16.01.2016… West Ham (h)…

Newcastle United 2 West Ham United 1

St. James’ Park… Saturday January 16th… 3pm

Attendance: 50,031

Ticket: £33 – Programme: £3

It’s been a bit of a strange week. Last Saturday, travelling to Watford, listening to Blackstar, oblivious. Then Monday happened and it made sense, it sounded different, it had been staring us all in the face. It was good to have those two days where it was just the new Bowie album…

Anyway, the events of last week and other things happening closer to home had put me in a pretty reflective mood prior to the match, so spent a couple of hours on Saturday just wandering through Newcastle and reminiscing. The quayside, Dean Street, Grey Street, Leazes Park. A fairly circuitous route to the match I guess…

Findings…? Even on a cold, damp day, Newcastle really is a beautiful city… and none of us is getting any younger…

newcastle v west ham...

Pre Match: View of St. James’ from Leazes Park…

Following the bracing walk, there was a football match, a pretty good one too. In fact, I enjoyed the game far more than I have in ages…

We played with a tempo, and this was largely down to the introduction of Jonjo Shelvey. His ability to spray passes accurately, and at speed, gave us a cutting edge (and a half a yard) that hasn’t been there in a very long time. The quarterback analogy is a good one…

Two up after fifteen minutes, two cracking goals. The first a great shot from Ayoze Perez, following a Shelvey pass. The second, a beautiful move. Shelvey to Janmaat on the right flank, a great piece of control, a first time cross behind the back four to Wijnaldum, bang…

We dominated for the remainder of the first half and should have been out of sight, a striker anyone…?

newcastle v west ham...

First Half Action: Newcastle Take a Corner…

We conceded early in the second half following a defensive error but we didn’t fold. Although West Ham pressed, we had as many chances to go 3-1 as they did to equalise. Rob Elliot made a good save late on from Kouyate but any result other than a Newcastle win would have been more than a little unfair…

In summary, a much better performance and a very welcome three points. But that’s all it is, three points. We’re still in the bottom three, there’s still a lot of work (both on and off the field) to be done…

Travelling to Watford next weekend in a slightly more positive frame of mind, Bowie on the headphones…

Newcastle United; Elliot (YC), Janmaat, Mbemba, Coloccini, Dummett (Saivet 57), Colback, Shelvey, Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Pérez (Gouffran), Mitrovic (Lascelles)

Not Used; Aarons, Darlow, Riviere. Toney

Goals; Pérez (6), Wijnaldum (15)

West Ham United; Adrián, Tomkins (Jenkinson 75), Collins, Ogbonna. Cresswell, Noble, Kouyaté, Obiang (Jelavic 45), Antonio (Moses 70), E Valencia, Payet

Not Used; Randolph, Reid, Song, Cullen

Goals; Jelavic (49)

As usual, more pictures on flickr…

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