Newcastle United went down to a poor Spurs side tonight, in a dismal, disappointing and depressing display that lacked heart, skill, passion and just about everything else you may want to see in a football game.
Two second half goals on 62 minutes from impressive Pavlyuchenko with a great header (where was Coloccini or Taylor) and then a terrible giveaway goal from Coloccini was enough to give Tottenham a two goal cushion, before Owen fired home on 90 minutes when Spurs goalkeeper Gomes could also push away a cross straight into Michael’s path.
The killer punch was after 66 minutes when Coloccini had the ball in the left back position and passed inside to Taylor, who made less than a determined effort to get the ball and Jamie O’Hara dispossessed him and was clean through on goal and gave poor Shay Given no chance. It’s the type of goal you give away when you are not concentrating on the game.
The Newcastle side have some good players, there’s no doubt about that, but their heads are just not in these games, and it’s obvious what the reason is.
But they are professionals who get paid huge wages so it’s difficult to feel sorry for them.
The first half was quite even with very few chances but the game was being played very slowly by two sides determined not to give any silly goals away, but it was a dreary and dead match for the fans, who didn’t turn out in big numbers.
Probably the best way to sum up the first half was when the TC commentator, right at the beginning of the second half said:
“If you’ve just got in and missed the first half – congratulations”
The second half was better, but only because it was hard to get any worse, and it was anybody’s game to win. Then an innocuous cross on 62 minutes saw the Russian Pavlyuchenko lose his markers and head beautifully home – to make it look so easy.
Then four minutes later the mistake by Coloccini sealed Newcastle fate, and their fourth defeat in a row.
Damien Duff had had a good chance to put Newcastle ahead after 48 minutes, when he was brilliantly put through by Martins, but his right foot shot was just cleared off the line by Jonathan Woodgate.
But the first goal in this game was always going to be crucial and Newcastle tonight looked like a team in dire danger of relegation, if somebody doesn’t come to the rescue.
And where was owner Mike Ashley and the Newcastle Board of Directors while this shambles was taking place?
Nowhere to be seen – once again.
Newcastle United: Shay Given, Fabricio Coloccini, Claudio Cacapa, Steven Taylor, Sebastien Bassong, Charles N’Zogbia, Nicky Butt, Geremi, Damien Duff, Oba Martins, Michael Owen
Subs: Steve Harper, Xisco, Shola Ameobi, David Edgar, Ben Tozer, Ryan Donaldson, Mark Doninger
Tottenham Hotspur: THFC: Heurelho Gomes, Gareth Bale, Didier Zokora, Aaron Lennon, Jermaine Jenas, Roman Pavlyuchenko, Vedran Corluka, Jamie O’Hara, Ledley King, Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Jonathan Woodgate
Subs: David Bentley, Darren Bent, Gilberto, Luka Modric, Giovani dos Santos, Fraizer Campbell, Ceasr Sanchez