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Season 2023-24
Bournemouth (h) Premier League


Saturday 17th February 2024, 3pm
(not on live UK TV)

St. James' Park

Conditions: Disjointed




2 - 2




Half time: Magpies 0 Cherries 0

51 mins
With Dominic Solanke pressurising him, Sven Botman moved the ball quickly from the left back position infield towards Martin Dubravka - only for him to stumble in the six yard box and leave the ball free for Solanke to net for his third goal against the Magpies this season. 0-1

58 mins Fabian Schar's shirt was tugged in the Bournemouth box by Adam Smith as Kieran Trippier played in a free kick.  A lengthy VAR review finally brought a penalty award after referee Michael Salisbury saw reruns of the incident on the pitchside monitor and further checks decreed that an offside call against the Newcastle defender was nullified by the foul on him.

Anthony Gordon stepped up to force a low shot into the bottom right-hand corner of the Gallowgate goal, just beyond goalkeeper Neto.

69 mins Shadowed by Dan Burn, Antoine Semenyo took Solanke's pass and advanced before firing past Dubravka from the right hand side of the box. 1-2

90+2 mins Bruno's deep cross from the left was met by Matt Ritchie with a header across the edge of the six yard box towards Sean Longstaff. Instead however, the ball bounced off Lloyd Kelly and fortuitously fell back to the veteran Magpie to ram in.

While the rest of his colleagues retreated quickly for the restart, a clearly overjoyed Ritchie destroyed the corner flag in the Strawberry Corner in trademark fashion.

Full time: Magpies 2 Cherries 2

We Said

Eddie Howe said:

"Another comeback from us. We had to dig really deep. The goals we conceded were tough blows. It was important we didn't lose.

"Im well aware and I think people who watch us regularly are aware, that were not at full power at the moment, were not at our fluent best but I think the reasons for that are obvious.

"We are a bit disjointed. We had players playing today who maybe wouldnt be in their best positions given a free hand. But everyone is giving as much as they can to get consistent results.

We have to look at the positives: its another game unbeaten for us; were getting points where we went through a spell when we werent.

"That was a big late goal for us. It just keeps that momentum. Of course were looking for three points in every home game, so were disappointed with certain aspects as well.

"We never know when were beaten. At 2-1 today, it would have been easy to not respond just as it would have been at 4-2 down against Luton. Thats down to the character of the players.

"Matt Ritchie epitomises the character. What he's given me and the group when out of the team has been truly incredible. I'm so pleased he's had a moment where everyone gets to talk about him and his qualities.

"He's an inspirational character behind the scenes - he's someone who drives standards. He's committed and very vocal. In the changing room he's the one driving the group. He puts the team ahead of himself. 

When you see that you hope they get their rewards. I desperately wanted to keep him here last season - he's a role model."

On Harvey Barnes:

"Really pleased to have Harvey back. He's probably not 100% but was fit enough to start, and has also done well from the bench. I'm delighted with his performance."

On Martin Dubravka:

"First half, he made a couple of really good saves and looked in a really good place. Unfortunately, as a goalkeeper, you slip, or something happens, and it's highlighted by everybody. I was really pleased with him today."

On Fabian Schar:

"The ball hit his arm & twisted his wrist. Fingers crossed it's not too serious. We could do without another injury."

On Joe White:

"He's been really good since coming back
(from a loan spell at Crewe Alexandra). Been really pleased with more maturity from him. Performances in training have been very good. He's not getting on the pitch for any reason other than training well & he deserves to be there."

Matt Ritchie added:

"I probably shouldn't have celebrated as much as I did because we needed to push for a win. I'm 34, not 25 now, but I'm still full of love for the game.

"When you haven't played and haven't scored, you miss that feeling. It's one of those things that keeps you going - scoring a goal, especially at that end of the stadium.

"I'm delighted to get the goal and the equaliser but frustrated that we didn't perform to the levels we know we can."

They Said


Andoni Iraola said:

"Today for me, its difficult to feel happy. Im really happy with the performance. I think we deserved the three points. 

"We came to a very difficult stadium with tough opposition and I think we did really well. We played very brave with high energy, we had the better chances, we were in front twice and to end with just one point, its not what we deserved today.

"I've been really upset with decisions in the last three games.  Against Fulham and Nottingham Forest they were not decisions that affected key moments but I was not happy with the refereeing, but today it affected. 

"It's irritating as we're only going to talk about the referee decisions and not how good my players played. They will talk about the decision and try to bend the rules but it is what it is."

"For me its very difficult to accept the result. I cannot accept the first goal they scored, the penalty decision. Hes in an offside position.

"Ive been talking to the referees after the game. Im not smart enough to understand their explanations. If only we are talking about the foul its a very soft foul for a set-piece because on set-pieces and corners, everyone grabs, goes to the floor and they are not calling anything all season, but they called a foul.

"We have to accept it. We will complain, but we have to accept it. But he was in an offside position, the ball goes exactly where he is, my player grabs the shirt because otherwise he is going to head the ball, obviously affects the play, and they spend 10 minutes (with) five, six referees watching the play.

"Also the VAR doesnt show the referee the wide camera so he can take the decision of the offside position. For me, its very difficult to accept, very, very, very difficult to accept, because I think we deserve a little bit of respect.

"I know we are Bournemouth, we are a small club, but we deserve much more respect than this.


United are unbeaten in five league and cup games, the longest sequence without defeat this season since an eight game run in September and October. However they are winless in four PL home games - their worst run since the start of the 2021/22 campaign when failing to win seven. 

Although he did oversee a 1-0 success here in the League Cup last season, Eddie Howe is still to defeat former side Bournemouth since taking charge of the Magpies in four attempts (three draws and one defeat).

Cherries in Toon - all-time:

2023/24 drew 2-2 Gordon pen, Ritchie
won 1-0 og (LC)
drew 1-1 Isak (pen) (PL)
2019/20 won 2-1 Yedlin, Clark (PL)
2018/19 won 2-1 Rondon 2 (PL)
2017/18 lost 0-1 (PL)
2015/16 lost 1-3 Perez (PL)
1991/92 drew 2-2 Hunt 2 (FAC) (lost 3-4 pens)
1989/90 won 3-0 Anderson, Quinn 2 (D2)
1972/73 won 2-0 Macdonald, og (FAC)

Full record v Bournemouth:
  P W D L F A
SJP 7 3 2 2 11 9
DC/VS 7 2 3 2 11 10
League 14 5 5 4 22 19
SJP(FA) 2 1 1 0 4 2
DC 1 0 1 0 0 0
SJP(LC) 1 0 0 0 1 0
DC 1 0 0 1 1 2
Cup 5 2 2 1 6 4
Tot 19 7 7 5 28 23

Matt Ritchie netted with his second touch of the ball, 52 seconds after arriving from the bench as a substitute. That's quick, but nowhere near as rapid as Michael Chopra (mackems away 2006, 13 seconds) or Sammy Ameobi (Spurs away 2014, eight seconds). 

Matt Ritchie's eighth PL goal for the club, equals team mate Sean Longstaff's tally along with old boys Philippe Albert, Ciaran Clark, Lee Clark, Duncan Ferguson and Temuri Ketsbaia. He's now netted 25 times in all competitions: 12 in the Championship, eight in the PL, three in FAC and two in LC.

Ritchie became the 17th different PL scorer for NUFC this season (excluding own goals). That's the largest number of our players to net in that competition, equal with the 17 that registered in both the 2019/20 and 2021/22 seasons.

If we're going to break that record, then Elliot Anderson, Paul Dummett, Lewis Hall, Emil Krafth, Tino Livramento, Matt Targett or Joe Willock will need to get their shooting boots on - or one of the development squad players........or goalkeepers.

Anthony Gordon scored his eighth goal of the season - all in the PL. His club total of nine PL strikes takes him level with current colleague Jacob Murphy and former Mags Faustino Asprilla, Jermaine Jenas, Peter Lovenkrands and Charles N'Zogbia.

Newcastle have converted their last 15 PL penalties since Joe Willock's miss at home to Manchester City in May 2021, although he did net the rebound. Matt Ritchie at Southampton in March 2020 is our last PL spot kick that didn't lead to a goal.

Gordon became the 33rd different Magpie to have taken a penalty for the club in the PL, his effort our 140th award in 1097 games in that competition.

Joe White made his PL debut, the 266th player to appear for Newcastle in that competition and the 109th born in England. The 21 year-old midfielder was first named on the bench in the PL back in September 2021 (away to Manchester United). 

Martin Dubravka
made his 150th appearance for the club, consisting of 139 starts and two as sub in the PL, six in the FAC, two in the LC and one in the CL.

Following four goalless visits, Dominic Solanke netted his first senior goal at Gallowgate - almost exactly nine years after he scored for Chelsea here during an FA Youth Cup tie.

There were two NUFC family connections in the away side - Justin Kluivert, the son of Patrick and Marcus Tavernier, the brother of James. 

Newcastle's last seven PL games have seen no less than 36 goals scored - 17 for and 19 against.

Nottingham Forest (h) lost 1-3
Liverpool (a) lost 2-4
Manchester City (h) lost 2-3
Aston Villa (a) won 3-1
Luton Town (h) drew 4-4
Nottingham Forest (a) won 3-2
Bournemouth (h) drew 2-2


Another goal-laden afternoon at Gallowgate on Saturday left Newcastle unbeaten in four Premier League games, but needing to come from behind twice to secure a point - the second equaliser coming from the unlikely source of Matt Ritchie.

Making one enforced change to the side that scraped a victory at Nottingham Forest the previous Saturday, Harvey Barnes returned for his first start since September as Callum Wilson dropped out with yet another random injury; pectoral tendon damage.

With Alexander Isak not ready to return after his latest breakdown, that left United without one of their two recognised forwards for only the second time in the season. That the first was a rancorous 0-2 reverse at Bournemouth in November didn't really inspire confidence, but if nothing else we'd had a full week to prepare for this second meeting rather than midweek Champions League action.

Anthony Gordon was given the task of leading the attack; Barnes and Miggy Almiron completing a front three that periodically rotated - and by the end of the game had Jacob Murphy at the head.

Given the quantity of goals scored recently in games involving Newcastle, to reach the interval scoreless was mildly surprising. Gordon looked sprightly and headed Kieran Trippier's cross from the right just wide early on before coming agonisingly close to charging down Neto's clearance.  

At the other end the Cherries came even closer, Howe pin-up Dominic Solanke twice denied by Martin Dubravka amid scenes of mild peril as speedy attacks by the visitors left both Dan Burn and Sven Botman struggling to keep pace with their opponents. 

Bournemouth went ahead in farcical fashion six minutes after the restart; pressing the hosts and profiting from Dubravka's disastrous slip when trying to clear Botman's back pass; Solanke grabbing his third goal against us this season from similarly close range to the first pair. 

If this was an audition in front of his future fans, that gloves and short sleeve look isn't a good one, but his ever-present record of 24 starts this season is as enviable as his 14 top-flight goals.

Our recent habit of conceding but quickly atoning at the other end was to continue, albeit after a VAR check in excess of four minutes - enough time for a few folks to empty their bladders without missing anything, although countless others wandered round obliviously all afternoon.

The incident that required scrutiny came when Bruno Guimaraes was squeezed off the ball midway in the Bournemouth half, Trippier's free kick into the box prompting Adam Smith to take a conspicuous handful of Fabian Schar's shirt. 

Initially indicated to have been offside, Schar's protestations to the referee soon caused play to be halted as the review took place - changing images on the big screen indicating that VAR was checking for a foul, offside and then a foul again.

Referee Michael Salisbury was then called to the monitor in front of the East Stand for reruns of the incident before indicating a penalty kick. Post-match analysis confirmed that the offside call against Schar was nullified by the foul on him. 

With Isak and Wilson absent (along with previous penalty takers Joe Willock and Joelinton) Gordon stepped up to fire into the bottom right-hand corner of the net, just beyond goalkeeper Neto.

That brought a slumbering home crowd to life and one excellent run from Bruno almost forced an own goal via Marcos Senesi. Gordon then looked like claiming his second of the game when he strode into the box, only to fail in his attempt to take the ball around the diving Neto.

United were instantly punished when Bournemouth attacked down what's becoming a well-trodden path to the Leazes End goal from the right flank, Antoine Semenyo taking Solanke's pass and advancing before firing past Dubravka on 69 minutes.

Going behind in that fashion saw inevitably Tino Livramento arrive in place of Burn left back but chances to level once again were sparse; fellow substitute Jacob Murphy unable to latch on a forward pass when any sort of bodily contact looked enough to beat Neto.

The ridiculously long VAR inquest for the earlier spot kick saw an additional 10 minutes tagged on - Howe introducing debutant Joe White and Matt Ritchie at the start of that period. Quite what Lewis Hall made of that isn't known, but his lack of pitch time grows ever more mysterious.

An unlikely leveller followed after White drove upfield and the ball was eventually dropped into the area by Bruno for Ritchie to finish at the second attempt with his first goal since July 2020. 

This one replicated the circumstances of the added time leveller against his former club at the Vitality Stadium almost five years ago, but was from rather closer range than that 2019 howitzer.  

While the rest of his colleagues retreated quickly for the restart, a clearly overjoyed Ritchie destroyed the corner flag in the Strawberry Corner in trademark fashion.

However once play did resume, United were unable to complete the turnaround and claim victory - the visitors coming as close to taking all three points before the final whistle sounded. 

Eventful, entertaining and concerning in equal measure - Honestly? that's no bad thing given the beige austerity of previous seasons. Frustration at not being a bit higher up the table is infinitely preferable to the fear of dropping into the bottom three.   

Pint in hand, a semi-serious analysis of Howe's side as the 21st century equivalent of Kevin Keegan's entertainers works partially - although there's a damn sight more tracking back these days. The flawed genius of that side is revered; the hoped-for injection of pragmatism from successor Kenny Dalglish real and the regret that it all imploded ongoing. 

In some ways we've reverted to the consistent inconsistency of even earlier eras, when we were known primarily as a cup side with erratic league form. If a continuance of that takes us back to Wembley in 2024, crack on.   

Much of what unfolded during another eventful contest was known: an inevitable consequence of lacking Nick Pope and Joelinton, persisting with the lumbering Burn and and having no acceptable centre forward cover. The latter shortage saw Ben Parkinson blooded late in the loss at Bournemouth but today the teenage striker was playing - and scoring - against Liverpool U21s across the city. We're still managing to score goals in sizeable quantities, even if we cannot stop conceding.   

Flawed but interesting is an understatement but characterises our form thus far in 2024.  At various points all three outcomes looked feasible today - but whether that scenario will be repeated at Arsenal next Saturday is rather more uncertain. Anyone on for a repeat of 3-7 visit in 2012? 

At least Bruno avoided the booking that would have seen him suspended for the next two games and has now managed five games without censure after six successive yellow cards. Channeling energies more into football and less into histrionics is benefiting us, while Lewis Miley behind and beside him was a joy to watch today and visibly stronger when challenging opponents.   

Whether Fabian Schar joins him in North London remains to be seen though, after he was treated onfield after full time and in discomfort with what was later confirmed to be a wrist problem - a little different to our immediate long-distance diagnosis of Marcelino finger. Dull this isn't.





Page last updated 09 April, 2024