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MATCH REPORT – Newcastle 1-1 Norwich City: Clark sees red in opening stages as Magpies play out frustrating draw with fellow strugglers

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Credit: @NUFC instagram - SJP under the lights...

Newcastle are still searching for their first win after a defensive blunder on Tuesday night meant they drew 1-1 with relegation rivals Norwich City. 

It was a frustrating introduction to life at St James’ Park for Eddie Howe as Ciaran Clark saw red inside eight minutes after a piece of brainless defending. 

It was a strange affair under the lights as the Magpies once again lost ground in their battle for Premier League safety. 

After Clark’s dismissal, Fraser was sacrificed and replaced by Federico Fernandez.

Callum Wilson gave Newcastle an unexpected lead courtesy of a second half penalty, before Martin Dubravka failed to catch the ball from a cross and gifted the opposition an equaliser late in the game.

The ‘keeper then became a hero, making a vital stop in injury time to prevent the Canaries from taking all three points back to Norfolk. 

Howe was forced to make defensive changes as Jamaal Lascelles and Matt Ritchie served their one-match suspensions. This meant long-awaiting recalls to the starting eleven for Jamal Lewis and Javi Manquillo as the home side reverted to a back four. 

The new system was foolishly dismantled inside the first ten minutes of the game after Clark’s woeful clearance cannoned off Norwich striker Teemu Puki and prompted the Irish international to deliberately pull down his man who was through on goal. 

The home fans prayed for a VAR reprieve but it didn’t come.

Referee Andy Madley had no doubts and despite the ball coming off Pukki’s hand, the new ruling meant the decision wasn’t overturned. 

Newcastle’s 10-men dealt easily with a poor Canaries side who lacked any real attacking threat; Jamal Lewis blocked a shot from Striker Josh Sargent which proved to be the best chance of the half for the visitors.

Howe moved to a 4-3-2 set up and his side produced a couple of promising moments. Jonjo Shelvey fired over after loud shouts of “shoot” from the home fans. Joelinton followed suit moments later. 

Credit: @NUFC instagram – Joelinton put in a man of the match display on Tuesday evening

After an attacking run from Joe Willock on the left wing, the ball found its way to Callum Wilson inside the box who replicated his teammates and failed to hit the target. 

The second half began much like the first. 

But when man of the match Joelinton felt he was brought down in the opposition box, the fans turned on the referee. The 25-year old was incandescent and was right to be. 

Moments later his teammates were unified in their protests as Jonjo Shelvey’s corner found the head of Federico Fernandez. The ball fired towards goal before hitting the outstretched arm of Billy Gilmour.

After a long VAR review, Newcastle were given a lifeline. 

Callum Wilson converted from the spot to make it 1-0 to the home side. Tim Krul in the Norwich goal was visibly disappointed as he parried the spot kick onto the underside of the bar, before it hit the back of the net. 

Credit: @CallumWilson instagram – the striker was captain for the evening…

This gave St James’ Park a lift and seemingly with VAR, the more you complain the more likely you are to get a VAR call in your favour.

Unlike at Arsenal where a number of dubious incidents in the opposition box were ignored, the Newcastle players made a song and dance about the penalty claim – eventually getting the decision in their favour.

Now all that was left to do was keep the Canaries out for the remainder of the game and things were going well until the 79th minute.

Minutes before Newcastle made two defensive changes which saw Miguel Almiron and Isaac Hayden enter the fray in replace of a leggy Joe Willock and exhausted Saint-Maximin. However, this pragmatic move to a more structured line-up seemed to backfire instantly.

The ball was whipped in on the Norwich right towards the back post where Slovak goalkeeper Dubravka spilled the cross into the path of the onrushing full back who played a looped it back into the middle.

Time seemed to go in slow motion as the ball floated towards the penalty spot where it was met by Finish striker Teemu Pukki who placed an impressive volley into the top corner.

Now the question was if Newcastle could hold on…

The home side pushed for an unlikely winner as the majority of players looked dead on their feet, having gave it their all. However, the Magpies rarely threatened as the visiting Canaries bore down on the Leazers end goal.

Newcastle nearly served up another gift in stoppage time as Fabian Schar tried a ridiculous Cruyff style turn before being dispossessed by freshly substituted Pierre Lees-Melou who rushed towards the box.

His driven right-footed effort was saved dramatically by the outstretched leg of Dubravka who diverted the ball over the bar.

Some more mindless defending.

Despite a valiant effort from the ten-men in black and white, the result feels demoralising given the current predicament as Newcastle still search for their first win of the season.

Things were made worse by Leeds’ late winner from the spot in the other Premier League game on Tuesday evening, leaving Newcastle six points from safety and Watford have a game on hand in 17th position.

However, for fans to boo that performance given the context of the game is hard to understand – if you boo that you don’t know much about football…

Only Ciaran Clark has answers for his pathetic display of brainless defending, which from an international standard player is hard to believe. He was at fault for his clumsy tackle that gave Brighton their penalty a few weeks ago and wouldn’t be at any other forward-looking club but Newcastle have been a team lacking for too many years.

Yes, he’s a liability but he is not the only one.

Failure to keep clean sheets means the Magpies are heading in only one direction – towards the Championship. They have entered uncharted territory having failed to win on the fourteenth occasion this season, with no team ever reaching safety from that position.

All attention now turns to another must-win battle against fellow strugglers Burnley on Saturday afternoon at SJP. A challenging Christmas fixture list leaves Newcastle in a precarious position.

The Mags may already be too far adrift come January where Howe is expected to spend big in the transfer window.

Player Ratings

Dubravka (5), Lewis (6), Clark (0), Schar (6), Manquillo (6), Shelvey (7), Willock (5), Saint-Maximin (7), Fraser (n/a), Joelinton (9), Wilson (7)

Subs: Federico Fernandez (6), Miguel Almiron (6), Isaac Hayden (6)

Man of the match: Joelinton

Eddie Howe:

“I’m hugely disappointed we couldn’t get over the line and win the game, but I think we saw really positive signs in terms of defensive resilience and collective spirit. We’re going to need that for what lays ahead.

“In the cold light of day, Ciaran (Clark) probably would have made a different decision, but in that moment, probably an impulse has made him stop the striker and it probably is a red card.

“These things happen in the game, my immediate reaction wasn’t really to focus on that, it was to figure out very quickly what we had to do, try and find a solution to the problem.

“The last thing I wanted to do was take Ryan Fraser off the pitch, but I felt I needed to do that for the team. Fede (Fernandez) came in and I thought he was absolutely magnificent tonight.

“We were desperate for three points today. We’ve got the one, but I have to cling to what I’ve seen in terms of what the players have delivered, the spirit, giving more, maybe more than what they thought they were physically capable of. We’re going to need that in the battle that we have ahead.

“We know we need wins, draws aren’t going to be enough. But I think all you can do in every game is give your all and I think you saw a group of players who gave that tonight. I couldn’t ask any more of those players who committed to the task ahead so I have to be very proud and pleased with them tonight.”

Post-match thoughts? Are you happy with the performance? Who was your man of the match? Will Newcastle claim their first win on Saturday against Burnley?

Join in the conversation and have your say…

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Odds on the next Sunderland manger – who do you think will come in?

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Sunderland Next Manager Odds - Who do you think will come in?

Sunderland late last night sacked Tony Mowbray as manager, they expressed gratitude to Tony and his assistant Mark Venus for their positive contributions over the past two seasons, stating that they will always be welcome back at the Stadium of Light and wishing them success in their future endeavors.

Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman praised Tony’s impact, acknowledging his high regard among players, staff, and supporters. Speakman highlighted Mowbray’s role in guiding the team to the Sky Bet Championship Play-Offs and his significant contribution to team development. He emphasized that while a difficult decision, it aligns with the club’s ambition and strategy.

Sky bet have released the odds for who the next manager may be, let us know on our Facebook page who you think will be the next manager and join in the conversation…

Steven Schumacher
2/1
Julien Sablé
7/2
Paul Heckingbottom
7/2
John Eustace
6/1
Graham Potter
10/1
Kim Hellberg
10/1
Kevin Muscat
12/1
Nathan Jones
14/1
Francesco Farioli
16/1
Jesse Marsch
16/1
Kevin Phillips
16/1
Diego Martinez
20/1
Frank Lampard
20/1
Jim Goodwin
20/1
Lee Carsley
20/1
Patrick Vieira
20/1
Roy Keane
20/1
Thierry Henry
20/1
Gary Rowett
25/1
Jocelyn Gourvennec
25/1
Michael Duff
25/1
Neil Warnock
28/1
Aitor Karanka
33/1
Karl Robinson
33/1
Leam Richardson
33/1
Nigel Pearson
33/1
Steve Evans
33/1
Steve Bruce
40/1

The North East Youtube channel has launched a weekly Premier League Prediction show. Based at the Geordie Star in Newcastle we invite Adam Pearson in to both go through the talking points of the last weeks premier league fixtures and then give our predictions for the week ahead.

 

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You can see our predictions for game week 15 below….

 

You can see our thoughts on the upcoming SAFC vs NUFC derby game below and Adam discussing winding up SAFC fans recently

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Premier League Prediction Show – Compete against us on YouTube + Adam Pearson

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Premier League Prediction Show with Adam Pearson

The North East Youtube channel has launched a weekly Premier League Prediction show. Based at the Geordie Star in Newcastle we invite Adam Pearson in to both go through the talking points of the last weeks premier league fixtures and then give our predictions for the week ahead.

 

You can test your football knowledge against us, get your premier league predictions in before the first premier league game kicks off to be counted and anyone who beats r team we will credit on screen. Make this new feature a part of your weekends pre premier league tradition and get involved!

 

You can see our predictions for game week 14 below….

You can see our predictions for game week 15 below….

 

You can see our thoughts on the upcoming SAFC vs NUFC derby game below..

Follow the channel to stay fully up to date, for some big local videos and to support us!

You can now download our FREE new app to stay fully up to date with all North East related news –  https://linktr.ee/northeastupdates

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Sunderland AFC has announced the departure of Head Coach Tony Mowbray

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Sunderland AFC has this evening parted company with Head Coach Tony Mowbray.

The Club expressed gratitude to Tony and his assistant Mark Venus for their positive contributions over the past two seasons, stating that they will always be welcome back at the Stadium of Light and wishing them success in their future endeavors.

Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman praised Tony’s impact, acknowledging his high regard among players, staff, and supporters. Speakman highlighted Mowbray’s role in guiding the team to the Sky Bet Championship Play-Offs and his significant contribution to team development. He emphasized that while a difficult decision, it aligns with the club’s ambition and strategy.

Emphasizing the commitment to their long-term strategy for sustainability and success, Chairman Kyril Louis-Dreyfus thanked Tony for his hard work and affirmed the club’s focus on implementing a high-performance culture and a strong playing identity.

The club reiterated the importance of fan support in their progress and invited supporters to the Stadium of Light during the festive period and into 2024.

During the interim period, Mike Dodds, supported by the existing coaching team, will oversee the first-team’s training and match preparations until the appointment of a new Head Coach is finalized.

———-

See our Interview with Newcastle United Youtuber Adam Pearson after he wound the Sunderland fans up following the news of the derby…

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Adam Pearson Winds up Sunderland Fans

See the full video below…

See our thoughts on the draw….

 

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Warm Christmas Meal Appeal North East – Help a Local Person in Need – NEoffers.co.uk

 

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Follow our YouTube for some big local videos and to support us!

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