Newcastle beats Southampton, virtually sure of EPL survival

Newcastle United's Ayoze Perez, right, scores his side's first goal of the game of the game against Southampton, during their English Premier League soccer match at St James' Park in Newcastle, England, Saturday April 20, 2019. (Richard Sellers/PA via AP)

Ayoze Perez's hat trick all but guaranteed Premier League safety for Newcastle by securing a 3-1 victory over Southampton

NEWCASTLE, England — Ayoze Perez's hat trick all but guaranteed Premier League safety for Newcastle by securing a 3-1 victory over Southampton on Saturday.

The Spaniard scored twice in four minutes in the first half before a Southampton fightback inspired by changes at halftime.

One of the newcomers, Mario Lemina, pulled one back in the 59th minute before Perez netted his 11th goal of the season in the 86th.

Newcastle is 10 points clear of Cardiff in the relegation zone after a sixth win in the last seven home games in the league.

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