The game was made considerably easier when Nathaniel Chalobah was dismissed just eight minutes in, and Callum Wilson put the Magpies in front three minutes later.
The game already seemed a foregone conclusion by this point, but another three goals meant that Eddie Howe oversaw a 4-1 win over the Cottagers.
Although Miguel Almiron scored twice and has earned the lion’s share of the plaudits, Bruno Guimaraes was truly unstoppable in midfield.
His intelligence as he made Marco Silva’s side chase hopeless balls was superb, whilst his defensive display also negated any chances of a slip-up.
Not only was he creative, but – as aforementioned – his use of the ball was imperative towards tiring out an already depleted opposition. He was accurate with nine of his 12 long passes, showing how his expansive play would have made them work extra hard.
To do all this in just 59 short minutes is sensational and shows how he truly was the star man for Howe today.
Guimaraes will now get a well-deserved week-long break, and hopefully, be fit enough for a full 90 minutes when his side host Brentford. Another tough game, but with the Brazilian in midfield the Magpies will always stand a better chance of victory.