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Season 2014-15
Manchester City (a) Premier League

In association 

Saturday 21st February 2015, 5.30pm.
Live on Sky Sports

Etihad Stadium

normal service resumed

£44 (£45 in 2013/14)

£3.50 for a shrink-wrapped edition that came in handy during the pre-match hailstorm....


Manchester City


Newcastle United

5 - 0




2 mins Vurnon Anita mis-controlled a pass from Mike Williamson on the edge of his own box and let in Edin Dzeko. Attempting to make amends, a clumsy barge sent the City striker tumbling and gave referee Chris Foy no alternative than to award a spot-kick after just 26 seconds. 

Sergio Aguero left Tim Krul rooted to his line with the penalty kick after 72 seconds, notching up his fifth goal against Newcastle in seven appearances for the Citizens

12 mins
Samir Nasri virtually ended the contest when he had time to take a touch after Dzeko's pass reached him via Williamson before firing past Krul with ease 0-2

21 mins
Dzeko ghosted behind a particularly ragged backline into the box, controlling David Silva's precise ball (possibly with his arm) and stroking it past Krul. 0-3

Half time: City 3 United 0

51 mins Aguero embarked on a lung-busting run upfield before playing the ball to Nasri, who in turn found Silva in space by the penalty spot. Without further ado, he thumped a low shot past Krul  0-4

53 mins Yaya Toure's forward chip found Aguero who chested the ball back for Silva to drill the ball past Krul again. 0-5

Full time: City 5 United

We Said

John Carver


"An apology, first of all.

"We all know we have a fantastic following, they were behind the team, but when you concede that early goal, it is disheartening. They kept staying behind us and kept singing.

"We weren't great, we came up against a top side. I have seen better sides than us come here and get a hiding.
My job now is, do I sulk and start talking behind people's backs? Do the players start talking behind people's backs? I hope not.

"We will have a discussion on Monday and air our differences, talk about today's performance and then take that forward into the game against Aston Villa.

"No matter what you plan during the week, when you concede a penalty within the first minute, more or less straight from the kick-off, then you are on a hiding to nothing.

"To concede a penalty in the manner we did is really annoying and frustrating.

"Then all of a sudden we concede another. Within the first 10 minutes of any game you should try and stay in the game and play in their half. We didn't do that."

On Daryl Janmaat:

"He has got a tight groin. I donít think heís too serious at the moment but it is tight and we took him off as a precaution. You know me, Iím not going to make excuses, Iíll deal with it and just have to adjust accordingly, just get on with it.Ē

Ryan Taylor added:

"We went into the game full of confidence after winning here back in October in the cup, but our confidence was zapped within a minute.  We thought they might have an eye on their game against Barcelona and that we could capitalise on that, but we shot ourselves in the foot and everyone's faces tell the story.

"Being 3-0 down at half-time, we wanted to go out and try to win the second half. We wanted a goal to try and build our confidence back up, but it just wasn't to be.

"They scored early on and then got their fifth within another minute or two, and you look at yourselves and think 'hang on, let's not make this embarrassing'. I wasn't on the pitch at the time but it was tough to take, even as a substitute. 

For me, it was pleasing to get back on the pitch. I love playing for this football club and have done since the day I signed. I was given the chance to play about 20 minutes and it was nice to be back out there, although not in the circumstances of the game.

"We can build confidence through the week on the training pitch. We have to put it right against Villa and get three points for the fans, because we let them down. All we can do is apologise and try to correct it for them next Saturday."

They Said


Manuel Pellegrini said:

"Of course was a good day because we won our game but (it was) not only (that) we won, (but also that) we returned to being a scoring team here at the Etihad and we repeated our last performance against Stoke.

"We were a solid team and an aggressive team from the beginning.

"For Edin
(Dzeko) it is very important. Maybe one of the things that happened in January was that Edin was just coming back from a long injury and Sergio Aguero was also. Both of them, the way they had minutes, will help them return to their normal performance.

"Edin not only scored but worked very well the whole game.

"The experience is always important but I think all the teams will drop points from now until the end of the season so we will see which team will drop least points."



Carver first eight games: lost 4, drawn 3, won 1
Pardew last eight games: lost 5, drawn 1, won 2

Newcastle were beaten by Manchester City in the Premier League for an eleventh successive game and haven't taken a point off them since a 2-2 draw on Tyneside back in October 2008.

Since Demba Ba headed past Joe Hart at the Gallowgate End in December 2012, The Magpies have failed to score against City in the Premier League, a barren run stretching to 489 minutes

Sergio AgŁeroís 72 second penalty conversion was the second fastest in Premier League history, only beaten by the 60 seconds it took Stuart Pearce to register for Nottingham Forest away to Aston Villa in October 1994. At least one person witnessed both: Steve Stone was playing for Forest in 1994 and part of Newcastle's coaching staff today.

Conceding three goals in the first quarter of a Premier League game may be painful to watch, but sadly not unknown for Newcastle, especially at this time of year:

Feb 1995 QPR (a) 4,7,18 (lost 0-3)
Nov 2007 Portsmouth (h) 8,9,11 (lost 1-4)
Feb 2011 Arsenal (h) 1,3,10 (drew 4-4)
Feb 2012 Spurs (a) 4,6,20 (lost 0-5)
Feb 2015 Manchester City (a) 2,12,21 (lost 0-5) 

Newcastle suffered their biggest defeat of the season, conceding five goals for the first time since Liverpool knocked in six without reply at Gallowgate in April 2013. Away from home this was and our largest losing margin since a 0-5 reverse at Spurs in February 2011

United also conceded three goals in one half for the first time since Manchester United turned a 0-1 half time advantage into a 0-4 full time outcome at SJP in April 2014. They'd done exactly the same thing a week earlier in March 2014 at Southampton.

Heaviest NUFC PL defeats:

2007/08 0-6 Manchester United (a)
2012/13 0-6 Liverpool (h)
2000/01 0-5 Arsenal (a)
2003/04 0-5 Chelsea (a)
2011/12 0-5 Spurs (a)
2014/15 0-5 Manchester City (a)

Jack Colback's tenth yellow card of the season gave him an automatic two game ban.

Ryan Taylor made his fourth senior appearance of the season, but the first since November after recovering from a fresh knee injury sustained in that game. He's played a total of 151 minutes in those four games and United have failed to concede a goal during that time. 

City v United - PL era:

Lost 0-5
Won 2-0 Aarons, Sissoko (LC)
Lost 0-4
2012/13 Lost 0-4
2011/12 Lost 1-3 Gosling
2010/11 Lost 1-2 Gutierrez
2008/09 Lost 1-2 Carroll
2007/08 Lost 1-3 Martins
2006/07 Drew 0-0
2005/06 Lost 0-3
2004/05 Drew 1-1 Shearer
2003/04 Lost 0-1
2002/03 Lost 0-1
2000/01 Won 1-0 Shearer
1995/96 Drew 3-3 Albert 2, Asprilla
1994/95 Drew 0-0
1993/94 Lost 1-2 Sellars
1993/94 Drew 1-1 Jeffrey (LC)

(games before 2003/04 at Maine Road)

Complete record versus Manchester City:



Football may be experiencing an unwelcome resurgence of racism, but Newcastle did their bit to promote multiculturalism here on Saturday. Rather than donning T-shirts or holding banners though, John Carver's side posted a performance seemingly inspired by the Chinese New Year of the sheep.

We may have lost by greater margins and endured more gut-wrenching and unexpected reverses on many other occasions, but in terms of a mismatch then this was almost without parallel. To claim that the penalty took the wind out of our sails assumes that we weren't already becalmed and the meek and miserable response to conceding. Lambs to the slaughter - although it's mostly mutton.

Despite protestations to the contrary from Barrack Road, this season is following exactly the same pattern as the last one - and there's not even the excuse of their talismanic colleague being sold (Cabaye) this time round to account for the mass mournfulness. The departure of Pardew had seemed to offer an opportunity for reassessment but at best that has been adjourned until the summer - or ignored totally, in the mistaken assumption that wasn't broken didn't need fixing.

Having trimmed the squad to the bone and beyond, those players left have almost all become "the first name on the teamsheet" by default, a lack of options meaning only injury will see changes to substantial parts of the lineup - certainly not a loss of form. 

Like loaning Davide Santon, signing crocks, loaning duck eggs and making no attempt at recruitment in January, none of this fits in with the club's stated ambition of aiming to finish as high up the league as possible. Our new club motto? "aut quod melius quartus" (fourth bottom or better). 

Much was made of our preparations for this match by the press, but the game plan mentioned can only be who was playing dominoes on the team bus, or whether the chippy at Wetherby would still be open. Such is the lack of defenders that we couldn't play five at the back if we wanted to....  

Our unlikely triumph at this venue in the League Cup last year was due in no small part to good fortune - along with competence, concentration and effort - but despite the magnitude of this loss, United should still consider themselves to have had a further rub of the Etihad green today.  

Had it not been for the impending visit of Barcelona in the Champions League and the delayed debut of £28m acquisition Wilfried Bony, then this could have gone from a stuffing to a massacre. Five goals down before the hour mark, those financing the spread betting / in play markets could be excused for putting the farm on Pellegrini's forces continuing to keep the scoreboard ticking over.

The lack of a sixth, seventh or even eighth goal was down to the home side decelerating rather than some new-found defensive prowess on our part: the City women's team playing across the road today would have fancied their chances against us. Although ending up just three goals shy of title rivals Chelsea, City may yet regret not keeping the hammer down.

Going five down did prompting some speculation as to whether a) our worst Premier League return was in danger and b) how many we'd need to concede for someone to suggest a refund for the away fans (answers: a) seven at Arsenal b) you're at the wrong club. 

Perez had presumably forgotten his PE kit and been punished by banishment to the left wing, while messrs Ameobi and Obertan looked on from the bench. The ruination of our Spaniard continues and Riviere's next move looks to be as a catwalk model for tracksuits. 

Our offensive threat consisted of a few forward forays from Moussa Sissoko, a long-range whistler from Janmaat and a first time volley from Papiss Cisse early in the second half: the latter the only genuine threat to Joe Hart's successful quest to register his first clean sheet in eleven attempts.

Forced to reckon without Jack Colback for the next two games and with no sign of the Ivorian bigamist, Carver did give Mehdi Abeid the second half to get back up to speed and hopefully the free transfer signing did enough to rise above the £8m Dutch duffer in the pecking order.  

If there was any uplifting moment at all - apart from the final whistle - then seeing Ryan Taylor return to the fray provided it. This  drubbing left United stuck in 11th and with a severely dented goal difference, but still ten points clear of the bottom three. No panic then, at least until April.

And what of the coach? Despite the cringeworthy efforts of some local journalists to portray him as a man for all seasons, his side remain unconvincing and his public unconvinced. It may well matter to him, but it's getting harder to fight off the rising tide of indifference on and off the field. 

Comments about Alan Pardew's failure at NUFC being due to his southern roots meanwhile undermine Carver's claims to understand his fellow supporters. That regional mistrust may well still apply to a section of the support, but it's a provincial, narrow-minded attitude that's hardly representative.  

It's also a blatant two fingers to those lads and lasses who absorb ever-increasing costs and travel complications to support the team home and away from Essex, Kent, Surrey and beyond. Geordies are black and white - and some of them have dodgy accents.  

Dusting off the defence mounted when similar charges were levied by misinformed hacks; messrs Ferdinand, Peacock, Lee, Macdonald, Roeder and Varadi didn't seem to noticeably suffer when on the books, because they happened to pronounce Newcastle with an R. If Carver genuinely believes that was the root of the bedsheet protests and abuse, then he wants to try speaking to the people who traipse around the country paying to watch this glorified pub team.   

The unexpected show of support from within the club for Carver following the "Pardew in disguise" chant at Selhurst Park meanwhile succeeded only in highlighting something that most folks missed. 
A brief chant carried off by the breeze at the fag end of a forgettable midweek encounter seems to have assumed artificial importance. To what end remains unclear. 

Doubtless our viewpoint here will alter once the extra tier is complete and capacity goes to 62,000, assuming we're still in the same league of course. Even from the very back row of the highest tier though, it would be apparent that something is fundamentally wrong with our approach. Or maybe this is just the consequence of removing competitiveness and making the season meaningless.

There may well be a massive gulf in finance between the teams, but for there to be a similar gap in attitude and aptitude is completely unacceptable. This was utter tripe and symptomatic of a drift even from the first weeks of Carver's time at the helm, when we at least tried against Chelsea. 


Page last updated 06 September, 2015