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Season 2019-20
West Bromwich Albion (a)
FA Cup Fifth Round


Tuesday 3rd March 2020, 8.00pm
Live on BBC Red Button / BBC online

 The Hawthorns

Conditions: Evocative
Tickets: £15 (£20 on the day for home fans)

£3 for a fine issue inspired by the issue for our 1953/54 FA Cup clash, even down to avoiding colour photos. A replica of that programme was stapled in as an insert.

West Brom


2 - 3




33 mins Taking a short pass from Danny Rose near to the left hand touchline in his own half, Allan Saint-Maximin initially stumbled as he turned, but his rapid recovery took out two Albion players as he accelerated over halfway.

With two more home players obligingly standing off, the Frenchman had time to continue his forward run towards the centre of the pitch before slotting a perfect pass to Miguel Almiron, who made a diagonal run from the right.

Miggy's first touch saw him shoot left-footed across Jonathan Bond and into the far corner of the Birmingham Road End goal.

45+1 mins Valentino Lazaro and Javier Manquillo exchanged passes going forward down the United right and when the former attempted to pull the back into to Almiron from near the byline, the ball struck a defender. 

However it bounced nicely into the path of Joelinton, who had the presence of mind to backheel it to Miguel Almiron, who lashed a left-footer into the roof of the net from an almost sitting position level with the penalty spot. 

Half time: Baggies 0 Magpies 2

47 mins Two Albion players left a speculative forward pass from Jamaal Lascelles to each other on the half way line as it bypassed Lazaro and it eventually ran to Joelinton, who laid it off to Almiron on the right.

He cut infield to play a curling ball out the left side of the box that reached the arriving Saint-Maximin, who was completely unmarked. Taking a touch, he slightly mis-hit his centre into the six yard box and the 'keeper went to ground near his front post in an attempt to block.

However Bond succeeded only in knocking it forward and into the path of Valentino Lazaro who let the ball hit his torso (or his penis) and deflect into the net from two yards out in front of the celebrating away contingent. To their right, disgruntled home fans turned and headed for the exits. 

74 mins Kyle Edwards was able to send a second cross into the box after his first was half-cleared. Kenneth Zohore nod the ball down a Matt Phillips shot into the ground bounced up and in off the underside of the crossbar. 3-1

Edwards took a pass from Kieran Gibbs down the Baggies left and outwitted both Fabian Schar and Manquillo en route to reaching the byline. Zohore got ahead of recently-arrived substitute Florian Lejeune to turn home a near post cross past Karl Darlow from close in. 3-2

Full time: Baggies 2 Magpies

We Said

Steve Bruce: 

"I knew what it would mean to have a little bit of a cup run. The drawís been kind to us - letís hope itís kind again!

"Weíre in the quarter final. There were large parts of it that I was delighted with - and, hopefully, we can take that into Saturday. We needed that.

"The Premier League is so difficult and unforgiving. You have to stay positive. The players seem to have enjoyed the change of system - certainly the forward players - (and) we've now got to take that into the league.

"Itís only the quarter final - itís nothing, yet - but it would be fantastic to take that support to Wembley. They havenít been there in years (in the cup). Letís see what we can do

On the nervy finish:

"It wouldnít be Newcastle if we didnít make a drama out of it!

"It must be something in our DNA. For an hour, I was very pleased. But, then that horrible mentality of when you think itís too easy. We switched off and to be fair to West Brom, they never gave up."

On Almiron and Lazaro:

He was terrific in his finishing. He was electric, all evening. It was a really, really top performance by the kid.

"We all know he can score, itís just he didnít get off to a great start. He missed a few chances and that eats away at you. But the one thing you canít deny is that the kid is a top player.

ďI also thought Tino gave us a nice balance on the right-hand side, I thought his movement and touch was good. For an hour, I was delighted with us."

On Saint-Maximin:

"Allan was a doubt. Nonsense written in a newspaper that I have had a fallout with him. I don't know where that has come from.

"He didn't train Sunday, we were wary of him, and you have to be careful. That is why I didn't risk him. He trained well yesterday and that is the way it was."

To the Mail reporter in question:

"I'm not going to answer you. it's total lies, it's nonsense. I am glad your source is wrong. Are you calling me a liar? Your reporting is wrong. I've had no row with Saint-Maximin."


They Said

Slaven Bilic said:

We ran out of time, but if we had scored a second with the few chances we had with 15 minutes to go, then I had a feeling we would have got a third.

"Unfortunately we scored the second a bit late. I am very proud of the guys but at the same time disappointed with the result.

"They put a very strong team out but we gave them way too much respect in the first half and let the midfielders feed their guys up front.

"The second goal was unfair because after the first one, we had a good spell and we told the guys at half time to unleash themselves and not show too much respect.

"But the worst thing that could happen happened in the second half when they got that third goal, but the reaction after that was absolutely magnificent.

"Itís a shame we couldnít start like that but it was a very good performance from the boys.

(There were two) reasons why I decided to go with this team.

One, the league is the priority. Maybe we were greedy, we wanted both, which is not wrong. Some of the players needed a rest, needed a break, considering the league and the situation weíre in.

"The second reason is that I have a very strong belief in the players who played tonight. They deserved a game, and the chance.

"Iím not disappointed with anyone. Some players got big pluses, some players got smaller pluses, but nobody disappointed.

"The first goal we tried to get the ball from their half and it was three of our players against one of theirs. It was our ball and then he nicked it and great pass, 1-0 - alright.

"Second...every goal is stoppable, but their second and third goals, not only the timing of them but the way we conceded them. You canít do that against top division opponents."


The Magpies ended a 307 minute wait for a goal in all competitions, since Allan Saint-Maximin's extra time winner at Oxford United a month ago.

That's the longest barren run since we endured a 454 minute sequence in all competitions between December 2015 and January 2016.

Miguel Almiron
boosted his scoring tally in all competitions this season to six, four in the FAC and two in the Premier League. That makes him our current top scorer, one ahead of Jonjo Shelvey with five - all in the PL.

Almiron's quartet of FAC goals in a single season is the most by any Newcastle player since Alan Shearer in 1999/00 (5).

Valentino Lazaro scored his first goal for the club and our eleventh in the FA Cup this season to date - the biggest total since netting 17 in 1999/00.

The orange change kit got a third competitive airing and we remain unbeaten when wearing (1-0 at Spurs, 1-1 at Rochdale, 3-2 tonight)

United won their second FA Cup tie away from home this season, the first time they've managed more than one in a season since the 1999/00 season (Blackburn Rovers and Tranmere Rovers).

The Magpies are now unbeaten in their last four FA Cup away ties, all of which were against lower league opposition (Blackburn Rovers won, Rochdale drew, Oxford United won, West Bromwich Albion won).

That's their best sequence since they went five unbeaten on the road between 1996 and 1998 (Chelsea drew, Charlton drew, Everton won, Stevenage drew, Sheffield United won - neutral ground).

Qualification for the FA Cup Quarter Finals means that we'll play a minimum of six matches in the competition this season, the most since 1999/00. 

This was the fifth Baggies versus Magpies FA Cup pairing, after 1938 (lost 0-1 away in Third Round), 1954 (lost 2-3 away in Fifth Round), 1974 (won 3-0 away in Fifth Round and 2010 (lost 2-4 away in Fourth Round).

That 1974 meeting is well-remembered, coming after Newcastle progressed through the Third and Fourth Rounds beating lower league sides in replays.

The situation has been repeated in 2020, with Albion currently in the second tier as they were 46 years ago and Newcastle one league above them.

NUFC last 10 Fifth Round ties:

West Bromwich Albion (a) won 3-2
2005/06 Southampton (h) won 1-0
2004/05 Chelsea (h) won 1-0
2001/02 Manchester City (h) won 1-0
1999/00 Blackburn Rovers (a) won 2-1
1998/99 Blackburn Rovers (a) won 1-0 (0-0 h)
1997/98 Tranmere Rovers (h) won 1-0
1994/95 Manchester City (h) won 3-1
1992/93 Blackburn Rovers (a) lost 0-1
1989/90 Manchester United (h) lost 2-3

Magpies @ Throstles - last 10:

2019/20 Won 3-2 Almiron 2, Lazaro (FAC)
2017/18 Drew 2-2 Clark, og(Evans)
Lost 0-1
2014/15 Won 2-0 Perez, Coloccini
2013/14 Lost 0-1
2012/13 Drew 1-1 Gouffran
2011/12 Won 3-1 Cisse 2, Ben Arfa
2010/11 Lost 1-3 Lovenkrands
2009/10 Lost 2-4 Carroll 2 (FAC)
2009/10 Drew 1-1 Duff
2008/09 Won 3-2 Duff, Lovenkrands, S.Taylor



The away fans may have serenaded the Hawthorns about missing their tea to go to Wembley, but the visiting players made a bit of a meal of reaching the last eight of the FA Cup on Tuesday night.

It's true that the the only thing that matters in cup football is the outcome, but only this club could leave their followers seething after achieving their best run in this competition since 2006.

3-0 up and apparently coasting against a much-changed home side whose priority rightly remains promotion, our attempts to see the game out once again backfired - as it had from winning positions away at both Rochdale and Oxford United.

In both of those ties, the replacement of Miguel Almiron sparked a comeback from the hosts that made it an unnecessarily nervous ending and tonight it happened again; Jonjo Shelvey's appearance unsettling his own side almost as much as the home substitutes.

The Paraguayan worried his pursuers all night and struck twice before half time to seemingly end the tie as a contest before Valentino Lazaro's maiden goal for the club gave us what for anyone else would be an unassailable lead.

Two late goals and a penalty shout in the final seconds threatened to derail us and although United missed several chances of their own as the tie opened up, Albion ended the night ahead on goal attempts.

This wasn't really a late collapse though; the warning signs were there within minutes of going three up; Rose twice clearing from inside his own six yard box at 3-0 and Kyle Edwards hitting the bar seconds before Albion's opener.

Another goal-line clearance from Schar at 3-1 was equally crucial, but the absence of VAR here proved not to be pivotal when a penalty shout for the home side was rightly ignored by the referee. Repeated reviews confirmed there was nothing doing, but in real time there was a micro-second of fear.

Keeping to his pledge of fielding strong line-ups, Bruce had begun with Joelinton, Almiron and Allan Saint-Maximin; loan duo Nabil Bentaleb and Lazaro also returning to the side - the latter following his suspension.

The hosts meanwhile were forced into changes by injury and ineligibility but ended up fielding just two of the XI that started in the league last weekend.

An indifferent start by both sides was notable for Albion giving up territory far too easily and encouraging Newcastle to get upfield. For all that though, our efforts on goal remained woeful and Karl Darlow warmed his hands first.

Things kicked into gear just before half hour when Saint-Maximin rattled the woodwork from long range and the Frenchman then excellently played in Almiron for a confident finish akin to his goal up the road at Wolves.

That lead was doubled in first half stoppage time when Joelinton back-heeled a ball from the right across goal and Almiron lashed it into the top corner - Lazaro making his first tangible contribution from outside right, where he seemed a more natural fit than at wing back.

Goals and progress then - albeit expected, given the faded glories of players like Charlie Austin, Chris Brunt, Kieran Gibbs and 39 year-old Gareth Barry.

For 90 minutes (well 70, anyway), this was pure escapism: never mind a confidence boost to the squad, it was a shot in the arm for fans after the recent pain of watching Premier League games.

In reality though, nothing much has changed and the first decent side we come across will probably send us packing. Sometimes it's in the Third Round, this time it'll probably be 90 minutes from a Wembley Semi-Final.

Post-match, Steve Bruce talked about a tendency to self-destruct as being part of this club's DNA, but we were once genetically programmed to excel in the cup. Sadly that's now as much part of our history as European campaigns or a number 9 who scores goals.

Negative outcomes against Southampton and Sheffield United will make our Quarter Final tie a sad irrelevance and a millstone around our necks: it's not the team that are programmed to screw things up, it's the actual club. 



Page last updated 05 March, 2020