Newcastle did not play very well in the first half at home to Everton this afternoon, but the very worst thing that could happen was to have a player sent off, and that’s exactly what happened just before half time. 🙁
The last thing you want in as important a game as this is for Newcastle, is to be at a disadvantage, and after 44 minutes midfielder Kevin Nolan was given a straight red by referee Lee Mason, following an poor challenge on Victor Anichebe.
These referees have far too much of an impact on games in the Premier League these days, and so it was again today, as we will need to play the second half with just 10 men.
We don’t really have a suitable replacement for Nolan either, since Barton and Guthrie are both unfit, and we’ll have to rely on Geremi again, but the Cameroon International has played hopeless the last two times he has played for the side. Maybe Alan Smith will get a chance this afternoon too, and maybe Alan would be a better bet – and he certainly will be motivated and he’s a real fighter, that’s for sure.
So the lads are really up against it, and they haven’t played too well in the first 45 minutes with 11 men, never mind going down to 10 men for the final 45 minutes.
But this game is not over, and with the crowd behind the lads, we need another gutsy performance like we gave against Manchester City, when we were behind with 10 man, and actually scored two goals to go ahead before City equalized with just 4 minutes to go.
But there’s no doubt this will not be a huge test of Newcastle’s guts and character, to be able to get anything out of this game.
And of course Nolan will now miss the next 3 games, including the all important next game at his old club Bolton Wanderers. Nothing like shooting yourself in the foot is there?
Just before half time Ameobi had the ball in the net as referee Lee Mason ruled that Shola Ameobi had impeded Tim Howard as the of them challenged for a looping high ball inside the six-yard area.
But whenever the goalkeepers don’t get the high balls these days, the referees almost automatically think they must have been fouled, so the goal was disallowed for a foul by Shola, but it’s hard to see how he fouled the American goalkeeper.
You know, sometimes, goalkeepers actually miss balls they should get, and are not fouled.
Oh well, there’s room for some Newcastle heroes in the last 45 minutes.
Howay The Lads!!