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Wells back with a bang in tale of unexpected

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Making his presence felt: Wells returned the starting line-up and picked up where he left off last season (Photograph courtesy of the Huddersfield Examiner)

Nahki Wells scored on his return from injury as Huddersfield Town grabbed a shock 2-1 win over Newcastle United in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday.

Wells struck moments before half-time and Jack Payne’s winner eight minutes from time gave Huddersfield their first win at St James’ Park in 63 years.

The home side had levelled through Dwight Gayle, but the majority of the 52,079 fans left disappointed.

Wells missed a huge chunk of Huddersfield’s preseason preparations due to a knee injury, but returned with a bang after also missing the first two games of the season.

The Bermuda striker, who had expected to start Saturday’s game on the bench, was left unmarked inside the box and swept in Chris Lowe’s cross to put his side ahead.

“I couldn’t ask for anymore, to be able to score in a match like that was fantastic,” Wells said. “It gives you so much confidence when you score. I’ve been playing catch up with fitness after missing the majority of preseason, and you know I got more minutes than I expected today.

“There are certain areas that I wasn’t happy with, but the goal was good for me and it gives me a platform to kick on from here.”

Newcastle were back on even terms with an hour gone Gayle nodded in a rebound from his own penalty kick after Mark Hudson, the Huddersfield defender, handled the ball.

Payne then secured all of the points for Huddersfield when he drilled an unstoppable shot past Matz Sels, the Newcastle goalkeeper, to spark jubilant scenes among the 3,200 away fans.

“Credit to Jack it was a fantastic finish when he came on. He got what he deserved,” Wells said. “We got a fantastic result against a big club. It was a massive upset and that’s what we came here for.

“It’s a dream to be playing at places like this from where I have come from but we came here and a lot of people had written us off.

“[David Wagner] The head coach told us to believe, dream, work hard and stick to the plan. We did that and to come out with a result like that is a major boost going into what is a tough run for us.

“The away fans have been fantastic. They’re always really good, our travelling supporters deserve a big credit and I’m really pleased for them. They travelled all this way in their numbers and we came and got a result, so I’m sure it will be a great weekend for Town fans.”

Wagner opted for a 4-4-2 formation with Wells playing alongside new signing Elias Kachunga for the first time.

“He [Wagner] said he wanted two strikers to nullify the midfielders dropping in, and I sort of knew the way the head coach works, and once he said that I knew he was playing another striker,” Wells said.

“It wasn’t easy, it was still hard for me to adapt as I haven’t played with another striker for over a year, so it’s hard to adapt and work with him in areas which is a bit foreign to me.

“I just tried to give it my all. This partnership could flourish, we won’t play together all the time, but when we do we will work hard and do well for the team.”

Also on target on Saturday was Wells’s Bermuda team-mate, Reggie Lambe, who grabbed his second goal of the season to earn Carlisle United a 1-0 victory at home to Plymouth Argyle in League Two.

Lambe, who was named man of the match, scored in the 37th minute when he fired home a low right-footed shot from 15-yards after the Plymouth’s defence failed to clear a dangerous cross from Danny Grainger, the Carlisle defender.

Elsewhere, Rai Simons, was an unused substitute in Chesterfield’s 3-1 home victory in League One over Swindon Town at the Proact Stadium.