Newcastle United midfielder Sean Longstaff was bursting with pride after his brother Matty netted the winning goal on his Premier League debut in Sunday’s 1-0 victory over Manchester United.
The siblings lined up together in the Magpies’ midfield for the first time in the league as Steve Bruce’s side went in search of their first home win of the campaign.
They got it thanks to the younger Longstaff’s first senior goal – a crisp, low 72nd-minute drive in front of the Gallowgate End which sent St. James’ Park into raptures.
And Sean – who turned in an industrious, disciplined display alongside the matchwinner – couldn’t hide his brotherly pride after seeing Matty live out his dream and secure a crucial win in the process.
“I think I was shouting, ‘shoot!’, but when it went it it’s a feeling you can’t really explain,” Sean told nufc.co.uk of the 19-year-old’s goal. “I paused for a little second and I thought I was going to burst out crying or something. I’m just so proud of him. He deserves that moment today and I’m over the moon for him. He was outstanding.
“I ran up and jumped on him, and I think AC (Andy Carroll) and Jamaal (Lascelles) and a few others got there quickly as well. It was unbelievable. It probably makes it all the special that all the staff and all the players were just as buzzing as me for him.
“I’ve known how hard he’s worked, and he’s had a few setbacks along the way, but I’m just over the moon for him. It’s one for him to enjoy.”
It was the first time the Longstaffs had lined up together in a senior fixture and, having been around Bruce’s first team squad since the summer, Sean feels his brother – who made his debut in the Carabao Cup clash with Leicester City in August – had more than merited his place in the starting XI.
“The gaffer’s had enough trust in him and put him in, and it was an amazing day. We needed it,” he said. “He came in and gave us a little lift and something to build on now for the whole team.
“I think he’s been ready for two or three weeks, to be honest. I think he’s had a big claim to start games before today, and you don’t want to put him in too early, but it’s like anything – you either sink or swim, and he swam, hasn’t he?
“From the first day he’s been with us in pre-season he’s been one of the best players in training every day, and he’s got his reward really for all his hard work.”
It was the perfect response from the Magpies, who recovered from their heavy defeat at Leicester City last weekend in style.
And 21-year-old Sean felt the result came at the right time for United, who now head into the international break on a high.
“We probably needed a reaction from last weekend as well. It wasn’t pretty and we put it behind us on the Tuesday – some honest words were spoken, and we moved on from it,” he explained.
“I think it just shows today when the stadium’s full and the crowd are behind us, that’s us – it’s a really, really hard place to come.
“It’s a great day for everyone and something to build on now going into the international break. Hopefully we can get a few boys back fully fit and hopefully it’s a sign of things to come, especially at home.”