Newcastle United scraped through their FA Cup third round replay thanks to an extra time victory against Blackburn Rovers.

The Magpies fielded a widely changed team and welcomed Freddie Woodman, Jamie Sterry, Cal Roberts and Sean Longstaff to the starting XI.

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It was these players who stood out on a night where United squandered an early two-goal. Indeed it was Longstaff and Roberts who fired the away side ahead with impressive finishes.


Goalkeeper Woodman’s potential has long been known, but it was the outfield players who stole the show. Longstaff, on the back of an impressive display against Chelsea, once again put in a mature performance and showed he has an excellent range of passing.

Roberts, on the other hand, provided an attacking threat that has been largely missing for the Toon Army this season and capped a good display with an excellent first-time finish. Although unlikely to start in the crucial fixture with Cardiff on Saturday, the South Shields youngster has certainly given Rafa Benitez the confidence that he can plug a gap if called upon.

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21-year-old Longstaff, however, has definitely shown enough in the last two games to keep his place on Saturday.

It’s refreshing to see a youngster potentially breaking through on a night where former hopeful Adam Armstrong netted for Rovers.

Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

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