Wayne Hennessy enjoyed his first comeback as Steve Bruce failed to honor a pre-match pledge to deal with him Newcastle United Fans to the cup.
Not only did he ensure that the tie went to a penalty shootout, but the new Burnley goalkeeper then blocked Alain Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almiron as Sean Dycke’s side won the penalty shootout 4-3. When Charlie Taylor’s decisive final kick booked a third-round tie with Rochdale at Turf Moor, an all-too-familiar sense of disappointment pervaded the crowd of 30,000 who might have thought Bruce’s program notes were a tempting fate.
“I really think there is nothing better than running with the cup,” the Newcastle boss wrote before his team paper revealed some heavy alternation between the squad.
Like Bruce, Dyche saw his team lose their first two league games and also made wholesale changes. He included Dwight McNeill although the much-admired winger from Aston Villa showed some fun early touches during the opening period.
Interestingly, Newcastle right-back Javier Manquillo led one of the biggest cheers of the night as he steamed in a powerful, high-speed challenge to Eric Peters. Likewise, the sight of Saint-Maximin and Joe Willock coming off the bench to take a turn extending their legs on the touchline garnered far more applause than anything that happened in the penalty areas.
Although Bruce’s side play marginally with better football, Hennessey, who recently arrived on a free transfer from Crystal Palace, initially had very little to do, watching Jeff Hendrik shoot from close range long distance.
Aaron Lennon was making his second Dyche debut after returning on a free transfer deal from Kayserispor but had to spend most of the evening tracking down the spirited Ryan Fraser. He teamed up well with Jamal Lewis down the left of Newcastle and when the latter provided Jolinton with a deep cross, the Brazilian striker’s attempt fell to Hendrik’s feet. Finally, called into his arms, Hennessey reacted cleverly, proving more than equal to the challenge, cleverly blocking the former Burnley midfielder’s shot with his legs.
Proper stimulation, Newcastle were finally threatened, and after making contact with Ciaran Clarke’s high ball and holding off brilliantly on Ben Mee, Dwight Gale’s shot hit the underside of the crossbar.
Although Gayle and Manquillo forced Hennessy in two massive saves after the holes created by Joelinton, they were replaced by St. Maximin and Willock. But even they couldn’t break Burnley’s resistance completely.
“We played well tonight and a goalkeeper [Freddie Woodman] Bruce said. “Unfortunately we didn’t take our chances but we just have to keep believing that things will turn out.”