19th December 2015, 5.30pm. Live on Sky Sports
Venue: St. James' Park
Conditions: Not quite Brunton Park, but on the wet side of
soggy and looking in danger of an abandonment before the interval.
1 - 1
38 mins In driving rain, substitute Aleksander Mitrovic reached Jack
Colback's free kick from the right flank to head goalwards, Brad Guzan tipping it over
for a flag kick in Strawberry corner.
What looked like a poor delivery from Siem De Jong skidded across the Villa
finding an unmarked Fabricio Coloccini who hit a firm low shot from
eight yards that went through Guzan
and found the back of the Gallowgate goal. 1-0
Half time: Magpies 1 Villans 0
61 mins Visiting substitute
Rudy Gestede made a
ridiculous two-handed push on Chancel Mbemba that went unpunished and won a
corner that Colback cleared at the near post. There didn't seem much
danger when Jordan Veretout's inswinging cross from the right reached Jordan
Ayew towards the edge of the box, but with Daryl Janmaat opting not to track
him, the former Marseille player turned to sweep
an excellent effort over the helpless Rob Elliot and into the top corner.
Full time: Magpies 1 Villans
Steve McClaren - who really should have had a brolly - said:
"I have just seen it again (De Jong's miss) I have seen him
thousands of times just put that in. I don't know, he was maybe unsighted - I
think the defender just got across - but it was kind of the defining
"Two minutes later, they go and equalise and then we have a bad 10-minute
spell. But then I thought we recovered well from that and really went for the
game at the end and again had two good chances with Gini and Ayoze.
"So it's frustration, for definite, but the players - we should win that
game with the chances. But that's football and sometimes you do, sometimes you
"I must say from where we were to where we are finishing at Christmas,
it's a lot healthier and the key thing is the attitude of the players.
"They are staying in the game, they are fighting for 95 minutes, they are
finishing games strong - they did last week and won the game there, and
nearly did it this week. But we'll take seven from nine and move on.
"They know when their team don’t try and don’t put the effort in and
don’t show attitude and don’t want to win the game.
"We were going forward at the end, we opened the game up, put a wide
player on for a defensive player and wanted to win the game and went for the
game so I was a little surprised.
“But you know you are always going to
get that in football and you can’t satisfy everybody. We have to overcome
the emotional fragility of the crowd and I thought we did that to a large
extent as we did against Tottenham and in the previous two games.
“We are trying to convince them to fight
and come through it and see what you can do and conditions were really poor to
play good football which is what we like to do and the players did well in it
"Everybody is beating everybody else
and you should show no disrespect to anyone else, no matter how many points
they’ve got because it is so tight and it’s not a given to win any game,
as we have seen with some of the results today and a lot of away wins, but I
think you will find that, although it may even itself out towards the end of
"But we are growing, we are getting
better, we continue the run, we would have taken seven from nine and we move
on to Everton.
"We’ve got the points, the
performances and the way the team is fighting, ten-12 games ago after
conceding, you could tell there was nervousness, we came back from that which
pleased me and we had chances to win the game at the end and it’s
frustrating we never.”
“We are not at that level yet but that
is the level you want to get to. We have a certain strategy and game plan in
each game and that does not necessarily mean controlling a game through
"Sometimes we are a better team when we are breaking, as we saw again on
Saturday. We are trying to get that balance between the two so we are growing,
developing, we are not there yet but as long as we keep battling and picking
up the points and always being competitive.
"Every manager says they could be
doing this and that in their interviews, in the last two weeks with Liverpool
and Spurs and previous to that we were talking about eight games, 13 points,
we had two bad performances.
"Of course it is going to be nervy
and that ebbs through from the whole stadium. You can feel the tension in
certain spells of the game but the one thing I did like was the way they did
"We had a bad 10-15 minutes and
overcame it and finished the game strong and that pleased me because I thought
ten games ago we would have lost that game.”
Remi Garde said:
"You know, maybe this is the point that we will need at the end of the
season, and then I want to be optimistic regarding the way we reacted in the
"Of course if you look at the first half, obviously for me it's a lack of
confidence of my players coming into the game and saying, 'We don't know
exactly what is going on'.
"When you are bottom of the league, the confidence is not straight away
within the game. We have to battle for that and when we are in a situation
where we have nothing to lose, we start to play and that was the case this
"The difficulty is to do it for 90 minutes, this is our problem currently,
to play a whole football game with intensity, to win the duels at the start
of the game.
"We have to work on that and the next game will be very important, it's
very, very important for us."
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Villa haven't beaten Newcastle on Tyneside since the infamous Dyer/Bowyer
"fight" game in April 2005, when we finished with eight men and lost 0-3.
Since then we've won six and drawn four.
Our last defeat anywhere to this lot came at Villa Park back in April
2010 when we lost 0-1. Since then there have been five Newcastle
victories and four draws.
Todays' failure to collect three points means that Newcastle have
failed to register back to back home victories during the whole of 2015.
Fabricio Coloccini scored
his first competitive senior goal since November 2014 and his seventh
for the club in all competitions:
Sep 2009 Cardiff City (a) header (won
Feb 2010 Watford (a) header (won 2-1) CH
Oct 2010 Wigan (h) header (drew 2-2) PL
Jan 2011 Spurs (h) shot (drew 1-1) PL
Sep 2011 Forest (a) header (won 4-3) LC
Nov 2014 West Brom (a) header (won 2-0) PL
Dec 2015 Aston Villa (h) shot (drew 1-1) PL
For the third successive meeting of these sides at SJP, both sides
had different managers: (2013/14 Alan Pardew v Paul Lambert, 2014/15 John
Carver v Tim Sherwood, 2015/16 Steve McClaren v Remi Garde).
Villans @ SJP - Premier
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 Venison, Beardsley 2
1993/94: Won 5-1 Bracewell, Beardsley 2, Cole, Sellars
Full record against Villa:
Hopes of a third successive win for Newcastle drained away at a saturated
St. James' Park on Saturday, as the Premier League's basement side came from
behind to salvage a point in the live TV teatime kick-off.
Winless in 15 games, Villa deservedly trailed at half time, although all
United had to show for their efforts was a Fabricio Coloccini shot following
a corner seven minutes before the interval.
At that point the chief obstacle to Steve McClaren's hopes of securing
all three points looked to be the Tyneside weather - with a downpour of
increasing volume leaving the pitch sodden and visibly impeding both sets of
players at times as the ball began to stick in one or two areas.
Thankfully the rain abated in the second half and allowed the game to
finish, but Villa got back on level terms thanks to an unstoppable effort by
Jordan Ayew that flew past Rob Elliot.
That came just moments after Siem De Jong had missed a glaring chance to
double his side's lead, heading Georginio Wijnaldum's deep cross wide from
point-blank range. The Dutchman later found it necessary to apologise via
twitter - an unnecessary gesture, but one that will probably become
compulsory within a season or two.....
Going in search of a winner at 101, Gini himself finished the move of the
match by shooting weakly at a grateful Brad Guzan. And when Moussa Sissoko
broke into the Villa box from the right flank late on, Ayoze Perez looked
odds-on to reprise his last-gasp winner at Spurs a week earlier - only to
blaze his shot harmlessly over the crossbar.
A result that most of Tyneside feared after our recent unexpected
resurgence could have been even more damaging had the visitors taken
advantage of their superiority at 1-1, substitute striker Rudy Gestede
becoming the latest average front man to unnerve our centre-back pairing.
For United, Papiss Cisse supplied the only two moments of goalmouth
incident in the first half hour with two headers, but was forced off through
injury and replaced by Aleksandar Mitrovic - who found the going rather too
soft for his liking after a header forced the corner from which we scored.
The Serbian Mark McGhee may be getting fitter but his hold-up play still
needs a lot of work and doesn't seem happy with balls played up to his head
and rarely bothers to leave the ground. Today he was dragged into a battle
with defender Joleon Lescott and his preoccupation with him meant that the
position of the ball became something of an afterthought.
Criticised for a cautious approach in some quarters, McClaren attempted to
boost his side's attacking options by introducing Florian Thauvin - who
seemed excited by the surf-like conditions and was soon aqua-planing through
a puddle. His attempts at tackling were little better than the crosses that
he served up however, with no hint that they were anything other than
random. We had a lad who could do that and cost a damn sight less, Sammy
Elsewhere there weren't many great individual performances, although
swamp-like conditions made it difficult for anyone to shine. Sissoko still
looks to be sulking when played out wide and his decision-making about when
to charge forward and take on multiple opponents remains questionable.
Pushed out towards the opposite flank and equally peripheral for the most
part, Wijnaldum's display echoed his seen away from home, drifting in and
out of the game, rather than taking it by the scruff of the neck. And
although he gave the appearance of gliding across the sodden surface when
others plodded, many of his flicks and tricks were superfluous and inferior
to a simple, accurate pass.
Some mild booing at the end was a measure of the frustration felt by many
fans and clearly irked McClaren who rightly stressed his satisfaction with
the effort levels of his players today, compared to home games earlier this
Had we drawn at Spurs last Sunday and won today, then our points tally would
be identical to what it is now - only in rather more expected circumstances.
But in typical United fashion, we did things backwards and came home with a
scalp only to slip up in our backyard - something that goes far
further back than this manager, this owner or these players. Maybe it is
just in the DNA.
Wins for Chelsea, Norwich and Bournemouth earlier in the day saw United
gain a point but drop to seventeenth. However, Swansea's 0-0 home draw with
West Ham on Sunday meant that we at least avoided falling into the bottom
three for Christmas. Failing to beat Villa leaves us two points worse off
than after seventeen games of the 2008/09 season.
At this stage, the mackems and Villa look to be in sufficient peril that
it would be a disaster to be overtaken by either of them - this result today
doing nothing to help Remi Garde's plight and the requirement to deprive the
red and whites of three points by winning a derby as important as increasing
our own points tally and self-respect.
However, Bournemouth's unbelievable run without their best players and
Swansea's squad strength ahead of a new managerial arrival leaves us looking
back when thoughts of upward movement after three wins on the bounce should
have been occupying us. Seeing the likes of Leicester and Watford firmly in
the top half of the table adds to the confusion, but Chelsea's proximity to
us may not be a feature of the league table for much longer.
He may have bemoaned De Jong's miss, but this result probably didn't
surprise the head coach, who previously spoke of the ups and downs he
expects this season and saw the inadequacies of the squad he inherited
demonstrated once again, albeit with greater spirit evident.
Nice though the Liverpool and Spurs results were, he'll be in no doubt that
there's work to do in the next transfer window, as was the case in when
January 2013 brought an influx of players to boost a side who had 20 points
when Auld Lang Syne was sung. Ahead of Everton and Albion we have 17.