No Owen To Damage Mackems This Time!

Last updated : 30 January 2009 By Footy Mad - Editor
Saturday 31st January 2009
Arsenal v West Ham 15.00
Aston Villa v Wigan Athletic 15.00
Bolton v Tottenham 15.00
Fulham v Portsmouth 15.00
Hull City v West Brom 15.00
Man Utd v Everton 17.15
Middlesbrough v Blackburn 15.00
Stoke City v Man City 12.45

Sunday 01st February 2009
Liverpool v Chelsea 16.00
Newcastle v Sunderland 13.30


Sunderland 1 Fulham 0
JANUARY 27: Barclays Premier League at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland 0 Blackburn 0

JANUARY 24: FA Cup fourth round at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland 1 Aston Villa 2
JANUARY 17: Barclays Premier League at the Stadium of Light.

Middlesbrough 1 Sunderland 1
JANUARY 10: Barclays Premier League at the Riverside.

Sunderland 2 Bolton 1
JANUARY 3: FA Cup third round at the Stadium of Light.

Everton 3 Sunderland 0
DECEMBER 28: Barclays Premier League at Goodison Park.



NEWCASTLE: Harper, Beye, Faye, Taylor, Jose Enrique (Edgar 87),Geremi, Butt, Barton, Owen, Viduka (Carroll 76),Martins (Duff 70).
Subs Not Used: Forster, Smith.

SUNDERLAND: Gordon, McShane (Harte 87), Nosworthy,Higginbotham, Collins, Edwards (Richardson 58), Whitehead,Miller, Reid, Murphy (Chopra 80), Jones.
Subs Not Used: Fulop, Leadbitter.
Att: 52,305

Michael Owen demonstrated exactly why manager Kevin Keegan is so desperate for him to sign a new contract by claiming a derby day double to increase Sunderland's woes with a 2-0 win at St James' Park.
The 28-year-old headed the Magpies into a fourth-minute lead and then made it six goals in as many games in the final minute of the first half from the penalty spot.
The win maintained Keegan's 100 per cent against the Black Cats, which now stretches to five games, on a day when his mission to keep the club in the Barclays Premier League was successfully completed.
By contrast, Roy Keane's side face a tense conclusion to the season with just five points separating them from the relegation zone with three games remaining.
Newcastle's greater quality in the final third ultimately won the day and extended their unbeaten run to six games in front of a largely delighted crowd of 52,305.
They were never in any danger of losing the game from the moment Owen's header flew into the net, and although the visitors rallied after the break, Newcastle might have won more comfortably.
But on an afternoon when only the result mattered, it was the men in black and white who were celebrating on the final whistle.
Keane has spent much of the run-up to the game reminding anyone who cared to listen about the quality of Newcastle's squad, and the learning curve on which his own players have been this season.
That was was by no means an attempt to prepare his excuses in advance, but rather a reflection of reality, and he headed for Tyneside confident his players would more than compete in the 139th Tyne-Wear derby.
However, he was dealt a cruel blow even before a ball had been kicked when Jonny Evans and Phil Bardsley, his two most influential defenders, had to withdraw through injury.
Keane decided to replace the pair with Paul McShane and Danny Higginbotham, and both men were to play significant roles, although not perhaps the ones they might have wished for.
The game was only four minutes old when McShane, who had already taken a wild swing at Owen, lost the England striker and saw him run on to Geremi's cross to power a header past Craig Gordon and set St James' Park alight.
With Keane's men desperately trying to come to terms with the changes in personnel - Carlos Edwards and Liam Miller were also drafted into the starting line-up - and the 4-5-1 formation in which they were asked to play, Newcastle dominated the early stages.
They might have increased their lead with 13 minutes gone, but Gordon got down well to push away Habib Beye's low drive, and the Scot had to collect Obafemi Martins' fiercely-struck 29th-minute cross as the Nigerian made the most of McShane's indecision.
Kenwyne Jones kept the home defence of their toes despite receiving little support, and managed to create enough uncertainty to suggest there might be a way back into the game.
However, but for two long-range Andy Reid efforts, which were saved comfortably by Steve Harper, the Black Cats produced little as an attacking force.
Given the circumstances, Keane might have been happy to get his team back into the dressing room with the scoreline at 1-0, but his hopes were dashed with just seconds remaining.
Owen and Mark Viduka carved the visitors open with a deft one-two inside the penalty area and when the former Real Madrid man tried to lift the ball over the sliding Higginbotham, the ball made contact with his arm and referee Mike Dean pointed to the spot.
Owen stepped up to blast the penalty past Gordon despite the keeper getting a hand to it to leave Sunderland with a mountain to climb.
The £17million man could have completed a famous hat-trick within three minutes of the restart, but his control from Beye's cross let him down, and that was the signal for the visitors to increase their tempo.
Sunderland forced a series of corners in quick succession to exert sustained pressure on their hosts for the first time in the game, but the Magpies held firm.
Keane made his move with 58 minutes gone when he replaced Edwards with Kieran Richardson and pushed Daryl Murphy up alongside Jones.
Reid curled a 61st-minute shot just over, but as the game opened up, there were chances at both ends.
Martins perhaps should have scored with 68 minutes gone after he and Owen sliced Sunderland open, but Gordon made a vital block, and Steve Harper had to match him seconds later to keep out Jones' thumping header.
As tome ran down, there was little sign of any impending drama with Newcastle easing towards the whistle and the party it sparked.