AS Monaco (n) Friendly
32 mins A
Danny Simpson free kick into the area was nodded on by both Mike Williamson
and Shola Ameobi before Demba Ba marked his return to Germany by
climbing higher than 'keeper Daniel Subasic to head home from close range 1-0.
"The younger players performed
better than they did in the first game. You saw our fitness levels were up a
little bit. Our established players all made progress. It was nice to see
the young players make an impact – Haris, Mehdi, Sammy and Tav. I thought
they were all very, very good.”
"I don’t see why they can’t do really well in the league - it is important for them to do that. You always look to build on the next season. They have the Europa Cup too and that will be a good competition – the further they go the more important they become on the European map.
"Newcastle are a good team and I wish
them all the best for next season. They have great fans."
Demba Ba's first goal since February of this year proved enough to secure the first victory of United's pre-season campaign on Monday evening, in the Bavarian town of Landsberg am Lech.
In front of a small crowd (less than 1,000) at the Hacker Pschorr Sport Park home of TSV Landsberg, Alan Pardew fielded a more experienced starting XI than that beaten on Friday.
Steve Harper made a rare senior start, Jonas Gutierrez was fielded at left back to allow Davide Santon a shift at right back and Danny Simpson and Mike Williamson were deployed in central defence.Mehdi Abeid and Gael Bigirimana kept their places in central midfield, as did Romain Amalfitano at outside right and Sammy Ameobi on the opposite flank.
The side was then completed by a front pair of Demba Ba and Shola Ameobi and the latter almost made an instant impact when his backheeled effort struck a post in the opening seconds of the game, after good work from Santon and Ba gave our captain for the night sight of the target.
Claudio Ranieri's men came close to opening the scoring in the 21st minute when Yannick Ferreira Carrasco got the better of Santon to reach a through ball and shot beyond the advancing Steve Harper - only for his effort to drop narrowly wide of the unguarded Newcastle goal.
The French Second Division side threatened once again down the left four minutes later and when Carrasco centred, Ibrahima Toure hit a goalbound effort from close range that Harper managed to block with his face - and looked to have momentarily caused him to see stars in cartoon style.
Newcastle went ahead just after the half hour and looked considerably brighter after doing so - although Harper was forced to tip a low effort from Nampalys Mendy round his post on 39 minutes after Mehdi Abeid was caught in possession.
At the other end, Subasic then blocked Shola's effort after younger brother Sammy threaded a pass through to him before the half time whistle sounded. Opting to make his first changes at the interval this time, those players replaced were obliged to take a dip in what looked like a children's paddling pool at pitchside - but was probably an ice bath.
With the game proceeding at a sluggish tempo, Monaco conjured up a half chance on 49 minutes as Valere Germain angled a glancing header off Harper's crossbar.Jonas moved upfield after Santon reverted to left back and Simpson was freed to cover right back when James Tavernier appeared to pair up with James Perch in central defence.
The arrival of Cheick Tiote for his pre-season bow effectively locked down the centre, with Monaco less of a forward threat following the substitution of Toure and seemingly content to move the ball around without looking to advance on the overlap - as they had earlier done so to good effect.
The closing stages saw Newcastle playing on the break and relying on the speed of Gabriel Obertan in an advanced central role when balls were hit long to him. However, the Frenchman spurned his best scoring chance with six minutes remaining, losing his marker only to see an effort blocked by Subasic. The ball fell nicely to the arriving Dan Gosling - but his weak shot was cleared off the line.
And there was just time for some late panic in the
United area, after a botched clearance ceded possession and Harper
gratefully held a goalbound effort at the second attempt in his six yard box.