Unai Emery lauded Ollie Watkins’ “fantastic” performance after the Aston Villa forward scored twice during their 2-1 victory over Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Watkins’ brace took his Premier League tally to 12 and Rodrigo Muniz scored his fourth in three games as the spirited Cottagers failed to find a late equaliser.

Villa boss Emery lauded the striker’s commitment as he continues his bid to be a part of Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2024 squad with England.

“He was fantastic,” Emery told a press conference.

“The best action was in the first half where he created a chance for (Youri) Tielemans.

“When he’s scoring, it’s very important for him and for us. I’m very happy with him and I believe his commitment has improved a lot. Defensively in set-pieces he is also very important, I’m very proud of him.”

Fulham came back strong in the second half through the in-form Muniz but Emiliano Martinez and Villa put on a resilient display to protect the three points.

Adama Traore came off the bench late on but Martinez bailed the visitors out with an impressive one-on-one save in second half added-time.

Emery praised the way his side kept composure when reacting to Fulham’s goal.

When asked if he was happy with Villa’s defensive efforts, Unai added: “Yes of course.

“It’s part of the game when you try and stop their qualities and their tactical ideas.

“We were calm at 2-0 but we made some mistakes for their goal. We reacted very well because our mentality was to not complain, keep the game plan and be strong in our structure.

“Emiliano (Martinez) saved it at the end and I think we deserved to win the match.”

Marco Silva admitted his side’s “soft” performance cost them on the day.

The Cottagers boss was disappointed with the defensive mistakes which allowed Watkins to punish Issa Diop in the lead up to his second goal.

“We cannot concede the goals that we did this afternoon,” Silva said.

“We were punished by the second goal, we were really sloppy in the way we defended that and it was a big punch to ourselves.

“It’s disappointing for us. We need to be much more aggressive and not so soft, because wen were soft.”

Ollie Watkins’ double helped Aston Villa to a 2-1 victory over a spirited Fulham at Craven Cottage.

The striker took his Premier League tally to 12 for the season and was the difference maker for Unai Emery’s men in west London.

Fulham’s Rodrigo Muniz scored his fourth in three games but Villa dug in during the second half to claim all three points.

Villa fired an early warning shot when Watkins’ goal was chalked off for offside. John McGinn slipped the attacker through but the linesman deemed him to have moved too soon as Fulham avoided an early scare.

Muniz started over illness-stricken Armando Broja up front and the Brazilian looked to continue his rich vein of form, getting on the end of Andreas Pereira’s through ball before firing his effort over the bar.

After Fulham had a goal of their own ruled offside from a set-piece, Villa punished a series of errors and took the lead.

The usually reliable Antonee Robinson had a moment to forget when his throw-in put Willian under immense pressure at the back before Watkins powered the winger off the ball, marauding into the box and drilling his effort past Bernd Leno into the left-hand corner.

Fulham’s sloppiness continued and Leon Bailey looked to inflict more misery on Robinson. The pacey Jamaica international turned the left-back inside out with intricate skill before his curved strike cannoned off the bar, much to the relief of Marco Silva’s men.

The visitors turned the screw and doubled their lead through the clinical Watkins.

Villa’s number 11 caught Issa Diop napping, finding a gap to get on the end of Youri Tielemans’ pass before he picked his head up, paused and blasted his effort into his favourite left-hand post to claim a brace.

But after 63 minutes Fulham scored on the break to blow the game wide open.

Robinson redeemed a poor a first half with a golden delivery from the left into the six-yard box, finding Muniz who poked the ball past Emiliano Martinez to give the Cottagers hope.

Silva turned to the bench in the form of Alex Iwobi and Adama Traore.

Iwobi, fresh from his Africa Cup of Nations campaign with Nigeria, forced Martinez into action with a driven shot across goal before Traore ghosted Alex Moreno and tested the Villa defence with a dangerous cross.

Traore went one-on-on during five added minutes but was denied by Martinez.

Marco Silva believes Rodrigo Muniz played his “best performance in a Fulham shirt” after he scored a brace during their 3-1 Premier League victory over Bournemouth.

Muniz, who scored his first-ever English top-flight goal in Fulham’s 2-2 draw with Burnley last week, netted his third strike in as many games alongside goals from Bobby De Cordova-Reid and Bournemouth’s Marcos Senesi.

Silva lauded the performance of the 22-year-old forward as Fulham claimed their first league win since New Year’s Eve.

“I’m really pleased for him and he really deserves it,” Silva said.

“When you have the chance, you have to step in and pop up and show your quality and it was the moment for Rodrigo to do it.

“This afternoon was probably his best performance in a Fulham shirt and he deserves it because he’s worked really hard.

“He had a good pre-season followed by a bad injury, but now he’s coming back and he’s fighting for what he wants and he’s showing the desire to play as the Fulham striker.

“The way he linked our game and played behind the pressure of the midfielders was really good.”

January loan signing Armando Broja came off the bench but failed to match Muniz’s performance up front.

Silva insisted that – much like the rest of the squad – the Albania international would have to wait his turn to claim a starting XI spot.

When asked if Broja would have to be patient, Silva added: “Not just him, but everyone.

“He’s a player who is here to help us and I believe he will help us. It’s competition between strikers and I will decide what is best for us in each game.

“We believe Armando will help us in the next few months because he is a player with a profile which I think will help.”

Fulham did not look back after De Cordova-Reid’s strike gave them the lead after five minutes. The potent winger capitalised on Lewis Cook’s slip before he drilled the ball home from six yards out.

Muniz poached Fulham’s second of the match, nine minutes before the break. Willian lofted a cross to De Cordova-Reid at the back post, who turned creator by nodding his effort into the danger zone and Muniz scored from inside the six-yard box with a roofed finish.

Bournemouth needed a response and they got just that five minutes into the second half when Senesi pulled one back for the visitors but – just two minutes later – Fulham responded in fashion when Muniz grabbed his second of the match.

Cherries manager Andoni Iraola believes the early goal hampered his side’s performance.

He said: “We conceded too much in the beginning of the game and we didn’t get nothing from today.

“Especially the first goal. It can’t happen, it’s a slip in a dangerous position.”

Rodrigo Muniz scored a brace as Fulham claimed their first Premier League win of the year with a 3-1 victory over Bournemouth at Craven Cottage.

Muniz was given the nod over January loan signing Armando Broja and scored twice, while Bobby De Cordova-Reid and Cherries defender Marcos Senesi also got in on the act.

Muniz, who scored his first-ever Premier League goal in last week’s 2-2 draw with Burnley, looked bright from the start during the victory for the west Londoners.

The Brazilian jinked past three defenders – showing exceptional ball control – before being brought down on the edge of Bournemouth’s area.

Marco Silva’s decision to start Muniz continued to pay off into the fifth minute when he was heavily involved with Fulham’s opening goal.

The tenacious striker evaded his marker down the right channel before his driven cross, which seemed routine for Lewis Cook to clear, caused the midfielder to slip, allowing De Cordova-Reid to power home from close range.

Tom Cairney recovered after taking a ball to the face and seemed unfazed when he performed a neat turn on halfway, unleashing Antonee Robinson, who was denied by goalkeeper Neto after an impressive reaction save at his left-hand post.

Muniz’s electric start reached another level when he poached Fulham’s second of the match, nine minutes before the break.

Willian lofted a cross to De Cordova-Reid at the back post, who turned creator by nodding his effort into the danger zone. The potent Muniz started behind the defender but reacted quickest and scored from inside the six-yard area with a roofed finish.

Bournemouth needed a response and they got just that – five minutes into the second half – when Senesi pulled one back for the visitors.

Marcus Tavernier’s corner was knocked down by Dominic Solanke before centre-back Senesi showed fantastic composure to control the ball and score on the half-volley to reduce the deficit.

But just two minutes later, Fulham responded in fashion when Muniz grabbed his second of the match.

Experienced technician Willian floated a similar cross to that of the second goal. But this time the unmarked Muniz drifted to the back post before his first-time strike smashed into the net and past the helpless Neto.

Broja came off the bench and looked to stamp his authority on the game. The Chelsea youth prospect hustled the back four and won a corner after the visitors were forced to cut out his dangerous pass into the box.

Bournemouth searched for a late fightback but the Cottagers held on through seven added minutes to leapfrog their opponents into 12th.

Vincent Kompany said David Fofana offers Burnley “something different” after the on-loan Chelsea striker came off the bench to rescue a point in a 2-2 draw against Fulham.

Burnley looked destined to lose their 10th home game in 12 this season after Fulham took control with two goals in the space of five first-half minutes from Joao Palhinha and Rodrigo Muniz – the Brazilian scoring his first Premier League goal.

But Fofana, making his home debut, came off the bench just after the hour and headed Burnley back into the game in the 71st minute before bundling in an equaliser in the first minute of stoppage time – two goals in 20 minutes matching his return from 17 appearances for Union Berlin during his last loan move.

“We can use any help we can get and David showed today that he gives us something different and we will need it,” said Kompany.

“I’ve not spent one second talking with him about what he did in the Premier League or with Chelsea. But he’s played in the Bundesliga, which is a very, very tough league and he’s a player that comes back with a wealth of experience.”

All three of Burnley’s January arrivals featured, with Lorenz Assignon making his debut from the start and fellow deadline-day arrival Maxime Esteve coming on at half-time to reinforce a defence too easily breached in the 17th and 21st minutes.

“I think that was a turning point for us, the performance of Fofana, the performance of Maxime Esteve, the performance of Assignon and the other players who came off the bench, that was a turning point for us,” Kompany said. “We have to have this week-in, week-out.”

Burnley, still seven points from safety, have been on the wrong end of late drama recently, but this result ended a run of 19 Premier League games in which conceding the first goal had spelled defeat for the Clarets.

“That’s what football is made for,” Kompany said. “In the first half we didn’t start badly at all but kind of out of nothing we’re 1-0 down and out of even less we’re 2-0 down and then, the first half, there was no real momentum in it, we didn’t really get going.

“But I saw a team at half-time that had character and passion and wanted to fight. The guys had a go at each other, five minutes later they’re in a huddle and they were ready to run their socks off and they got their rewards.”

While Burnley celebrated, Fulham rued what had looked like a golden opportunity to end a winless run away from home that stretches back to the opening day of the season, and a winless league run at Turf Moor which dates back to 1951.

“There is frustration of course in our dressing room at the way we lost two points this afternoon,” Marco Silva said.

“Until the moment they scored for 2-1 we are the best team in the pitch. We could have made it 3-0 instead of 2-1 but for their exceptional goalkeeper who kept them in the game.

“We lost two points because they punished the mistakes, it’s not the first time it has happened.

“You have to be stronger at this level. If you make mistakes of course you are punished. For 70 minutes we played so well but you cannot switch off and be naive like we were.”

David Fofana came off the bench to mark his home debut with two goals as his stoppage-time equaliser earned Burnley a point in a 2-2 draw against Fulham.

The Cottagers, without an away victory since the opening day of the season and winless in the league at Turf Moor since 1951, appeared to be cruising after goals from Joao Palhinha and Rodrigo Muniz had them 2-0 up inside 21 minutes.

But on-loan Chelsea striker Fofana, on as a substitute just after the hour, got them back into it with a 71st-minute header before bundling in the leveller in the first minute of stoppage time – equalling in 20 minutes his number of league goals for Union Berlin in 17 games during a previous loan this season.

Vincent Kompany’s side remain seven points adrift of safety, but this ended a run of 19 Premier League games in which Burnley had lost after conceding first, and the mood inside Turf Moor improved dramatically after Fofana’s late intervention.

Kompany’s side, whose last league win was away to Fulham on December 23, began well and kept the Cottagers inside their own half. After Lyle Foster dispossessed Tosin Adarabioyo it took a superb recovery tackle from Tim Ream to deny Wilson Odobert a clear shot at goal.

But it fell apart very quickly. Kompany gave a debut to Lorenz Assignon, who arrived on loan from Rennes on deadline day, but the right-back needlessly conceded a 17th-minute corner when he shepherded the ball out of play rather than hook it clear.

The mistake was instantly punished as Andreas Pereira whipped the ball in and Palhinha turned it goalwards, with his header beating James Trafford with the help of a deflection off Sander Berge.

It got worse four minutes later when Antonee Robinson’s long punt up field turned into the perfect ball for Muniz to score his first Premier League goal.

The 22-year-old Brazilian, starting in place of the injured Raul Jimenez with new boy Armando Broja on the bench, was played onside by Vitinho as he got goalside of Hjalmar Ekdal, running at Trafford before lifting the ball over the exposed goalkeeper to a chorus of boos from the Turf Moor crowd.

Ekdal was hooked at half-time as Maxime Esteve, Burnley’s other deadline day signing on loan from Montpellier, came on for his debut.

Josh Brownhill, making his 100th Premier League appearance, had a shot which picked up a deflection on its way to Bernd Leno, but it was Fulham who continued to probe to the frustration of the home fans.

Willian’s curling low shot was pushed aside by Trafford, who then repelled Adarabioyo’s powerful header from the resulting corner. Soon after, the goalkeeper made a smart save to deny Muniz at his near post.

Fofana came on for his home debut alongside Johann Berg Gudmundsson just after the hour, and soon set up Brownhill, who blazed wastefully over.

Moments later, the Ivorian was celebrating his first Burnley goal. Assignon led a breakaway down the left, and sent in a cross which sailed over Leno to leave Fofana to head into an open goal.

Marco Silva responded by giving Broja his debut but his decision to reinforce the defence with Kenny Tete backfired.

The Dutchman missed what looked a routine interception of Gudmundsson’s ball forward and it ran through to Odobert to send in a low cross, and Fofana beat Ream to the the near post to divert it home.

The goal survived a VAR check for handball, to the delight of the home crowd and the relief of Kompany.

0715 – Welcome to the PA news agency’s live transfer deadline day blog.

The winter transfer window closes this evening at 11pm for Premier League and EFL clubs while it is 11.30pm for teams in Scotland.

There are plenty of deals in the pipeline, with Fulham linked with a deadline-day loan move for Chelsea striker Armando Broja and Rangers expected to complete the signing of Colombian winger Oscar Cortes on loan from Lens.

Fulham could push a deadline-day loan bid through for Chelsea striker Armando Broja.

The Albania striker was among the Chelsea substitutes as Mauricio Pochettino’s side were beaten 4-1 at Liverpool on Wednesday.

Broja did not get on the pitch and Fulham boss Marco Silva is keen to bolster his forward options with Raul Jimenez’s hamstring injury leaving them light in attack.

Aston Villa, West Ham and Wolves have also been linked with Broja this month, but Fulham now appear Broja’s most likely destination should he leave Stamford Bridge for now.

Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher has been linked with a move to Tottenham throughout January, but Spurs boss Ange Postecoglou suggested on Tuesday it would be “unlikely” to see any more signings.

Aston Villa are expected to land Middlesbrough winger Morgan Rogers in a deal worth £16million.

Boss Unai Emery is also keen to keep hold of Jacob Ramsey, who has been linked with Tottenham and Bayern Munich.

Newcastle were also linked with Ramsey, but Eddie Howe insisted on Monday that the Magpies had made no approach for the 22-year-old.

Howe added he is determined to keep his squad “intact” amid speculation over the futures of Kieran Trippier, Callum Wilson and Miguel Almiron throughout the window.

Manchester United, in action at Wolves on Thursday, are not expected to make any late signings in the window.

But Uruguay winger Facundo Pellistri did leave on Wednesday night, joining Granada on loan for the rest of the season.

Pellistri, 22, has made 14 appearances for United this term and returns to Spain having had two previous loan spells at Alaves.

Nottingham Forest have brought in United States midfielder Giovanni Reyna on loan until the end of the season.

Reyna, 21, is the first Forest signing for boss Nuno Espirito Santo as the club bid to secure their Premier League survival.

Fellow strugglers Sheffield United could also be active with boss Chris Wilder admitting the club will be working “frantically” to improve their squad before the window closes.

Crystal Palace could be one of the biggest spenders on Thursday with Blackburn midfielder Adam Wharton close to swapping Lancashire for South London.

Palace have reportedly agreed a fee of £18million plus £4m for Wharton, who could sign a five-and-a-half-year deal at Selhurst Park.

West Ham could lose Said Benrahma and Pablo Fornals on deadline day.

Lyon are keen on Algeria forward Benrahma with Real Betis in pursuit of Fornals.

Hammers boss David Moyes said: “At the moment they are both at the club and there’s no change.”

Burnley expect to complete a permanent move for France U21 centre-back Maxime Esteve.

A deal in the region of £12million (€14m) has been reportedly agreed with with Montpellier.

Marco Silva was disappointed Fulham failed to turn their dominance into goals in Tuesday night’s 0-0 Premier League draw against Everton and called for his players to be more clinical.

Raul Jimenez, who was substituted at the break, missed a golden opportunity in the first half before Rodrigo Muniz failed to impact the game.

Fulham failed to move 10 points clear of the relegation-threatened Toffees in the table, adding to the woes of last week’s Carabao Cup and FA Cup exits.

“With the result, I am disappointed,” Silva said. “Both teams had chances to score and it was clear we were the most dominant on the pitch.

“We created many chances to score, we had good moments but we missed putting the ball in the net.

“It is not a good thing (Fulham missing chances). The decision making has to be better in the final third of the attack. We need to be more assertive, more calm in some decisions because we arrived in so many dangerous areas.

“We need to be more ruthless and clinical in moments.”

Jimenez netted four goals in December but looked a shadow of himself against Everton.

The west Londoners have been linked to Chelsea’s Armando Broja in the last few days of the transfer window but Silva played down any chances for a deal before Thursday’s deadline.

“To be honest with you, I am not expecting many things towards the end of the market,” Silva added. “If it was possible to do something we should of done it at the beginning of the window because we had a semi-final to play and the FA Cup.

“The board are trying to do their best but if you ask me if we are going to do many things at the end of the market, then no.

“I will not talk about players that are not our players and rumours.”

Toffees goalkeeper Jordan Pickford had a standout performance which included a magnificent fingertip save to deny Tosin Adarabioyo’s close-range header in the second half.

Everton manager Sean Dyche talked up the England number one.

He said: “I thought he had a good performance. He is England’s number one and we have a high expectation of him.

“His decision making was good tonight and as a team we worked very hard in front of him, we had a collective mentality. He played his part tonight without a shadow of a doubt.”

Fulham’s scoring woes continued as their missed opportunities saw them held to a goalless Premier League draw with Everton at Craven Cottage.

After last week’s exit from both the Carabao Cup and the FA Cup, the west Londoners failed to bounce back with a win over an Everton side, who now sit in the bottom three following Luton’s 4-0 victory over Brighton.

Raul Jimenez, who scored four goals in December, could not replicate last month’s success before Rodrigo Muniz was largely anonymous when called upon in the second half.

Fulham started with purpose. After Andreas Pereira’s earlier strike sailed over the crossbar, Antonee Robinson forced Jordan Pickford into action when he cut onto his weaker right foot and won a corner for the hosts with a driven effort from range.

After last week’s poor showing in front of goal during both cup defeats, the Cottagers’ lack of cutting edge seemed to continue when Jimenez’s shot managed to go out for a throw-in instead of hitting the target.

And they almost rued their missed opportunities when Everton failed to convert the chance of the match in the 24th minute.

Fulham goalkeeper Bernd Leno parried Ashley Young’s curling free-kick into the path of James Tarkowski, who looked set to tap the Toffees ahead.

Towering defender Issa Diop had other ideas, positioning himself perfectly and nodding Tarkowski’s rebounded effort onto the crossbar before a herd of white shirts swarmed the six-yard area and kept the scores level.

Pereira continued to bombard the Everton goal with pot shots but it was Jimenez who would be the most frustrated after another glaring miss.

Pickford’s save from a Timothy Castagne shot gave the Mexico international a golden opportunity to score into an open net but he opened his body up too much and missed the target from close range.

Jimenez’s first-half display saw him substituted at the break and it was Everton’s striker who looked the most dangerous when Dominic Calvert-Lewin rose highest from a corner and clipped the crossbar, nearly edging the visitors ahead.

On the hour mark, Castagne won a flick-on from a set-piece and was also denied by the woodwork as both sides’ frustrations began to grow.

The momentum continued in the hosts’ favour but a remarkable save from England number one Pickford kept it even.

Willian – who had been a shadow of his usual self – jinked past his man and delivered a well-weighted cross to Tosin Adarabioyo, whose header looked destined for the top corner but was denied by Pickford’s acrobatic fingertip stop.

Eddie Howe praised the resilience of his Newcastle side after their 2-0 win against Fulham at Craven Cottage saw them progress to the FA Cup fifth round for just the second time in 18 years.

Only once since 2006 have the Magpies reached the competition’s last-16, when the side managed by Steve Bruce fell at the quarter-final stage against Manchester City.

Howe emphasised the importance of the club’s last shot at winning a trophy this campaign after they despatched Marco Silva’s team in west London.

“It was a big result for us,” he said. “We knew we wanted to progress. It’s our last chance at silverware this season so I think the expectation from us internally was that we had to give it everything to try and get through.

“I didn’t think it was the most fluent performance we’ve ever delivered but we got the major things right which were resilience, really good character and attitude. We improved in the game, we got better in the second half.

“It’s a competition that we want to do well in. Hopefully there’s more to come.”

Newcastle took the lead six minutes before half-time and Fulham had themselves to blame.

A free-kick hoisted over from the right was dealt with indecisively by the home side’s defence, as two players got in each other’s way in a doomed attempt to clear. From there, the ball dropped to Sean Longstaff, who with a confident swing of his left foot fired Howe’s side in front.

VAR was called upon to adjudicate on a possible handball against Bruno Guimaraes as the ball pinged loosed inside the box, but the goal was deemed legitimate and Newcastle led.

Earlier, Rodrigo Muniz had had Fulham’s best chance of the half, striking low towards Martin Dubravka’s bottom corner and drawing a superb stop from the goalkeeper, who clawed it away at full stretch.

Newcastle doubled their lead on the hour mark, Sven Botman rising to thump a powerful header at goal from Kieran Trippier’s corner. Marek Rodak beat it away with two firm hands but could not get it clear of danger and Dan Burn tapped home.

The result brought welcome respite to what has been a torrid patch of away form for Newcastle, after five consecutive league defeats on the road.

“It’s strange because you look at us in the cups and we’ve been OK (away),” said Howe. “We just haven’t carried it across to the Premier League form, which has been a huge frustration. But I don’t see any reason why we can’t start winning away from home.

“We prided ourselves last year on being hard to score against. We’ve got the players to score at the other end. It’s been missing this year, but hopefully that will return quickly.”

Fulham boss Silva reflected on a a second cup exit in a week following Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final loss to Liverpool.

“That is football sometimes,” he said. “You play well but the key moments were not clear for us and that is our fault. The chances that we did create, with the amount that we created, we should have been more ruthless.

“We arrived so many times in dangerous areas that we have to better decide the last action, the pass or the finish. We have to be stronger in those situations, on the set pieces and with our finishing.”

Newcastle showed signs of being back to their best as they knocked Fulham out of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win at Craven Cottage.

Sean Longstaff scored in the first half before Dan Burn dealt the final blow to Marco Silva’s men in the fourth-round tie.

Newcastle, who last played on January 13 and are without a league win in four, looked fresh as they inflicted more cup misery on Fulham, ending their hopes of silverware following their Carabao Cup semi-final defeat to Liverpool earlier this week.

The west Londoners were sloppy in possession and after Marek Rodak bailed his team-mates out with a quick-thinking stop to deny Kieran Trippier’s cross-shot, Anthony Gordon’s long-range effort missed the target, whistling past the Fulham goalkeeper’s left-hand post.

Rodrigo Muniz was given a rare start and the Brazil forward was taking his opportunity, forcing a fingertip save from Martin Dubravka before his turn of pace saw Fabian Schar give away a yellow card on the break after 21 minutes.

Fulham lacked cohesion after manager Silva made seven changes from the XI that played in Wednesday’s Carabao Cup exit.

A great chance went begging for Newcastle when Alexander Isak rounded the keeper but failed to pull the trigger in time as the ball trickled out for a goal-kick.

But Newcastle breached Fulham’s defence as the hosts’ frailties continued into the 39th minute.

Trippier tested the waters with another inswinging cross which seemed routine for Fulham to deal with.

Kenny Tete and Bobby De Cordova-Reid ran into each other instead of clearing their lines before the ball fell to Longstaff, who powered home from inside the area.

Silva turned to the bench in the form of the experienced Willian and the Brazilian swung the momentum in the Cottagers’ favour.

After the winger’s long-range goal was chalked off for offside, he enjoyed neat touches and exchanges around the Newcastle area as Silva’s side searched for an equaliser.

But it was the Magpies who punished the home side after they failed to clear their lines once again in the 61st minute.

Trippier’s corner found Sven Botman, whose header had too much power for Rodak keep hold of the ball.

The Cottagers’ back-up keeper parried the ball into the path of Burn, who finished first-time from inside the six-yard area.

Eddie Howe has admitted that star midfielder Joelinton could be sold this summer as Newcastle wrestle with financial restrictions.

The Magpies have spent the last week resisting overtures from Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich for England full-back Kieran Trippier, while strikers Callum Wilson and Miguel Almiron have also been linked with moves away from Tyneside after chief executive Darren Eales revealed that the club might have to trade players to comply with Premier League profit and sustainability rules.

Negotiations over a contract extension for Joelinton, who has 18 months remaining on his existing deal, have stalled, prompting suggestions the £40million Brazilian may have played his last game for the club after undergoing surgery which will rule him out for the rest of the season.

Asked if that could prove the case, head coach Howe replied: “I’m not a fortune-teller and I certainly hope that is not the case. There is a possibility that could be the case, but I don’t know.

“Eighteen months [left on a contract] is a vulnerable time for a club. The club will need to tie Joe down to a longer-term contract or there is a possibility he will be sold in the summer. That is just the reality of the situation.”

However, Howe added: “As his manager, I’m determined for him to stay. I love him as a person and a player, so that would be my wish, for him to sign a long-term contract.

“But of course there’s more to it than that. There’s Joe’s wishes and what he wants. Before he signs a contract he has to be entirely happy with everything. We’re not at that stage yet.”

Howe would have much preferred to have spent his club’s mid-winter break fully concentrating on Saturday’s FA Cup fourth-round trip to Fulham, but in the event, found himself fending off approaches for players he regards as key components of his squad.

To his relief – to date, at least – the club’s owners, who met in Alnwick on Thursday evening to discuss the way forward – have resisted moves for England duo Trippier and Wilson, while Paraguay international Almiron’s situation remains similarly unchanged.

Trippier’s future in particular has been under scrutiny with Bayern having tabled a a loan bid and two cash offers before apparently abandoning their interest after receiving no encouragement.

Howe said: “We’ve had a lot of conversations in the last week and it’s always been about Newcastle, and I think it was very important that I made that clear and got that out there to everybody, that his commitment to Newcastle shouldn’t be questioned.”

On Wilson, who was wanted on loan by Atletico Madrid and has since been linked with Chelsea and West Ham despite currently being out of action with a calf injury, he added: “When you look, we have two strikers and one of them is injured, so we have one fit striker. It doesn’t make sense.”

Howe, who confirmed Newcastle had ended their interest in a loan deal for Manchester City midfielder Kalvin Phillips for “financial reasons”, also admitted the club is not close to making a signing this month and may ultimately do no business despite Joelinton’s unavailability.

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe is confident Kieran Trippier will stay with the club after they resisted Bayern Munich’s attempts to prise him away.

The 33-year-old England full-back was the subject of three separate offers from the Bundesliga champions earlier this week, all of which were rejected by the Magpies.

Howe, who has also seen strikers Callum Wilson and Miguel Almiron linked with moves away from Tyneside before next Thursday’s transfer deadline, insisted Trippier – the first man signed by the club’s new owners following their takeover in October 2021 – never wanted to leave.

Speaking ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup fourth-round trip to Fulham, he said: “We obviously hope he’ll stay – and I’m very confident he will – and be part of our long-term future, but I have to make it clear that he’s never asked to leave or even questioned his future here. He’s always been fully committed.

“We’ve had a lot of conversations in the last week and it’s always been about Newcastle, and I think it was very important that I made that clear and got that out there to everybody, that his commitment to Newcastle shouldn’t be questioned.”

Bayern said they had ended their pursuit on Wednesday evening after being given no encouragement, and asked if he considered the matter over, Howe added: “His situation is finished as far as everyone is concerned, Kieran, myself.

“I’ve just been in football long enough to never ever say 100 per cent because I don’t want to look stupid, but Kieran is 100 per cent committed and we definitely want to keep him.”

Wilson has been linked with a series of clubs this week after chief executive Darren Eales admitted the club would have to trade players in future windows in order to comply with spending restrictions.

But Howe said: “In every conversation that I’ve had with Callum – very similar to Kieran – he’s 100 per cent committed to Newcastle. No part of him is looking elsewhere.

“He wants to come back and score goals, he’s got big ambitions for the second half of the season and we want to keep him here.

“Obviously some things are out of my control and of course the club is acting within the long-term interests of the club and has to, and I understand that and am fully supportive of it, so let’s see what happens.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has been quick to play down early talk of another quadruple bid after booking their place in the Carabao Cup final.

The Reds were chasing four trophies two years ago when they beat Chelsea – who they will again face in next month’s final – at Wembley.

In that season Klopp’s side played every match they were eligible for but finished with only a domestic cup double after being pipped to the Premier League title on the last day by Manchester City and losing to Real Madrid in the Champions League final.

This time around they again have their sights on a four-trophy haul, sitting top of the Premier League having reached the last 16 of the Europa League and face Championship opponents Norwich in the FA Cup on Sunday.

“I didn’t think about it to be honest because we are far off having ‘four finals’,” said Klopp, less than 24 hours after their 3-2 semi-final aggregate win over Fulham.

“We have qualified for one. It makes no sense to plan the next one before you have played the first one.

“The competitions are not made so that someone wins all of them. It’s just the number of games. I saw that the final is on February 25 and if we win on Sunday then the next round of the FA Cup will be three days later.

“It’s very unlikely we reach all three finals, it’s just the nature of it.”

The disquiet continues over the decision for Mohamed Salah to leave Egypt’s Africa Cup of Nations base in Ivory Coast to return to Merseyside for treatment on a hamstring injury.

Egypt’s doctor Mohamed Abou El-Ela reportedly told African media Salah did not want to come back and claimed Klopp revealing he would be leaving before the national team had chance to announce it had caused problems.

While Klopp apologised if he spoke out of turn he stressed both parties wanted the best for their prized asset.

“Most people in Egypt understand the situation because we have exactly the same target as Egypt – make Mo fit as quick as possible,” he added.

“That’s all we want and that’s how it always is. If a player is injured we try everything to help him to get fit as quick as possible.

“All parties agreed that it makes sense he is doing rehab here. We have a season to play so we want him fit but if he is fit earlier then as long as Egypt is still in the tournament he will go back, that is clear. Then it’s a win-win.

“If I said something too early – I knew there were discussions that he might come home but I didn’t know if that was already sorted – and then someone tells me ‘How can you say that?’ then I’m sorry, it wasn’t intentionally wrong.”

Midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai is expected to return from a hamstring injury at the weekend after four matches out but Klopp does not yet know if right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold (knee) will be available for training on Friday.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.