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Newcastle’s Ciaran Clark aware things can change quickly in the Premier League

Match-winner Ciaran Clark has warned Newcastle there will be more twists to come after helping them move clear of the Premier League’s relegation zone.

Back-to-back wins over West Ham last weekend and Bournemouth on Saturday had eased the Magpies into 11th place and seven points clear of the bottom three.

However, 30-year-old defender Clark has been around long enough to know that fortunes in football can quickly take a turn and has urged his team-mates to take nothing for granted.

He told NUFC TV: “We spoke about that between ourselves. We knew that the league was tight and two wins on the bounce will throw you a few places up the league. That’s the way it’s going to be this season.

“Other teams are going to do the same and there’ll be a lot of chopping and changing.”

Bournemouth took the lead at St James’ Park courtesy of a sublime short corner move which saw Harry Wilson sweep them ahead after Ryan Fraser and Josh King had caught the Magpies cold.

They levelled before the break when DeAndre Yedlin powered home a header from Allan Saint-Maximin’s deflected cross, and Clark won it seven minutes into the second half when he scuffed home from fellow defender Federico Fernandez’s knock-down.

It was the first time he had scored in successive Premier League games and meant seven of the club’s last nine goals have come from defenders.

Asked why that might be, Clark replied: “I don’t know. We’ve got lads in there who can definitely put the ball into great areas, and we’ve got lads who are willing to attack it and win the first one and then it’s all about where you are for the second ball, and that showed.

“Today, there were some great balls in and Fede won the first one and it just fell to me nicely there and a lovely little touch into the bottom corner.”

Clark was not even making the matchday squad a few weeks ago, but his form since returning to the side has won him a place in the Republic of Ireland squad for the friendly clash with New Zealand and the crucial Euro 2020 qualifier against Denmark next week.

But as he headed for Dublin, Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe was coming to terms with what he believed was a missed opportunity for his side.

He said: “We made some uncharacteristic mistakes with the ball at a time when we were dominating the game. And when you give Newcastle transitions with the attacking players that they have, with the pace they have in their team, that’s a dangerous thing to do.

“From that point it just gave them confidence, it got the crowd into the game and that’s a huge frustration from our perspective.”