Isak on the double as Newcastle deny Nottingham Forest
Alexander Isak scored an injury-time penalty as Newcastle boosted their Premier League top-four hopes with a 2-1 injury-time win at Nottingham Forest, whose relegation fears were heightened.
The Magpies were headed for a draw until Isak's penalty earned a deserved three points to move the Geordies to within a point of fourth-placed Tottenham with a game in hand.
Forest had gone ahead midway through the first half through Emmanuel Dennis' first goal for the club, but Isak levelled in superb fashion on the stroke of half-time when he volleyed home.
A second half of frustration unfolded for Eddie Howe's side as they searched for a winner, not least when they had a goal controversially ruled out by VAR.
But Isak had the final say from the spot after Moussa Niakhate's handball to keep the dream of Champions League football next season firmly alive.
The late goal saw Forest beaten at the City Ground for the first time in 10 matches going back to September and they could end the weekend's action back in the relegation zone.
Victory was only what Newcastle deserved and they did not look like a team who had yet to win away in 2023.
Manager Howe praised Isak for his match-winning role.
"He was tired because he gave so much, but he deserved to stay on the pitch," Howe told Sky Sports.
"The penalty was a big moment for us but he had the confidence to take it and put it away well. He's getting sharper and getting fitter and I'm really pleased for him.
"Credit to all the players to come from behind and get the win."
Forest boss Steve Cooper was frustrated by his side's performance and how individual errors contributed to the defeat.
"We came up against a really good team, I'm just disappointed in our own decisions around the goals," he said.
"Injury time in the first half and injury time at the end of the game as well, it's something we have to look at ourselves. It was a strange performance from the ref but we've got to look at ourselves and the football decisions we've made.
"We blame no-one but ourselves and we haven't covered ourselves in glory for the goals."