Old boy Duff does the damage.

Duff in his Newcastle days.
Newcastle have a terrible habit of allowing old players to come back and haunt them. It’s almost written in the stars that if a former Mag lines up against the lads he’s bound to score an important goal. Step forward Damien Duff who’s second half goal proved to be the winner at Craven Cottage this evening.

It’s certainly been a couple of days that Newcastle fans would like to forget and we went into tonight’s game with all eyes on how the team would react on the field after losing ‘friend’ Andy Carroll to Liverpool. We have been in excellent form so far in 2011 and tonight provided a test against a Fulham team who are finding a bit of form themselves as of late.

The first half offered little in terms of real chances or quality for either team. The only memorable Newcastle attempt being a weak right footed effort by full back Danny Simpson that was dealt with easily by Fulham stopper Mark Schwarzer.

After only 13 minutes United striker Shola Ameobi was replaced by Nile Ranger after sustaining a facial injury following a clash with Fulham new boy Steve Sidwell. Shola has suffered a suspected fractured jaw, which is a massive blow considering Newcastle’s dubious striker situation. Young Ranger might have got on the score sheet early on after arriving to the field but was unable to get on the end of Joey Barton’s free kick which was put out of play by Sidwell.

Fulham had two first half penalty appeals waved away by referee Mike Jones, both incidents involving tussles between Mike Williamson and Brede Hangeland in Newcastle’s penalty area. Replays show Williamson was clearly pulling on the Hangeland’s shirt for the first incident and was all over the giant Norwegian again for a set piece just moments later. It could have easily been two penalty kicks conceded in the first half.

The second half offered a lot more from the word go, with the home team looking dangerous with former player Mr ‘I’m as loyal as they come’ Duff seemingly determined to get on the score sheet. The Irishman spurned an easy opportunity, but made up for it with a tidy finish on the 67th minute following a good ball by Danny Murphy. Few can argue that Fulham were the better team and deserved their lead.

Newcastle did have bright spells in the second half, with Nile Ranger unlucky not to do better with a Kevin Nolan flick on from close range which was dealt with by Schwarzer. Leon Best was unable to direct a header into the back of the net after he met a brilliant left footed Danny Guthrie cross. Peter Lovenkrands was introduced after 72 minutes replacing Best but was unable to make a difference to the performance or result. As the game went on Fulham looked good going forward and were denied the chance to extend their lead on a few occasions, with Harper pulling off a couple of smart saves.

On the whole it was a poor performance from Newcastle. There were a couple of good moments in the second half but we looked flat in the final third and the lack of quality up top showed a little tonight. Fulham are a well organised team who are hard to beat at Craven Cottage and sadly we didn’t do nearly enough to even come close to winning the game.

It’s certainly been a mad couple of days with Judas Carroll taking centre stage. Damien Duff commented after the game saying he got stick from the Newcastle fans so it was nice to score. He couldn’t resist dropping in his little ‘I didn’t have a good time up there’ line and even said that’s probably why he got stick tonight. Hmmmmm, perhaps Damien, or maybe it was because you pledged your future to the club when we got relegated and then not only left soon after that, but also stuck a boot into the club when you got your move?

Still nevermind, we must now concentrate on Arsenal who we entertain at St James’ Park on Saturday afternoon. HWTL!

Fulham (4-4-2): Mark Schwarzer; John Pantsil, Brede Hangeland, Aaron Hughes, Chris Baird; Clint Dempsey, Danny Murphy (c), Steve Sidwell, Damien Duff ; Andrew Johnson, Mousa Dembele.

Subs: David Stockdale, Carlos Salcido, Jonathan Greening, Diomansy Kamara, Simon Davies, Gael Kakuta, Zolten Gera.

Newcastle (4-4-2): Steve Harper; Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Jose Enrique; Joey Barton, Danny Guthrie, Kevin Nolan (c), Jonas Gutierrez; Shola Ameobi, Leon Best.

Subs: Tim Krul, James Perch, Sol Campbell, Michael Richardson, Shane Ferguson, Peter Lovenkrands, Nile Ranger.

Referee: Mike Jones.

Attendance: 25,620.

37 thoughts on “Old boy Duff does the damage.

  1. I think on the evidence of tonights showing it’s gonna be a long, hard, nervy run-in. Hope im wrong but we just seem delfated; we can’t hang on to a lead, and that was before Carroll deflected his honour. I think Benny and even Ireland are gonna be so important. Ranger just (like it or not) isn’t up to it, neither is Peter and Leon hasn’t the control or first touch. Ireland could become a toon hero along with Benny IMHO and predictive wisdom. They could come in and add a bit of class and assurance to calm everybody down aswell as chipping in with crucial goals.


  2. Lets hope we don’t provide entertainment for Arsenal whilst we “entertain” them. I can take a loss, but another performance like that? Won’t be happy.


  3. Agree about Arfa DJG, March can’t come soon enough, will be brilliant to have him back in the squad. Whilst Ireland is good, he only has like 8 goals in 139 appearances for city or something along those lines…when we need goals I can’t see the point using a five man midfield to get him in, and who knows how long it will take to get him up and running? Maybe just as long as it takes ranger or best or even loven to find their feet….


  4. For all those plums out there who supported the sale of AC, do you now realise you can’t put money on team spirit!
    Pardew is an utter disgrace!
    He should have took AC to one side and spent an hour, one to one, and told him the advantages and disadvantages of going to a club a shadow of it’s former self or staying at a club built around him and the potential to be a local hero forever more.
    Pardew clearly didn’t and therefore lost Carroll and by the looks of it the dressing room and before long his job.
    Can’t believe you lot and Pardewcouldnt see it!


  5. booby it wasnt his choice it was the fat controller once the money was right. Forget currect positions, Liverpool are a European club, we are a selling club always have and will be. Until we are not owned by people who want to make money out of us (Hall, Shepard, Ashley have or will all make money) it will never ever change unless we get owners who want to win things.


  6. I can live with losing, but Ameobi’s injury is really going to hurt us this season, we seemed lost out there, and just kept trying to play long ball. Really can’t wait for Ireland and Arfa, we need a bit of spark in midfield, and for Ranger to get his first goal. On the upside, I thought Gutierrez played well today, It’s nice to see him running with the ball rather than trying to play a passing game which isn’t him at all.

    We’re really lacking firepower at the moment, I couldn’t believe it when we failed to get a replacement for AC. I’ve been looking through the free transfer listings on the PFA site and I think we should try to get Jérémie Aliadière in. He was out with injury at the start of the season, meaning he couldn’t sign for West Ham, but I think after a couple of weeks of fitness training he could come in and do a job for us until the end of the season or at least bolster the ranks with some experience. I’ve always rated him highly.


  7. I posted on the other thread but was ignored as per 😥

    Coleman mentioned emergency loans, and with free agents etc there’s hope, but are we able to add to the squad after the deadline? The loan Market was different in the championship but I don’t know for us now in the prem?

    Team spirit will have gone one of two ways, down with the big man going, or up as the rest dig in and show that they actually do give a monkeys and want to stay and help us. I think Ireland and benny boy playing up front is what we need! Play Nolan just behind and give them all free roles. We will see a major change in style and we will need to play more like arsenal which is a great prospect.


  8. Also, it’s all well and good slaggingbthe club but if u went to your boss today and said pay me 3 times my wage or I’m off to that company
    round the corner, what would the response be? And if it’s positive where do u work cos I’m coming to work with u!


  9. can anyone find any mention of an agent regarding the carroll sale?

    was there any agent involved? if so was it carroll’s own agent or some token agent supplied by nufc?

    or was it all just done through pardew?

    is this why pardew was brought in?


  10. Guthrie seems to be getting up to speed. Thank god Tiote is now back and I think Pardew should put an arm around him and explain that he needs to reduce the cards a bit. We deffo can’t afford him to get anymore red cards and I think he can only get another 2 yellows before a 2 match ban. Tiote and Guthrie in the middle, The tank winning the ball and Guthrie playing it out. Nolan up front just behind Best. I think thats the best we can do until Ireland and Benny are back.


  11. Rangers attitude stinks, loads of off the ball moaning – arguing with Barton etc – he needs to get his act together – best makes the wrong decisions, never seems to know when to make a run and easily handled by fulham last night
    Enrique was getting pulled all over the place by duff – poor game

    Anyone see me on the telly – apparantly i was miserable get shown during the game – to be honest I was just knackered, was up at 5 for work – son and his mates were with me – am slowly converting his college to all support the toon tho last nights game didn’t help the cause 😉


  12. Malchick – yup Carroll and his agent put the transfer request in, Carroll can’t write so prob didn’t even know what he was putting his x to until to late


  13. Anyone see that miserable git on Sky in the stands supporting us last night – looked like he had been up since 5 and was watching a guttless display :mrgreen:


  14. Isn’t football amazing? And more so, it’s fans?

    If we had won 1-0 last night I wonder what the reaction would be? Especially those who said they wouldn’t have been held to ransom bh AC…now the same people having a go at moneybags 24 hours later after a poor performance! I stand by what I said…if Andy wasn’t a money grabbing got he’d still be here.

    Maybe footballers lose that magic a little bit once they become pro’s. What I mean is that no off the field events EVER effect me when I play. I don’t go to make a pass and remember I have fallen out with the wife, or any other problems going on, I am 100% focused on the game with no outside influences at all. I am sure most of you will say the same. So why is it I am hearing Carrolls departure as an excuse for poor performance? They are all professionals getting paid more in a week than we earn in a year, go out there and do your job. Never mind all the psychology crap, if I was in sales and sold I wouldn’t go far.

    Another thing, Danny Simpson sent all the lads on twitter a message which one fan had posted saying “Fulham will definately beat us 3-0”. to all the lads who are on twitter. He followed the message with “not what I want to hear from our own fans”

    What do you all make of that? I think it’s shocking on a number of different levels and sent him a direct message telling him so


  15. Nevermind lanky Larry; I’d like to know what the hell they’ve been doin in Portugal. I think Best should have spent less time playing table tennis and more learning how to trap a penny floater. 😮


  16. is there no decent freebies out there,coz if shola is out for 6 weeks,were the goals going to come from,squeeky bum time..



  17. Over last couple of seasons seems whenever there’s been a break for internationals etc, instead of coming back rejuvenated after time off, our lot always look lethargic and half arsed. Same again last night. Collective malaise, and DJG whatever they were working hard at in Portugal, I agree it couldn’t have been tactics etc


  18. Did anyone really expect Carroll to do so well this season, January last year he was behind Harweood in the pecking order, Looking like a left footed Kevin Davies.

    At the start of the season we were wondering where the goals would come from and we are again, Carroll (and Nolan) stepped up now its someone elses turn.

    It was a shite performance but we are on 30 points, 2 wins and 4 draws away from safety. If Nolan, Shola, Loverman, Ranger, Barton, Ben Arfa and Ireland cant muster that between now and the end of the season, We deserve to be relegated…


  19. Gotta say, although the criticism of our ‘strikers’ is warranted, they weren’t really the problem yesterday. I can’t remember a single cross or through-ball that was actually played into a decent area. Yes, when we had Carroll you could get away with that and he’d bring other players into play, but we need to get the midfield thinking and creating.

    Barton played some nice passes, but usually to the other wing. Jonas and Enrique didn’t cross anywhere near as often as I would have liked. Simpson didn’t push forward as much as usual, and Nolan & Guthrie seemed to both be playing the DM role.

    Ranger looked a lot less interested and a lot more lazy than I’ve ever seen him, but his and Best’s poor performance owes as much as anything to the the fact that they were only played the ball when isolated and with 3 defenders to beat.

    Think we’ll see the strikers weigh in with a few more goals once Benny, Ireland and Tiote are back. Maybe even Gosling? Haven’t seen enough yet…


  20. Oh, and how quickly things can change for a player:

    “Am I a £35m striker?

    I scored 24 goals helping my side win promotion back to the Premier League aged just 22. In my first season in the top flight I had scored 15 goals by the end of January including a goal against the reigning champions, a goal away at Arsenal and a cracker in a home win vs Liverpool.

    My form earned me an England call-up and debut in a friendly.

    Am I a £35m striker? No, I am Michael Ricketts, February 2002.”


  21. nope pardew played him 7 times at west ham according to your link, 6 as a sub.no goals. Pardew will know he’s out there but there’s nowt to suggest he’s the answer.


  22. Roy – I couldnt tell – but he had a 4 on his back – his son had a 4 on his, and his two mates had 1’s on theirs 😆


  23. Raffo – I think an emergency loan is a no go. End of the day, in the eyes of the rules, we still have fit strikers.

    Deb – I agree entirely. Everytime we have a break we seem to come back looking even more lethargic. No excuse for it.


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