Date: Sunday 13th February 2022, 2.00pm
Live on Sky Sports
Venue: St. James' Park
1 - 0
35 mins Joe Willock's forward run was halted right on the edge of the
Leazes box when he went to ground under challenge from Calum Chambers. Match
referee Craig Pawson initially
indicated a penalty after some deliberation, before the inevitable VAR review
was indicated on the big screen.
Willock's tumble had appeared
opportunistic but unlikely to be overturned; VAR official Paul Tierney
passing judgement on which side of the line the foul occurred - with the
Newcastle man falling well insider the area.
A reasonably quick decision saw the penalty
downgraded to a free kick, with replays in the stadium confirming that was
correct. That free-kick was on the edge of the box slightly to the left hand
(Milburn Stand side).
As the wall and Kieran Trippier got
ready, Dan Burn evoked memories of Steven Taylor and Kevin Nolan by blocking
the 'keeper's view while Villa deployed John McGinn as a "draught excluder"
behind the defensive wall.
Trippier stepped up and hit his shot into a gap vacated by messrs Wood and
Schar and the ball grazed the knee of Villa's Emiliano Buendia before nestling in the back of the net.
Mayhem promptly ensued.
Half time: Magpies
61 mins The VAR decision, as explained in the
waffle. And for "goes around comes around/evens itself up" advocates,
look back at the one that went against us at Villa Park back in August. This
was feet, that was toe nails....
Eddie Howe said:
"It wasn't the prettiest - and
we're probably the first to admit that - but I think it was
beautiful at the same time, from our perspective because the beauty
was in our defending and in our detail.
"I thought the players gave everything to what was a difficult game
- I don't think either side played the perfect game.
"We feel we have got a good
balance; the shape of the team is good and we feel the organisation
"We had to manage the lead and do the horrible things really well
and, even in the last few minutes, the lads were putting their
bodies on the line and stopping crosses and blocking shots -
everything you need when you are in a relegation battle.
"In weeks gone by, we might have
lost that game - or not won it - and now I think we are showing
newfound resilience and confidence, so that is great to see.
"We've worked incredibly hard in the last three games; I don't think
there's been any secret to how we've won the games.
"I don't think they've been fluent footballing performances where
we've played from back to front and all the things that we potentially want
to do in the future but it's been very disciplined, hard-working, a lot of
energy, a lot of team-work, team spirit, togetherness that have made the
difference for us.
"So big compliments for everyone for that because that's sometimes the
hardest thing to deliver consistently."
On Kieran Trippier:
"Trippier got stamped on and
he couldn't continue with a problem on the top of his foot, so he's
gone for an X-ray at the hospital.
"We're keeping everything
crossed hoping that there's no broken bone."
On Dan Burn:
"He was excellent. Again, very calm. I thought he added a real
composure to the back line. Aerially very good, swept up a lot of
dangerous-looking situations in a calm, composed way.
"So I thought it was a great debut, and so nice, for him, that it
was here. Obviously, I know how much the club means to him, his
history here, so it was a great moment.”
Steven Gerrard said:
"I think everything was wrong today. I don't think we were at it - we
were miles away from where I want to be. We have got what we deserved.
think there was a slight improvement from us at half-time, but we can't
wait until half-time to start having a go and try to bring something to
"We didn't deserve any luck today because you make your own luck so,
inevitably, we are going away with what we deserve.
"I think we have got to be braver, first and foremost. You have got to
want to stop the ball going in your goal. It's not the time now for me
to be digging anyone out or pointing fingers, but I don't think
Newcastle have had to play great to get a result.
"That's a concern for me and something we're going to have to improve on
very quickly. We've got to be careful we don't think we're just OK in
the middle of this league because you can be dragged down and you can be
dragged down very quickly.
"We've got lots of work to do."
United won three successive
PL games for the first time
since November 2018 (1-0 Watford home, 2-1 Bournemouth home
and 2-1 Burnley away). That run came to a juddering halt in the next
game...against West Ham.
Before today, Newcastle last recorded successive PL home victories
in December 2019 (2-1 Southampton and 1-0 Palace). They are now unbeaten in their last five PL
outings, taking 11 points from a possible 15.
This was the 50th PL meeting of these two clubs, with Newcastle winning
23, drawing 16 and losing just 11.
Villans @ SJP - PL era:
2021/22 Won 1-0 Trippier
2020/21 Drew 1-1 Lascelles
2019/20 Drew 1-1 Gayle
2016/17 Won 2-0 Gouffran, og(Lansbury) CH
2015/16 Drew 1-1 Coloccini
2014/15 Won 1-0 Cisse
2013/14 Won 1-0 Remy
2012/13 Drew 1-1 Ben Arfa
2011/12 Won 2-1 Ba, Cisse
2010/11 Won 6-0 Barton, Nolan 2, Carroll 3
2008/09 Won 2-0 Martins 2
2007/08 Drew 0-0
2006/07 Won 3-1 Milner, Dyer, Sibierski
2005/06 Drew 1-1 Shearer (pen)
2004/05 Lost 0-3
2003/04 Drew 1-1 Robert
2002/03 Drew 1-1 Solano
2001/02 Won 3-0 Bellamy 2, Shearer
2000/01 Won 3-1 Glass, Cort, OG
2000/01 Drew 1-1 Solano (FAC)
1999/00 Lost 0-1
1998/99 Won 2-1 Shearer, Ketsbaia
1997/98 Won 1-0 Beresford
1996/97 Won 4-3 Ferdinand 2, Shearer, Howey
1995/96 Won 1-0 Ferdinand
1994/95 Won 3-1 Beardsley 2, Venison
1993/94 Won 5-1 Beardsley 2, Sellars, Bracewell, Cole
It's now 14 games since United last lost to Villa at
SJP in all competitions. That was the
infamous 0-3 reverse in April 2005 when the hosts finished with
eight men, following red cards for messrs Taylor, Bowyer and Dyer.
Dan Burn made his PL debut and
became the 252nd
different player to represent Newcastle in the competition - and the
100th English-born player.
The 2004/05 win is one of just two at SJP for Villa in the PL, the
other in 1999/00 when Alan Shearer was dismissed. The
only season Villa did the PL double over Newcastle was
2004/05, United winning at Villa in 1999/00.
Jonjo Shelvey's effort at Leeds and Kieran Trippier's dead
ball double against Everton and Villa means that the Magpies have scored
from free kicks in three successive games for the first time
since who knows when? ever?
Trippier's feat of converting free kicks in consecutive PL games was
last achieved by a Newcastle player in May 2003 when Hugo
Viana obliged at Birmingham City home then West Bromwich Albion
Following the loan departure of colleagues Elliot Anderson and Joe
White, U23 midfielder Lucas De Bolle was selected in a PL matchday
squad for the first time, remaining on the bench unused. He wears
squad number 50.
In the absence of Callum Wilson and Matt Ritchie and despite the
presence of previous successful penalty takers Joelinton and Schar
on the field, Chris Wood had appeared set to take the spot
kick before VAR intervened.
5 foot 4 inch Fraser
and 6 foot 7 inch Burn
(caption via Kieran Trippier's instagram)
For the second time in six days, Kieran Trippier was the toast of
Tyneside as his expertly-dispatched free kick gave his side their
third successive victory and lifted them four points clear of the
Wearing the captain's armband, Trippier brilliantly fired home from
the edge of the Leazes End box on 35 minutes - referee Craig
Pawson's original penalty award for a foul on Joe Willock by Calum
Chambers downgraded to a free kick by VAR official Paul Tierney, who
spotted that the offence was marginally outside the penalty area.
There had been some good-natured debate in midweek about whether
Trippier's debut strike had gone over or round the defensive
obstacle. Well, this one definitely went through the wall - but
still provoked a mass rendition of the song he's inherited from Ryan
Steven Gerrard's side thought that they'd levelled just after the
hour when Ollie Watkins headed in from close range after Lucas
Digne's centre from the Villa left was helped on by Philippe
Coutinho and wildly ricocheted off Schar's leg to create an
However, a belated VAR call cut short the celebrations of the
visitors - Watkins deemed offside by the narrowest of margins as he
beat Martin Dubravka, having strayed forward as the original cross
That was a second body blow to the L7 occupants clad in claret and
blue, whose celebrations of the penalty refusal were soon to be
rammed down their throats.
This time their cheers turned to boos and shouts of
as evidence of a prematurely-ignited smoke bomb drifted away in the
A game of remarkably few clear-cut scoring chances for either side
was littered with injuries and stoppages; requiring five minutes of
first half injury time and seven before the full time whistle
sounded amid massive relief.
With Jamaal Lascelles missing due to illness, Fabian Schar completed
90 minutes but needed attention to both leg and head injuries before
Alongside the Swiss defender there was a bow for Dan Burn and he
gave a towering performance for his boyhood team on what he later
admitted was a dream come true.
Burn's devotion to the cause saw him clutching a strip of Tyrong
Mings' shirt at one point during the second half, that he then
casually chucked towards a fan behind the Leazes goal.
Thankfully he managed to not to mark the occasion with an own goal
just before half time, unwittingly diverting John McGinn's low shot
from distance a whisker away from the goal with Dubravka a helpless
Matt Targett meanwhile looked on; ineligible to
feature for his loan club against his parent one.
His place at left back went to Javier Manquillo, but he
struggled through the opening half with ankle injuries before
expiring during first half added time and going off to make way for
fit-again Paul Dummett.
The most concerning casualty was Trippier, who had shaken off calf
injury concerns to play. He looked in some discomfort before the
break and went to ground early in the second half before limping off
after an innocuous-looking clearance - although the damage had come
from an earlier stamp.
Speaking after the game, Howe confirmed that the full back had
undergone an X-ray of his left foot and he was later seen clad in a
protective boot. Confirmation followed the following day of a broken
bone will keep Trippier out for an unspecified period - a deeply
worrying development given the immediate impact that the player has
made since arriving from Madrid.
Off the field, there were two separate incidents in the second half
that both appeared to be medical emergencies: the game halting for a
few moments for a stricken fan in the upper section of the
Gallowgate to receive attention.
The final minutes of play meanwhile continued to a backdrop of
medical staff attending an incident in the East Stand lower section,
close to where a similar situation had unfolded during the Spurs
home game back in October.
A long way short of a classic then - and to the uncommitted watcher,
the second half was so stop-start as to be virtually unwatchable.
After a weekend of results in our favour though, the only thing that really mattered was
getting three points to maintain that all-important momentum.
Thankfully, a combination of tenacity and technology saw United through
to victory, despite
a clutch of enforced reorganisations.
Oh, and Trippier of course. Get well soon - his loss a reminder that
this is still Newcastle United, where nothing ever goes smoothly.
But you knew that.