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Family affair as Longstaff revels in ‘dream’ Newcastle debut

Newcastle manager Steve Bruce congratulates Matty Longstaff after the win against Manchester United © AFP / Paul ELLIS

NEWCASTLE, United Kingdom, Oct 6Matty Longstaff admitted his match-winning Premier League debut was a dream come true as the teenager lined up alongside his brother Sean to stun Manchester United on Sunday.

Longstaff, 19, marked his first top-flight start with the 72nd-minute rocket that handed Newcastle a 1-0 victory at St James’ Park.

It was an incredible moment for the Newcastle-born teenager, who joined forces with his 21-year-old brother to leave the struggling visitors in turmoil.

“Last night you go to bed dreaming of it but you never think it will happen. I’m over the moon, speechless,” Longstaff said.

“I found out I was in the team yesterday after training, the butterflies started going and I looked forward to it ever since, I was buzzing.

“I think getting to play with Sean was unbelievable. We used to kick each other in the garden growing up so to be on the same team, for our hometown club, and to win against Man Utd, who are a good side, is a bit surreal.”

The fairytale finish came when Longstaff struck from 20 yards to beat United keeper David de Gea in just his second appearance for the club he supported as a boy.

“It was hit and hope and rather than a placed shot but it’s in the back of the net. You can’t describe the feeling, running away to the fans, it was surreal,” he said.

“I thought my first-half shot was in but it hit the bar. That was a bit disappointing but to get the goal front of the Gallowgate, it’s that little bit special.”

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His brother Sean revealed Matty has helped lift the mood of Steve Bruce’s squad during a troubled run for Newcastle.

“I’m over the moon. I know how hard he’s worked. He’s been the best player in training. He was a breath of fresh air,” he said.

“He was really quiet last night, he’s usually bouncing around the house shouting. I’ve never heard him so quiet! I couldn’t be prouder of him.”

Newcastle manager Bruce admitted he didn’t know anything about Longstaff when he arrived on the club’s pre-season tour after being hired from Sheffield Wednesday.

“He’s been a breath of fresh air. He just wants to play football. I thought who’s this ginger kid when we were in China. He’s been good in training,” Bruce said after finally securing his first win over United as a manager.

“It didn’t faze him. He enjoyed it. He probably didn’t sleep well last night. He won’t get much sleep again tonight!

“It’s quite a story. I’ve been going 20 odd years and not been able to beat Manchester United and he’s done it straight away.”

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