Newcastle United’s injury-time win at Nottingham Forest has thrown Manchester United back into the top four, Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher claimed on Friday.
Alexander Isak scored his second goal of the game from the penalty spot deep into stoppage time to give Eddie Howe’s side a crucial 2–1 victory before the international break and move Newcastle to fourth to within a point of Tottenham.
The Magpies may extend their lead over Liverpool to five points but are one win away from catching third-placed Manchester United, who beat them 2-0 in the Carabao Cup final last month.
Looking back on the race in the top four, Carragher showered praise on Newcastle after their decisive win on Friday, praising Howe’s quick and energetic system.
The Red Devils travel to St James’ Park in early April in what promises to be a massive clash for a Champions League spot.
Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher believes Newcastle United’s injury-time win at Nottingham Forest on Friday night has thrown Manchester United back into the top four
The Red Devils are third in the Premier League but are just three points clear of Newcastle
“This result pulls Manchester United into the pack, especially with Newcastle playing Manchester United next,” Carragher told Sky Sports after the game.
“Newcastle will have to get used to it. They will get involved in European football, they are expected to progress in the cup. What really impresses me is their walking system. Forest went from man to man and they couldn’t really handle it.
“I love watching them. The big thing for Newcastle and Tottenham is the fact that Tottenham have to go to United.
“The thing about Liverpool and Tottenham is that it feels like there is a bit of unrest in both clubs. I don’t think you get that in Newcastle.
“Even if they don’t win a game, it’s still a really good performance. I very rarely watch them and am not impressed. This break may come at a bad time for them.
“Just because they’re doing well doesn’t mean they’ll be there next year. Chelsea and Tottenham will be much stronger next season.’
Carragher, who presented Isak with the Player of the Match award while on duty as co-commentator, praised the Newcastle striker for his valuable contribution on the City Ground.
Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville admitted he was impressed by the Magpies’ “measured” approach to business following the club’s monumental takeover by Saudi Arabia in 2021
🗣 “It looks like they are now in a real battle to get into the top 4.”
Jamie Carragher believes Manchester United need to be on their guard in the race for the top 4 ahead of Newcastle 👀 pic.twitter.com/gq1B4dH19M
– Football Daily (@footballdaily) March 17, 2023
Isak canceled out Emmanuel Dennis’ opener with a superb volley just before half-time and later kept his nerve to bury Newcastle’s injury-time penalty.
Carragher wanted to focus on the rest of his game, adding: “Isak has scored his goals and that’s what we judge strikers by, but I don’t think he’s just a goalscorer. There’s a lot more to his game than that. He wasn’t nervous about taking the penalty and he does everything you’d expect from a top striker.
Meanwhile, ex-Manchester United star Gary Neville admitted he was impressed by Newcastle’s “measured” approach to business following the club’s takeover by Saudi Arabia in 2021.
He fears his old side will miss Casemiro’s experience in Erik ten Hag’s midfield as the Brazilian faces a four-game ban following his red card last week.
“United will be without Casemiro for the next four games which will make a big difference and Newcastle are now in a position where they can make a good push,” Neville said after the game.
Both Neville and Carragher praised Alexander Isak after his brace at the City Ground
“This is the time to get in shape but there is still a long way to go. Eddie Howe won’t get carried away, but he will feel more confident after the last few days. It’s a really tough run-in for Newcastle.
“Chelsea, Tottenham, Liverpool and other clubs have had disappointing seasons. What I like about Newcastle is that it was a measured transition, how they chose their manager and brought in players.
“There are some pretty solid characters in this dressing room. You have a great opportunity.
“I’m stunned by where they are this season. I thought they were seventh or eighth. Well done to Eddie Howe, well done to the players and it looks like they just turned a corner. Isak is on the move. They really care about him. Callum Wilson will fight to get into the team.’