MATCH REPORTS

Magpies Beaten At Wigan

Graeme Souness on the bench

WIGAN ATHLETIC 1
NEWCASTLE UNITED 0
Barclays Premiership
JJB Stadium
October 15, 2005
Kick-off 12.45pm

Goal: Roberts 40min

Gary Oliver reports from the JJB Stadium

NEWCASTLE United's four-game unbeaten run came to an end when they lost 1-0 to Premiership new boys Wigan Athletic at the JJB Stadium.

Latics striker Jason Roberts proved the matchwinner for the home side, squeezing a shot past Shay Given in the 40th minute.

Newcastle pressed hard for an equaliser in the second half, and skipper Alan Shearer thought he had levelled with a 65th minute header from Charles N'Zogbia's left-wing corner - however, referee Phil Dowd and his assistant ruled the ball had not crossed the line before it was cleared by defender Leighton Baines.

Wigan were reduced to ten men with six minutes remaining after Lee McCulloch was dismissed for a late challenge on Emre.

However, despite Newcastle's late rally, the hosts were able to hold on for victory and extend their own unbeaten league run to six games.

SECOND HALF ACTION UPDATES

90min - A Newcastle corner is cleared and Shola Ameobi retrieves possession only to lay a stray pass into the path of Graham Kavanagh. The Wigan midfielder releases substitute David Connolly on the counter-attack, but his shot is turned behind by the sliding challenge of Stephen Carr. Newcastle quickly get the ball back upfield, but they are unable to force an equaliser and their four-game unbeaten run comes to an end.

89min - With time running out and Wigan trying to run down the clock, Stephen Carr's frustration costs him a yellow card.

88min - Newcastle come close to an equaliser as Charles N'Zogbia's left-wing cross is chested down by Alan Shearer only for the skipper to see his cross-shot drift agonisingly wide of John Filan's far post. Graeme Souness makes his last substitution of the match by replacing Robbie Elliott with Lee Clark.

84min - WIGAN RED CARD. The Latics are reduced to ten men for the closing stages as Lee McCulloch is shown the yellow card for a foul on Emre midway inside the Wigan half.

82min - Wigan make a second substitution as Jimmy Bullard is replaced by Ryan Taylor.

79min - Stephane Henchoz becomes the fourth player to be booked in the match for a foul on Shola Ameobi 25 yards from the Latics goal.

76min - Wigan make their first change of the game as Paul Jewell withdraws Henri Camara and sends on David Connolly in attack.

73min - Charles N'Zogbia's purposeful run towards the Wigan penalty area is ended when he is brought down by Jimmy Bullard, who concedes a free-kick in a dangerous position. Emre's effort from 22 yards, however, is easily gathered by John Filan.

70min - Steven Taylor is shown the yellow card from referee Phil Dowd after an aerial challenge on Jason Roberts.

69min - Newcastle launch another attack when Steven Taylor plays a ball out wide to Stephen Carr. The Irishman's cross is a dangerous one, but unfortunately for the Magpies, Michael Owen is unable to get a proper connection on the ball as he stretches to reach it.

64min - Emre's clever run forward sees the Turkish midfielder lay the ball off to Charles N'Zogbia and his centre is deflected behind off Arjan De Zeeuw. From the corner, Alan Shearer thinks he has equalised with a downward header, but the officials have a different view, saying a combination of Leighton Baines and John Filan prevented the ball from crossing the line.

60min - Shola Ameobi is the first Newcastle player to be booked after a challenge on Leighton Baines.

58min - Wigan midfielder Graham Kavanagh tries his luck from 22 yards, but his low shot is no problem for his Republic of Ireland colleague Shay Given, who makes a save low to his right.

52min - Newcastle win a free-kick 25 yards from goal after Alan Shearer is fouled by Stephane Henchoz in an aerial duel. The ball is played short to the skipper from the set-piece by Charles N'Zogbia, but his low strike is blocked by the Wigan defensive wall.

49min - Newcastle launched their first attack of the second half when Shola Ameobi tried to get to a forward ball ahead of John Filan. The ball broke to Michael Owen, but his attempt to steer the ball goalward was blocked by Stephane Henchoz, who was closely marshalling his former Liverpool colleague.

48min - Wigan continued to set the pace immediately after the interval and Steven Taylor had to concede a corner when he turned behind a low right-wing cross from Pascal Chimbonda at his near post.

46min - Wigan were straight on the attack in the second half, and a determined run by Henri Camara was only ended 30 yards from goal when he was blocked by Steven Taylor, who conceded a a free-kick in the process. A clever move between Leighton Baines and Graham Kavanagh set up a shooting chance for Jimmy Bullard whose dipping effort narrowly cleared Shay Given's crossbar.

Newcastle made a further substitution at the interval as Emre returned to first-team action, replacing Amady Faye.

FIRST HALF ACTION UPDATES

45min - Referee Phil Dowd reaches for his notebook for the first time in the afternoon to show a yellow card to Damien Francis after a late challenge on Scott Parker on halfway. The free-kick is hoisted into the Wigan penalty area but Dowd blows up for a foul on Latics keeper John Filan.

44min - Wigan mount another attack and Henri Camara's drive from the edge of the area carries straight through to Shay Given.

41min - Newcastle try to hit back immediately as Alan Shearer heads the ball into the path of Charles N'Zogbia and his well-struck shot cannons into Stephane Henchoz and goes behind for a corner.

40min - WIGAN GOAL. Damien Francis plays in Jason Roberts and though his shot is partly blocked by Shay Given, it still carries enough pace to cross the line before the retreating Scott Parker can clear.

39min - Almost an embarrassing moment for Shay Given as he races from his box to head clear a long downfield punt from Stephane Henchoz. The Irishman is beaten by the bounce and has to scramble back into his area and dive on the ball before Jason Roberts can pounce.

37min - The Magpies are forced to make their first substitution of the game as Lee Bowyer limps out of the action to be replaced by Shola Ameobi. The United midfielder appeared to pick up the injury after a block tackle with Lee McCulloch two minutes earlier.

36min - Newcastle clear a Wigan corner and Michael Owen leads a counter-attack upfield, switching the play to an unmarked Charles N'Zogbia on the left flank. The young Frenchman advances just inside the Latics' 18-yard box, but his low cross-shot is comfortably held by John Filan.

32min - Wigan's Henri Camara tries to play striker partner Jason Roberts into a scoring chance, but excellent defending by Jean Alain Boumsong in his own penalty area snuffs out the threat.

28min - A first real chance for Michael Owen in the match. Amady Faye found space down the right to deliver a low centre that was met by the Magpies striker on the run at the near post. However, Owen got over the ball and his effort sailed into the stands.

26min - Newcastle have their best chance yet. Shay Given's long punt downfield was flicked on by Alan Shearer, and when Stephane Henchoz failed to make the clearance the ball fell to Lee Bowyer 25 yards from goal. Despite his shot not being particularly well-struck, it beat the outstretched right hand of Latics keeper John Filan, only to bounce off the base of his goalpost and fall kindly for him to retrieve.

20min - Wigan win a free-kick on their right side after Robbie Elliott is adjudged to have fouled Jason Roberts. Jimmy Bullard delivers to the far post where Lee McCulloch is unable to keep his header down.

14min - Lee McCulloch sees his shot from the edge of the penalty area deflected off Jean Alain Boumsong and go behind for a corner.

12min - Amady Faye wins a header in midfield to release Charles N'Zogbia down the left flank. However, with Michael Owen taking up a good position in the penalty area, the Frenchman's attempted low centre lacks power and is easily cleared by Arjan De Zeeuw.

10min - Wigan come closest to opening the scoring. Jean Alain Boumsong, in trying to clear a long punt forward from Baines, succeeds only in heading it back towards his own goal, leaving Robbie Elliott and Jason Roberts in a battle for possession. The Latics striker gets the better of the race and then cracks a shot against Shay Given's right-hand post before Amady Faye put the ball behind for a corner.

7min - Newcastle force the first corner of the game, when Scott Parker's low centre from the right byline is turned behind by Stephane Henchoz. However, Charles N'Zogbia's delivery is too low and easily cleared by the home defence.

5min - Wigan launch their first attack of the game. Leighton Baines crosses from the left and his centre is headed clear by Robbie Elliott as far as Jason Roberts, who fires wide with an ambitious attempt from 25 yards.

2min - Newcastle, defending the end at which the travelling Geordie fans are housed, launch the first attack of the game. Stephen Carr's right-wing cross is only half cleared by the Wigan defence, and when Alan Shearer delivers the ball back into the home penalty area, it is just out of reach of a stretching Michael Owen. 

TEAM NEWS

NEWCASTLE United boss Graeme Souness made three changes to his line-up from the previous Premiership match at Portsmouth.

Record signing Michael Owen - who missed the goalless draw at Fratton Park with a dead leg - was back to partner skipper Alan Shearer in attack, and the 25-year-old went into the Wigan game on a high having netted his 33rd goal for England in Wednesday's World Cup qualifying win over Poland at Old Trafford.

Owen's return meant Shola Ameobi dropped down to the substitutes' bench, where he was joined by Lee Clark, as boss Souness preferred to start with Amady Faye in central midfield. Partnering Senegalese international Faye in the engine room was Scott Parker, making the 150th start of his club career.

Newcastle's other change from the starting line-up at Pompey came at left-back. Robbie Elliott, who replaced an injured Celestine Babayaro at half-time at Fratton Park, continued in the absence of the missing Nigerian.

The Magpies, who wore their green change kit for this fixture, were again without Nolberto Solano, Kieron Dyer, Albert Luque, Titus Bramble and Craig Moore - but Turkish midfielder Emre was fit again and named among the subs after recovering from a hamstring injury.

Wigan, unbeaten in their last five matches, went into the early kick-off knowing a victory would temporarily push them into second spot in the Premiership, while Newcastle were themselves looking to extend their unbeaten run to five games and record a fourth consecutive clean sheet for the first time in the top-flight since the end of the 1996/97 campaign.

TEAMS

Wigan Athletic: John Filan, Pascal Chimbonda, Leighton Baines, Arjan De Zeeuw, Stephane Henchoz, Jimmy Bullard (Ryan Taylor 82m), Graham Kavanagh, Damien Francis, Lee McCulloch, Jason Robert, Henri Camara (David Connolly 76m).
Subs not used: Mike Pollitt, Steve McMillan, Matt Jackson.

Newcastle United: Shay Given, Stephen Carr, Robbie Elliott (Lee Clark 88m), Jean Alain Boumsong, Steven Taylor, Lee Bowyer (Shola Ameobi 37m), Amady Faye (Emre 45m), Scott Parker, Charles N'Zogbia, Alan Shearer, Michael Owen.
Subs not used: Steve Harper, Peter Ramage.

Referee: Phil Dowd.
Attendance: 22,374.

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