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Newcastle United 2-0 Aston Villa – English Premier League – 3 November 2008 – Live Blog

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Newcastle United (Martins 60′, 82′) 2-0 Aston Villa
Stadium: St. James Park, England
Competition: English Premier League
Date: 3 November 2008
Kickoff: 20:00 GMT, 15:00 ET

Newcastle United climbed out of the bottom of the standings and stunned Aston Villa, 2-0, to put an end to Villa’s third-place aspirations. Soccerlens brought you the action live! Click below for the liveblog and feel free to leave comments!

Match Preview:

After showing that they weren’t ready for prime time against Chelsea, Aston Villa have rebounded nicely, going unbeaten in their last three matches, including two consecutive wins. Villa are once again threatening to break into the top 4, and with a win against Newcastle, they’ll go into 3rd place, two points clear of Manchester United.

Newcastle are still finding their way under new manager Joe Kinnear. After a spirited draw with Manchester City and a close loss to Sunderland, Newcastle got a huge win against West Brom this past Tuesday. Joey Barton finally opened his account this season with a well-taken penalty shot and the club should get welcome news as skipper Michael Owen looks set to return following an injury layoff. While a dramatic win against West Brom might not be much to celebrate, it was a welcome three points for the beleaguered Magpies and something to build on as they take on Villa.

Will Villa serve notice to the EPL that they’re serious title contenders? Will Newcastle get the big win that they’ve been looking for? Tune in and find out!


Newcastle United: Given, Beye, Coloccini, Taylor, Jose Enrique, Gutierrez (“Jonas”), Barton, Butt (c), Duff, Martins, Ameobi.
Subs: Harper, Guthrie, Owen, Bassong, Cacapa, N’Zogbia, Geremi.

Good news for Newcastle fans, as Owen is on the bench and will be available as a late-match weapon. Only one change for Newcastle from the side that won against West Brom. Guthrie will head to the bench as he’ll be replaced by the returning Nicky Butt.

Aston Villa: Friedel, L. Young, Cuellar, Laursen (c), Shorey, Milner, Reo-Coker, Barry, A. Young, Agbonlahor, Carew.
Subs: Guzan, Harewood, Davies, Knight, Salifou, Sidwell, Gardner.

John Carew will return to the starting lineup and push Milner (who will be taking on his old team) into the midfield. Petrov will be left out completely as Villa will go with Milner, Reo-Coker, Barry, and Ashley Young in midfield. Gareth Barry will be looking to extend his three-match scoring streak.


Huge win for Newcastle as they climb out of the relegation zone. Thanks to everyone who followed along! Join me tomorrow for Champions League action between Liverpool and Atletico Madrid!

90′ + 4 Sidwell fouls Barton and Jonas takes it quickly. Owen gets it and gives it to Butt. Newcastle run it out and there’s the whistle!

90′ + 3 Looks like Michael Owen will get a 60 second cameo appearance here. He’s on for Ameobi. Huge ovation for both men as Tyneside will be rocking tonight.

90′ + 2 Jonas gives up a corner, but Villa waste it as Sidwell’s long-range shot is well off the mark.

90′ + 1 3 minutes will be added on. Duff gets into the box, but Barry is there to take it away. Ameobi is down on the pitch after a hard challenge. Ameobi tries his luck from the right edge of the box, and he forces Friedel to make a good save. Luckily for Friedel, all the white-and-black shirts had tracked back to play defense.

90′ Milner steals it, but Barton gets it back and Newcastle will continue their game of hot potato.

89′ Newcastle are content to play keep-away during these last few minutes. Duff gets fouled by Ashley Young.

88′ Martins, the Newcastle hero, will come off and receive a well-deserved standing ovation. He’ll be replaced by Cacapa.

85′ Change for Villa as Harewood will come on for Reo-Coker. Cuellar sends in a long entry pass that bounces out for a goal kick.

82′ GOAL! Beye tries to pick out Duff with a long cross form the right, but L. Young is there to knock it away. Jonas then makes a great run from the left flank into the box and threads a great centering pass to Martins. Martins gets behind Laursen and easily taps it past Friedel.

79′ Alan Shearer is in the house. No doubt plotting his takeover of the managerial job.

77′ Sidwell gets booked for a challenge on Martins. Fair booking. Sidwell looked like he was going for Martin’s crown jewels there.

75′ I’ve blogged four Villa matches so far (Liverpool, Chelsea, Pompey, and this match). I have to say that they have not impressed me at all. They don’t look like a top 4 side in the slightest.

74′ Looks like turnabout is fair play as Laursen hits Ameobi with an elbow. Ameobi is down on the pitch and is getting treatment.

73′ Sidwell immediately gets involved, sending a ball into the box. It bounces around a little, but Given is able to save it. Agbonlahor does a great job to keep it alive and sends in a cross from deep down the left flank. Eventually, Butt overpowers Carew and knocks it away from danger.

72′ Shorey comes off for Villa, and here comes Chelsea legend Steve Sidwell!

71′ Ameobi gets booked after he elbows Laursen in the face.

70′ Duff whips in the corner, and it eventually falls to Butt. He tries to volley it in, but it’s over the bar for a goal kick. Meanwhile, it looks like Steve Sidwell will be coming in soon for Villa.

69′ Martins shows some nifty moves and waltzes his way towards the edge of the box. He goes down on the edge of the box, but no free kick this time. Barton sends in a cross from the left flank, but it’s knocked out by L. Young for a corner.

68′ Reo Coker with a knee-lift on Barton. Looks like he’s getting a taste of his own medicine.

67′ We’ll see who takes this one. Duff, Butt, and Barton are standing over it. Barton walks away, so it looks like it won’t be him. Butt takes it and it hits the far post. Great kick from Butt, who just missed putting this game out of reach. Friedel was well beaten on that one.

66′ Duff gets it on the edge of the box and he goes down from the challenge from L. Young. This will be a great chance for Newcastle.

65′ Martins plays Duff through to the left. Newcastle knock it around for a little before sending it back to Given. Ameobi then is called for a foul in the attacking half and Friedel will kick it away.

63′ Well, Martins deserved that goal. He’s been great tonight. Great pass from Barton, who really is a talented player. Too bad he’s crazy.

62′ Laursen makes everyone’s heart stop when he heads it back to Friedel and forces his goalkeeper to make a pretty good save.

60′ GOAL! Barton finds Martins on the edge of the box and Martins turns to his left and eludes Shorey. He sends a powerful left-footed shot that beats Friedel. What a shot! The only complaint I have is that Martins totally wiped out on his somersault celebration.

57′ Duff whips in the corner, but Laursen heads it away. Long pass into the box for Ameobi, but he can’t get a head on it as he is well cut off by Shorey.

56′ Newcastle on the run as Barton cuts out Reo-Coker’s pass. Cuellar fouls Martins deep down the left flank and it will be a free kick for Newcastle. Martins is angry and wants a card on Cuellar, and Martins gets carded for dissent.

55′ Barry whips it in towards Laursen, but he can’t get a head on it. A. Young makes a nice play to keep it from going out of bounds, but he gives it away to Newcastle.

54′ Agbonlahor gets it deep down the right half of the box and tries to whip in a cross. It’s knocked away for a corner.

53′ Milner’s corner is wasted, but Villa retain possession. Barton gets booked for going studs up and tripping L. Young. Not a smart challenge there, and that should have been Barton’s second yellow.

52′ A. Young sends a cross from the left flank, and Enrique knocks it away for a corner, even though there were no Villans around him.

49′ Milner tries to whip in a cross into the box from the right, but A. Young can’t get on the end of it. He goes down in the box and is holding his head in pain. Newcastle go on the break and try to take advantage of their temporary man advantage, but they waste the chance.

48′ Milner tries to send a pass through to Barry in the box, but Coloccini knocks it away.

47′ A. Young makes a good move down the right flank and sends in a nice cross to the far post where Agbonlahor is. Beye makes a great tackle to concede the corner. A. Young sends in the corner towards the far post where Milner gets his head on it. He can’t get the ball down, though, and it’s well over the crossbar. Poor marking by Newcastle, and they’re lucky that it wasn’t Laursen that got that free release.

46′ Newcastle kick off and we’re underway! No changes for either side at halftime.

Despite the score, it’s been an eventful half. Both sides had their chances, but neither club was able to convert. Much like in their matches with Chelsea and Pompey, Villa haven’t been able to hold the ball long enough to generate sustained pressure. Additionally, they’ve had trouble finishing in the box. Newcastle should be glad that they’re still level, and could bring Owen in for the last 20 minutes or so to see if they can steal this win. We’ll see what changes are in store for both clubs in the second half.

45′ + 1 One minute added on. Milner whips in a cross from deep down the left flank, and Carew is able to get his head on it, but it’s weak and Given handles it easily. Doesn’t matter anyway, since the ref had called a foul on Carew. There’s the whistle and we’re at halftime.

45′ He sends in the free kick, but Newcastle take it away after Milner can’t hold onto it. Martins tries to test Friedel from long-range, and it isn’t even close.

44′ A. Young wins a free kick in the attacking half of the field.

43′ Butt with a sloppy pass to Jonas on the left flank, and it’s out for a Villa throw-in.

41′ Duff and Beye do a nice one-two and Beye whips in a cross from the right flank into the box for Taylor. It just eludes the sliding Taylor, though, otherwise it would have been 1-0.

40′ Martins tries to get free down the left flank, but Cuellar knocks it away for a Newcastle throw. Martins has been a real terror so far.

38′ Duff whips in a corner from the right wing, but Friedel comes out to collect it. Spurs fans shudder to think what Gomes would have done (or not done) with that one.

37′ Jonas makes the run down the left flank, but L. Young hits him in the chest with a hand check and is booked. Martins gets it inside the box and tries to fire on goal, but it’s well blocked. Back the other way, and A. Young tries a long-range shot from well outside the box and it’s over the crossbar.

36′ Agbonlahor gets it on the edge of the box and finds A. Young in front of goal. He fires on goal, but Given comes off his line and makes a great save. A. Young whips in the corner, but Newcastle clear it away.

35′ Taylor with a good challenge on A. Young and Newcastle spring their counterattack. Sloppy pass from Martins, though, and Laursen clears it.

34′ Barton gets it and tries to thread it through to Martins. The pass gets cut out by Laursen, though.

31′ Martins makes a great run and eludes Laursen and Shorey. He fires on goal, but it’s over the crossbar. He really turned Laursen inside out on that one. To borrow a basketball analogy, he broke Laursen’s ankles with that crossover.

30′ A free kick for Newcastle now, as Reo-Coker is called for a foul in midfleld on Jonas. Lots of fouls in this one, so far. It is a little physical out there, but Bennett and crew have been pretty liberal with the whistle.

29′ Agbonlahor battles with Jose Enrique down the right flank and Enrique grabs his arm and is called for the foul. Barry whips in the free kick from the right flank and Laursen gets a head on it, but sends it out of bounds for a goal kick.

26′ Barry takes a quick free kick and sends it deep down the left flank for A. Young. Young gets closed down well by Barton and he has to send it out to Milner, who takes a long-range shot that is well off-target.

24′ Milner is called for a foul on Coloccini. Bennett calls him over but doesn’t book him. He just wants to talk.

23′ Barton gets it on the edge of the box and fires it on target. Friedel does a good job to cover it up, especially since he had Martins breathing down his neck.

22′ Agbonlahor makes a great move in the box and springs Milner. Milner gets in behind the defense and tries to center it back to Agbonlahor. It’s a good cross, but Agbonlahor just misses it. Barry then gets booked for a hip check on Jonas.

21′ On the replay, Barton gave Agbonlahor a little love tap on the nose. It wasn’t quite a “Drogba,” but it was close. Probably should have gotten a yellow out of that.

19′ Barry whips in the free kick on the edge of the box. It’s out to Shorey, but he whiffs on the kick and Newcastle will take it.

18′ Milner tries to get around Jose Enrique, but Enrique easily stops him. Barton then gets into an altercation with Agbonlahor and is called for a foul. Barton was thrown to the ground, but he also looked to be grabbing Agbonlahor’s arm.

17′ Duff tries to get around L. Young and falls down in the box. Duff remonstrates for a penalty, but Bennett isn’t buying it. Replay shows Duff clearly lost control on his own.

15′ Both squads are trying to settle in and develop a rhythm. Meanwhile, there are plenty of great seats still available. Even floor level. That’s what happens when your team is losing.

14′ Barry tries to catch Given off-guard and sends in a long-range shot. Given is more than equal to the chance, though. Barry will have to do better than that if he wants to make it four-in-a-row.

12′ Ashley Young gets a free kick from midfield. He launches his kick into the box towards Laursen, but it evades everyone and bounces over the end-line for a goal kick.

11′ Barry whips in the corner and Laursen heads it on goal, but it just glances off the post. Wow. That was close. Martins then comes back the other way and makes a great move that turns Cuellar inside-out. Martins fires on goal, but it’s well over the crossbar. Still, that was a pretty sweet move.

10′ Carew gets it and is promptly closed down by Coloccini. Carew tries to send a cross into the box, but it’s knocked out by Coloccini for a corner.

8′ Martins turns on the edge of the box and fires on goal. His shot is deflected out for a corner. Duff whips in the corner, but Laursen heads it away. Beye is then booked for, what looked like, a ticky tack foul on Milner.

7′ Carew makes a good move down the right flank, and he centers it Milner. Taylor gets to it first, and Milner tries to slide into his former teammate. Milner gets called for the foul and it’ll be a free kick for Given.

6′ Agbonlahor flicks it to Carew, but Coloccini intercepts it and gives it to Given, who kicks it away. Jose Enrique sends a good cross into the box that Laursen gets to. He can’t clear it away, though, and Jonas has it. He holds it, though, and loses it.

5′ Jonas gets dispossessed by Ashley Young deep down the right flank, but Milner gets hit with a crushing tackle, giving it back to Newcastle. The crowd really enjoyed that one.

4′ A. Young tries to play Agbonlahor through down the left flank, but Beye is there to intercept it.

1′ Villa kick off and here we go! Steve Bennett will be our ref today. Apparently, he hasn’t shown the red card in 17 matches. We’ll see if that continues here. Villa on the attack early as Agbonlahor takes it away from Barton. A. Young whips a cross into the box from deep down the left flank towards Milner, but Newcastle knock it away. Reo-Coker then tries a long-range shot, but it’s blocked by Taylor.

0′ Should be a good goalkeeping battle between two of the best keepers in the Premiership. It will be a welcome change, especially after watching Almunia and Gomes engage in a perverse version of “Can You Top This” during the Tottenham/Arsenal match last week.

0′ Villa have some really tough fixtures coming up. They have Arsenal and Manchester United in successive weeks, as well as a trip to Prague in a couple of days. We’ll really find out a lot about them over these next couple of weeks.

0′ This will be a very important statement game for both squads. Villa want to cement their credentials as a serious title contender while Newcastle want to get out of the relegation drop-zone and build on last week’s success against West Brom.

0′ Hello everyone! Welcome to Soccerlens’ coverage of the Aston Villa/Newcastle match! I’m Victor and I’ll be your liveblogger!

Match Review:

In the end, Newcastle thoroughly outplayed Villa and deserved the three points. Joe Kinnear seems to have his team believing in themselves, and they’ve played very well over the last month. Obafemi Martins worked tirelessly and was an absolute terror to the Villa defense, while Ameobi, Barton, and Jonas all played extremely well. We knew that Newcastle was too good to be a last place team, and they clearly showed that they have the potential to play with anyone.

As for Villa, I’ve liveblogged four of their matches, and they have yet to score a single goal in any of those games. Sure, you can’t just look at those 4 matches, but they have not impressed me at all. You could chalk up the Liverpool and Chelsea matches to the quality of their opposition, but they should have done better against Pompey and Newcastle. Good teams win, even if they aren’t clicking on all cylinders, and they certainly beat the teams that they’re supposed to. They came close to scoring in the first half, but they were utterly dominated in the second half and failed to generate any meaningful chances. Martin O’Neill will have to go back to the drawing board and figure out what’s wrong with his offense, especially with Arsenal and Manchester United on the horizon.

Man of the Match:

Obafemi Martins

Martins was an easy choice, what with his a brace and all. But he did more than just score. He worked tirelessly down the left flanks and was a constant threat, especially during the first half when Villa outplayed Newcastle somewhat. As I mentioned earlier, Ameobi, Jonas, and Barton also played well, as did Laursen for Villa, who continued to provide the kind of leadership and defensive excellence that he has all year.

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Victor Li is a writer who does live blogging and features for Soccerlens. He has a law degree, but, unfortunately, he spent more time in law school studying David Beckham's contract situation at Manchester United than he did learning about actual contracts. He roots for Manchester United and, because he's an eternal optimist, the U.S. National Team.