MATCH REPORTS

Ten-Man Toon Denied Deserved Win

Newcastle United celebrate v Man City

NEWCASTLE UNITED 2
MANCHESTER CITY 2
Premier League
St.James' Park
Monday, October 20, 2008
Kick-off 8pm

Craig Hope reports from St.James' Park ...

MATCH REPORT

TEN-man Newcastle United fought back from a goal down to claim a spirited and well-deserved 2-2 draw against Manchester City.

The visitors seized the lead after 14 minutes when Habib Beye, despite having won the ball, was shown a straight red card after challenging Robinho inside the area with the Brazilian dusting himself off to tuck away the resultant penalty.

The Magpies rallied and Damien Duff had a great chance to level before Shola Ameobi volleyed past Joe Hart from close range at the Gallowgate End right on the stroke of half-time.

Joe Kinnear's men refused to settle for a share of the spoils and emerged after the interval clearly in search of a second.

And that goal came on 63 minutes when Geremi's corner spooned off the boot of City skipper Richard Dunne and into the top corner to spark mass celebration inside St.James' Park.

The visitors' numerical advantage began to tell late in the game and, despite denying his compatriot with a top drawer save moments earlier, Shay Given was beaten by Stephen Ireland with four minutes left on the clock.

SECOND-HALF UPDATES (click refresh for latest)

90+3min - United have a free-kick, they must surely play for time.

90+1min - City have a corner - this is bite-your-nails stuff! Wright-Phillips' delivers but Onuoha is unable to get direction in his header and guides well wide.

There will be four minutes added time.

89min - United really are living on the edge here and Ireland shaves the foot of the post from a narrow angle, again from Robinho's clever throughball.

86min - MAN CITY GOAL (2-2): United can't quite hold on to that lead and STEPHEN IRELAND this time beats international team-mate Given with a low finish from 10 yards out after he was slipped in by Roninho.

84min - Geordie hearts are in mouths as Ireland unleashes an outrageous 20-yard volley which looks destined for Shay Given's bottom corner - somehow though the Irish stopper denies his compatriot with a save from the very top drawer before pouncing on the loose ball.

83min - A change for City with young striker Daniel Sturridge replacing Javier Garrido.

79min - Shola is making way for Andy Carroll and he too receives a standing ovation from the Toon Army in recognition of his contribution tonight.

76min - Robinho shoots through bodies from 20 yards but again Given is equal to the effort and saves.

74min - N'Zogbia immediately releases the unmarked Duff on the left, Ameobi is the winger's only option and he does well to escape the attentions of Dunne to turn the low cross goalwards but unfortunately for United it crashes into the side-netting.

72min - Onouha is in an advanced position and pulls back looking for Wright-Phillips, Butt has read the cross and boots into the Gallowgate End for a corner. Wright-Phillips' lofted ball is plucked to the safety of his chest by Given. N'Zogbia replaces Martins who gets a standing ovation from the home crowd.

69min - City are beginning to take control here and Robinho's low shot cannons off Taylor and away for a corner. Wright-Phillips' out-swinger is flashed goalwards by Jo but his zipping header clears the crossbar.

66min - Coloccini wins excellently from Robinho's ball into the penalty area and heads clear - United have to be careful.

64min - Ched Evans comes on for Dietmar Hamman.

63min - NEWCASTLE GOAL (2-1): Unbelievable! The Geordies are in front! Geremi's out-swinging corner spoons of the foot of a static RICHARD DUNNE and into his own net to spark mass celebration inside St.James' Park!

62min - Shola has been outstanding and he delivers a pacey centre which flies across the face of goal - it was begging to be put in.

61min - Kompany stings the palms of Given with a driving 20-yards strike which the Irishman does well to hold.

59min - Wright-Phillips' sliced strike brings a big cheer from the home crowd as it fizzes well wide.

58min - St.James' Park is absolutely bouncing! The injured Micah Richards is replaced by Nedum Onuoha.

57min - Martins tries to thread strike partner Ameobi in on goal but Dunne has read the unfolding danger and gets his body between the Toon frontman and the ball to block and clear.

54min - United are in the ascendancy here with the Toon Army jumping!

51min - Duff's persistence wins a corner on the right which Geremi takes, City only half clear and in the end an offside flag against Ameobi brings the attack to an end.

50min - Nicky Butt deals with a testing Garrido free-kick from the Milburn Stand touchline as he gets sufficient distance on his near post header to avert the danger.

47min - Geremi delivers a well-paced centre from deep with whistles through a crowd of bodies in the City area and away for a goal kick.

United get the second period underway with no changes at the interval - the home side enjoyed a roarcous welcome from the Toon Army.

FIRST-HALF ACTION

45+1min - Kompany is booked for a foul on Ameobi before Rob Styles brings an eventful first half to a close.

45min - United survive a scare at the other end as Ireland's low shot skids wide with Given scrambling.

44min - NEWCASTLE GOAL (1-1): United are on level terms and it's exactly what they've deserved! Martins' cross cannons off Dunne, then Duff, then Kompany and then Ben Haim before bouncing into the path of SHOLA AMEOBI who controls on his chest before volleying right-footed past Joe Hart from close range - it's his first goal since October 15, 2006!

41min - At the other end City have two corners in quick succession with the second, deliverd out-swinging by Garrido, is flicked goalwards by Hamman with the ball nestling on the roof of the net.

40min - The hosts have enjoyed much the better of the last ten minutes and Geremi's dangerous delivery from deep is met by Ameobi with Joe Hart rushing from his line to claim the looping header - Shola is proving a real handful.

37min - Garrido is booked for a late challenge on Duff on the right.

35min - Ameobi springs Duff clear with an expertly-weighted throughball, the Irishman should do better but side-foots straight down the throat of Joe Hart in the middle of City's goal and he saves - that was a great chance but to be fair to Duff he has covered every blade of grass so far tonight as United search for that leveller.

32min - Duff is wrestled to the ground by Garrido on the left and the Magpies have a free-kick. Geremi's whipped centre causes momentary panic in the City backline as Hart punches his own defender Dunne in the face before following through and fisting the ball to safety.

30min - United have a corner as Geremi's long, searching ball is headed behind by Ben Haim. Geremi's ball is poor and City clear.

28min -  A string of quick City passes in the final third opens up the angle for Robinho to shoot from 14 yards out, his snap effort comes off the leg of Taylor and looks to have looped over a helpless Given, luckily for United the ball defletcs wide with a stretching Jo unable to turn it on target.

25min - Bassong isn't aware of the fast-arriving Richards on the right as he looks to watch Garrido's left-wing centre out for a goal kick, the defender tries to turn the ball back into the danger zone but it cannons off the Frenchman and away for a corner. Jo gets on the end of Wright-Phillips' delivery but his header is weak and United clear.

22min - City are teasing passes around the United half as they make their man advantage tell.

17min - The Magpies are stretched here and it looks as though City could win a second penalty when Richards comes into contact with Coloccini inside the area - credit to the young defender as he stays on his feet and the visitors have a corner. Nothing comes of Wright-Phillips' centre.

14min - MAN CITY GOAL (0-1): Drama here at St.James' as Habib Beye is shown a straight red card following a sliding challenge on Robinho with the Brazilian through on goal - replays show the Senegal star got the ball! After lengthy protests ROBINHO picks himself to fire the resultant penalty past Shay Given amid a huge chorus of boos inside the stadium.

11min - Martins is scythed down by Garrido who was trailing in the Nigerian's wake just outside the area - somehow the Spaniard escapes punishment. Geremi lines up the free-kick and has the home crowd on their feet as his dipping effort shaves the crossbar. 

9min - Ameobi has had an encouraging start and wins a corner off the shins of Dunne on the right. Geremi takes with Kompany heading behind for another flag-kick at the near post. This time Dunne heads clear of the danger zone with Coloccini poised to head on target.

6min - It's a lively start and both teams seem up for the battle.

4min - The visitors have a corner as Coloccini slides to block Wright-Phillips' cross. The tiny winger takes, the ball runs through to Robinho on the extreme left of the penalty area, he shoots but only succeeds in screwing his effort all the way back to Wright-Phillips on the right, he too gets his angles all wrong and miscues allowing United to clear.

2min - Shola harries Hamman out of possession midway inside City's half allowing Duff to feed Geremi on the right touchline, the Cameroon star weighs up his options and delivers a teasing, curling centre which Ben Haim is backpedalling to head to safety with Martins lurking.

The lads emerge from their team huddle, led by Nicky Butt, as Man City get the game started attacking the Leazes End.

It's a fairly balmy evening here on Tyneside and even the wind appears to have stayed away as the two teams enter the field to the sound of Local Hero.

TEAM NEWS

OBA Martins returns to the Magpie starting XI following a knee injury lay-off with Joe Kinnear making four changes to the side which drew at Everton more than two weeks ago.

Michael Owen (groin) is sidelined while Shola Ameobi, Sebastien Bassong and Habib Beye come in for Charles N'Zogbia, Claudio Cacapa and Jose Enrique who all drop down to the bench.

Andy Carroll (foot) also returns to take his place among the United substitutes.

Dietmar Hamman starts against his former club while Robinho has shaken off a dead leg to line-up alongside fellow Brazilian Jo.

TEAMS

NUFC: Shay Given, Habib Beye, Sebastien Bassong, Fabricio Coloccini, Steven Taylor, Nicky Butt (c), Danny Guthrie, Geremi, Damien Duff, Oba Martins, Shola Ameobi
Subs: Steve Harper, Claudio Cacapa, David Edgar, Jose Enrique, Charles N'Zogbia, Xisco, Andy Carroll

MCFC: Joe Hart, Micah Richards, Javier Garrido, Richard Dunne (c), Tal Ben Haim, Vincent Kompany, Stephen Ireland, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Robinho, Dietmar Hamman, Jo
Subs: Nedum Onuoha, Elano, Kasper Schmeichel, Gelson Fernandes, Ched Evans, Daniel Sturridge, Galuber Berti

Referee: Rob Styles
Attendance: 45, 908

FACTS AND FIGURES

United v City @ SJP - Premier League Years

2007/08: 0-2
2006/07: 0-1
2005/06: 1-0 Owen
2004/05: 4-3 Robert, Shearer, Elliott, Bellamy.
2003/04: 3-0 Shearer 2, Ameobi
2002/03: 2-0 Shearer, Bellamy
2001/02: 1-0 Solano (FAC)
2000/01: 0-1
1995/96: 3-1 Ferdinand 2, Beardsley
1994/95: 0-0
1994/95: 3-1 Gillespie 2, Beresford (FAC)
1994/95: 0-2 (LC)
1993/94: 2-0 Cole 2

For Newcastle;

1. Not won in six league and cup matches; drawn one and lost five since beating Coventry 2-3 after extra time in the second round of the Carling Cup on 26 August at the Ricoh Arena.

2. Gained just one point from a last possible 15, since their only maximum of the current campaign; 1-0, home to Bolton on 23 August.

3. One win, two draws and four defeats from their first seven fixtures represents their second worst ever start to a Premier League season.

4. Lost the last two home league games against Hull and Blackburn.

5. Manchester City were one of six clubs to leave St James' Park with maximum points last season.

6. Managed just one win in the last 14 Premier League matches against North-West clubs; home to Bolton two months ago.

7. Lost five of the last seven top-flight matches at St James' Park, against clubs from the region.

Man City;

1. Won three and lost four Premier League matches under Mark Hughes.

2. Yet to draw a match in any competition this season.

3. Lost four of the last five away Premier League games.

4. On a league high 21 matches since a score draw; the 1-1 stalemate, away to Derby on 30 January 2008 being the most recent.

5. Newcastle were one of four clubs they beat on their Premier League travels last term.

6. Won eight of the last nine Premier League matches against North-East opposition; the exception being the 8-1 loss at Middlesbrough on 11 May 2008.

7. Kept clean sheets in five of the last seven league trips to the region.

REFEREE

Rob Styles
- Hamphire official has taken charge of one other Magpie fixture this term, August's 3-0 defeat at Arsenal.

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