Newcastle United list the Sky Bet Championship on the final day of the season after a convincing 3-0 win over Barnsley. They started the day in second position and needed Brighton to drop points in order to win the title.
Despite taking a lead into the final minutes of the game, the Seagulls never looked confident and conceded a late equaliser to ten-man Aston Villa, handing the league to Newcastle in the process.
These teams have clearly been the best in the Championship this season and have swapped the top two positions frequently. That said, the Magpies have been top of the table for a longer length of time with 137 days and are deserving winners.
With three matches to go, it looked unlikely that they would lift the trophy as they trailed Brighton by seven points. However, the players never gave up hope and believed that the impossible could happen.
Three convincing wins to end the season have seen the team return to their best and they are now carrying major momentum into the summer.
Rafa Benitez’s men may have been the favourites going into the summer, but that shouldn’t take anything away from their achievement. The Championship is getting better with every season and Newcastle needed time to adjust to their new surroundings in August.
They have become only the 3rd second tier team to lose their opening two matches and win the division, after Middlesbrough (1926/27) and Sunderland (2006/7). This may be considered as one of the smaller feats in Benitez’s managerial career, but it was evident on Sunday that he was delighted to win the Championship.
It has been a hard slog of a season and the Magpies are coming out of it stronger than ever.
They are returning to their rightful home of the Premier League as champions and now have more momentum to take into the summer. There have been difficult times this season, but they have overcome them and the title is their reward for that.
Now, the focus switches to next season. There will be a lot of debate about the future of Rafa Benitez over the coming days.
The mood coming out of the club is positive and the manager’s position will be strengthened by the reaction of the supporters on Sunday.
Mike Ashley was at the game and he will want more days like this. The man to deliver them is Benitez.
Here is how Twitter reacted to Newcastle’s promotion:
— Sky Bet Championship (@SkyBetChamp) May 7, 2017
— BHAFC ?? (@OfficialBHAFC) May 7, 2017
— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) May 7, 2017
'I'd like to congratulate Newcastle on a wonderful season. They've just, just beaten us to it,' Chris Hughton remains a different class.
— Martin Hardy (@mhardysport) May 7, 2017
— David Moat (@DavidMoat) May 7, 2017
The ironic nature of their title win was noticed:
— Alex Richards (@AA_Richards) May 7, 2017
Benitez’s critics were proven wrong:
— Taylor and Besty (@TaylorandBesty) May 7, 2017
Some weren’t impressed by the achievement:
— Jason Victor Cundy (@jasoncundy05) May 7, 2017
Embarrassing for Newcastle that they spent all that money and only won the league on the last day. Pashun merchants
— party ross anthem (@Rauss_Mc) May 7, 2017
So the money team win the championship. Bollocks, typical flooky Newcastle. Still a shit club ?
— Ste McGreal (@SteMcgreal) May 7, 2017
This shows they were deserved winners:
Newcastle this season:
Most points: 94
Most goals: 85
Most wins: 29
Best goal difference: +45
"Rafa will struggle in the Championship" pic.twitter.com/uZLp96QRND
— BigSport (@BigSportGB) May 7, 2017
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