Newcastle United marked its return to England’s top flight with a 4-1 victory Monday over Preston North End in a match rife with storylines.
A nervous opening stanza set the table for a second-half littered with goals and astonishing moments, as the mood at St. James’ Park transformed from one of doubt to one of unadulterated joy.
Related: Newcastle earns Premier League promotion with Preston beatdown
Understandably, the Geordies in attendance and the Magpies players were jubilant, as Rafa Benitez circled the pitch as the Toon Army sang the Spaniard’s name.
Here’s a look at some lasting images from Monday’s result:
Elated supporters congratulate Benitez and his staff seconds after the final whistle.
Goalscorers Christian Atsu and Ayoze Perez embrace U.S. international full-back DeAndre Yedlin as Jonjo Shelvey waves goodbye to the second tier.
Magpies mastermind Benitez embraces Man of the Match Matt Ritchie.
Benitez and Aleksandar Mitrovic share a laugh as the Serbian striker implores the Spaniard for a hug.
The gaffer hesitantly accepts Mitrovic’s request as, somewhere, a Tyneside dry cleaner cringes at Tuesday’s task.
Mitrovic mistakes Jack Colback for a horse before telling the former Sunderland villain-cum-Magpies hero, “Giddy up, next stop Premier League.”