MATCH REPORTS

Heroes And Villains!

Newcastle players celebrate after scoring in the 2-1 win at Aston Villa

ASTON VILLA 1
NEWCASTLE UNITED 2
Barclays Premiership
Villa Park
February 11, 2006
Kick-off 3pm

Gary Oliver reports

FULL-TIME REPORT

NEWCASTLE United earned a fantastic 2-1 victory at Aston Villa despite having to play the final half-hour with only 10 men.

With Glenn Roeder's Magpies leading 2-1, they saw Celestine Babayaro sent off by Mike Riley for a foul on home sub Milan Baros, but the Czech star saw his resulting penalty kicked over the bar by Shay Given.

United had got off to a perfect start when Shola Ameobi fired them ahead in only the second minute. Luke Moore levelled for Villa with a near-post header in the 16th minute, but Charles N'Zogbia pounced for his second goal in as many games when he restored Newcastle's lead from close range on the half-hour mark.

After Babayaro's dismissal, Newcastle had to weather serious Villa pressure. But some lion-hearted defending, great goalkeeping from Given and a little slice of luck when Liam Ridgewell hit the crossbar with a header meant caretaker boss Roeder could celebrate a second win in as many games.

SECOND-HALF ACTION UPDATES

90min+3 - Referee Mike Riley has his yellow card out again. This time it is shown to Shay Given for taking too long over a goal-kick deep in injury-time. But Alan Shearer and Scott Parker ensure the final seconds are then played out up the Villa end of the park and victory is confirmed when Mike Riley blows for full time.

90min - Emre fouls Gareth Barry to concede a free-kick 25 yards out just as it is announced there will be an extra four minutes. From the free-kick, the United wall stands firm to keep out a Peter Whittingham's drive out. The Magpies launch a great counter through Kieron Dyer, but when Scott Parker goes down under a Mark Delaney challenge, referee Mike Riley is not impressed.

89min - More dogged defending, this time from Titus Bramble to stop Milan Baros getting in a right-wing cross. From Peter Whittingham's corner, Olof Mellberg and Luke Moore head the ball goalwards before Shay Given comes from his line to collect.

86min - Kieron Dyer and Emre do well to keep possession and run down the clock. Villa's frustrations spill over as Peter Whittingham is booked for scything down Scott Parker.

85min - Newcastle make their final change as Glenn Roeder brings off Charles N'Zogbia and Lee Bowyer comes on.

83min - Shay Given has made some brilliant saves this season and now he produces another right out of the top drawer. A great challenge by Robbie Elliott on Luke Moore sees the ball drop nicely for Juan Pablo Angel, but the Colombian's dipping 20-yard strike is tipped behind by United's Irish keeper, who is at full stretch to concede a corner. From the flag-kick, Given has his woodwork to thank as Liam Ridgewell sees an eight-yard header crash against the crossbar.

80min - Newcastle are defending heroically at this point in the game. Firstly Aaron Hughes sees a drive blocked by Jean Alain Boumsong and then his central defensive partner Titus Bramble gets in the way of an effort by Juan Pablo Angel.

78min - There is a brilliant piece of skill from Kieron Dyer as he twists and turns Aaron Hughes before winning a corner. When the ball is cleared from the left-wing delivery, Dyer is quickly on hand to win back possession but Villa then in turn launch a counter of their own that ends when Titus Bramble makes a great tackle on Milan Baros.

74min - Newcastle badly need to get the ball upfield and earn a respite from Villa pressure. Both Kieron Dyer and Charles N'Zogbia get into good forward positions, but each time they are crowded out by the home side. 

71min - Jlloyd Samuel swings in a left-wing cross and Luke Moore's diving header is deflected behind for a corner. Gareth Barry claims a second penalty for a handball from the resulting flag-kick. Referee Mike Riley turns it down but does book Milan Baros, presumably for dissent.

69min - Glenn Roeder makes a second change. Shola Ameobi comes off and Kieron Dyer takes over for 10-man United.

67min - Newcastle withdraw Nolberto Solano and send on Robbie Elliott to bolster the defence. However, there is soon another chance for Villa as a poor clearance by Jean Alain Boumsong creates an opportunity for Luke Moore, but he fires into the side netting when trying to beat Shay Given at his near post.

61min - MISSED PENALTY: Milan Baros takes the spot-kick for Villa. Shay Given dives to his left, but saves with his trailing foot as the ball loops up and over his crossbar. The ball goes behind for a right-wing corner that drops to Gareth Barry, but his close range effort is deflected behind by Nolberto Solano who is guarding the back post.

60min - NEWCASTLE RED CARD: Milan Baros makes a great burst into the Newcastle penalty area and just as he tries to go around Shay Given he is bundled over by Celestine Babayaro. Mike Riley decides it is worthy of a straight red card and gives Villa a penalty.

59min - Peter Whittingham's forward pass sets Juan Pablo Angel running forward. He works space off Titus Bramble for a shot, but Shay Given makes a comfortable save low to his left. Villa then make their final change as Liam Ridgewell comes on for Craig Gardner.

55min - Villa make a double switch as Milan Baros and Juan Pablo Angel come on in place of Lee Hendrie and Kevin Phillips. Baros' first action is to win a corner as Titus Bramble heads his right-wing cross behind.

53min - Scott Parker goes into referee Mike Riley's notebook after a challenge on Lee Hendrie. Parker is furious with the punishment, especially as TV replays show he has won the ball.

50min - Titus Bramble makes a storming run upfield and lays the ball off to Alan Shearer on his right. The skipper's first cross is cut out by Villa, but when he delivers again to the far post the big defender cannot control it.

46min - Olof Mellberg fouls Alan Shearer in the air as the pair compete for a downfield punt from Shay Given to give Newcastle a free-kick 25 yards from goal in a central position. Emre takes it, but his left-foot curling effort can only hit the wall. As both teams compete for the loose ball, Craig Gardner hauls down Scott Parker and becomes the second Villa player to receive a yellow card.

FIRST-HALF ACTION UPDATES

45m+2 - Lee Hendrie spurns a glorious chance to level in the dying seconds of the half. Gareth Barry hooks the ball in from the left, and when it drops between Charles N'Zogbia and Celestine Babayaro, Lee Hendrie can only screw a right-foot effort wide from scarcely six yards. It is a let-off for United who are happy to hear Mike Riley's whistle signal half-time and they leave the field with their lead intact after a very eventful opening 45 minutes.

45min - Newcastle finish the half strongly, and Gareth Barry has to concede a right-wing corner to cut out Peter Ramage's low cross. Emre delivers to the near post, where Peter Ramage heads inches over the bar.

41min - Some superb hold-up play from Alan Shearer sets up a run for Charles N'Zogbia but Mark Delaney puts the ball behind for a corner. Emre's left-wing flag-kick is headed goalwards by Shola Ameobi to Alan Shearer, but his hooked effort is cleared on the line by Delaney for another corner. Again Emre swings in the delivery, but this time Jean Alain Boumsong heads down powerfully and the ball bounces back up and over Thomas Sorensen's crossbar.

36min - There is a scare for United as Luke Moore gets on the ball inside their penalty area. But Peter Ramage makes a good challenge before Titus Bramble clears up.

34min - Emre makes a super forward run deep into Villa territory. His options, however, are limited and when he lays the ball back to Celestine Babayaro the left-back sees his cross deflected behind for a corner. From the flag-kick Peter Ramage heads over.

30min - NEWCASTLE GOAL (1-2): Celestine Babayaro lifts a ball upfield from the left that Shola Ameobi flicks into the path of Alan Shearer. The skipper finds Nolberto Solano unmarked, but when his shot is blocked by Thomas Sorensen, Charles N'Zogbia beats three home defenders to the loose ball to restore the Magpies' lead with his second goal in as many games.

26min - Play is held up as Alan Shearer needs attention after being winded in an aerial challenge with Olof Mellberg. When play resumes, there is another stoppage as this time the Villa skipper needs treatment after being hurt in a tussle with the lively Shola Ameobi.

20min - Gareth Barry tries to test Shay Given from 25 yards, but his well-struck left-foot drive is always drifting away from goal.

18min - Mark Delaney is the first player to be booked for a trip on Shola Ameobi just as the striker sets off on a dangerous run. From the free-kick, the home defender makes amends by clearing a low left-wing cross from Charles N'Zogbia before Alan Shearer can reach it.

16min - VILLA GOAL (1-1): Craig Gardner swings in a vicious free-kick from the left that Luke Moore gets his head to before Titus Bramble and Shay Given is unable to keep it out at his near post.

10min - Newcastle are only inches away from extending their lead. Charles N'Zogbia swings over a left-wing cross that falls to Nolberto Solano. The Peruvian tees up Shola Ameobi and his shot deflects behind off Olof Mellberg, only just missing the target with a wrong-footed Thomas Sorensen unable to do anything to reach the ball.

7min - There is pressure for Villa and they win a left-wing corner. Gareth Barry delivers but Jean Alain Boumsong is fouled by Olof Mellberg as he heads clear.

4min - There is an early chance for a Villa equaliser as a ball from the left drops for Luke Moore, but a great challenge from Scott Parker prevents the forward taking a shot. Newcastle counter swiftly but Mark Delaney cuts out Nolberto Solano's through ball aimed for Shola Ameobi.

2min - NEWCASTLE GOAL (0-1): People are still taking their seats as the Magpies get off to a perfect start. Nolberto Solano feeds a pass from the right into Alan Shearer inside the Villa box and the skipper flicks it first time to an unmarked Shola Ameobi, who advances and slides it under Thomas Sorensen and into the far corner of the net. It's a superbly-worked goal, but David O'Leary must be furious with his defenders. 

TEAM NEWS

GLENN Roeder kept faith with the same 16 players who got his caretaker reign off to a winning start as Newcastle United travelled to Aston Villa.

The former Magpies skipper named an unchanged starting eleven and subs bench for the Premiership game at Villa Park.

Nolberto Solano got a mixed reception as he came out to warm up against his former club. James Milner was prevented from playing for the home side as part of the conditions of his season-long loan move from St. James' Park, although former Toon defender Aaron Hughes did figure.

Former Sunderland keeper Thomas Sorensen was between the posts for David O'Leary's men, but ex-Black Cat midfielder Gavin McCann missed the game through suspension.

TEAMS

Aston Villa: Thomas Sorensen, Mark Delaney, Jlloyd Samuel, Olof Mellberg, Gareth Barry, Lee Hendrie (Milan Baros 55m), Peter Whittingham, Aaron Hughes, Kevin Phillips (Juan Pablo Angel 55m), Luke Moore, Craig Gardner (Liam Ridgewell 59m).
Subs not used: Stuart Taylor, Ulises De La Cruz.

Newcastle United: Shay Given, Peter Ramage, Celestine Babayaro, Scott Parker, Jean Alain Boumsong, Titus Bramble, Nolberto Solano (Robbie Elliott 67m), Emre, Alan Shearer, Shola Ameobi (Kieron Dyer 69m), Charles N'Zogbia (Lee Bowyer 85m)
Subs not used: Steve Harper, Lee Clark.

Referee: Mike Riley.
Attendance: 37,140.

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