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This Season 
 Match Report 2000-01 - West Ham (h) 
Date: Mon 16th April 2001 3pm.

Venue: St. James' Park 

Conditions: Nothing but Blue Skies....


Newcastle United 2 - 1 West Ham


32 mins. Solano turned back a low right-wing cross to Cort who side-footed a close range volley into the Leazes goal. 1-0

Half time: Newcastle 1 West Ham 0

56 mins. A cross hit the outstretched arm of Nigel Winterburn and Durkin pointed to the spot. Solano calmly slotted the spot-kick to Shaka's right side once Nobby had seen him dive the other way. 2-0

80 mins. A pincer movement by Caldwell and O'Brien on Song in the area was deemed illegal, O'Brien being the main perpetrator, Lampard strode up purposefully and leathered it past Given. 2-1

Full time: Newcastle 2 West Ham 1

We Said

A clearly relieved Uncle Bobby said: 

"We are going to enjoy the victory. It's very important for us. It has ended a poor run, a depressing run, a sad run.

"It has been the worst run that I have had since I came here two years ago, in fact I can't remember ever picking up two points from 21 in my career as a manager.

"I'm glad it's over and we should really now pick up some more points and finish higher than where we are."

Robson then went on to talk about Alan Shearer's condition:

"He's making progress and Mr Steadman's allowed Alan to start a little bit of light training but he does not want it to get warm or flare up again.

"It looks as though he might not be available all season, and he might have to do an operation.

"He will decide whether to operate again or build up his quads and progress with light training."

"In my head I have (written Shearer off for the rest of the season), but he hasn't." 

"If Steadman finds it has settled down, he won't operate unless he needs to because every time the knife goes into you it's a setback."

They Said

Not-so-'Appy 'Arry was asked whether his Irons were safe : 

"Not at all, I wish we were. I think we still need another result.

"Coventry are having a right go and I could see them certainly getting 40 points and I think we need a win still for sure."

"Once we lost Kanoute it was always going to be a struggle. We had no strength up front, no pace, and he's important to us the way we play away from home.

"I had to push Joe Cole up there, he's not a front man and it became more and more difficult."


The World was a younger place, Goma & Dyer were in our lineup and Andy O'Brien was more concerned with the machinations of the Bradford one-way system the last time we won at home.

With the Leeds away victory coming shortly afterwards, Bobby's period in the wilderness had extended to 86 days before Cort and Solano managed to score the goals that beat a frankly stinking West Ham side.

Pre-match portents were good, with the return of Dabizas and absence through suspension of Stuart Pearce, as well as an injury to Di Canio that meant once again, he avoided having to play up North. However, inside ten minutes Newcastle were forced into a change when Barton limped off with an Achilles problem. The omission of Hughes (not picked) and Griffin (groin problem) from the bench meant that Steve Caldwell made his entrance, and yet another new defensive lineup was chalked up.

After one or two miscues, Caldwell contributed to the United victory from his unfamiliar right full back position, and when Mr Solano deigned to  join him out on the flanks, things started to get moving. With Acuna also out of the starting lineup, Speed was able to revert to his more usual game of linking up with the forwards, not having to worry about stray Chileans haring upfield. Alongside him was Bassedas, who impressed for a change and probably deserves to retain his place in the side.

With the game kicking off in virtual silence and a noticeable lack of atmosphere evident, it was as well that the Magpies scored first, and the ball in from Nobby was a beauty, meeting Cort's boot as the forward struck his third comeback goal with a well-timed run.

Given in the United goal was a virtual spectator, as Dabizas especially set about his task with determination and glee, his hard tackling approach not the expected action of a man returning to the fray after an eight month absence. The Hammers didn't seem to be able to raise themselves after the opening goal, and their second half showing was little better. The much-hyped Joe Cole appeared to be averse to passing the ball (the white LuaLua?), while returning Geordie Michael Carrick won't look back on this display with any satisfaction.

After the penalty award and Solano's strike, for a brief period the visitors threatened to cave in completely, with the determined though not especially fleet-of-foot Gallacher causing havoc and unlucky not to add a third. Shaka Hislop, who had been well received by the toon fans both before the start and when he took up his position for the second half in the Gallowgate goal, also made a crucial save from Cort.

With things going so well, Shay Given might have been forgiven for thinking that this was the day that he finally kept a clean sheet at club level, but almost inevitably he was beaten from the penalty spot, the fourth such award in five games. That was the signal for a last ten minutes that had frantic patches, but never really saw West Ham manage to threaten an equaliser despite throwing men blindly forward.

Newcastle looked once or twice as if they would punish the visitors on the break, but didn't quite mange to, substitute Acuna failing to tumble over the line with the ball from close range - perhaps we might have got a try for that one......

With the unwashed from down the road losing again and yet more scandal concerning their players about to hit the streets, this victory couldn't have come at a better time, and we can only hope that it's the springboard for a creditable performance down there next Saturday.

As well as local pride, I feel a strong sense of civic duty for my fellow EU citizens, and firmly believe that we should do everything possible to prevent the mackems from despoiling European cities next season. This country has a bad enough reputation without unleashing hordes of ne'er do wells on the European mainland, with their own particular brand of Royston Vasey parochialism. And nasty cheap trousers.  

PS - aside from the scoreline, the highlight of the day has to be the frank exchange of views in the second half between a Milburn Stand fan and Nigel Winterburn. Said aged player was waiting for the trainer to leave the field before taking a throw-in when he was distracted by one of our fans, who appeared to be blowing kisses to him. Winterburn singularly failed to see the funny side of this, and appeared to pass a few comments, which resulted in the crowd in that area joining the kiss blower in winding up the by-now obviously agitated Winterburn. 

He eventually took the throw and cocked it up, but was allowed to continue by an equally flustered referee, who then took the opportunity to have a quiet word with the player. All harmless and frankly hilarious stuff, and a good deal better than chucking petrol bombs....            



Page last updated 14 July, 2016