Come On Joe - Make Taylor Skipper!

Last updated : 06 October 2008 By Footy Mad - Editor
I don't know if Newcastle United supporters and Joe Kinnear speak the same language, but Taylor inspired his team to a fabulous fightback against Everton on Sunday.

The youngster probably broke all the rules of being a full-back by covering every blade of grass on the park, but no one can doubt his influence in a game that seemed a lost cause as we approached half-time.

It may not have been the tirade of swearing that stand-in boss Kinnear used to the media in midweek, but he certainly seemed to inspire his crisis-torn team mates.

Two down to Everton, Newcastle hit back to end a run of five successive defeats.

Everton cruised into the lead through a Mikel Arteta penalty and £15million new boy Marouane Fellaini's first for the club.

But Taylor went on a "mission"!

He headed one back seconds before the break and then set-up Damien Duff for the equaliser a minute into the second half.

And had it not been for two desperate goal-line clearances from Leighton Baines, Everton could have been severely embarrassed.

With a gaggle of consortiums - from the USA and the far and Middle East - circling to take over the Tyneside club in the coming weeks, Kinnear may not be around much longer.

But he could do a lot worse than relieve Owen of the armband, and let the shy 28-year old get on with doing what he does best (scoring goals) and give it to a player who showed fight and spirit at a time when heads were about to drop.

Kinnear, who watched the match from the directors' box as he fulfilled a touchline ban, missed both the Newcastle goals as he made the long journey to-and-from the dressing room.

Perhaps it was an inspired substitution to replace Jose Enrique with Bassong six minutes from the break, but I'd rather pin the praise on the young England Under-21 international.

There was none of the superb shape and pattern of play that took a point from Old Trafford on the opening day of the season. This was pure blood and guts.

After seven minutes Yakubu turned Claudio Cacapa far too easily as a ball came in from the left, but the Nigerian stabbed a 12-yard effort just wide.

And Fabricio Coloccini hardly steadied the nerves, being caught the wrong side of Everton strikers more times than I care to remember.

Everton were ahead after 17 minutes when Nicky Butt was penalised for a foul on Baines in the box after the full-back looked to have lost the ball. It was a brainstorm because Butt was never going to lunge in like that and seriously expect to get away with it.

Referee Howard Webb had no doubt over giving Arteta the chance to drill home the penalty.

The second Everton goal arrived after 35 minutes when Baines' cross from the right was reached first by Fellaini in the six-yard box, and he stretched out a leg to see his debut goal for the club crash home off the underside of the bar.

Newcastle replaced Enrique with Bassong six minutes from the break, before Butt was booked for a trip on Saha.

The Toon were looking ragged, but they were given a lifeline when Taylor headed home at the far post seconds before the break from Geremi's cross.

Spurred by that late goal in the first period, Newcastle struck again a minute after half-time.

Taylor was played in down the right and with Everton expecting a flag, Taylor kept running and crossed for Duff to guide home the equaliser. It was Phil Jagielka who had played Taylor onside.

It was not three points, but this is a start.

EVERTON: Howard, Hibbert, Jagielka, Lescott, Baines, Arteta,Osman, Fellaini, Pienaar (Vaughan 84), Saha (Anichebe 72),Yakubu.

Subs Not Used: Nash, Yobo, Castillo, Nuno Valente, Rodwell.

NEWCASTLE: Given, Taylor, Coloccini, Cacapa,Jose Enrique (Bassong 39), Geremi (Ameobi 75), Butt, Guthrie,N'Zogbia, Owen, Duff.

Subs Not Used: Harper, Xisco, Edgar, Doninger, Donaldson.