Saturday 11th August 2007, 3pm
Venue: Reebok Stadium
Admission: £32 Upper, £24 Lower
(£39 upper last season)
1 - 3
11mins N'Zogbia's free kick from distance eluded everyone
including Jaaskelainen as it looped into the net 1-0
21 mins We went further ahead in a move that had its origins in
the inability of Milner to give anything up as a lost cause.
His chasing down near the corner flag ultimately led to United obtaining
possession and the winger crossing from the left for Martins to chest
the ball down and then convert a memorable close -range bicycle kick 2-0
27mins Before the half hour, the travelling support at the opposite
end of the ground were in dreamland as Martins made it three. His low
shot that took a deflection that, while not enough to deflect from its
goalbound path, stranded Jaaskelainen 3-0
Half time: Bolton 0 Newcastle 3
50 mins From our corner Bolton broke upfield after an off-balance Geremi
couldn't block McCann. Anelka slid the ball past Harper from an angle
for what was a virtual replica of his FA Cup Final goal against us (past
Given) for Arsenal in 1998 1-3
Full time: Bolton 1 Newcastle 3
is a great start to the season for me and my players.
"The application by the players was terrific and I think that the
quality of the finishing was the difference between the two teams.
"I'm not sure what level these players are at yet but they are
starting to hit a standard I don't want them to drop. These are the standards we have to set ourselves for the rest of the
"I have to admit I was a little more edgy and nervous than usual. To
bring my Newcastle side here against my old club where I still have so many
friends was special.
"The quality of our finishing was first-class, particularly with the
first two goals. When I arrived at Bolton in 1999, I started winning matches. I
will do the same at Newcastle even if it might take a year or two to get exactly
where we want to be."
"I left Bolton in the best state they've ever been. I thought the booing from the fans was banter. I waved to the
Newcastle fans and they responded.
"I want to improve Newcastle to a point where they
haven’t been before. With the support of the owner and chairman, the club
is moving forward very quickly.
“I am 40% where I want to be. There is another
60% to go and I have got to buy myself some time to get there. It is about winning matches and we have managed to
“When I took over at Bolton in 1999 we never stopped
winning and that gave me the chance to build a fantastic structure at the club.
Responding to pre-match comments from Bolton chairman Phil Gartside:
"He believes I've done things that I haven't, he's got obsessed by it but
he shouldn't; life moves on, I've moved on and the club's moved on.
"I've given him a great platform to continue the success I brought,
so I don't know why he is so critical.
"I've been very disappointed in a lot of the comments he has made but
my actions spoke louder than words. I've kept my mouth shut and we've come here
and played them off the park and won the game.
"I'm just looking forward and not back now."
Little Sam commented:
"We didn't start in that first 45 minutes. I thought we got the
response we wanted in the second half, but we've been talking about playing,
playing, playing and you wouldn't have seen much evidence of that in the first
"Maybe we got lost in the irony in that
first 45 minutes and I can understand that. It was a big occasion for everybody.
It's always an anxious time going into the first game of the season; you wonder
if you've pitched it right and obviously we hadn't in that first half.
"I understand the occasion and I think
it had an adverse effect on us, but I'm just pleased that we showed in the
second half that, when we get the ball down and play, we're a lot more effective
than when we go direct.
"It's always a factor when people you
train with all week don't play. But we've got a squad here to cover that and I
don't want to make excuses.
"Dioufy was excellent when he came on,
as the whole team were. In the first 45 we all looked like 11 strangers but in
the second half we were more cohesive and looked more of a team."
Toon @ Trotters - Premiership:
2007/08: Won 3-1 N'Zogbia, Martins 2
Lost 1-2 Dyer
2005/06: Lost 0-2 No scorer
2004/05: Lost 1-2 Ambrose
2003/04: Lost 0-1
2002/03: Lost 3-4 Shearer 2, Ameobi
2001/02: Won 4-0 Solano, Robert, Shearer, Bellamy
1997/98: Lost 0-1
1995/96: Won 3-1 Ferdinand 2, Lee
Full record against Bolton:
Four debutants - messrs Rozehnal, Smith,
Geremi and Viduka took the total number of players to have appeared
for us in the Premiership to 133.
A fifth new recruit - Claudio Cacapa - was an unused sub.
Geremi was made Captain and became the first Cameroonian player to
appear in our colours.
By our calculation he thus became the 37th nationality to appear for us in the
Premiership (listed here in numerical order):
Republic of Ireland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Argentina,
Australia, Czech Republic, Greece, Italy,
Portugal, Spain, Belgium, Brazil, Cameroon, Canada, Chile,
Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Democratic Republic of Congo,
Georgia, Germany, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, South Africa, Senegal,
Sweden, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, USA.
results - NUFC Managers:
Sam Allardyce - Bolton (a) won 3-1
Glenn Roeder - Portsmouth (h) won 2-0
Graham Souness - Bnei Sakhin (h) won 2-0
Bobby Robson - Chelsea (a) lost 0-1
Ruud Gullit - Aston Villa (a) lost 0-1
Kenny Dalglish - Charlton (h) won 2-1
Kevin Keegan - Bristol City (h) won 3-0
Ossie Ardiles - Bristol Rovers (h) lost 0-2
Jim Smith - Wimbledon (h) won 2-1
Charles N'Zogbia's goal saw the Frenchman repeating his feat of scoring
the first one under a new Toon manager, after doing the trick for
Roeder against Pompey.
Our opening goal in this game was the 800th we've scored in the
And yes, after the first round of Premiership games we are top of
The last time we can find us in that spot was after beating West Ham
4-0 at SJP in our opening fixture of season 2002/03.
The last time we scored three goals in one half away from home (or
three goals in a match away from home) was in the 4-1 victory at the
Mackems - when Zog was also among the scorers and the referee was also
No sign of wantaways Luque or Dyer - the former allegedly set to leave
for Levante, the latter not in the right frame of mind to play
according to Sam after the collapse of his Hammers move.
Our typically weak punning headline for this one spoke of Sam Missiles, but
perhaps a more accurate parallel could be drawn with that old Strongbow cider
commercial where three arrows land in quick succession.
Yes, Bolton's defence were short-handed and saddled with more leaks than a Max Boyce convention - a
situation hardly improved forty eight hours later by their acquisition of the
willing but limited Andy O'Brien.
But regardless of whatever staffing issues the Trotters had, Allardyce's new
charges were in the mood to wreak havoc from the off and rode the tide of good
fortune that came their way in a first half that had both sets of fans rubbing
their eyes in disbelief.
Three strikes and you're out indeed - and in the bizarre world of Newcastle
United, the two scorers were the same pair who went AWOL at Watford in the final
game of last season and have spent most of the close season being linked with
moves away from Tyneside.
Boardroom-led, pre-match propaganda had attempted to underplay Sam's role in the
21st Century Bolton revival, inferring that fans, players and officials were
relieved he'd slung his hook to leave them to push onwards and upwards.
Unfortunately that defiance/delusion failed to transmit itself to the ticket
office or home dressing room, with empty spaces evident on all sides of the
former and fitful contributions from many of the latter.
Even the trademark physicality of previous seasons was lost from the Trotters,
who preferred to leave the hockler Diouf on the bench until the second half -
when he showed a damn sight more fight and commitment than most of his
colleagues, even if well shacked by our lot.
Sam appeared pitchside at the restart, but no sooner had he succumbed to the
"give us a wave" cries from the away end than his old side
For a while that buoyed the home crowd and a slight unease could perhaps be
detected among those well versed in the art of watching Newcastle sides
However that feeling gradually melted away as Bolton failed to find any
meaningful width or service to Anelka and we coped with their aimless long punts
The departure of Speed with quarter of an hour remaining ended any lingering
hopes that his side had of clawing their way back into this game, as Newcastle
sat in midfield and contented themselves with trying to set Shola away.
Unsuccessfully. Now where's that hip grease?
After a sweltering afternoon, the absence of a midweek fixture for us in either
league or Europe may be a blessing, allowing the players recovery time from
their opening day exertions.
The free week before Villa also gives us a further opportunity to integrate
recent signings and chase further new faces, as well as see the injury list
And of course there's always the post-match analysis and Prozone stats to be
looked at in this new world.
After the comparative famines of recent times this was a fabulous result on many
levels - taking points from a place where we've tossed away the last fifteen,
registering an away win of any description and collecting a maximum points return
on opening day.
But while much ballyhoo surrounded the return of Allardyce, for the supporters
of his new side, the venue and the occasion were of secondary importance -
lagging way behind
the instant coherence of the performance, the hints at planning &
organisation (revolutionary!) and the sheer entertainment value of the first
Nineteen away games in the Premiership last season saw us register a measly
fifteen goals - something that caused some of the most romanticised Magpie
diehards to adopt a pragmatic stance and start making value judgements about
turning out and parting with their hard-earned.
Quite simply, we weren't worth watching.
Today was all about getting a little pride and belief back - and a renewed
sense of optimism that seemed utterly impossible in those miserable final games
of last season when we lacked the talent, motivation or application to give
Blackburn and Watford a game.
The earliest of early days then but none the less heartening for that. Biffa