By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor
At St. James' Park
Newcastle United 1 (Cisse 90)
Anzhi Makhachkala 0
(Newcastle United win 1-0 on aggregate)
Papiss Cisse headed an injury-time winner to put Newcastle United into the Europa League quarter-finals, with a 1-0 victory over ten-man Anzhi Makhachkala on Thursday night.
The Senegalese forward nodded home Sylvain Marveaux's cross with the last touch of the game at St. James' Park, as the Magpies navigated their way through a tricky two-legged Europa League Round of 16 tie.
But Anzhi had their moments too, with Samuel Eto'o threatening and Mbark Boussoufa crashing a free-kick against the woodwork.
The Russians' cause wasn't helped when midfielder Mehdi Carcela-Gonzalez received his marching orders early in the second half for a second booking, and Cisse made them pay with his late, late header.
The visitors could have taken a shock lead inside the opening three minutes.
Andrei Eschenko galloped forward from his right-back berth and was allowed time and space to reach the final third before slipping a ball into the path of Eto'o, who drove across the face of goal and narrowly wide.
But United controlled the early stages, with Marveaux particularly prominent. And it was the midfield schemer who had their first shot in anger in the 11th minute.
Exchanging passes with Papiss Cisse, the Frenchman's quick feet saw him ease past Yuri Zhirkov before unleashing an immediate strike which wasn't too far away at the near post.
Taylor twice denied Lassana Diarra with vital last-ditch blocks - firstly after the former Arsenal, Chelsea and Portsmouth man had latched onto a loose ball inside the box, and then when he robbed Cheick Tiote and let fly from 18 yards.
The Magpies were dealt a blow on 37 minutes when captain Yohan Cabaye limped off, having earlier pulled up holding his groin, and their pain was almost doubled immediately.
Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa knocked a pass straight into the feet of Carcela-Gonzalez, who played a one-two with Eto'o before rippling the side-netting from a tight angle.
For all his heroics at one end, Taylor came close to breaking the deadlock on the stroke of half-time, rising highest at the far post to meet Marveaux's floated free-kick but powereing his header over the top.
On 52 minutes it was that man Taylor, again in the thick of the action, when he was presented with the best opportunity of the night.
Another inch-perfect Marveaux free-kick was knocked down into the centre-back's path by Sissoko, but Taylor could only stab straight goalkeeper Vladimir Gabulov from a close range.
With the hosts on the front foot, Anzhi's task got even tougher ten minutes into the second half.
Already booked for a tug on Tiote's shirt just seven minutes previous, Carcela-Gonzalez clattered into Massadio Haidara out on the left touchline, leaving German referee Deniz Aytekin little option but to produce a second yellow card for the winger.
With the Magpies looking to stretch the ten men of Anzhi, 18-year-old Adam Campbell was introduced from the substitutes' bench, for only his third first-team appearance.
The pacy Academy forward immediately took up a role wide on the left and it wasn't long before he was involved - starting a neat flowing move which ended with a long-range Tiote strike rising just over the top with Gabulov at full-stretch.
But the visitors almost stunned more than 45,000 Geordies inside St. James' Park with a late winner. Awarded a free-kick 20 yards out and with just two minutes remaining, wide man Mbark Boussoufa curled a strike over the wall and against the underside of the bar, with the ball fortunately bouncing clear to safety.
And Cisse made them pay with the last kick of the match.
Marveaux jinked in off the right flank before curling a ball onto the frontman's head six-yards out, and Cisse made no mistake with a bullet header that clinched United's spot in the Europa League quarter-finals.
Newcastle United (4-3-3): Rob Elliot; Davide Santon, Steven Taylor, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Massadio Haïdara; Vurnon Anita (Adam Campbell 71), Cheick Tiote, Yohan Cabaye (c) (Jonas Gutierrez 37); Sylvain Marveaux, Papiss Cisse, Moussa Sissoko
Anzhi Makhachkala (4-3-3): Vladimir Gabulov; Andrei Eschenko, Ewerton, Joao Carlos, Yuri Zhirkov; Odil Ahmedov, Lassana Diarra (Oleg Shatov 74), Jucilei; Mbark Boussoufa, Samuel Eto'o (c), Mehdi Carcela-Gonzalez
Subs not used: Evgeni Pomazan, Rasim Tagirbekov, Arseni Logashov, Kamil Agalarov, Fedor Smolov, Lacina Traore
Referee: Deniz Aytekin (Germany)
Bookings: Newcastle - Anita (57); Anzhi - Carcela-Gonzalez (48, 55), Zhirkov (86)
Sendings off: Newcastle - none; Anzhi - Carcela-Gonzalez (55)
Attendance: 45,487 (359 Anzhi)