Bruno Guimarães scored twice to set Newcastle United on their way to a 5-1 victory over Brentford in the Premier League.
The game was decided by quickfire spells in each half, which saw four of the six goals scored and a controversial Bryan Mbeumo disallowed effort.
After Mbeumo’s early slice of misfortune, when Ivan Toney was adjudged to be offside, Guimarães headed Newcastle into a 21st-minute lead, which Jacob Murphy doubled shortly after following a David Raya error.
Toney pulled one back from the spot just after the restart, only for Guimarães to restore the hosts’ two-goal advantage almost instantly.
The home side added two more goals late on through Miguel Almirón and an Ethan Pinnock own-goal to complete a wretched afternoon for the Bees on Tyneside.
Thomas Frank made three changes from last weekend’s goalless draw at Bournemouth, one enforced and two tactical. Ethan Pinnock returned from injury to make his season debut, replacing Pontus Jansson, while Josh Dasilva and Aaron Hickey came in for Vitaly Janelt and Mikkel Damsgaard.
Unsurprisingly, the home side named the same starting XI which had put four past Fulham last time out.
Brentford: Raya; Hickey (Ghoddos 83), Ajer, Mee (Damsgaard 71), Pinnock, Henry; Baptiste (Onyeka 63), Jensen, Dasilva (Janelt 45); Mbeumo (Wissa 62), Toney
Subs not used: Cox, Canós, Zanka, Roerslev
Newcastle United: Pope; Trippier (Targett 84), Botman, Schär, Burn; Longstaff, Guimarães (Saint-Maximin 78), Willock; Almirón (Anderson 84), Murphy (Joelinton 66), Wilson (Wood 84)
Subs not used: Karius, Lascelles, Lewis, Fraser
The early exchanges were open with Brentford, and Shandon Baptiste in particular, having success winning the ball back high up but the chances came at the other end.
A quick switch from left to right allowed Miguel Almirón time to cut inside off his wing and fire an effort towards the top corner – only a flying Raya kept the ball out of the top corner.
Newcastle almost took advantage of Brentford’s high press on their next attack, but Kristoffer Ajer made a crucial recovery tackle on Jacob Murphy as the United winger broke down the left channel.
The Bees had got into a couple of promising positions by winning the ball back high up without making the most of it, but that all seemed to change after ten minutes. Mathias Jensen’s interception, 35 yards out from goal, allowed Baptiste to play Mbeumo though and he finished low past Nick Pope.
However, as Brentford’s players celebrated in front of the Gallowgate end, referee John Brooks was called over to the monitor when he decided that Toney had been both offside, and interfering with play, on the edge of the area.
Buoyed by that let-off, Newcastle took control of the game. Ben Mee had to be in the right place at the right time to smuggle away an Almirón cutback while Mbeumo got himself in between Sven Botman’s well-struck effort and the goal.
From the resulting corner, the home side worked the ball out to Kieran Trippier who delivered a teasing cross to the back post that Guimarães guided in, via the far post, despite Raya’s best efforts.
Baptiste tested Pope with a low shot from inside the D but the next action saw the home side double their lead.
Raya’s pass out for Jensen was intercepted by Wilson and he turned across goal for Murphy to roll into an empty net.
The remaining quarter of an hour of the half saw Newcastle dominate the game without doing too much to put the Brentford goal under pressure, aside from one weakly struck Joe Willock shot that Mee cleared.
Brentford, who brought on Janelt for Dasilva at the break, started far the better after the restart.
Mbeumo had already brought a smart save out of Pope before Thomas Frank’s side were handed a route back into the game.
Dan Burn handled Aaron Hickey’s header back across goal and Toney did what he’s done all 19 times previously, and scored from 12 yards.
Any momentum the Bees got from that goal didn’t last long as Guimarães restored Newcastle’s two-goal lead less than 120 seconds later. Hickey was crowded out by the left touchline, Newcastle’s Brazilian midfielder driving forward to the edge of the box before finding the bottom corner.
By now Newcastle sensed blood. Wilson and Willock both missed the target from inside the area before a scramble, which saw blocked efforts from Sven Botman and Almirón, eventually ended with Toney hacking Wilson’s close-range effort to safety from under the shadow of his crossbar.
All Brentford could really muster in the closing stages was an off-target header from Wissa and a fierce Toney drive from the angle that was blocked.
Any lingering hopes of a comeback were ended with eight minutes to play. Pinnock underhit his backpass to Raya, which allowed Almirón to get there first, round the stricken Bees keeper, and fire into an unguarded net.
The final action of the game saw the home side add their fifth - Pinnock could only divert Joelinton’s near-post centre over Raya and into the back of the net – with the referee shortly after bringing to an end a difficult afternoon at St. James’ Park.
Reaction: Thomas Frank
Head coach Thomas Frank said it’s vital that his players learn from the defeat.
Reaction: Mathias Jensen
With Brighton & Hove Albion our next opponents on Friday 14 October, midfielder Mathias Jensen stressed the need for a positive response.