By Amir Mir
Joey Barton believes Newcastle beating promotion rivals Brighton 2-1 on Tuesday night was a “big step” for the club.
Rafa Benitez’ side locked horns with Chris Hughton’s men at the Amex Stadium with the duo looking to finish top of the pack in the Championship table.
The home team opened the scoring on the night when striker Glenn Murray converted his penalty against a side that had opted to play without a striker.
That tactic from Benitez paid off in the end because his team scored two goals in the last ten minutes to secure a dramatic three points against their rivals.
Burnley midfielder Barton shared his thoughts on that win and whether his former club deserved the three points.
“Huge step for Newcastle tonight,” Barton wrote on his personal Twitter account. “Lucky equaliser but deserved on the balance of play. Much better team.”
Huge step for Newcastle tonight. Lucky equaliser but deserved on the balance of play. Much better team.
— Joey Barton (@Joey7Barton) February 28, 2017
As a result, the Magpies opened up a two-point lead on the Seagulls in the table and a further eight points on third-placed Huddersfield.
The Terriers will welcome the north-east club to Yorkshire at the weekend, but before that, they will travel to Premier League side Manchester City for an FA Cup replay on Wednesday night.
After their relegation from the Premier League last term, Benitez has guided his side to a number of crucial wins in the second tier.
From their 23 victories during this campaign, they have picked up three points against the likes of Brighton, Leeds, Reading, Derby and Aston Villa.
In the latest Newcastle news, Leeds supporters reacted to the Magpies beating Brighton.