Newcastle Utd v Birmingham City
St. James' Park
Saturday November 5 2005
Kick off 3pm
Ian Willis reports from St. James' Park
Final Update: 90mins
A LATE goal from Emre gave United their fourth successive win against struggling Birmingham City at St. James' Park on Saturday.
The Turkish midfielder, a matchwinner in the last home game against Sunderland, saw a long range drive on 77 minutes leave visiting goalkeeper Maik Taylor flat-footed to give Newcastle the points.
Prior to that goal, there had been little action of note at either end, though Newcastle had claims for a penalty waved away in the first half when Matthew Upson appeared to handle, then in the second half a 30 yard drive from Jari Jarosik rattled the post.
SECOND HALF UPDATES
90m Three minutes of time were added on and Birmingham piled forward in search of a point, but The Magpies held on to win their fourth game in a row.
87m Pandiani's ball over the top to Forsell is over-hit and Given collects the ball.
85m Birmingham bring on Mikael Forsell and Walter Pandiani for Stan Laziridis and Muzzy Izzet as Steve Bruce goes for broke with five minutes left.
84m Emre is booked for a foul on Clapham.
83m Lee Clark comes off the bench in place of Nobby Solano. When play resumes with a City corner, Shearer heads Pennant's inswinger away.
82m Shearer is booked for a foul on Jarosik
80m Owen fails to pick out Solano after a quick break from the hosts, and Upson clears the danger.
78m UNITED GOAL Newcastle have several chances to shoot after a move down the right, but nobody is preapred to try their luck until Ameobi pulls the ball into the path of Emre and his drive from outside the box leaves Taylor flat-footed and the goalkeeper can't keep it out.
77m Shearer's looping header from Solano's cross into the box is easily saved by taylor.
74m Emre skips through down the inside left, but his pull back is cut out by Taylor in the Blues goal.
73m Emre is fouled by Lazaridis to give United another free in a dangerous position just outside the dee. Emre takes the kick, but can't keep his effort down and it flies over the top into the Gallowgate End.
72m Given gets down at his near post to palm out an angled shot from Heskey after Kilkenny skipped past Emre and threaded a ball through to the former Liverpool striker.
71m Babayaro brings down Pennant as the winger triesd to cut in from the left to give City a free kick on the angle of the box, but Given gathers Kilkenny's set piece.
70m Ameobi's left wing cross is sliced away for a flag kick by Lazaridis. Solano's corner is headed away from the front post by Lazaridis.
66m Jarosik clips Ameobi as the substitute tries to glide past him. United are awarded a free kick 25 yards from goal, but Solano's effort is headed away. When Birmingham break quickly and find themselves two on two, Bramble gets across well to clear before heskey gets the chance to shoot.
62m Emre is fouled by Turkey team-mate Izzet just outside the box to the left hand side of the dee. Solano rolls the ball to Shearer but Birmingham make the block.
60m Another free kick awarded against newcastle angers the home crowd and players, and it almost gets worse when Upson glances Clapham's inswinging free kick wide of Given's right hand upright. Souness makes his feelings known to the match officials before being ushered back to his seat by the fourth official.
58m Jarosik rattles the post from distance as United wait for play to stop for a handball, then at the other end when Newcastle quickly break the referee allows plat to continue when Martin Taylor clearly prods the ball back into the arms of namesake goalkeeper Maik.
57m United make their first change of the afternoon, with Shola Ameobi replacing Charles N'Zogbia
55m Ramage nods Pennant's cross away from the penalty spot.
53m Owen spins past Upson on the edge of the box but the ball runs away from him and maik Taylor collects it.
51m N'Zogbia's cross diverts off Cunningham and rolls out for a corner on the left hand side. Heskey clears the ball from the edge of the six yard box.
46m Shearer and Owen get the second period underway as the rain starts to fall over St. James' Park.
FIRST HALF UPDATES
45m Two minutes of time are added on, and Ramage sees a shot from distance fly high and wide. At the other end a teasing free kick from kilkenny is headed away for a corner which Pennant takes, but Newcastle clear as the half ends goalless.
44m Steven Taylor goes into the book for a challenge from behind on Heskey. When the free kick is whipped into the box, Upson nods the ball back from the back post and Jarosik screws a volley wide of the target.
43m Jarosik fires over from the edge of the box after Bramble fails to head clear a ball over the top from the visitors
42m Izzet is booked for a foul on Solano three yards outside the box to the right of centre. Solano takes the free kick, and curls the ball up and over the wall but into the sidenetting.
39m N'Zogbia's shot is defelceted for athe game's first corner after Ramage crosses from the right. Emre arrows the ball in from the left, but Ramage mis-times his header and the chance goes begging.
32m Given gets out well to fist away a cross from Pennant with Jarosik lurking, then as United break quickly Upson has to sweep away a low cross from N'Zogbia after good work from Owen.
29m N'Zogbia's cross from the left bounces up and appears to strike the arm of Upson, but again the referee waves away appeals for a spot kick.
26m A foul on Taylor gives Newcastle a free kick 35 yards out just to the right of centre. Emre's ambitious effort flies into the two-man wall and is hacked away.
22m Kilkenny fouls Emre to give United a free kick on the right. It is quickly taken and played in by N'Zogbia to Owen, and when he tumbles under a challenge no penalty is awarded despite loud shouts from the Leazes End.
21m Solano trips Clapham to give City a free kick just outside the box on the left channel. When the ball was played quickly into Lazaridis, he dives over a challenge from Parker and is promptly booked for trying to con referee Mike Dean.
20m Heskey heads Cunningham's free kick wide after Emre is harshly adjudged to have fouled Kilkenny in front of the dug outs.
18m Emre's free kick from the right flew acros the face of goal, but Maik Taylor got down to get a vital block in a crowded six-yard box and the chance went begging.
16m Lazaridis needed treatment after being caught by Taylor's flaling arm as they battled for a high ball, but was able to play on.
15m Steven Taylor is penalised for a foul on Heskey as they challenge for a high ball 30 yards out. Jarosik's free kick is blocked by the five-man wall and United clear the loose ball.
10m After quiet first few minutes, United string together some passes between Emre, Parker and Solano, but the peruvian's ball for Owen is cut out by Cramlington=-born centre back Martin Taylor.
01m Upson's foul on Shearer gave United a free kick midway inside the City half with just six seconds on the clock, but the set piece came to nothing as the visitors cleared their lines.
Birmingham got the game underway attacking the Gallowgate End.
ALAN Shearer, three goals away from equalling Jackie Milburn's record of 200 goals for The Magpies, was recalled to the starting line up as United hosted Birmingham City at St. James' Park.
Shearer replaced Shola Ameobi, while in the only other change to the side that won at West Bromwich Albion last weekend, Titus Bramble came in for Jean Alain Boumsong at the heart of defence.
United: Shay Given, Peter Ramage, Steven Taylor, Titus Bramble, Celestine Babayaro, Nobby Solano (Lee Clark 83), Emre, Scott Parker, Charles N'Zogbia (Shola Ameobi 57), Alan Shearer, Michael Owen Subs (not used): Steve Harper, Robbie Elliott, Amady Faye
Birmingham: Maik Taylor, Kenny Cunningham, Martin Taylor, Matthew Upson, Jamie Clapham, Jermaine Pennant, Muzzy Izzet (Mikael Forrsell 85), Jari Jarosik, Stan Lazaridis (Walter Pandiani 85), Emile Heskey, Neil Kilkenny Subs (not used): Nico Vaesen, Oliver Tebily, Marcus Painter
Referee: Mike DeanAttendance: 52,191