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Newcastle 2 Sunderland 0

Newcastle
2 - 0
Sunderland

Sid James Park

20th April 2008 13:30

Attendance: 52305

Referee:

Any defeat is hard to stomach but a defeat to your bitterest rivals is even harder to take.

The first half was basically a non-event with Sunderland gifting a 4-minute goal to Newcastle`s Michael Owen. The England front man converted a pinpoint accurate cross after he ghosted in behind McShane.

The first four minutes were to become a reflection of the whole of the first half with Sunderland giving Newcastle too much time on the ball by not closing them down.

Newcastle extended their lead just before the break when Sunderland conceded a penalty. Higginbotham was adjudged to have handled in the box as Owen tried to get past him. Owen converted from the spot, as Gordon`s touch couldn`t keep his powerful shot out.

Roy Keane`s half time team talk must have done the trick as his side came out after the break a much-improved side.

With his side passing the ball around a lot more fluently Whitehead, Collins and Jones all came close to scoring a Sunderland an equaliser but all their efforts were blocked by a resilient defence.

Sunderland`s first clear cut chance of the second half came when Collins wiped in a cross for Jones to head goal bound only for Harper to save.

Gordon then made a great save to deny Martins

Jones had another great header saved by Harper after Miller`s bended cross-evaded all of Newcastle`s defence.

Sunderland`s last chance came when Miller put his long-range shot is high and wide.

Sunderland were by far the better side in the second half but found Harper in fine form to be equal to everything they tried.


Sunderland Line Up 4-5-1

Gordon 7
McShane 3 (Harte 6)
Nosworthy 5
Higginbotham 5
Collins 4
Edwards 5 (Richardson 5)
Whitehead 5
Miller 5
Reid 6
Murphy 4 (Chopra 6)
Jones 6


Subs not used

Fulop
Leadbitter

Star Player

Craig Gordon - The best of a bad bunch made some great save to deny Martins and almost saved Owen`s penalty.

Vital Sunderland Says

We weren`t at the races in the first half and we paid the price for some sloppy defending. In the second half was a case of too little too late, as we couldn`t turn our pressure into goals.

Evans and Bardsley were a big miss at the back as we started to leak sloppy goals in their absence. Top priority for Keane has to be to sign Evans in the summer.


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Writer:KEV1N
Date:Sunday April 20 2008
Time: 11:04PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Leicester City 38 23 12 3 81 32
2 Arsenal 38 20 11 7 71 29
3 Spurs 38 19 13 6 70 34
4 Man City 38 19 9 10 66 30
5 Man Utd 38 19 9 10 66 14
6 Southampton 38 18 9 11 63 18
7 West Ham 38 16 14 8 62 14
8 Liverpool 38 16 12 10 60 13
9 Stoke 38 14 9 15 51 -14
10 Chelsea 38 12 14 12 50 6
11 Everton 38 11 14 13 47 4
12 Swansea 38 12 11 15 47 -10
13 Watford 38 12 9 17 45 -10
14 WBA 38 10 13 15 43 -14
15 Crystal Palace 38 11 9 18 42 -12
16 AFC Bournemouth 38 11 9 18 42 -22
17 Sunderland 38 9 12 17 39 -14
R Newcastle 38 9 10 19 37 -21
R Norwich 38 9 7 22 34 -28
R Aston Villa 38 3 8 27 17 -49
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