup (Carabao Cup) at an ecstatic St James' Park.

Eddie Howe's resurgent side will face either Manchester United or Nottingham Forest at Wembley as the Magpies attempt to win their first major trophy since the Inter Cities' Fairs Cup in 1969.

Newcastle, who last played in a Wembley showpiece when they were beaten by Manchester United in the 1999 FA Cup final, had a 1-0 advantage from this semi-final first leg, and Sean Longstaff settled any nerves among an expectant Toon Army with two early goals.

The only cloud over Newcastle's celebrations was a late red card for influential Brazilian midfielder Bruno Guimaraes for a challenge on Samuel Edozie, given by referee Paul Tierney after the intervention of VAR.

The hosts had gone in front just four minutes in as Longstaff took advantage of good work from Kieran Trippier to beat Saints keeper Gavin Bazunu, and the goalscorer then crowned a sweeping move with a confident finish in the 21st minute.

Che Adams gave Southampton hope with a fine 25-yard strike on the half-hour that ended Newcastle goalkeeper Nick Pope's attempt to keep an 11th clean sheet in succession, but their slow start cost them dearly to leave Howe and his players contemplating that Wembley date on Feb 26.

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