Month: February 2016

27.02.2016… WBA v Palace…

West Bromwich Albion 3  Crystal Palace 2

The Hawthorns… Saturday February 27th… 5.30pm

Attendance: 24,806

Ticket: £27 – Programme: £3.50

A first for me. A Premier League match as a neutral, and a pretty good one too…

west brom v palace...

Pre- Match: Outside The Hawthorns…

West Brom cruised through the first half, going in 3-0 up at half time. The pick of the goals being the third, a lovely move capped off by a fantastic finish from Berahino.

Palace pulled one back fairly quickly after the restart through Conor Wickham and continued to press. They pulled back to 3-2 with about ten minutes left, leading toa fairly squeaky finish for the home side…

west brom v palace...

First Half Action…

Following a fairly poor run, this was the three points that really put West Brom’s Premier League berth for next season beyond doubt. Palace, on the other hand appear to be sinking like a stone. Do you ever get the feeling that you’ve been Pardewed…?

West Bromwich Albion; Foster, Dawson (YC), McAuley, Olsson, Brunt (Chester 44 (YC)), Fletcher, Yacob, Gardner, Sessegnon (McClean 75), Rondón (Sandro 87), Berahino

Not Used; Anichebe, Myhill, Lambert, Pritchard

Goals; Gardner (12), Dawson (20), Berahino (31)

Crystal Palace; Hennessy, Kelly, Dann, Delaney, Ward, Zaha, Cabaye (YC) (Gayle 80), Ledley (Jedinak 81), Mutch, Adebayor (YC) (Bolasie 45), Wickham

Not Used; Speroni, Mariappa, Lee Chung-yong, Chamakh

Goals; Wickham (48, 80)

As usual, more pictures on flickr…

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20.02.2016… Worcester (h)…

Nuneaton Town 1 Worcester City 1

A1 Gas Force Arena… Saturday February 20th… 3pm

Attendance: 825

Ticket: £13 – Programme: £3

My first trip to Nuneaton in a couple of months, and a very welcome break from Newcastle United…

Nuneaton’s form hasn’t been great recently and coupled with teams around them winning games in hand, they’ve dropped from top of the league to the fringes of the plays-offs. As a result, today’s game was really a ‘must win’…

nuneaton v worcester...

Pre-Match: Worcester City Warming Up…

Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way. Neither side really had a shot on target for much of the match before Nuneaton took an unexpected lead late on. It didn’t last for long though, as Worcester equalised in the 90th minute, taking a point from a game that neither side really deserved to win…

It was a result that keeps Nuneaton in fifth place in Conference North, the final play-off place…

nuneaton v worcester...

Second Half Action: Nuneaton Press…

I considered the trip to Corby next Saturday but decided against it. For such a sort journey it involves rather a lot of trains and a great deal of standing on platforms. Not really something that I want to be doing in February…

I’m not a fan of free Saturdays though, so following a quick look on the BBC website I managed to find myself a game. I’m off to the Hawthorns to watch West Brom play Crystal Palace, didn’t get there with Newcastle this season and last season’s trip was rather rushed so it’s an ideal opportunity to have another look…

Nuneaton Town; Smith, Clifton, Keane C, Duffy, Rowe-Turner, Clifton, McDonald, Byrne, Morgan, Whitehouse, Waite (Smith 68), Harewood (Ironside 63)

Not Used; Daniels, Warburton, De La Paz

Goals; Morgan (81)

Worcester City; Vaughn, Minihan, Gudger, Sharpe, Thomas, Jackman (Ologu 82), Nti, Donnellan, Hughes (Bakayoko 72) Gater, Murphy (Burton 82)

Not Used; Ross, Waldron

Goals; Bakayoko (90)

As usual, more pictures on flickr…

13.02.2016… Chelsea (a)…

Chelsea 5 Newcastle United 1

Stamford Bridge… Saturday February 13th… 5.30pm

Attendance: 41,622

Ticket: £55 – Programme: £3

Another embarrassment on an early evening in West London…

It was never going to end well. I’m not a fan of the the Saturday 5.30pm games at the best of times, particularly when they’re in London. There’s always that nagging feeling in the back of my mind about trains, generally due to the length of the post-match queues for the Underground. Self preservation has become a much stronger instinct than any misplaced loyalty to this shower, in the end I was glad to have an excuse to leave early…

So… I didn’t see the last 20 minutes, it was 4-0 when I left, and it was 5-1 and over by the time I got signal back at St. Pancras Station. I managed to make it back for the 19:58 to Leicester, and that was the highlight of a dismal afternoon…

chelsea v newcastle...

It’s Me, Diego Costa, Being All Christ-Like… Anyone Want To Buy Some Tyres…?

The game was pretty much over in nine minutes, and dead in seventeen. Much of the rest of the evening was spent looking at my watch, praying for it to be over. What remained involved a fruitless effort to shut out the sound of the idiotic Adam Johnson chanting; not quite sure what it has to do with us or how it helps anyone involved..?

I couldn’t really estimate the percentage of our support who felt the need to participate (there was some casual homophobia in evidence too) but I’ve never felt so disconnected from a Newcastle away following in my life. I don’t imagine that I was the only one…

chelsea v newcastle...

Second Half Action: A Rare Newcastle Attack…

Back to the football, briefly. Apparently McClaren appeared to be in denial post-match, grinning and talking up our chances. I didn’t see any of the post-mortems though, I’d already watched (most of) it once, that was enough. I could see absolutely no point in wallowing in it…

So what happens next..? We don’t have a game for two and half weeks. It’s our last chance to sack McClaren. He has to go, now… But we all know that he won’t…

Chelsea; Courtois, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry (Babatt 38), Azpilicueta, Fàbregas, Matic, Willian (Loftus-Cheek 80), Pedro, Diego Costa (Traore 60)

Not Used; Begovic, Baba, Mikel, Kenedy

Goals; Diego Costa (5), Pedro (9,59), Willian (17), Traore (83)

Newcastle United; Elliot, Janmaat, Taylor (YC), Coloccini, Aarons, Shelvey (YC), Tioté (Lascelles 67), Sissoko, Wijnaldum (Colback 45), Townsend, Mitrovic (Doumbia 70)

Not Used; Pérez, Saivet, Darlow, Riviere

Goals; Townsend (90)

As usual, more pictures on flickr…

06.02.2016… West Brom (h)…

Newcastle United 1 West Bromwich Albion 0

St. James’ Park… Saturday February 6th… 3pm

Attendance: 50,152

Ticket: £29 – Programme: £3

A decent performance against a woeful West Brom. Our inability to turn possession and chances into goals is still a worry though. Whether we will come to regret not moving for a recognised striker in the window remains to be seen but not sure whether a semi-fit Seydou Doumbia is going to be the answer…

newcastle v west brom...

Approaching St. James’ Park…

So, nineteen shots, seven on target; and, most importantly, a  1-0 win. Labouring the point but with a decent quality centre forward it would have been a lot more…

West Brom offered very little at the other end, Janmaat clearing up near the end just to make sure. In fact the Throstles (Baggies?) look a fairly reasonable bet to replicate our late season capitulation of last year, the more the merrier…

newcastle v west brom...

Second Half Action…

Next stop, Chelsea on Saturday evening, the ridiculous £55 ticket. Let’s not get carried away though, it has all the makings of a damage limitation exercise, although I’m desperate to be proved wrong…

Newcastle United; Elliot, Janmaat, Taylor, Coloccini, Aarons, Shelvey (Saivet 90), Tioté, Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Townsend (Pérez 88), Mitrovic

Not Used; Darlow, Doumbia, Gibson, Williams, Barlaser

Goals; Mitrovic (32)

West Bromwich Albion; Foster, Dawson, McAuley (YC), Olsson (YC), Chester (YC), Yacob, Sandro (Berahino 45), Gardner (Pritchard 45), Fletcher, McClean, Anichebe (Rondón 74)

Not Used; Myhill, Pocognoli, Lambert, Sessegnon

Goals; None

As usual, more pictures on flickr…