Newcastle United 2-2 Tottenham Hotspur – as it happened
Four goals, one point each, Spurs twice had a lead cancelled out by Newcastle. A better-than-average Premier League match.
Well, that was, eventually, alright. I can’t say the same for life, but still, may as well take the acceptability wheresoever we find it. Newcastle were a little negative in the first half, but once they have Ben Arfa fit, will be more effective on the break, and with Taylor and Cabaye’s delivery will threaten everyone at set-pieces. Spurs, meanwhile, are still Spurs. They played well enough to win but not well enough to guarantee a win, and gained nothing from compromising Modric, their best player. It’d help their cause if van der Vaart would run around a bit, but Bale on the right for any reason is a nonsense, even if it might produce the occasional goal.
Talking of goals, you can see those from this here, on 101greatgoals. Otherwise, it’s goodnight from me and goodnight from me – but FCF will be back within the hour, with a surprise MBM of the Rome derby.
FULL-TIME: NEWCASTLE UNITED 2 v 2 TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR
90+5 min: After a minor appeal for a penalty – Ameobi flicked a cross into Walker’s arm – Gutierrez has a shy with the final kick of the game, Friedel eventually hanging on.
92 min: Almost a winner for Newcastle. After Modric is booked for a foul, Taylor curls in a free-kick that falls to Coloccini on the back post. He somehow diverts in square, where it’s recycled by Ameobi and prodded back to him. Back now to goal, he turns at the ball runs across him, but can’t quite get his foot around the ball and slices wide.
90 min: There’ll be five added minutes, and the crowd is amped, baby.
89 min: Pavlyuchenko replaces a less than gruntled Adebayor, but though he’s a-chunterin’, he’s a bollocking in the post for his earlier narcissism.
88 min: Defoe manages to engineer an opportunity in the box – how I didn’t quite see – and from about six yards, dematerialises a shot that’s blocked by Coloccini and a follow-up that’s straight at Krul.
86 min: BRILLIANT EQUALISER FROM AMEOBI! 2-2!
Cabaye, prompting around the fringes, fineigled a pass through to Ameobi, suddenly clear. Ball behind him, he somehow controlled on his heel and lost Walker, moving left, before turning into a low shot before the defender could recover, lashing across Friedel and into the far corner.
84 min: Parker’s had a very good second half, and he windmills forward in the inside-right position, finding Adebayor on the edge of the box. With Defoe to one side and Parker, who carried on running, the other, he instead opted to finesse his genitalia, losing possession to outrage of his manager.
81 min: Obertan controls a left-wing cross on the edge of the box and lays back to Tiote, shaping for the broadsword, but the angle demands the rapier, so he readjusts and tries a curler. It’s not badly hit either, but straight down the middle, which allows Friedel to tip over the top.
78 min: Modric feints to receive a pass, instead letting it run across him, fooling Tiote who boots him into the air with a beautifully executed garden tackle. He’s booked.
77 mins: Another Newcastle change – Sanno on for Simmo.
75 min: Scott “Scotty” Parker brings down Ba, and is booked. Looked a bit harsh to me, especially with his name with a y on the end and his hair and his trying hard and his McDonald’s ad and everything. Taylor swings in the free-kick, but Spurs get it away.
73 min: More pressure from Spurs, Bale finding space on the left and scooping one over the Modric with others better placed. But the ball worked its way back to him and his second effort was much better, Coloccini nudging the jumping Adebayor imperceptibly enough not to concede a penalty.
71 min: Best and Ba go off, Ameobi and Ben Arfa (who? etc) come on.
68 mins: FINE GOAL DEFOE! NEWCASTLE 1 v 2 SPURS
This is very nice. Parker curls one into Defoe, and though it takes a flick off Adebayor, he, with his back to goal, holds out his studs to control, turns and leaves Taylor, and lashes a low shot with his left foot that beats Krul to his left.
67 min: Walker appears to be pulling through. Modric then runs at Taylor who fouls him, and he jumps up off the grass to fly at him. Just as I’m all of a tizzy, he grabs the ball and continues playing – no fight for us.
64 min: “It’s Defoe’s time”, says Martin Tyler, but that turns out not to be the case, and he replaces Van der Vaart.
59 min: Walker appears to have become injured, doing what I couldn’t say, as my cable extinguished itself. So Defoe, waiting to come on, has sat down again, no doubt muttering about the injustice of it all. He’s a ftbllr, all he wants to do is play ftbll. And be rich. And have and do everything he decides to have and do whenever he decides he wants to have and do it.
57 min: A minor kerfuffle as Modric skates round the side of Taylor, convinced the ball was out of play and over the right touchline. But the linesman was on the spot and waves play-on, leaving Taylor – and probably – sadly – the lino – relieved when Livermore couldn’t stick the cross away.
56 mins: A crossfield ball, hit left-to-right, finds Obertan in space, and taking a few strides forward, he drills a shot just wide of the far post. “It was never going in”, elucidates Davie Provan.
55 mins: Scylla and Charybdis almost collide, as Obertan zooms in to dispossess Bale, disaster is narrowly averted when their heads just miss one another.
51 min: Modric wriggles thither and hither through the centre of the Newcastle defence, before running out of position. The ball eventually squirts back to Krul, and his hoof has Ba on the chase, but Bassong eases him out it. And suddenly it’s end-to-end, as Modric breaks again, sliding a pass to Adebayor on the right of the box. Moving away from goal, he does well to lever into a shot that goes through Taylor’s legs and trickles by the far post – not far by it at all.
48 min: Gutierrez, on the ball just off the left touchline and around the edge of the box, bursts past Modric who does very little to stop him, save a dangled hind leg. Now on a boust, he also dashes by Walker and stands up a cross to the far stick where Ba chucks his legs at it to force the ball over the line. Friedel does get to it, but it’s well-in. Good goal.
48 min: GOAL FOR NEWCASTLE! 1-1!
47 mins: Parker spins cleverly in centrefield, but his pass rolls into referee Lee Probert, who raises a hand in acknowledgement. Bet he’s always wanted to do that.
46 min: A game: players whose names are also cities. I’ll start. Younes Kaboul.
46 min: And off we pootle once more.
When Pardew was fuckin’ shit up at West Ham, the BBC once zoomed in on his half-time notes. They read as follows:
2-0 DOWN, 10 MEN, STAY CALM.
Inspirational stuff, eh.
Something for half-time, from John Reid – according to whom it’s “slightly interesting” to ponder a potential Capello-Redknapp job-swap. Trebles all round!
HALF-TIME: NEWCASTLE 0 v 1 TOTTENHAM
45 min: There’ll be a sole added minute. Martin Tyler tells us that the view from the away end is better than it’d be from behind a running track – he’s clearly never been up there, as the stand goes backwards rather than upwards. I was once chucked into a wall by an irated local steward for my temerity in observing this. Obviously I battered him afterwards, no I didn’t. Not that watching the game from behind a track is any way acceptable, but there’s no way at all, whoever ends up ruining their club with that…that stadium – that it’s lasting more than a few weeks.
43 min: Perhaps the Taylor foul is similar to the Ferdinand one of yesterday, the attacker anticipating a tackle that was weaker than imagined. But in both situations the attacker was impeded, so the refs were probably right each time.
40 min: GOAL! van der Vaart ambles up to the ball and, left-footed, swishes into the right corber about halfway up, as Krul dives the other way.
39 min: Cabaye was caught in possession by Livermore, crunching in low, hard and fair, finding Adebayor, with his tackle. He put the ball behind Taylor and lanked after it, running centre-to-left, and passing his man, was brought down. Taylor is whinging, and there may have been no contact, but I’m pretty sure there was. Either way, he was absolutely done, and has escaped plenty in the past.
39 min: Penalty do Tottingham!
34 mins: Bale and Modric have swapped for the moment, which seems wise to me. Meanwhile, Newcastle man Oliver Lewis gripes that “our best players are on the bench”, which seems a little strong, but I do see his point. He also mentions that “Ba and Best aren’t convincing”, which is very harsh, and not just because of how well their names look together. But even if Ba were rubbish, you can’t sneeze at the opportunity to sing this at a football ground:
30 min: After Ba and Gutierrez work some space down the left and the latter is run out of play behind the goal, the lesser-spotted Ledley is down and appears to be wincing due to his right hamstring. He departs immediately, replaced by Bassong, and cheap gags aside, it’s yet another shame – he’s a superb player, or at least would’ve been, but for the injuries.
27 min: We are encouraged to feel sympathy for poor old Harrance Redknapp and his long commute to work from his mansion on Millionaire’s Row. And if hearts aren’t already a-bleeding, think of poor Harry and the council’s desire to provide social housing that interferes with his – his – earner. Don’t they know how bedressed he is? It’s as if he’s a wheeler-dealer or something, except for the fact that we know he isn’t.
25 min: Hello, hello, is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me. Or furnish me with some excellent conversation, presented in the form of invigorating prose. Anyone know any fart gags?
23 min: Obertan wins a corner off King, and Newcastle attempt the volley-to-the-edge routine, where Coloccini is waiting. Waiting to do what I’m not sure, but a Tottenham head flicks the ball away before it arrives.
21 min: Newcastle have been fairly circumspect thus far – their midfielders are defending deep, and restricting the space for Spurs to play. Gutierrez attempts to inject some life, though, laying off to Ba and haring away in search of a return, that was overhit. Alan Pardew is grinning. Of course he is.
17 min: We’ve not had a chance yet, a state of affairs that Spurs try to improve, Assou-Ekotto drilling a crossfield ball at Bale, who cleverly cushion-volleys inside to Adebayor, who cleverly flicks back and behind towards Bale – but gets too much on it, and it comes to nothing.
15 min: I used to have an Auntie Friedel. Every year on my birthday, she sent me a cheque for £6, until suddenly, it increased to £7. Then it stopped. Brad Friedel is a very fine goalkeeper.
12 min: Obertan tries to give the ball away and fails, instead exchanging passes with Gutierrez who finds Taylor. For no reason whatsoever, Walker scythes through him, and Newcastle have a free-kick in a dangerous position wide on the left. Cabaye swings it into the box low, but hits it just too hard to Ba to get a touch, Friedel collecting instead.
10 min: Spurs are on top now, their midfielders tight and bright. I’d have them as favourites to win The Battle For Fourth Place.
8 min: Martin Tyler reminds us that Younes Sammer once nutted Chieck Tiote. Those there are some stones – his ridiculous attempts to mess around at the back suddenly seem like nothing very much daring at all.
6 min: Things are all settled into that familiar pattern of not much happens followed by not much happens punctuated by error.
3 min: Assou-Ekotto bursts down the left, and Obertan hasn’t bothered to track back – his recent good form must have gone to his head, which would explain a thing or two. He drills a low cross that Adebayor steps over and van der Vaart rushes onto, but his touch is heavy and ruins his chances of getting a decent shot away.
1 min: I’m not quite sure what colour you’d call Spurs’ kit – it’s the lilac side of blue. Anyway, Modric is on the left, Livermore in the middle and Bale on the right.
1 min: And so it begins. This is rubbish.
Ledley King narrowly avoids injury in the Spurs huddle. They are now super-duper primed.
I say hotting up, I mean there will now be an exchange of hand
shandiesshakes. Now that’s sportsmanship.
The players are out and the atmosphere’s hotting up. Yes, it’s time for a commercial break.
Mr Stadium-Announcer exhorts the crowd to “make some noise”. I wonder what some noise of his pliers-and-blowtorch-death sounds like.
Let’s have an Alan Pardew anecdote. A pal stopped for a late jar in a Northumberland pub. You like that? MATES and BEER in the very same sentence – oh, me. On the way back from a formalish affair and tieless, he’d borrowed a wide pink kipper number that’d belonged to his dead father-in-law. Leaving the aforementioned pub, some grey bloke in the doorway says “oooh, that’s a really nice tie”. “Family heirloom” came back the response, and the pal left – before dashing back in, exclaiming “fucking Alan fucking Pardew” and dashing out again.
Just call me Scoop.
Let’s have an Alan Pardew anecdote. Two days before the start of this season, I saw him in Covent Garden. Into his phone he said:
‘There’s no fucking choice for it, you’ve just got to fucking lie”.
Given that there’s no possible chance it could possibly have been football, I wonder what he can possibly have been talking about.
So, Newcastle are unchanged for the fourth game in a row whilst for Spurs, Adebayor makes it and Livermore replaces Defoe. Thus, for the second league game in a row, they can field the lesser-spotted Ledley – he partners Younes Beckenbauer at the heart of their defence.
And here are your teams:
Newcastle: Krul, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Coloccini, Ryan Taylor, Obertan, Cabaye, Tiote, Gutierrez, Best, Ba. Subs: Elliot, Santon, Ben Arfa, Lovenkrands, Gosling, Marveaux, Shola Ameobi.
Tottenham: Friedel, Walker, Kaboul, King, Assou-Ekotto, Livermore, Parker, Modric, Bale, Van der Vaart, Adebayor. Subs: Cudicini, Pavlyuchenko, Giovani, Defoe, Bassong, Rose, Townsend.
Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire)
You might call our tea-time shindig the Teenage Boy Derby, supporters of both sides perpetually on a promise – theirs by entitlement – that never quite reaches the…er…er…immersed in splendour stage. Carl Ewart had it right:
“Sometimes she looked really lovely. The problem was that she was quite a fat lassie, well, no fat, but big, and she had blondish, sort ay gingerish hair. We went doon the road, me aw shy in case anybody saw n thoat that we wir gaun oot thegither. Meetin Juice Terry now wid be the worse thing oan Earth. It wisnae that ah didnae like her, it wis that she wasnae really skinny wi big tits like the lassies in the wank mags and they were normally the type ay bird ah went fir.”
That, basically, is Newcastle and Spurs, and true to form, we find both swaggering hard with horny purpose. Newcastle are miles ahead even of where soothsaying visionary Alan Pardew expected them to be, whilst Spurs syoot Daniel Levy – finally satisfied that Joe Lewis is in love with his business acumen – has finally allowed Harry Redknapp to bring in a striker, with predictable results.
This should be a good game. But it should be a good life, too.