Late Solano Strike Saves Newcastle Blushes

NEWCASTLE United continued their pre-season program with a trip west to take on League One team Carlisle United but narrowly escaped defeat after Carlisle had surprisingly taken the lead with a poorly defended goal from Danny Livesey.

In a constantly interrupted second half Newcastle pushed for the equalizer and were rather fortunate to get it in injury time through Nobby Solano.

The equalizer saved the blushes for Newcastle’s 3,000 traveling fans.


Goalscorer Nobby Solano

The goal scorers from the 3-1 win over Hartlepool United, Michael Owen and Shola Ameobi, were both absent, and goalkeeper Shay Given was also omitted from the squad. But Geremi and James Milner – who both missed the first game – were scheduled to get an outing and they were both named among the substitutes.

Joey Barton was named captain for the day and it seemed strange that Charles N’Zogbia started at left back. Rozehnal and Ramage were paired in central defense. The game started with rain pouring down.

Newcastle started the game well and on six minutes Obafemi Martins had a good shot that was tipped wide by keeper Kieran Westwood. Newcastle pressed forward again on 22 minutes and Nicky Butt crossed to Barton who aimed a powerful header towards goal – but keeper Westwood was again equal to the test.

Two minutes later Martins dribbled his way nicely through – but his left-footed shot hit side netting. Five minutes before the break and 6’3″ Gateshead-born striker Andy Carroll hit a good shot just wide of the post – and the break arrived with the score still at 0-0.

Just 11 minutes had elapsed into the second half when a Michael Bridge-Wilkinson cross was headed firmly home by Danny Livesey – with Harper rooted to the spot. This gave Carlisle a surprising lead and the defending was not good by Newcastle.

The second half was constantly interrupted by substitutions on both sides – and this prevented either team from being able to get going – but Carlisle were playing well.

On 64 minutes Newcastle’s Geremi – who is an expert at free kicks – fired one in from 30 yards and it flashed just wide of the post. On 68 minutes there was an attempted pitch invasion by a couple of supporters – and this caused another delay in the game.

Newcastle struggled to get on even terms and they needed an injury-time goal from Nolberto Solano to salvage a draw. It was a momentary lapse at the back by Carlisle that allowed Solano to latch onto an Andy Carroll flick – and finish nicely with a neat right footed shot past keeper Kieran Westwood.

This saved some embarrassment for Newcastle and their 3,000 traveling fans.

Everybody got a game except James Milner who was not brought on – but this will give him a little extra rest before the next pre-season friendly against Celtic on Thursday evening. Solano, N’Zogbia and Carroll played the full game for Newcastle.

It was interesting that at the end of the game Newcastle had no fewer than eight youth team members from the last two seasons playing – Krul, Bertram, Francis, Troisi, Lough, Lua Lua, Huntington and Carroll. There was a good attendance of over 12,000 for the game.

While Newcastle fans will not be happy with the result – these games are exercises in giving players match practice and trying various combinations and set plays. As Sam stressed a week or two ago – he didn’t mind if he lost all the pre-season friendlies – the real test starts on August 11th at Bolton Wanderers.

Newcastle United: Harper (Krul), Carr (Bertram), Rozehnal (Huntington), Ramage (Francis), N’Zogbia, Dyer (Troisi), Barton (Lough), Solano, Butt (Geremi), Carroll, Martins (LuaLua).
Subs (not used): Milner, Forster.

Referee: Mike Pike
Attendance: 12,346

14 comments so far

  • James

    Jul 21, 2007 at 6:05 PM

    Comment #1

    oh dear ,what else is their to say

  • Ed Harrison

    Jul 21, 2007 at 6:10 PM

    Comment #2

    James – it’s not too bad – these games are just to try things out and give the lads a game for match practice – really wouldn’t read too much into this – other than a second badly defended goal let in.

  • Howie

    Jul 21, 2007 at 6:17 PM

    Comment #3

    We really need some height in the defence so am glad he isn’t going for Baines and Young. I think it is just what we needed because what would we have learned by winning the game 3 or 4 nil. Might wake up a few players and sure it is just about getting the fitness right for the start of the season. Good news with the Aussies getting knocked out. Viduka should be ready now for start of season.

  • Ed Harrison

    Jul 21, 2007 at 6:26 PM

    Comment #4

    Howie – yes I saw that – so think Sam was going to give Mark a little break – but he’ll be back soon – that’s good for us – but not for Australia.

  • Hammy

    Jul 21, 2007 at 7:19 PM

    Comment #5

    Did anybody see BSA on Sky Sports news……..I’m off to the betting shop to put some money on Dyer NOT being a toon player next season……..
    Showdown talks due early next week………Big Sam looking to sort things out once and for all. Any comments lads……..

  • DC

    Jul 21, 2007 at 10:31 PM

    Comment #6

    Not really ‘blushes’ when it was only a friendly. We may of played shite, but its just a friendly. I dont really care what the score was.. All their getting is there match fitness tbh.

  • Ross

    Jul 21, 2007 at 11:31 PM

    Comment #7

    i have to say, all the apparent fuss with any situation kieran dyer has apparently been involved in aside, i’d be a bit gutted if we lost him for this season.
    from reading a couple of seperate reports on both pre season games, he looks like he’s been playing surprisingly well. if the reports are accurate, then he’s looked quick, sharp, and in good shape.
    he’ll be an asset to us next season if he’s still in black and white, big sam gets the best out of his players, and in my view, kieran dyer is a player who has massive potential to offer

  • Phil

    Jul 21, 2007 at 11:51 PM

    Comment #8

    Some one told me Barton broke his metatarsil, any truth in that?

  • dingo

    Jul 22, 2007 at 12:12 AM

    Comment #9

    yeah Phil….. broken foot man ;[…… is this a sign of things to come…? there must be summink in the water.

  • dingo

    Jul 22, 2007 at 12:14 AM

    Comment #10

    anybody know how long he might be out for?

  • dingo

    Jul 22, 2007 at 12:24 AM

    Comment #11

    Joey will be out for 6-7 weeks.

  • Nevski

    Jul 22, 2007 at 5:52 AM

    Comment #12

    That’s what they’re reporting on

  • Ed Harrison

    Jul 22, 2007 at 8:14 AM

    Comment #13

    This is one time we hope is not correct – that would be terrible.

  • Obafan

    Jul 22, 2007 at 1:02 PM

    Comment #14

    I hope things are not continuing like the last couple of years; always injured players so we can’t create a squad who gel perfectly together, because we have to make changes every week.


You must log in to post a comment.