Newcastle continued their fine start to the season with victory at bottom of the table Rotherham. A Christian Atsu goal before half time ensured that Newcastle took all three points from a game that Newcastle had to win to maintain pressure at the top of the table.
Rotherham played their part in the game, but they still continue to prop up the foot of the Championship.
FT| Millers 0 v 1 Newcastle. Every player in Stubbs' side ran themselves into the ground and Ball could have earned them a point late on.— Rotherham United (@OfficialRUFC) October 1, 2016
Rafa Benitez's side came into the game on the back of a fantastic win against Norwich on Wednesday. Two goals in stoppage time saw them beat Norwich 4-3 while hosts Rotherham were beaten for the third match in a row, as they lost to early pace setters Huddersfield.
In a sell out game at the New York stadium, it was a fiery start between the two sides. Yoan Gouffran had the first real chance of the match when his effort was cleared off the line before Rotherham's Jon Newell tried a volley from the edge of the box that forced keeper Karl Darlow into a save.
Rotherham then continued to apply pressure and came close to taking the lead when Jon Taylor hit the bar.
Newcastle then took the lead through a brilliant goal from Christian Atsu. Atsu cut onto his left foot from the edge of the box and unleashed an unstoppable shot past keeper Lee Camp, which was his first for the club.
0-1 - That is brilliant by Atsu! He cuts in from the right and bends a left-footed shot into the far top corner. Superb goal! #NUFC— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 1, 2016
The goal was harsh on Rotherham who had kept their visitors at bay, but went into the break a goal behind.
Early in the second half, Atsu had the chance to double his goal tally for the match and for his team, but his shot was saved by Lee Camp. The next few minutes saw the game turn very gritty with tackles flying in from both sides.
Newcastle had chances to add to their lead but heroic Rotherham defending combined with some poor Newcastle finishing saw the lead remain at one.
Rotherham piled on the pressure and came close to equalising when Dominic Ball's header came back off the post in a testing few minutes for the visitors.
Newcastle in the end managed to hold on for another three points while Rotherham manager Alan Stubbs knows his side need to pick up points soon as they continue to prop up the foot of the table.