Harper 'Experience' The Backbone To Toon 'Shut Out'!

Last updated : 03 January 2011 By Footy Mad - Editor


Alan Pardew: "I'm very pleased with the discipline of the team.

"Some of the things that have cost in the past, we eradicated to a degree.

"I asked them to play a high line, which they carried out, and they made it difficult for Wigan to play their natural game. We stifled them really well.

"We lost Andy Carroll but everyone pulled their socks up today and reacted in the right manner."

Although a lot of supporters were behing Tim Krul to keep the goalkeeper's jersey for the fixture, I though Steve Harper did enough to reclaim the number one slot.

I wouldn't say Pardew took a risk recalling the veteran, because you know what you are going to get with him - consistency at a high level.

He didn't have much to do in the 90 minutes, but when he was called upon he looked safe and composed, and he set up Newcastle's only goal with a superb angled cross that would have done credit to David Beckham!

Despite a couple of mistakes, Krul has not let anyone down deputising for Harper, although he has probably not done enough at this stage to replace him as Alan Pardew’s first choice.

Harper has had to be patient during his recovery from a shoulder operation and had hoped to be re-installed between the posts for the game against Birmingham City before Christmas, but the snow prevented him from training properly and delayed a recall.

The 35-year-old had not played since the 1-0 win at Everton on September 18, but the back-line looked more organised with him between the posts giving out the orders at dead-ball kicks.

The young Dutchman has vast potential, but Pardew’s first big selection decision as United manager favoured the senior player ... and he probably got it right.

With Fraser Forster also due to return from a season’s loan at Celtic in the summer, Harper knows he cannot afford any slip-ups, but he has been one of United’s most consistent players over the last 18 months and the recall makes sense after two successive defeats.

It remains to be seen how happy Krul is with the decision, although he was fortunate to hold to his place after a dreadful mistake in the 3-1 home defeat by Manchester City and his time will come again.

The real difficulty for Pardew will come when Forster returns to United after a second season of regular first team action when on loan.

It is almost impossible for a manager to keep three goalkeepers happy when all expect to play and either one will have to be sold, or Forster will go back out on loan.




WIGAN: Al Habsi, Stam (McManaman 84), Gary Caldwell, Alcaraz, Gohouri, Gomez (Boselli 59), Thomas (McArthur 46), Watson, Diame, Cleverley, Rodallega. Subs Not Used: Pollitt, Steven Caldwell, Lopez, Figueroa.

NEWCASTLE: Harper, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Barton, Nolan (Smith 86), Tiote, Gutierrez, Ameobi (Best 77), Lovenkrands (Routledge 70). Subs Not Used: Krul, Williamson, Perch, Ranger.

Att: 15,277

Is Shola Ameobi big enough to fill Andy Carroll's boots? He looked a gift horse in the mouth just seconds after kick off, but took the headlines for scoring the goal that took Newcastle back into the top half of the table.

Ameobi, back in the side (following injury) as a replacement for the injured Carroll, pounced in the 19th minute when Ali Al Habsi blocked Joey Barton's shot and Peter Lovenkrands's follow-up hit the post.

Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor also both struck the woodwork for the visitors, while Gary Caldwell saw his header come back off the bar for the Latics.

It was always going to be a rough-and-tumble affair, with both sides trying to seize the opportunity to get away from the relegation scrap at the basement of the table, but Newcastle won a game they always seemed to have the edge.

When class mattered, the Toon had Barton in fabulous form probing the Wigan defence for 90 minutes, and Coloccini the ice-man in the defence.

Alan Pardew was hoping to bounce back from two straight defeats and his decision (like Chris Hughton earlier in the season) to scrap the 4-5-1 system for 4-4-2 won the day.

Newcastle created the first goalscoring opportunity after just two minutes as Danny Simpson swung a cross into the box from the right.

Ameobi was allowed the space to meet it but the striker was unable to find the target, heading the ball back across the face of goal.

Three minutes later Wigan went close themselves as a failed clearance from Ben Watson's free-kick fell to Tom Cleverley, whose curling shot drew a smart save out of Steve Harper. Antolin Alcaraz headed the resulting corner straight at the Magpies goalkeeper.

Cleverley was presented with another chance on the quarter-hour mark after receiving a neat pass from Mohamed Diame, but the on-loan Manchester United youngster volleyed over the bar.

It was encouraging stuff from the hosts, but within moments, they were behind after a defensive error by Steven Gohouri.

Having dispossessed the Ivorian, Barton struck an effort which Al Habsi managed to parry, but Lovenkrands hit the loose ball against a post and Ameobi was on hand to tuck away the rebound.

An unmarked Lovenkrands should have doubled his side's advantage in the 31st minute after Barton squared to him right in front of goal, but the Dane got the ball stuck under his feet and Watson rushed in to avert the danger.

At the other end Cleverley's deflected shot from the edge of the box earned Wigan a corner which was met by Caldwell. The Latics skipper saw his header bounce back off the bar and the ball came to Hugo Rodallega, who lifted his attempt over.

Newcastle were next to hit the woodwork soon after as Coloccini looped a header onto the top of the goalframe and then Al Habsi had to be alert in rushing out to halt Jonas Gutierrez's progress.

Lovenkrands nodded a good chance over from a cross by Barton, and the former Manchester City man sent a free-kick off-target just before the break.

Martinez substituted Hendry Thomas for James McArthur at half-time and Wigan made the early running after the re-start, Jordi Gomez advancing down the right side but sending his delivery into Harper's arms.

Rodallega tried his luck twice in quick succession only to shoot wide of the mark each time.

Mauro Boselli was then introduced in place of Gomez to give Rodallega fresh support in attack, but it was Newcastle who nearly scored 10 minutes later as yet another header hit the crossbar.

This time it was Taylor denied after he got on the end of Barton's free-kick.

Lovenkrands and Ameobi came off for Wayne Routledge and Leon Best as the visitors looked to close out the game.

Boselli claimed his shot had been blocked by Taylor's hand in the box, but referee Howard Webb waved play on.

The Yorkshire official, who had been made an MBE in the Queen's New Years Honours List, then booked Barton for a rash challenge on McArthur.

Newcastle might have added a second goal towards the end as first Best poked wide after finding himself through one-on-one and then Jose Enrique blasted over, but come the final whistle, they had done enough.



Tuesday 04th January 2011  

Blackpool  v  Birmingham 20.00
Fulham  v  West Brom 20.00
Man Utd  v  Stoke City 20.00

Wednesday 05th January 2011  

Arsenal  v  Man City 19.45
Aston Villa  v  Sunderland 19.45
Blackburn  v  Liverpool 20.00
Bolton  v  Wigan Athletic 20.00
Everton  v  Tottenham 20.00
Newcastle  v  West Ham 19.45
Wolves  v  Chelsea 19.45


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Harper, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Barton, Nolan (Smith 86), Tiote, Gutierrez, Ameobi (Best 77), Lovenkrands (Routledge 70).
Subs Not Used: Krul, Williamson, Perch, Ranger.

Krul, Coloccini, Steven Taylor, Perch, Tiote (Lovenkrands 79), Barton, Routledge, Simpson, Smith, Gutierrez (Ranger 67), Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Harper, Williamson, Xisco, Best, Kadar.

Krul, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Routledge (Ranger 60), Barton, Tiote, Gutierrez, Nolan, Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Harper, Williamson, Guthrie, Perch, Smith, Best.

NEWCASTLE 3 LIVERPOOL 1 (Nolan, Barton, Carroll)
Krul, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Campbell, Jose Enrique, Barton (Routledge 90), Nolan (Smith 87), Tiote, Gutierrez, Carroll, Ameobi (Ranger 63).
Subs Not Used: Harper, Guthrie, Lovenkrands, Perch.

WEST BROM 3 NEWCASTLE 1 (Lovenkrands)
Krul, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Campbell, Jose Enrique, Routledge (Ranger 74), Guthrie (Smith 73), Tiote, Gutierrez, Carroll, Ameobi (Lovenkrands 46).
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Perch, Best, Kadar.

Krul, Simpson, Steven Taylor, Campbell, Jose Enrique, Routledge, Guthrie, Tiote, Gutierrez, Carroll, Ameobi (Ranger 77).
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Lovenkrands, Perch, Smith, Best, Kadar.

Krul, Simpson, Williamson, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Guthrie (Routledge 71), Nolan, Smith, Gutierrez (Campbell 77), Carroll, Ameobi (Lovenkrands 72).
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Perch, Steven Taylor, Ranger.

Krul, Simpson, Williamson, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Guthrie (Routledge 76), Tiote, Nolan, Gutierrez, Carroll, Lovenkrands (Ranger 76).
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Campbell, Smith, Xisco, Steven Taylor.

Krul, Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Barton, Nolan, Tiote (Routledge 88), Gutierrez, Carroll,Ameobi (Ranger 46).
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Campbell, Lovenkrands, Smith, Steven Taylor.

Krul, Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Barton, Tiote, Nolan, Gutierrez, Carroll, Ameobi (Ranger 82).
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Campbell, Routledge, Lovenkrands, Smith, Steven Taylor.

NEWCASTLE 5 SUNDERLAND 1 (Nolan 3, Ameobi 2 - 1 pen)
Krul, Jose Enrique, Coloccini, Williamson, Simpson,Tiote, Barton, Nolan, Gutierrez, Ameobi (Ranger 86), Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Routledge, Lovenkrands, Perch, Ryan Taylor, Smith.

WEST HAM 1 NEWCASTLE 2 (Nolan, Carroll)
Krul, Simpson, Williamson, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Barton, Nolan, Tiote, Gutierrez, Carroll, Ameobi.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Guthrie, Routledge, Lovenkrands, Perch, Ryan Taylor, Smith.

NEWCASTLE 2 WIGAN ATH 2 (Ameobi, Coloccini)
Krul, Perch (Ranger 89), Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Guthrie (Routledge 66), Tiote, Barton, Gutierrez, Lovenkrands (Ameobi 60), Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Ryan Taylor, Smith, Kadar. 

MAN CITY 2 NEWCASTLE 1 (Gutierrez)
Krul, Perch, Williamson, Coloccini (Campbell 36), Jose Enrique, Ben Arfa (Routledge 7), Nolan (Carroll 76), Tiote, Barton, Gutierrez, Ameobi.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Lovenkrands, Ryan Taylor, Smith.

Krul, Perch, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Ben Arfa (Gutierrez 62), Barton, Tiote (Ameobi 74), Routledge, Nolan, Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Lovenkrands, Ryan Taylor, Smith, Ranger.

Harper (Krul 35), Perch, Coloccini, Williamson,Jose Enrique, Routledge, Tiote, Barton,Ben Arfa (Gutierrez 84), Nolan, Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Campbell, Lovenkrands, Ryan Taylor, Smith.

Harper, Perch, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Routledge (Ameobi 81), Smith (Lovenkrands 62), Barton, Gutierrez (Ben Arfa 73), Nolan, Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Krul, Campbell, Ryan Taylor, Tiote.

Harper, Perch, Williamson, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Routledge, Smith, Barton, Gutierrez, Nolan, Carroll (Ameobi 81).
Subs Not Used: Krul, Lovenkrands, Ryan Taylor, Kadar, Vuckic, Ranger.

NEWCASTLE 6 ASTON VILLA 0 (Barton, Nolan 2, Carroll 3)
Harper, Perch, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Routledge (Ameobi 76), Smith (Ryan Taylor 76), Barton, Gutierrez (Xisco 80), Nolan, Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Krul, Lovenkrands, Vuckic, Tavernier.

Harper, Perch, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique, Routledge, Smith, Nolan (Ameobi 71), Barton,Gutierrez (Xisco 80), Carroll.
Subs Not Used: Krul, Ryan Taylor, Vuckic, Ranger, Tavernier.


Krul, Perch, Williamson, Kadar, Ryan Taylor, Routledge (Gutierrez 56), Guthrie, Smith (Barton 71), Vuckic, Lovenkrands (Carroll 57), Ranger.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Coloccini, Jose Enrique, Tiote.

CHELSEA 3 NEWCASTLE 4 (Ranger, R Taylor, Ameobi 2)
Krul, Ryan Taylor (Tiote 63), Campbell, Coloccini (Williamson 63), Ferguson (Barton 90), Ranger, Gutierrez, Vuckic, Smith, Ameobi, Lovenkrands.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Nolan, Carroll, Ben Arfa.

ACCRINGTON STANLEY 2 NEWCASTLE 3 (Ryan Taylor, Ameobi, Lovenkrands)
Krul, Ryan Taylor, Kadar, Tavernier, Ferguson, Ranger, Donaldson, Vuckic (Nolan 90), LuaLua, Ameobi,Lovenkrands.
Subs Not Used: Soderberg, Williamson, Barton, Routledge, Perch, Smith.


CARLISLE 0 NEWCASTLE 3 (Best, Ranger, Vuckic)
Harper (Krul 46), Tavernier (R Taylor 46), Coloccini (S Taylor 46) (Henderson 81), Williamson (Perch 46), Enrique (Ferguson 46), Inman (Routledge 46), Smith (Barton 46), Nolan (Guthrie 46), LuaLua (Vuckic 46) , Carroll (Best 46), Lovenkrands (Ranger 46).

Krul, Taylor (Routledge 45), Tavernier, Coloccini (Williamson 45), Diaz (Ferguson 57); Ranger (Xisco 45), Barton (Smith 45), Nolan (Guthrie 45), Vuckic (Edmundsson 72); Best (Lovenkrands 45), Carroll (Ameobi 45).

Harper, Perch, Enrique, Coloccini, Williamson, Guthrie, Nolan, Smith, Ryan Taylor, Lovenkrands, Ameobi. Subs: Carroll, Xisco, Best, LuaLua, Krul, Vuckic, Ranger, Donaldson, Tavernier.

DEPORTIVO 0 NEWCASTLE 0 (NUFC win 5-4 on penalties - Lovenkrands, Nolan, Carroll, R Taylor, Barton)
Harper (Krul 46); R Taylor, Perch (Tavernier 52), Coloccini, Enrique; Routledge, Barton, Guthrie (Nolan 46), Xisco (Gutierrez 46); Carroll, Best (Lovenkrands 73). Subs (not used): Smith, Ferguson

RANGERS 2 NEWCASTLE 1 (Lovenkrands)
Harper; Perch (Tavernier 81), Coloccini (Ferguson 81), Williamson, Enrique (R Taylor 56); Routledge (Xisco 83), Barton, Nolan, Guthrie, Gutierrez (Lovenkrands 69); Carroll (Ameobi 46).